APIX3 ecosystem expanded with HDMI-APIX3 converter

11th February 2021
Alex Lynn

Inova Semiconductors has expanded its APIX3 ecosystem with a compact HDMI-APIX3 converter from partner company ARRK Engineering. APIX3 (Automotive Pixel Link) is a multichannel serialiser/deserialiser for high-resolution video applications in motor vehicles.

The debice is used in particular in modern infotainment and driver assistance systems (ADAS) and can simultaneously set up multiple display connections with a bandwidth of up to 12 Gbit/s and supports HD as well as Ultra HD displays.

The converter, developed by ARRK Engineering, allows the convenient display of video signals from any HDMI source on APIX3-compatible automotive displays. In addition, the converter features flexible firmware that enables easy analysis of APIX3 displays as well as uncomplicated debugging of the component. Both image and control data can be transmitted. The resolution of the HDMI interface can be adjusted automatically or manually to the respective APIX3 display. A complex control unit can be simulated by integrating driver functions. It is also possible to receive and evaluate MII Ethernet data.

"Inova is committed to continuously expanding the APIX3 ecosystem and therefore works closely with its partners," said Markus Römer, Manager Field Application at Inova Semiconductors. "The new HDMI-APIX3 converter from ARRK Engineering is another component in the APIX3 portfolio. It supports system developers as well as vehicle manufacturers in the development, validation and release of complex APIX3-networked infotainment solutions."

The HDMI-APIX3 converter features a compact design with dimensions of 105x46x80mm and a low weight of 250g. On the front there is one interface each for the USB, Ethernet and HDMI connection. The back allows the connection of the APIX3 component to be tested, a supply voltage of 12 VDC and an exchangeable SD card. The power consumption of the converter is 2.7W.

The integrated microcontroller controls all important functions of the APIX3 converter. For example, it coordinates the display data channel of the HDMI interface so that the video data is sent in the format for the connected display. This means that the resolution of the HDMI interface can be adjusted at any time during runtime. This makes it easy to play back the desired image content on the display device in order to carry out extensive tests and analyses.

There are many possible uses for the HDMI-APIX3 converter. In display development, it is suitable both as a general measurement technology and video source and, for example, for the durability testing of displays. It is also used when it comes to the uncomplicated review of new concept ideas from an OEM, rapid prototyping or targeted HMI development that is to be precisely adapted to the respective application environment. Since the HDMI-APIX3 converter is downward compatible with the APIX2 interface, it can also be used with displays of the previous generation.

"This video converter has already been used hundreds of times by customers and is the result of a close and long-standing cooperation with Inova and our customers," explained Kai Walz, Group Leader of Electronics Product Development at ARRK Engineering. "We are always pleased when our customers surprise us with new use cases that we hadn't even thought of, and we are happy to make customer-specific adjustments if necessary."

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