ARM running audio
Audio processing used to be specialty required by playback systems such as TVs, DVDs and equalizers in Hi-Fi systems.
Driven by the proliferation of microphones in smartphones and other home devices, the task of audio processing has spread practically everywhere. Specialty audio DSP isn’t the only chip in a system to process audio, either.
As more audio is running on ARM processors, more OEMs are “keenly looking at microphones” as input sensors for AI, DSP Concepts’ Beckmann said.
DSP Concepts is best positioned to observe such a market transition.
Beckmann reported a market uptick for his company’s own audio tools called Audio Weaver over the last 12 months. Audio Weaver, as Beckmann described it, is “the only graphical audio design framework that works cross-platform.”
Industry analysts agree that DSP Concepts holds a unique place on the audio market. Bob O'Donnell, president and chief analyst, TECHnalysis Research, LLC, told EE Times, “I don’t know of many direct competitors to DSP Concepts or their Audio Weave tool. There are many companies who do professional audio editing and audio processing for music and recording purposes, but that’s a different animal.”
Cooney agreed. “I don’t know of any competing products to Audio Weaver.” He added, “DSP Concepts have other products too, such as sound enhancement algorithms (noise suppression, echo cancelation, beam forming), benchmarking and reference designs.”
DSP Concepts doesn’t design or sell DSPs. Yet, competitors are generally other DSP outfits. Audio Weaver competes with audio tools internally created by DSP suppliers such as Texas Instruments or Cirrus Logic. The difference is that those internally developed tools only work on their own chips. In using a platform-independent tool like that of Audio Weaver, “OEMs don’t have to get locked into a specific DSP,” added DSP Concepts’ Tu.
Cooney said that DSP Concepts, by partnering with a number