Silicon Proven Low-Jitter PLLs Target PC, Networking and Consumer
Applications, Include LockNow!TM
Technology for Low Power and Wireless Applications
LOS ALTOS, California - True Circuits, Inc. (TCI), a leading provider of
analog and mixed-signal intellectual property (IP) for the semiconductor and
systems industries, today announced the immediate availability of a line of
spread-spectrum and low-bandwidth Phase-Locked Loop (PLL) analog hard macros
with LockNow! technology.
True Circuits' low-jitter Spread Spectrum PLL allows the spread-spectrum
functionality to be included in the ASIC rather than requiring a separate
part on the system board, thus reducing manufacturing costs. It is designed
to multiply an input clock by an integer or fixed-point number with a
frequency spreading capability suitable for PC, networking and consumer
electronics applications that require spread-spectrum clock sources to
satisfy FCC requirements for RF emissions.
True Circuits' Low Bandwidth PLL is designed to address the problem of
excessive jitter from system clocks originating from lower-quality crystals.
This PLL design generates high-speed clocks required for processors and chip
interfaces that require low-jitter performance.
"We developed these high-performance PLLs to help circuit designers meet the
performance goals required by specialized product applications," noted Dr.
John Maneatis, True Circuits' President. "Our new Spread Spectrum and Low
Bandwidth PLLs are rich with features and are based on the same core
technology as our other low-jitter PLLs, including special circuitry that
allows for very fast locking with minimal frequency overshoot. We call this
circuitry LockNow! technology and now offer it on all True Circuits PLLs to
improve PLL lock times by two or more orders of magnitude."
True Circuits' Spread Spectrum PLL generates a spread-spectrum clock that
lowers EMI emissions from chips. It has completely adjustable bandwidth,
spreading rate, and spreading amount. While the actual spreading amount with
a particular setting can be difficult to control for most PLL designs, True
Circuits' design employs unique circuits to eliminate variability in the
actual spreading amounts. The Low Bandwidth PLL has adjustable bandwidth and
allows the designers to dial-in the desired amount of period jitter
filtering. The bandwidth is adjusted as a precise fraction of the reference
True Circuits' LockNow! Technology
True Circuits PLLs with LockNow! technology achieve lock in essentially
constant time at a particular output frequency independent of feedback
divider and bandwidth settings, regardless of the loop bandwidth for a given
output frequency, and add no additional frequency overshoot. Unlike
competing designs, LockNow! PLLs have no special modes that require external
control and no lurking failure mechanisms found only on the production line.
ASIC and SoC designers employing LockNow! PLLs can typically expect two or
more orders of magnitude improvement in lock times with the same level of
input period jitter rejection as before.
"True Circuits' continuous product improvements are driven by lab
experience, customer requirements and our unique understanding of the PLL
design problem", added Dr. Maneatis. "LockNow! technology is just one of the
many improvements that we have standardized into our entire family of PLL
designs and rolled out to our customers over the last few years. In this
case, LockNow! technology was developed for customers with fast start-up
time requirements, usually stemming from low-power designs which power down
the PLL when not active. However, as there is no tradeoff with LockNow!
technology, all our PLL customers will benefit from this significant
Pricing and Availability
True Circuits PLLs with LockNow! technology are available for immediate
customer delivery. The hard macros are available for a per use license fee
with no royalty fees. The license fee includes integration support from TCI
to ensure a successful customer tape out. The deliverables include GDSII and
LVS Spice netlists, Verilog and synthesis models, Library Exchange Format
(LEF) files and extensive user documentation.
About True Circuits PLLs
True Circuits offers a family of standardized PLL designs-clock generator,
deskew, low-bandwidth and spread-spectrum PLLs-that spans nearly all
performance points and features typically requested by ASIC designers. The
designs are available for immediate delivery in a range of frequencies,
multiplication factors and functions in CMOS processes from 0.25 to 0.09
micron and foundries such as TSMC and UMC.
About True Circuits
Founded in 1998, True Circuits, Inc. develops and markets a broad range of
PLLs and other mixed-signal designs for ICs for the semiconductor, systems
and electronics industries. TCI's reputation is built on providing quality
standardized and full-custom PLLs and other mixed-signal designs to the
world's most demanding customers. TCI's robust state-of-the-art circuits,
methodical and proven design strategy, and its close association with the
world's leading silicon fabrication vendors, allow it to produce new and
innovative designs in a variety of advanced process technologies quickly and
True Circuits is headquartered at 4962 El Camino Real, Suite 206,
Los Altos, Calif. 94022 and can be found on the web at
www.truecircuits.com. Product inquiries can be made by calling the
company directly at (650) 691-2500 or via e-mail at