MaxLinear and MStar develop cable gateway reference design for China

Wednesday, January 4th, 2017
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MaxLinear and MStar Develop Reference Design for Next-Generation Ultra High Definition Smart Cable Gateway Set-Top Boxes

LAS VEGAS — MaxLinear Inc. (NYSE: MXL), a leading provider of radio frequency (RF) and mixed-signal integrated circuits for cable and satellite broadband communications, the connected home, data center, metro, long-haul fiber networks, and wireless infrastructure, and MStar Semiconductor today announced a joint reference design that allows Chinese cable operators to deploy the next generation of ultra-high definition (UHD) smart cable gateway set-top boxes (STB).

The MStar gateway platform uses MaxLinear’s MxL254C Full-Spectrum CaptureTM (FSC™) cable receiver IC, which digitizes the entire cable spectrum, performs the digital tuning and demodulation of up to four cable channels reducing power consumption, complexity and cost. The MxL254C also includes a parallel transport interface to the MPEG system-on-chip (SoC) providing an additional option for the serial transport interface.

The smart gateway STB reference design enables cable operators in China, using MaxLinear’s leading FSC technology, to develop STBs with competitive features such as fast channel change, multi-screen share and remote network monitoring.

The reference platform combines MaxLinear’s MxL254C cable receiver with MStar’s 4K MSA6Z18 SoC to offer cable operators the best-in-class UHD smart STB solution in a power and cost-optimized design.

MSA6Z18 is a highly integrated, high performance UHD SoC fulfilling various CA/DRM requirement for STB application. With built-in high performance CPU, 3D GPU, VP9/HEVC decoder/encoder and full coverage of HDR technology, it provides the best complete solution for a rich features gateway.

“The reference design combines two cutting-edge products into one and giving customers a ready solution to deploy in the market efficiently,” said Wayne Tsai, Marketing Director at MStar. “The MStar/MaxLinear UHD smart cable gateway demonstrates how multi-channel contents on multi-screen with fast zapping capability could enhance user experience.”

“MaxLinear is extremely pleased to be a strategic partner to MStar to target the next-generation smart cable gateway set-top box market,” said Will Torgerson, Vice President & General Manager, MaxLinear Broadband Group. “MaxLinear’s multichannel FSC cable receiver in conjunction with MStar’s high performance audio/video decoders, provide cable operators with compelling features such as fast channel change, multi-screen share and remote network monitoring in a very low power, simple and cost-effective design.”

The joint reference design will be on display at CES 2017, January 5th – 8th 2017, in MaxLinear’s private suite at The Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas.


The MxL254 device is available for sampling and is in mass production.