Audio Codec Family Suits All TV Standards

By Dave Bursky, Editor

META AXD, a full audio IP platform developed by Imagination Technologies Group plc, delivers a complete multi-standard and multi-stream audio solution for Systemon- Chip (SoC) designs. The suite of codecs unveiled at the Embedded Systems Conference, now delivers a comprehensive suite of standards required for decoding and encoding of audio for digital TV and set-top box applications in all major geographies. Also included in the IP suite is a powerful processor capable of supporting the most demanding audio applications such as found in Blu-ray players.

Standards supported by the suite include AAC, HE-AAC v2, MPEG-2 BC, DTS, Dolby Digital, and Dolby Digital Plus. Additional audio standards supported by the codecs include Dolby Pro-Logic II post-processing plus stereo widening, EQ, re-sampler, reverb; as well as Musicam, MP3, HE-AAC v2 (including DAB+ transform), Real (Cook), WMA9, Ogg Vorbis, and FLAC stereo decoders.

The META AXD codec suite takes a new approach, applying multi-threaded processing to deliver industry leading performance in a shared memory, high-latency SoC environment. All audio processing in the SoC is off-loaded to the META AXD core, freeing valuable host processor resources for improving the user experience and delivering value-added applications. The AXD family, which includes AXD230 and AXD270, supports the latest audio standards, including MP3, HE AAC, WMA and surround sound up to 7.1 channels. The suite is delivered with codec and post-processing application-specific firmware packs which are managed entirely by the host driver software, minimizing system design and implementation complexity.

The IP blocks are complete solutions that enable both multi-stream and multi-standard decode, encode, pre-processing and post-processing of audio. Controlled via a host processor using the OpenMAX-IL, GStreamer or proprietary APIs, the AXD cores have been designed to operate from an SoC’s shared external memory resources, minimizing total solution cost. The META AXD IP platforms provide ‘drop–in’ support of audio for any SoC, with a wide range of application specific codec packs available together with a choice of control APIs to use on the system host processor. Licensees need not involve themselves in any aspect of the AXD firmware unless they wish to develop their own audio algorithms, for which comprehensive tools are also available. For more information, go to www.imgtec.com

Dave Bursky is a well-recognized pundit on electronic design. He is Senior Contributing Editor for Chip Design magazine and a frequent contributor to Embedded Intel Solutions magazine.