Global semiconductors specialist and a pioneer in ICs for audio processing, STMicroelectronics Pty Ltd has introduced the world’s first audio processor to incorporate the innovative HDR (High Dynamic Range) audio signal acquisition technology.
Audio processors are key components of home systems such as active speakers, docking stations, and digital media players. ST’s highly integrated device, the STA311B audio processor combines all the leading-edge audio processing technologies into a powerful, flexible, and easy-to-use solution, making it ideal for a wide range of home systems, from entry-level to high-end equipment.
Andrea Onetti, General Manager Analog and Audio Systems Division, STMicroelectronics says the unprecedented combination of performance and flexibility built into the STA311B allows users to simultaneously reduce their costs and improve their customers’ listening experience.
HDR signal acquisition allows digital signals with a dynamic range exceeding 130dB to be generated without the need for expensive, high-performance ADCs (Analogue-to-Digital Converters). ST’s patent pending technique allows the STA311B to process sounds as low as a whisper or as high as jet engine noise with the same degree of clarity, delivering excellent audio quality.
Key features of the STA311B audio processors include eight audio processing channels with up to 10 independent user-selectable biquadratic filters per channel; input and output mixing capabilities; multi-band dynamic range compression; advanced pop-free operation; auto-detection of input sampling frequency; input and output (pre- and post-processing) RMS metering; ST’s proprietary FFXTM Pulse Width Modulation technology; and HDR acquisition inputs.
All these features in a single compact 8.0x8.0x0.9mm VFQFPN package allow audio equipment and subsystem manufacturers to reduce costs by developing multiple products based on the same design.
The STA311B’s input/output RMS metering function enhances safety levels by allowing the application to suppress unwanted energy surges that could potentially damage the speakers. The STA311B’s pop-free circuitry also enables a seamless start-up, eliminating unwanted noise due to the bridge charge sequence in both Single-End and Bridge-Tied Load configurations.
Part of the Sound Terminal product family, the STA311B is fully supported by ST’s free APWorkbench software development tool that allows all ST audio products to be configured via an intuitive, user-friendly graphical interface.