Dec 8

QuickLogic Generations; How the ArcticLink III VX Compares and Contrasts to the ArcticLink II VX

For those who are avid readers of the QuickLogic HotSpots, the ArcticLink II VX (ALII) is a very familiar topic.  As the primary vehicle for our VEE and DPO technologies, the ALII has been used by OEMs such as Pantech, BenQ, Kyocera, and others.

But, like all things aimed at consumer technology, it must evolve, which is where our newest product platform, the ArcticLink III VX (ALIII), comes in.

As a first pass, let’s review some high-level specifications and how they’ve changed.

Interface Options:

The ALII offers 2 different interface options, the ALII VX2 (RGB-> RGB) and the ALII VX4 (MDDI -> RGB).   To address the interface needs of OEMs (which will be covered in a future blog), the ALIII will offer 13 different options, including

  • VX3; MIPI -> MIPI
  • VX6; MIPI -> MIPI & RGB

With significantly more options, the ALIII addresses interface needs of today’s and tomorrow’s smartphone and tablets.

Maximum Resolution Supported

The ALII supports up to WXGA, or 1366 x 768.  Frankly, that support is still good enough for all of today’s products.  However, we believe that future tablets, and perhaps even smartphones, will  exceed those spec’s.  We designed the ALIII with support to WUXGA, or 1920 x 1200.  This insures that the ALIII will support products for years to come.  To note: there are variants of the family which do address lower resolution applications, allowing customers to choose the best product for them.

Power Consumption

Due to its unique DPO HD+ power savings feature, the addition of the ALIII into any system will save an average of 20-25% of system power on average, making the ALIII a ‘power-negative’ device.  However, even with total system power savings, OEMs are concerned about the power consumption of the actual chip.  The ALIII significantly lowers that as compared to the ALII.

There are two ways to examine power consumption of the ALII vs ALIII, at the same resolution and at maximum resolution.

  • At the same resolution (1366 x 768), the ALII consumes 118mW, whereas the RGB -> MIPI version of the ALIII consumers only 25mW, a generational savings of 79%
  • At maximum resolution (1024 x 600 for the ALII VX4, 1920 x 1200 for the ALIII), the ALII consumes 123mW, whereas the RGB -> MIPI version consumes 52mW, a savings of 58%. That means that even if you grow your display resolution by 2.2X, we still consume 58% less power than before

It should be noted that the power consumption of the ALIII will change depending on the interfaces chosen – we’ll address that in a subsequent blog.

Package Size

Perhaps one of the most important things is package size.  No matter how good your chip is, no matter how it might benefit the user or OEM, if the package is too big, it won’t be used.  In keeping with that, we’ve reduced the 6 x 6mm size of the ALII by 44% to 4.5 x 4.5mm.

And finally…

The ALIII is intended to supplement, NOT replace, the ALII.  We will continue to actively sell and market the ALII alongside the ALIII.

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  1. jim - Dec 9, 2011 @ 10:03 am | Permalink

    Paul, as a further clarification, the slides from the FPD Tech Forum indicate mass production in Q2 of 2012. has mass production been pushed back to Q3 of 2012

    • Paul Karazuba
      Paul (QUICKBLOGGER) - Dec 9, 2011 @ 3:24 pm | Permalink

      I was a misprint in the FPD slides. Q3 is the official time, and is being corrected now.


  2. jim - Dec 8, 2011 @ 2:36 pm | Permalink

    Paul, thanks for the info. can i conclude that the new AL3 CSSP is complete, tested and ready to be sold or is there debugging still to be done. what are the potential issues as you move this product into mass prodcution

    • Paul Karazuba
      Paul (QUICKBLOGGER) - Dec 8, 2011 @ 4:22 pm | Permalink

      Hello Jim,

      Thanks for the comment. To say that the product is complete, tested, and ready to be sold is too aggressive right now. The ALIII will begin customer samples in Q1 2012, with mass production in Q3 2012. This product faces more or less the same issues that any semiconductor product faces with transitioning to mass production.

      Thanks, Paul


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