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Frontier Silicon launches next-generation unified receiver module

10th October 2008
ES Admin
Frontier Silicon has announced its latest generation of unified receiver modules. The Venice 7 module has been fully optimised to ensure the lowest levels of cost and power consumption while providing feature enhancements above Frontier’s current market leading Venice 5 DAB solution. Fully compliant with the Europe-wide Profile 1 requirements from WorldDMB and EBU, Venice 7 is designed as a drop-in replacement for existing Venice 5-based radios, instantly providing a 50 percent reduction in power consumption to enable the most power efficient digital radios ever.
Anthony Sethill, CEO, commented, “Because Frontier designs the silicon, module and software in-house, it enables all aspects of the solution to be developed in harmony. Venice 7 is powered by Frontier’s new leading-edge audio processor IC, Kino 3. This has resulted in the most cost-optimised multi-mode tuner module available today”.

The Venice 7 module will strengthen the growing DAB market in the UK while addressing the emerging digital radio markets including Australia, France, Germany and Italy, which are all planning major digital radio launches during the next 12 months.

WorldDMB announced Profile 1 last month to facilitate the rapid growth of digital radio across Europe by providing receiver manufactures with the economies-of-scale that result from a single Europe-wide marketplace. Profile 1 defines the required functionality for mass-market digital radio receivers that use the Eureka 147 family of digital broadcasting standards.

Venice 7 uses Frontier Silicon’s revolutionary new Kino 3 baseband processor chip, which utilises the most advanced semiconductor manufacturing process technology to enable the lowest power consumption. The chip integrates sufficient memory to support DAB, DAB+, DMB-A and FM without the need for additional cost of external SDRAM memory.

The Venice 7 module includes all interfaces necessary for a fully functional radio, needing only power supply, display, keypad, audio amplifier and speakers to complete a product.

When configured in master mode, Venice 7 can drive a number of different display options depending on the end product application and price point. Options range from a 128x64 full graphics display running Frontier’s enhanced 4-line user interfaces (UI), to a highly cost-competitive ultra-bright starburst display with a single line UI. The software provides full flexibility, giving radio manufactures a high degree of product differentiation through UI customization.

Venice 7 may also be configured in slave mode under the control of an external microprocessor for more complex audio systems such as AV receivers. In this instance, full-featured software application interface and host reference software is provided for seamless system integration.
Other software features include multi-language support, iPod docking with secondary display for artist and track name, power saving features, and an in-the-field firmware upgrade facility via USB. A fully-qualified radio platform including iPod docking support is also available with the newly introduced Jupiter 7 production-ready reference platform.

Compliance with World DMB’s Profile 1 specification for basic digital radio means that both the Venice 7 module and Jupiter 7 reference platform enable products that are interoperable throughout Europe and beyond, and also operate seamlessly with the rest of the digital audio world.

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