Epson shipping samples of a 32-bit microcontroller with dedicated sound hardware

Seiko Epson Corporation (TSE: 6724, "Epson") has begun shipping samples of the S1C31D50, a 32-bit microcontroller with dedicated sound hardware for 2-channel sound. Epson plans to produce 200,000 units per month of each model.

Sound is becoming an increasingly popular feature in home electronics, remote controllers for home appliances, industrial devices, health and fitness equipment with guidance systems, and alarms in office buildings, shopping complexes, and factories. This MCU is ideal for all these applications. An ARM® Cortex®-M0+ processor integrated with a dedicated HW Processor provides 2-channel sound on a single MCU chip. The use of two channels enables music and voice to be played simultaneously, lending audio guidance greater elegance and warmth. Voice speed can also be flexibly adjusted.

The MCU’s dedicated HW Processor sound hardware boasts a pair of special features. First, the HW Processor plays sound without requiring CPU resources, so CPU resources can be allocated to other processes even during sound playback. The use of a high-compression algorithm (16 kbps @ 16 kHz) shrinks the size of sound data memory, making it possible to provide a large amount of sound data and sound data in multiple languages. Epson also offers a PC tool that provides a development environment for easily creating sound data in Japanese, English, Chinese, and Korean without studio recording. 
Second, the MPU also has a self-memory check function that can detect failures in built-in RAM, built-in Flash, and external SPI-Flash memories without using CPU resources.

Epson is committed to helping its customers improve the performance of their products with solutions that leverage Epson’s efficient, compact, and precision technologies.

* A processor designed by U.K-based ARM Limited, the ARM® Cortex®-M0+ is ARM’s most energy-efficient processor and by far the most widely used processor in the market.
ARM and Cortex are registered trademarks of ARM Limited (or its subsidiaries) in the EU and other countries. All rights reserved.

Key Product Features

1. Dedicated hardware block for independently executing functions. The HW Processor executes the following functions without using CPU resources:

Sound play processing

  • 2-channel mixing sound (for playing background music + voice)
  • Voice speed conversion (playback speed adjustable in 5% increments between 75% and 125%)
  • The sampling rate of 15.625 kHz is high enough for background music as well as voice.
  • High-compression voice decoding algorithm with high sound quality (16/24/32/40 kbps)

Self-memory check function

  • Built-in RAM (R/W check, MARCH-C START)
  • Built-in Flash checksum, CRC
  • External QSPI-Flash checksum, CRC

Simple HW Processor interface

  • Just set functions and commands in the special register and then start

2. Easily add voice later

  • Sound data is easily added simply by writing the sound data and sentence information (sound data number and joining information)

3. Development environment

Epson sound creation PC tool

  • Studio recording is not needed. Simply use the PC tool to create all the sound data you need (languages supported: Japanese, English, Mandarin Chinese, Korean)
  • Sound data, which is assigned a number in the PC tool, can be played back by specifying the assigned number in the HW processor register, so there is no need to create and evaluate codes for linking sound data, etc.
  • Your WAV format sound data is easily imported into the PC tool

Notes

1. Please see the website below for further details about the S1C31D50 and the rest of the products in the S1C31 series (the S1C31D50, S1C31D01, and S1C31W74).
global.epson.com/products_and_drivers/semicon/products/micro_controller/armcore/index.html

2. Further details about the 16-bit S1C17 series are available on the following website:
global.epson.com/products_and_drivers/semicon/products/micro_controller/16bit/

About Epson
Epson is a global technology leader dedicated to connecting people, things and information with its original efficient, compact and precision technologies. With a lineup that ranges from inkjet printers and digital printing systems to 3LCD projectors, watches and industrial robots, the company is focused on driving innovations and exceeding customer expectations in inkjet, visual communications, wearables and robotics.
Led by the Japan-based Seiko Epson Corporation, the Epson Group comprises more than 76,000 employees in 87 companies around the world, and is proud of its contributions to the communities in which it operates and its ongoing efforts to reduce environmental impacts.
global.epson.com/ 

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RFS to showcase advanced antenna solutions to simplify the evolution to 5G at MWC 2018

Radio Frequency Systems (RFS), a global designer and manufacturer of total-package solutions for wireless and broadcast infrastructure, will be showcasing three new antenna product lines at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2018 to help streamline the evolution to 5G. 

