Bluetooth reference design for audio applications

September 20, 2019 //By Rich Pell
TWS Bluetooth reference design for earbuds, headsets
QuickLogic Corporation (San Jose, CA) has announced a collaboration with Bluetooth audio SoC developer Airoha, a division of MediaTek in Taiwan, to develop a reference design for True Wireless (TWS) Bluetooth earbuds and headsets.

Based on Airoha's new AB1536 Bluetooth Audio SoC and QuickLogic's EOS S3 Voice and Sensor Processing Platform , the reference design enables third-party developers to quickly and easily implement True Wireless (TWS) Bluetooth 5.0 earbuds and headsets using the complete hardware, software, and development board solutions provided by the combined companies.

"This is an ideal use case for our EOS S3 platform," says Scott Haylock, product marketing manager at QuickLogic, "and we are excited to be working with Airoha to bring ultra-low power and hands-free voice recognition to developers of TWS earbud and headset applications. These features, combined with the comprehensive single-chip SoC solution from Airoha, will significantly facilitate the design process of next generation TWS Bluetooth 5.0 consumer electronics applications."

The EOS S3 Voice and Sensor Processing Platform is an ultra-low-power SoC that combines always-on/always-listening voice processing with fast, efficient and sophisticated sensor processing capabilities. It includes a proprietary, patent-pending uDSP-like Flexible Fusion Engine (FFE) that handles the bulk of the sensor algorithm processing, which minimizes the processing load for the floating point MCU.

The multi-core design of EOS S3 enables it to be used as a host processor as well as a companion co-processor. Power consumption in the always-listening mode is minimized by its hardware integrated Low Power Sound Detector (LPSD), while system-level power consumption is further optimized by dynamic power management technology.

Airoha's AB1536 is an advanced single-chip SoC that integrates Bluetooth 5.0 baseband and radio for intensive audio applications. It supports wideband speech (HFP1.7) and includes AAC and SBC decoder and support for two microphones for better noise reduction and echo cancellation performance.

The AB1536 also includes embedded serial flash memory to support third-party software porting and upgrading. Its integrated MCU and DSP capabilities enable high-quality voice and music applications for earbuds and headsets.

Adding always-on voice recognition capability via the EOS S3 enables hands-free operation, thus dramatically increasing product usability and improving the quality of

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