June 1, 2012 -- As audio IC designs move to finer geometries, it becomes more difficult to design, and less cost-effective to integrate, high-performance analog circuits on the same piece of silicon with high-density digital circuits. Audio system architects are pushing analog portions of an audio signal chain further towards the input and output transducers and connecting everything in between digitally.
As the analog circuits are pushed to the edges of the signal chain, digital interfaces between ICs in the chain become more prevalent. DSPs have always had digital connections, but now digital interfaces are being included on the transducers and amplifiers that usually have had only analog interfaces.
By Jerad Lewis. (Lewis is an applications engineer for MEMS microphones at Analog Devices, Inc.)
This brief introduction has been excerpted from the original copyrighted article.