CARLSBAD, USA: MaxLinear Inc., a leading provider of integrated radio frequency (RF) and mixed-signal integrated circuits for broadband communication applications, announced that Hitron Technologies Inc., has selected the Maxlinear MxL261 digital cable multi-channel tuner-demodulator single-chip front end IC for a new DOCSIS® 3.0 cable modem.
Hitron’s CDA-30360 modem recently achieved certification from CableLabs. The CDA-30360 is a high-speed data cable modem designed using both the MxL261 and Intel Puma 5 chipset. The modem features both 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet and USB host interfaces for future webcam, printer server or NAS file server connectivity. The modem has advanced features including voice and video support, IPv6 addressing and DES/AES data encryption to ensure complete data privacy.
The MxL261 is based on MaxLinear’s low power digital CMOS process-based RF and mixed-signal technology. It is a single-die, global standards, digital cable front end with integrated splitter, two 100MHz wideband tuners, four QAM demodulators, and a four-channel wide IF output.
The MxL261 delivers ultra-low power at less than 175mW per channel in full eight-channel mode. The low power consumption and the power control flexibility of the chip enable compliance with Energy Star and the European Code of Conduct for Digital TV Services and Broadband Equipment for both standby and operating modes. The MxL261 die is mounted in a 7x7 mm, 48-pin QFN package.
“We are aggressively expanding our high-speed cable modem product line and we appreciate the flexibility that the MxL261 gives us to develop a common platform that supports our DOCSIS customers in the U.S. and our EuroDOCSIS customers in Europe,” said Jonathan Kao, director of Product Marketing of Hitron Technologies. “Even though it’s a significant effort to launch a DOCSIS 3.0 product with a brand new chip, we were confident of our performance and capabilities because of our experience with the quality of MaxLinear’s products.”
“This is a great design win, and it’s indicative of the value that the MxL261 brings to cable equipment providers who are looking for cost-effective, low power tuner solutions for DOCSIS products,” said Patrick Tierney, director of Product Line Marketing for MaxLinear, Inc. “The MxL261 is the only part on the market to offer a complete single-chip, front-end solution that combines wide-channel signal capture, QAM demodulation, flexible output and tight integration with Intel’s Puma5.”
Today’s generation of DOCSIS cable modems, embedded multimedia terminal adapters (EMTAs), cable gateways, and high-end set-top-boxes utilize eight downstream channels and four upstream channels (eight by four configuration). The MxL261’s four MPEG transport stream outputs, and wideband analog IF-output seamlessly connect to an Intel Puma5 DOCSIS SoC to efficiently capture eight DOCSIS downstream channels.
With a simple replacement of the current front end with the MxL261, OEMs may upgrade their field proven and widely deployed four-channel designs to eight-channel designs with minimal changes to hardware and software.