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  1. Technology
August 1, 1994


By CBR Staff Writer

IBM Corp has a single-chip MPEG-2 decoder device for the full-motion digital video market. This is the first in a family of MPEG-2 chips IBM plans to offer for the broadcast, computer and consumer electronics markets. It processes the compressed bit streams to allow high-quality video to be displayed on television or computer monitors. It decompresses either MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 digital video information in full compliance with the International Standards Organisation standard for MPEG-2, Main Profile at Main Level, at CCIR601 resolution. Device characteristics include about 1m transistors in an 8.1mm by 8.15mm die size, 1.0W and 3.3V. The device has an error concealment mechanism, which enables the decoder to maximise use of available good data. Multiple DRAM configurations for storing coded data, partially decoded pictures and reference pictures used for motion compensation are also supported. An advanced output filtering and display control permits handling of aspect ratio changes, image expansion in both horizontal and vertical directions, as well as direct connection to standard digital NTSC or PAL encoders. The on-screen display function provides for effective decoder use in the television set-top box environment. Samples in IBM’s 0.8 micron CMOS technology are available now at $98 for 1,000-up. Volume in 0.5 micron CMOS is set for fourth quarter.

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