National Semiconductor Introduces Lowest-Power, Easy-to-Use Cable Extender Chipset

Proprietary BiCMOS Technology Enables Data Transfers Over a Wide Range of Cables Up to 400 Meters

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - February 26, 2007 - National Semiconductor Corporation (NYSE:NSM), a leading supplier of high-performance analog signal-path products, today introduced the industry's lowest power cable extender chipset that boosts the reach of 0.15 Gbps to 1.5 Gbps LVDS, LVPECL, and CML signals up to 400 meters over copper cable with only 360 mW power consumption. National built this easy-to-use chipset with its proprietary silicon-germanium (SiGe) BiCMOS-8 process technology, which provides the highest performance-to-power ratios for high-speed interface devices.

National's innovative DS15BA101 and DS15EA101 cable extender chipset extends serial data streams from serializer/deserializer (SerDes) and field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) over CAT5 and coaxial cable at up to half the cost of fiber optic solutions. Previously, LVDS/LVPECL/CML signals were limited to less than 20 meters of cable. Engineers have been seeking an easy way to bridge longer distances over low-cost copper cables, and National's cable extender chipset and complete reference design now gives them the flexibility to easily extend that reach for remote cameras and displays, remote radio head (RRH) base stations, high-speed test equipment, industrial machine vision systems and many other industrial-grade applications.

Complete Reference Design
The DriveCable002EVK reference design features everything engineers need -- including evaluation system, schematic and printed circuit board (PCB) layout Gerber files -- to quickly and easily evaluate and integrate the cable extender chipset into their design. It plugs directly into a designer's existing system and supports CAT5/5e/6/7 100-Ohm twisted pair cables up to 100 meters and 50-Ohm coaxial cables up to 400 meters. For more information on the DriveCable02EVK reference design and evaluation system, please visit

Cable Extender Chipset Technical Features
The DS15BA101 differential buffer is an adjustable cable driver offered in a space-saving 3 mm by 3 mm 8-pin LLP® package. The device is powered from a single 3.3V supply and consumes 150 mW (typical) at 1.5 Gbps. The DS15BA101 operates over the full −40 degrees C to 85 degrees C industrial temperature range. In addition to being used with the DS15EA101 adaptive equalizer as a cable extension chipset, the DS15BA101 cable driver also can be used standalone for level translation between LVDS/CML/LVPECL and CML or LVPECL.

With no packet formatting, training or comma characters required, the chipset automatically adapts to different cable types, cable lengths, data rates and data formats without external programming, providing an easy-to-use alternative to fiber and Ethernet solutions. For more information on the DS15BA101 or to order samples, visit

The DS15EA101 is an adaptive equalizer offered in a 4 mm by 4 mm 16-pin LLP package. It has been optimized for equalizing data transmitted over copper cables and operates over a wide −40 degrees C to 85 degrees C temperature range from 150 Mbps to 1.5 Gbps. The device automatically adapts to equalize any cable length from zero meters to distances with attenuation up to 35 dB at 750 MHz. The DS15EA101 allows either single-ended or differential input drive, enabling equalization of coaxial cables and twisted pair cables. Additional features include a loss of signal (LOS) output and an output enable which, when tied together, disable the output when no signal is present. The DS15EA101 is powered from a single 3.3V supply and consumes 210 mW (typical) at 1.5 Gbps. For more information on the DS15EA101 or to order samples, visit

About National's Interface Portfolio

National Semiconductor, the LVDS and CML technology innovator and market leader, offers a wide range of interconnect solutions that transfer high-speed digital signals using world-class analog technology. These solutions help system designers develop high-performance applications in a variety of markets, including communication and industrial systems. The products feature high reliability, low power and low noise, as well as dramatic systems savings in cable and connector costs. National Semiconductor is the world's largest supplier of high-speed LVDS products, according to Databean's 2005 Analog IC Market Share survey. For more information on National's interface products, visit

Pricing and Availability

National's cable extender chipset and DriveCable002EVK reference design are available now. In 1,000-unit quantities, the DS15BA101 is priced at $4, and the DS15EA101 is $8.75.

Acronyms: low-voltage differential signaling (LVDS); current-mode logic (CML); low voltage positive emitter coupled logic (LVPECL); and bipolar complementary metal oxide semiconductor (BiCMOS).

About National Semiconductor

National Semiconductor, the industry's premier analog company, creates high-value analog devices and subsystems. National's leading-edge products include power management circuits, display drivers, audio and operational amplifiers, interface products and data conversion solutions. National's key analog markets include wireless handsets, displays and a variety of broad electronics markets, including medical, automotive, industrial, and test and measurement applications. Headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif., National reported sales of $2.16 billion for fiscal 2006, which ended May 28, 2006. Additional company and product information is available at


Mark Alden

Title: PR Manager

E-mail: [email protected]

All Topics