As operators continue to invest in new hardware as a means of keeping pace with growing capacity demands, it’s become all the more important to introduce high performing infrastructure designed for today’s complex macro-environment. RFS CEO, Herbert Merz commented, “To help address this and satisfy our customers, we have extended our product range looking at the specific challenges operators face with LTE-A and 5G infrastructure and designing an innovative portfolio to solve these, driving further efficiency and reducing Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) for existing and next-generation network deployments. 

MWC will see RFS showcase three flagship products:

• Active Passive Antenna

RFS is introducing the first Active Passive Antenna (APA) with interleaved radiating layers for 3.5GHz mMIMO. As a key enabler of 5G, mMIMO systems will be used on both small cell and macro sites, however, operators face the challenge of deploying the infrastructure to support this on crowded cell sites. RFS will exhibit a prototype APA at MWC and demonstrate how it solves many of the technical and economic challenges operators face with mMIMO on LTE-A and 5G networks.  

• Multi-band Antennas

Revealed for the first time at MWC will be RFS’s new multi-band antenna range to support the newly reallocated L band for LTE applications. This new product range holds the greatest potential for operators as it not only allows the addition of the 1.4GHz band, but has an evolution path to support 3.5GHz and 2.3GHz TDD applications. 

The design features and capabilities of the high-performance, multi-band platform allow operators to expand capacity and coverage, as well as integrating new frequencies, delivering a product that not only supports the frequencies of today but can easily adapt to integrate the next-generation frequencies as networks evolve. 

• Microwave Antenna Systems

To offer a more efficient microwave backhaul solution to meet the needs of growing 4G, and 5G networks, RFS will demonstrate its new Dual Band Microwave Antenna system which combines two frequency bands into a single antenna. RFS’s Dual Band system provides benefits both on reducing CAPEX due to lower transportation and installation costs; and on savings OPEX due to a reduction in tower leasing costs. 

RFS will also be showcasing an expansion of its existing SerenityLine family of microwave antennas, built to meet ETSI Class 4 standard to increase the link capacity of a network by deploying new microwave links where high levels of interference are present; to help mobile operators satisfying their customer connection expectations.

Alongside the above newly developed products, RFS will be discussing its broader portfolio of end-to-end solutions for indoor and outdoor capacity extension and network densification with small cells, uniquely positioning RFS as a full-service strategic partner to operators and OEMs. 

A range of demos and solutions will be showcased on hospitality stand 2LV24, Hall 2. To set up a meeting at MWC 2018 with RFS to discuss the evolution from 4G to 5G and how RFS can help, contact Véronique De Fournoux: veronique.de_fournoux@rfsworld.com 

Trademarks: RFS® is a registered trademark of Radio Frequency Systems. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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RFS and Blue Danube Systems Announce First Active Passive Antenna (APA)

RFS and Blue Danube have demonstrated the first Active Passive Antenna (APA) that combines a 96 element Hybrid Massive MIMO antenna for mid band frequencies (1700-2300 MHz) and a low band passive antenna for low band frequencies (600-900 MHz). Outdoor testing results confirm APA performance is uncompromised by the integration.  Several variants have been tested, with gains over 23 dBi gain in the mid band active antenna and 17 dBi in the low band passive antenna. The first commercial system trial will begin in March. The APA supports todays LTE 4G systems and is upgradeable to 5G. The product will be showcased at Mobile World Congress in both the RFS and Blue Danube booths. The APA is contained in one panel and does not increase the site antenna counts. The system provides increased capacity while reducing the OPEX of a multiple antenna solution. 

“Wireless networks must address not only future capacity but existing tower top and siting challenges. Massive MIMO offers significant gains in wireless data rates,” said Mihai Banu, CTO at Blue Danube. “By combining Massive MIMO with a passive low band we are providing operators a flexible solution for site implementation.”

“RFS provides a full range of antenna solutions for the Wireless industry. We are proud to announce the APA as an extension to our product line. APA is a major technical enabler for the evolution of 4G and 5G networks as it simplifies adding and deploying Massive MIMO systems on existing crowded macro sites,” said André Doll, CTO at RFS. “RFS will continue to innovate in this integration of passive and active antennas to bring solutions to our customers.”

