Video ICs support MHL interface standard

28th January 2014
Mick Elliott

L2Tek is selling new video ICs from Explore Microelectronics, a fabless semiconductor company based in Taiwan. Aimed at companies designing and manufacturing digital and analogue audio/video (AV) broadcast and switching equipment, the new EP9555E is a three-port low-power HDMI/MHL receiver with a video up/down scaler and CCIR 601/656 digital video output.

MHL (Mobile High-Definition Link) is a mobile audio/video interface standard that allows the connection of devices such as smartphones or tablets among many other devices – most commonly via a device’s micro-USB interface – to the HDMI port of a high-definition TV (HDTV) or AV receiver. The current industry standard MHL (MHL 2.0) supports resolutions up to 1080p HD resolution, while also being able to charge the connected device, although the most recently released specification (MHL 3.0) will include support for 4K (Ultra HD) formats.

Supporting video output up to 1080p at 60Hz, the new device is compliant with HDMI 1.4, MHL 2.0 and HDCP 1.4 specifications. The chip supports one HDMI/MHL dual-mode port and two MHL ports and also two-channel IIS and S/PDIF audio outputs. Integrated into the IC are equaliser switches, an HDMI/MHL core, an HDCP (High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection) engine, video scaler and EDID (Extended Display Identification Data) RAM in a single chip.

An on-chip video scaler is able to scale the input video up or down to any resolution within the range of 0.5 to 2X in both horizontal and vertical modes. This is useful for converting an EIA standard video to suit an LCD screen with a different resolution. The device also integrates an on-chip 8-bit MCU for HDMI/MHL/HDCP scaler control and CEC/RCP applications, enabling ease of use and negating the need to develop user firmware. Other features of the device include low power operation, and stand-by current of less than 1mA in power-down mode. It is available in a 128-pin LQFP package.

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