IEEE Journal of Solid-State Circuits

A 32-b RISC/DSP microprocessor with reduced complexity

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This paper presents a new 32-b reduced instruction set computer/digital signal processor (RISC/DSP) architecture which can be used as a general purpose microprocessor and in parallel as a 16-/32-b fixed-point DSP. This has been achieved by using RISC design principles for the implementation of DSP functionality. A DSP unit operates in parallel to an arithmetic logic unit (ALU)/barrelshifter on the same register set. This architecture provides the fast loop processing, high data throughput, and deterministic program How absolutely necessary in DSP applications. Besides offering a basis for general purpose and DSP processing, the RISC philosophy offers a higher degree of flexibility for the implementation of DSP algorithms and achieves higher clock frequencies compared to conventional DSP architectures. The integrated DSP unit provides instruction set support for highly specialized DSP algorithms. Subword processing optimized for DSP algorithms has been implemented to provide maximum performance for 16-b data types. While creating a unified base for both application areas, we also minimized transistor count and we reduced complexity by using a short instruction pipeline. A parallelism concept based on a varying number of instruction latency cycles made superscalar instruction execution superfluous.