As network demand grows, operators have to rely on acquiring more sites, obtaining additional spectrum and deploying multiple frequency bands. This results in a shift towards complex multiband passive antennas to reduce OPEX and meet zoning and environmental regulations. With the introduction of Massive MIMO active antennas for 4G LTE today and 5G in the future, a new dimension of complexity is added to existing deployments.  By integrating Massive MIMO systems with passive antennas into an APA, a number of potential issues can be solved. APA’s do not increase the site antenna counts with a minimal size increase to reduce visual impact and wind loading.  APA’s also help solve some technical challenges faced by Massive MIMO radios such as thermal dissipation and number of RF connections. All of these will ease and reduce site negotiations and its related OPEX and CAPEX.

Trademarks: RFS® is a registered trademark of Radio Frequency Systems. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

About Blue Danube Systems
Blue Danube Systems is a privately held start-up backed by Sequoia Capital and Silver Lake along with other investors including AT&T. Blue Danube’s unique, award-winning technology combines intelligent software and hardware into a Massive MIMO solution that enables a significant increase in network capacity, utilizing existing infrastructure and today’s mobile devices. For more information, please visit www.bluedanube.com

Blue Danube Participation at Mobile World Congress 2018 
Blue Danube will have representatives at Mobile World Congress from February 26 through March 1n Barcelona. Blue Danube can be found in Hall 2, hospitality stand 2L10

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RFS Announces Development of Dual Band Microwave Antenna Solutions

Radio Frequency Systems (RFS), a global designer and manufacturer of total-package solutions for wireless and broadcast infrastructure, today announced it has developed a new dual band antenna solution to enable mobile operators to keep up with increasing capacity demands, better utilize available spectrum, reduce installation costs, and cut down on tower leasing fees. 

RFS will offer compact 1ft and 2ft dual band solutions to support a traditional frequency band plus the higher frequency E-Band from a single antenna. The ability to combine a low frequency band that has good propagation properties and the higher frequency with greater capacity will allow carriers to leverage the benefits of both bands – supporting higher capacities and broader availability over longer distances. 

Carrier aggregation with a single dual band antenna has been demonstrated to reduce total cost of ownership (TCO) and result in CAPEX/OPEX savings by minimizing transportation needs, installation time, and tower loading and rental fees.

“We’ve seen how significantly the buildout of LTE has already driven the need for more mobile network capacity and that demand is only going to become greater with the advent of 5G,” said Benoît Bled, global product line manager, RFS. “As a leader in microwave technology, RFS is committed to product innovation and looking ahead to simplify network evolution. The availability of dual band antenna options will allow us to best support our customers’ future needs to increase capacity, while providing maximum savings for them.”

RFS will unveil the first of its multiple dual band offerings –- a 2ft antenna that supports both E- band and 23 Ghz frequencies –- in Booth 2LV24, Hall 2. at Mobile World Congress Barcelona taking place February 26-March 1, 2018. 

Trademarks: RFS® is a registered trademark of Radio Frequency Systems. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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RFS takes active steps to address 5G infrastructure challenges with APA

Radio Frequency Systems (RFS), a global designer and manufacturer of total-package solutions for wireless and broadcast infrastructure, today announced its new Active Passive Antenna (APA) system. Designed to help operators overcome the technical and economic challenges associated with the evolution to 5G, and continued network modernization in relation to LTE-Advanced, RFS’ APA system will be demonstrated for the first time at Mobile World Congress 2018.

The new APA system uniquely interleaves a 5G active antenna with a passive base station antenna under the same radome. It is being developed in response to operator demand to combine the antennas for 3.5GHz mMIMO with existing passive systems, thereby addressing the significant challenge they face in relation to cell site restraints when looking to deploy new active antennas in dense urban areas.

RFS’ interleaved APA system has a number of benefits:
 

  • Simplifies the evolution to 5G, allowing operators to easily deploy active antennas and thereby introduce support for new spectrum bands to existing macro sites without needing to increase the overall antenna count per sector (and minimizing visual impact).
  • Lowers Total Cost of Ownership due to shared chassis and RF components between the two antenna systems and reduced windload.
  • More efficiently tackles the common heat dissipation issue associated with active antenna technology. RFS’ APA system takes advantage of the design and housing of the existing passive antenna to act as the heat exchange for the active antenna, driving efficiency, increasing reliability and reducing overall weight by downsizing the bulky heatsinks that are typically needed.

