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The Bullet3 is a high-quality stereo audio PC-Card (CardBus compatible) with the built-in processing power of a floating-point DSP from Texas Instruments.

It features a Texas Instruments TMS320C32 digital signal processor, stereo CD-quality input/output audio channels, SRAM, DRAM and flash memory.The Bullet3 is rated at 50MFLOPS. It consumes .26W with no clock, .54W at idle and 1.82W while performing an FFT on 48kHz audio. It is available with several memory and interface options (all with 512kB Flash).

Audio Channels: A Crystal Semiconductor CS4231A stereo multimedia CODEC provides single-ended line-in, line-out and mic-in channels. The CS4231A uses sigma-delta modulation, 64x over-sampling, 16-bit resolution, and auto-tracking anti-aliasing/reconstruction filters. Sampling rate, gain, attenuation and format (8-bit or 16-bit linear, A-law, u-Law, and ADPCM) are software selectable.

Serial Port: In addition to accessing the DSP's audio port, the 15-pin receptacle provides a direct interface to the C32's serial port control signals: CLKX0, DX0, FSX0, CLKR0, DR0 and FSR0. These signals are EMI filtered but not buffered. The Bullet3's serial data can be transmitted at a rate of 8.6Mbps over an 18 inch cable.

Flash Memory: The 512k byte of flash memory may contain the user's application software which the Bullet copies into its SRAM when powered up, giving it self booting, auto run capabilities. The upper sector of flash is reserved for board configuration data.

Programming Interface: CAC provides development support software consisting of device drivers, API's, demos, diagnostics, DSP C-compilers, assemblers and debuggers. Specialized tools are available from third-party companies such as National Instruments' LabView fromSheldon Instruments (who also offer up to 64 analog I/O channels) and RIDE. The device driver interfaces with the host operating system to provide low-level access to the DSP hardware.

Currently MSDOS, Windows 3.1, 95, 98, NT and 2000 are supported. LINUX drivers were ported by one of our kind customers and are available from Communication Automation Corporation - CAC(http://www.cacdsp.com) (free and unsupported) for downloading. The demos include audio, FFT, interrupt, and other examples which serve as a good starting point for many applications. The diagnostic utilities help reveal problems in hardware and software installation.

Robert R. Radcliffe <bobrad_at_cacdsp.com>

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