Jacobs Pineda, Inc.
J1 - Jacobs Pineda, Inc.


  • Decodes 5.1 Dolby Digital/AC-3 (ATSC A/52)
  • Decodes MPEG layers 1 & 2 (ISO11172)
  • 20 bit stereo PCM output
  • Dolby Group A conformance.
  • Support for DVD and SPDIF
  • Supports DRAM sharing
  • Low cost three block architecture
  • Downmixes to Normal/Pro-Logic Stereo

The J1 is a core cell design of an application specific signal processor which performs both Dolby Digital/AC-3 and MPEG audio decompression in a single design. The J1 is capable of decoding all AC-3 bitstreams with full support for bitstreams encoded with 5.1 channels and data rates of up to 640kb/s. The J1 downmixing capability produces stereo output in either normal or Pro-Logic compatible modes, making it ideal for DVD and set-top applications. For MPEG operation, J1 produces stereo output from either MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 audio bitstreams. The J1 audio quality meets the highest standards, allowing it to be used for the most demanding audio applications. The 20-bit PCM output yields Dolby "Group A" performance for AC-3, and conforms to the highest audio quality level specified by ISO11172-4 for MPEG bitstreams.


In order to achive the lowest incremental cost for audio decoding, J1 has been designed for efficient integration with other functions, like MPEG video decoding or PC graphics controller functions. This level of integration is enabled by J1's glueless burst memory interface which allows the J1 to piggy back onto an internal memory bus and efficiently share DRAM memory with other functions. DRAM sharing allows on-chip RAM to be reduced by a factor of ten from what would otherwise be requried for the AC-3 and MPEG algorithms, thus minimizing cost. The burst memory interface is glueless, providing all memory addresses, and can be connected directly to a high speed memory bus without additional buffering. For efficient operation, all memory accesses are in blocks of 32 bytes, and J1 can tolerate latency inherent in shared memory systems. For non-integrated applications, the burst memory interface can be configured to directly address an on-chip SRAM.


Additional features are provided to support a wide variety of applications. For applications incorporating video, the J1 synchronization interface performs functions necessary for A/V synchronization with MPEG time stamps. For applications in automobiles or other noisy environments, the J1 core implements a dynamic range compression function which is compatible with Dolby Laboratories specifications. The J1 also provides stereo outputs which are ProLogic compatible. For DVD applications, the J1 provides PCM mode processing; with left, right, left+right (mono), volume control, and pass through modes. The J1 core also performs AC-3/MPEG framing necessary for interfacing to S/PDIF equipped external decoding devices. An optional output module provides the single wire S/PDIF serial output (See IEC 61937 standard). Other optional serial interface modules are available for I2C and 3-wire protocols.


The complete dual-standard J1 core is only 16-20K gates in size, and including ROM and RAM, requires a silicon area of less than 3mm2 in a 0.35u CMOS processes. Estimated size in 0.25u libraries is approximately 2mm2 .  While other designs incorporate multiple logic, RAM, and ROM blocks for various functions, the J1 uses only three blocks, one logic, one RAM, and one ROM, thereby minimizing inter-block routing overhead and silicon area. Because RAM is unified into a single block, the J1 is able to employ overlay techniques to reuse the RAM for multiple purposes, thus minimizing the number of bytes needed, and further reducing the silicon area. The J1 design incorporates all buffering and interface logic, so that it may be used in a wide variety of applications with no additional logic or buffering.


The J1 design kit is compatible with Synopsys and Verilog design methodology. J1 requires 0.35 micron or better technology, and is designed for synthesis with off-the-shelf gate array or standard cell ASIC libraries. Click here to find out more out the core cell design kit.


By combining the J1 core with the Jacobs Pineda, Inc. JDA1 Audio DAC/PLL core, and J5 3-D Processor, a complete audio decoding subsystem can be built for DVD applications, accepting AC-3/MPEG digital audio in, and producing analog and SPDIF outputs with a single clock source.


    Dolby Digital/AC-3 (Certified by Dolby Laboratories, Inc.)
    • Coding standard: ATSC A/52
    • Sampling rates: 48 kHz, 44.1 kHz, 32 kHz
    • Coding modes: 1+1, 1/0, 2/0, 3/0, 2/1, 3/1, 2/2, 3/2
    • Multi-channel down-mixing
    • Re-matrixing to preserve Dolby Prologic encoding
    • Conformance: Group A (20 bit)
    • Coding standard: ISO11172-3, layers 1,2
    • Sampling rates: 48 kHz, 44.1 kHz, 32 kHz
    • Conformance: Highest level (16 bit)
    • PCM modes for non-compressed audio data
    • Sampling rates: 48 kHz, 44.1 kHz, 32 kHz
    • I/O: 16-24 bit input PCM, 16-bit output PCM
    • Modes: PCM pass, Mono, Mono-L, Mono-R
    • Other mixing functions possible. All scale by PCM scale factor.
    • Frames compressed MPEG or AC-3 data into SPDIF stream.
    • Standards: ATSC/A52 Annex B. , IEC 1967
    • SPDIF Pass through modes now available for MP3/AAC

The J1 is designed to operate with a master clock rate of at least 66MHz.


The following diagram shows how the Jacobs Pineda, Inc. J1 and JDA1 core cells can be used to add MPEG/AC-3 audio decoding with analog output to an MPEG video decoder IC. In this application J1 interfaces directly to the shared SDRAM interface in order to minimize on-chip RAM. Further the JDA1 is clocked by the same 27MHz clock that clocks the video output circuitry.