“Operators will have many different options for deploying 5G active antennas, but for dense urban locations where space is a considerable issue, APA technology is a very efficient approach,” said Herbert Merz, CEO at RFS. “Investment into infrastructure is going to grow considerably with 5G and so will deployment complexity. This new approach will help to streamline that evolution.”

The APA is effectively a two-in-one system housed in a form factor that’s the same size as the systems operators have already deployed. By interleaving the two antennas using RFS’ longstanding heritage and expertise, it’s been able to minimize distortion while ensuring consistent high performance of both systems. For operators, APA technology will therefore allow them to prepare for 5G’s evolution while also improving their 4G and LTE-A networks to support ever-increasing demand for capacity.

Trademarks: RFS® is a registered trademark of Radio Frequency Systems. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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RFS Announces Additions to Class 4 Microwave Antenna Line to Increase Link Capacity in High-Density Environments

Radio Frequency Systems (RFS), a global designer and manufacturer of total-package solutions for wireless and broadcast infrastructure, today announced the availability of 1ft and 2ft antennas with higher performance radiation characteristics according to ETSI EN 202217 Class 4 standards.  The company’s SerenityLineTM family of Class 4 microwave antennas continue to provide the market’s best RF performance and allow mobile operators to increase the link capacity of a network by deploying new microwave links where high levels of interference are present. 

While RFS’ high quality ETSI Class 3 antennas are sufficient for most of today’s network scenarios, Class 4 antennas will allow RFS customers to offer the highest performance in even the most congested environments. The higher side lobe suppression of SerenityLine antennas supports networks in ultra-dense areas and enables earlier reuse of frequencies. The lower interference increases the carrier-to-interference-ratio and allows smaller antennas with better link throughput, reducing tower leasing fees. The lower interference also enables higher modulation schemes, increasing the data capacity per antenna.

The lightweight, easy-to-install 1ft and 2ft SerenityLine antennas minimize the total cost of ownership by improving network efficiency, facilitating better re-use of a frequency channel, and decreasing installation expenses. The latest offerings are available in both single (SL) and dual polarization (SLX) versions.

“At RFS, we pride ourselves on offering a complete portfolio of high quality, innovative microwave products that not only address the requirements that operators and system integrators have today, but also well-positions them for the future,” said Benoit Bled, Product Line Manager, Microwave Antenna Systems, RFS. “Our SerenityLine antennas have a flexible feed design, better radiation performance, and allow for in-field updates so our customers can make the most of the limited spectrum they have available and embrace next generation radio by easily upgrading from single to dual polarization in the field.”

In addition to its antennas, RFS provides a complete, end-to-end microwave product portfolio, including elliptical waveguides, connectors, components and accessories to support wireless network deployments and upgrades. 

Trademarks: RFS® is a registered trademark of Radio Frequency Systems. ShareLite™ is a trademark of Radio Frequency Systems. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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RFS Introduces New Three-column Multi-Band Antennas Supporting the 1.4GHz Frequency Band for LTE Applications

Radio Frequency Systems (RFS), a global designer and manufacturer of cable, antenna and tower systems providing total-package solutions for wireless and broadcast infrastructure, today announced the availability of a three-column antenna configuration to support the L-band (1.4GHz). This antenna family is particularly critical as the 1.4GHz band continues to be reallocated from satellite communications to LTE applications. RFS’ three-column platform is also ready to host additional bands such as 3.5GHz and 5GHz. Newly licensed frequencies have the potential to provide today’s mobile operators with much-needed capacity support for continually growing mobile network traffic.  

RFS’ three-column platform allows the addition of 1.4GHz band support alongside legacy low (694-960MHz) and high (1695-2690MHz) frequency bands without the need for any internal or external diplexing and will continue enabling MIMO 4×4 in these bands while offering high gain on all bands. The innovative ultra-wide band (1400-2690MHz) antenna design and latest features provide the best trade-off between gain and vertical and horizontal patterns from a single antenna, and is ideal for adding capacity and coverage to existing sites and integrating new frequency bands.

