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Why us? Because we agreed to do it,” Dole said. All the engineers agreed to it. That's the hardest part.” He noted that other companies are trying to cobble together similar design schemes but have had trouble convincing various aspects of their engineering organizations to switch from tried-and-true approaches.

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Why us? Because we agreed to do it,” Dole said. All the engineers agreed to it. That's the hardest part.” He noted that other companies are trying to cobble together similar design schemes but have had trouble convincing various aspects of their engineering organizations to switch from tried-and-true approaches.

In Nortel's new framer, the T1/DS-1 interface of the Lunar chip can be configured in an octet bus-interface mode with robbed-bit signaling, or in a traditional four-pin-per-DS1 configuration. The 8-bit bus interface can be selected for synchronous or asynchronous operation. For special-purpose networks, the chip also supports DS-2 framing and M12 multiplexing. Superframe, extended superframe and transparent framing modes are also supported.

A remote test unit on the 204-pin Lunar chip generates and detects pseudo-random bit patterns at DS-0, DS-1 and DS-3 levels. Loop timing and reference timing at 1.544 MHz or 8 kHz are provided, as are all diagnostic and loopback M23 functions. The current BGA package is the limiting factor for the number of channels, and Nortel plans to examine other surface-mount packages to carry framing densities beyond 28 channels. The chip is available now at a price of $300 each in quantities of 10,000. Nortel also offers an evaluation board for $2,995.

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The Cirrus/Crystal LIU device supports 3.3-V and 5-V operation, and is the only 3.3-V LIU to meet European CTR-12 and ETSI 300 011 jitter specs. The chip features a JTAG boundary-scan test port to verify chip-to-chip interconnects and path integrity. The LIU supports both predefined T1 and E1 pulse shapes, as well as user-programmable custom transmit pulse shapes. Cirrus uses a special patented technique for impedance matching, to eliminate the need for external load-matching resistors.

The CS61584A is offered in 64-pin thin quad flat pack and 68-pin plastic leadless chip carrier, in 3.3-V and 5-V versions for both packages. Pricing starts at $19.00 each in quantities of 1,000.

DTMF + Data Train Rides Brooktrout's cPCI WAN Access Card

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Brooktrout Technology (Needham, MA — 781-444-0283) used CT Expo to show off the combined strength of their newly acquired NetAccess and Lucent/Rhetorex divisions, and, as always, a large show-floor landscape of partner exhibitors.

On the Netaccess/Brooktrout Technology side, one of the products they showed me was their PRI-CompactPCI WAN Access card, a network interface card that works with T-1 or E-1 interfaces, as well as Primary Rate ISDN and Frame Relay.

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The card provides network interface in increments of 2, 4 or 8 T-1s / E-1s through the addition of TI C54X DSPs on a mezzanine card. For pure DTMF applications such as tandem switching, the boards themselves suffice; they support DTMF R2 and MFC.

Store-and-forward or voice-compression applications require the addition of separate telephony resources. The WAN Access card also supports data engines, allowing developers to use one card to support both PPP traffic, say, and voice traffic in up to 256 streams.

The Performance Analyzer is a Windows NT-based, client/server application that supports a variety of database products, including Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle.

— Brandon Friesen

Smart Home's Commaster II

Business Development Manager Eyal Alon and the other folks from Smart Home (Tel Aviv, Israel — + 972-3-902-6957) made the trek to Los Angeles from the Middle East; if their product is as good as it appears to be, SOHO workers should be pleased that they made the trip.

Smart Home's Commaster II PC card turns your PC into a PBX, modem, fax machine, voicemail service, answering machine, intercom, paging system and voice recognition system — a state-of-the-art telecommunication center, essentially. As the first member of Smart Home's SHOVAV family of products, the PC card and Windows 95 software give SOHOs an all-in-one product with voice-activated commands (they use a Lernout and Hauspie speech engine).

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