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Driving the Future of Automotive Infotainment with Noise Resilient Audio Converters
F. Viemon, H. KUO

July 15, 2014

The automotive market is driven in recent years by new consumer expectations. Ahead of them, the daily in-vehicle entertainment and connectivity experience, namely automotive infotainment, is becoming as important as traditional criteria: engine performance, safety and look of the vehicle.

Automotive infotainment refers to the hardware/software system combining multimedia entertainment (e.g. radio, CD/DVD for audio and video playback), driving information (e.g. safety, navigation and general car status) and connectivity (to smartphone, other cars and Internet). In parallel to the evolution of smartphone connectivity with vehicles, the Internet of Things (IoT) and Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS), it is expected that automotive infotainment is going to be more and more complex and remain a major focus in the future.

The audio subsystem plays undoubtedly a key role in the automotive infotainment system. This article describes the main automotive application constraints that have an impact on audio performances and thus consumer experience, together with design considerations to be taken care of at silicon Intellectual Property (IP), Systemon- Chips (SoC), application firmware/software and Printed Circuit Board (PCB) levels. Finally, this article highlights the critical performance parameter (common mode rejection) and noise tolerance specifications that are necessary for a given car audio converter IP in order to overcome the main automotive application constraints.

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