RFS takes a building block approach to antenna development, efficiently tailoring existing and trusted platforms to serve as the foundation for future-proof new solutions. The three-column platform will allow the evolution up to 16-ports on a single antenna without any diplexing required. This platform gives operators the flexibility to deploy multiple radio technologies with several frequency bands and 4-way MIMO on one 50 cm (19.7 in)-wide antenna with best-in-class wind-load and PIM performances.

“RFS is a technology innovator committed to providing our customers around the world with the most flexible, high-performance and cost effective platforms that will enable them to support the frequencies of today – and easily integrate the next-generation frequencies of tomorrow,” said Laurent Cruchant, Vice President Antennas Business Unit, RFS.  “We understand the unrelenting network capacity demands that mobile operators face and the importance of supporting all low, high and middle band frequencies from a single antenna platform.” 

RFS’ flexible three-column platform achieves the optimal tradeoff between RF performance and mechanical constraint, providing MIMO-enabling features (Port-to-port isolation, cross polar discrimination, squint) at the highest market standards. It is designed for low wind-load to minimize tower loading, as it is comparable in size to available dual-band antennas but it adds a third antenna path. Its 4.3-10 connector interface supports future-proof multi-band antenna deployments with optimized PIM stability.

RFS will debut its 10-port and 16-port three-column antenna models supporting 1.4GHz band in Booth 2LV24, Hall 2. at Mobile World Congress Barcelona taking place February 26-March 1, 2018. 

Trademarks: RFS® is a registered trademark of Radio Frequency Systems. ShareLite™ is a trademark of Radio Frequency Systems. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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Avnet Silica Opens Registration for European MiniZed SpeedWay Design Workshop Series

Avnet Silica, an Avnet company (NYSE: AVT), today announced that registration is now open for a series of interactive SpeedWay Design Workshopsto help engineers jump-start the development of single-core Xilinx® Zynq®-7000 All Programmable SoC devices using the Avnet MiniZed Zynq SoC development kit, a cost-optimized prototyping platform for embedded vision and Industrial IoT systems. These one-day instructional programs, hosted by Avnet Silica across Europe, will train customers on the latest design flows using Xilinx’s Vivado® Design Suite through a mix of lecture and interactive labs.

Avnet’s MiniZed Zynq SoC development kit showcases the power of the single-core Xilinx® Zynq®-7000 All Programmable SoC devices, which feature a single-core ARM® Cortex-A9 processor paired with 28nm Artix®-7 based programmable logic. MiniZed features on-board connectivity through USB, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth and a compact design that is small enough to fit into a shirt pocket. Peripherals can be plugged into dual Pmod-compatible connectors, the Arduino-compatible shield interface or the USB 2.0 host interface. Workshop attendees will have the opportunity to integrate the HTU21D peripheral module from TE Connectivity (TE), a global leader in connectivity and sensor solutions, and explore the results through the interactive lab sessions.

For designers new to Xilinx SoC technology and tools, or those looking to brush up their skills, Avnet Silica will offer two introductory courses: Developing Zynq Hardware and Developing Zynq Software. More experienced designers can choose from two advanced course offerings: Integrating Sensors on MiniZed with PetaLinux and A Practical Guide to Getting Started with Xilinx SDSoC development environment.

“Avnet’s MiniZed SpeedWay Design Workshops teach developers the basics of both hardware and software integration using the MiniZed platform,” said Jim Beneke, vice president, engineering and technology, Avnet. “With this training, engineers will have the technology, tools and design expertise they need to more quickly capture the benefits of the single-core Xilinx Zynq-7000 All Programmable SoC, which is one of the industry’s most flexible, scalable and secure platforms for cost-sensitive as well as high-performance applications.”

For more details about the SpeedWay Design Workshops™  as well as dates, locations and registration visit www.avnet-silica.com/speedways.

Visit the www.minized.org site for MiniZed development kit tutorials and to join the MiniZed community where users can collaborate with other engineers also working on Zynq designs.

TE Connectivity, TE and EVERY CONNECTION COUNTS are trademarks. All brands and trade names are trademarks or registered trademarks, and are the properties of their respective owners. Avnet disclaims any proprietary interest in marks other than its own.

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