Next-generation Bluetooth LE Audio codec IP

January 15, 2020 //By Jean-Pierre Joosting
Next-generation Bluetooth LE Audio codec IP
Synopsys has collaborated with Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits (IIS) to release an implementation of the next-generation Bluetooth LE Audio Low Complexity Communication Codec (LC3).

The new codec is designed to be compliant with the upcoming Bluetooth LC3 audio codec specification and is optimized to deliver high-quality audio and voice playback in battery-powered devices incorporating DesignWare® ARC® EM DSP and HS DSP processor IP.

The LC3 codec is an important feature of Bluetooth LE Audio, the soon-to-be-released next-generation audio standard defined by the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) that enables system-on-chip (SoC) designers to efficiently implement high-quality voice and audio streaming in a wide range of applications, including mobile, wearables, and home automation. The LC3 codec for ARC processors is based on an implementation by Fraunhofer IIS that is designed to meet Bluetooth SIG requirements. The new LC3 codec, running on ARC EM and HS DSP processors, allows designers to rapidly integrate a complete, pre-verified hardware and software solution for voice and speech processing into Bluetooth-enabled devices requiring minimal energy consumption.

"The rapid growth of wearable devices requiring high-quality Bluetooth audio streaming is driving the need for power-efficient processor IP with DSP capabilities that can meet intensive computation requirements of voice and audio applications. Those applications require an optimized codec providing state-of-the art voice and audio quality at minimum computational complexity. The LC3 codec is designed exactly like that," said Manfred Lutzky, head of Audio for Communications at Fraunhofer IIS. "By porting the LC3 codec to the DSP-enhanced ARC processors, Synopsys is enabling customers to quickly implement LC3 codec functionality in their low-power SoCs."

"The fact that the LC3 codec can provide very high-quality audio even at low bit rates makes it a key feature of the upcoming LE Audio standard," said Mark Powell, chief executive officer of the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG).

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