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National Semiconductor Introduces New Single Function PCMCIA Interface Chips


National Semiconductor Corporation announced two new Single Function PCMCIA Interface Chips, the PCM16C010 and the PCM16C011. Both chips are fully compliant with the PC Card Standard and offer designers a simple-to-use, off-the-shelf solution to PCMCIA single function interface technology. The new devices are pin compatible with National's existing PCM16C02 Multi-function Interface chip and provide a time-saving, low-cost alternative to custom-designed ASIC and FPGAs.

Technical features

The PCM16C010 and PCM16C011 are generic interface devices and are pin compatible with port 0 and port 1, respectively, of National's PCM16C02 Multi-function device. In addition, the PCM16C010 also supports NAND Flash Memory by providing the necessary control signals required to handshake with NAND Flash devices. The PCM16C011 offers PC Card Standard DMA capability for those applications needing this feature.

Pin compatibility to National's PCM16C02 Multi-function Interface gives the PC Card designer the advantage of being able to create a multi-function card design utilizing the PCM16C02, then to depopulate the card and create a single function card by utilizing either of the new low-cost single function chips.

"This feature offers a simple, cost-effective approach to designing multiple PC Cards with one design effort," says Andy Grace, National's Product Manager for PCMCIA products. "Prior to the availability of National's new single function interface chips, it would have required two unique design efforts to develop two different cards."


PCMCIA technology is widely utilized in both Apple and IBM compatible PC notebooks. Although notebooks have been the primary application focus, desktop PCs are beginning to incorporate PCMCIA slots so that users can utilize a PC Card peripheral or memory card in both types of machines. The new National chips will help simplify the development process for single function PC Cards, such as GPS, encryption, serial/parallel interfaces, memory, and other I/O cards.

In contrast to many function-specific ASIC/FPGA solutions, National's PCM16C010/011 chips allow designers to implement PC Card designs more quickly. Instead of spending a lot of time understanding and implementing a PC Card standard compliant interface into an ASIC, debugging the ASIC, and then getting card and socket services software to work with the ASIC, the new National PCMCIA interface products allow designers to focus their efforts on the primary function of the card. This reduces design cycle time and saves ASIC development costs.

Both of National's new devices support generic ISA-like functions and will operate in 3.3 or 5.0 vdc (volts, direct current) environments.

Both the PCM16C010 and PCM16C011 are offered in 100-pin Thin Quad Flat Pack (TQFP) package as the PCM16C010VJG and the PCM16C011VJG. The PCM16C010VJG is available immediately; the PCM16C011VJG is sampling now, with volume shipments expected in Q4. The PCM16CO10VJG and PCM16C011VJG will be priced at $4.40 each in 10,000 piece quantities.


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