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April 18, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 12:33pm


By CBR Staff Writer

The Sunnyvale, California-based Philips Semiconductors Inc arm of Philips Electronics NV has been talking up its TriMedia TM-1000 multimedia microprocessor. The TriMedia processor is designed for multimedia applications in consumer electronics and personal computers, and uses Very Long Instruction Word technology, and a companion scheduling C compiler. The company has released performance data for the TM-1000 and claims it demonstrates the power and flexibility of the TriMedia processor in applications such as video encode, decode, video telephony and communications. The part is claimed to provide the power of multiple signal processors with the flexibility and ease of programming of a general-purpose processor. Philips claims running MPEG-2 code or decode with full Digital Video Disk uses 74% of available processor performance at 100MHz, just 51% at 133MHz. The figures for Dolby Digital AC3 with six channels are 26% and 21%, with two channels, 19% and 15%. The 133MHz figures are extrapolated from 100MHz ones using cycle-accurate simulations. H.324 Videophone with full options at 15 frames per second uses 89% of a 100MHz processor. Here, extrapolations for 133MHz do not work, so there are no figures for the 133MHz – parts aren’t yet ready. Philips claims the TM-1000 achieves these performances with relatively slow clock rates because of its Very Long Instruction Word CPU core, which is designed to process five instructions with each clock cycle, enabling it to process up to 4bn operations per cycle. Separately, Communication Intelligence Corp signed for Philips to install its handwriting recognition software on Philips’s chips.

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