Xilinx Introduces Breakthrough Zynq RFSoC DFE for 5G Radio Mass Deployment

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Beijing, China, October 28, 2020 – Xilinx, Inc. (NASDAQ: XLNX), the global leader in adaptive and intelligent computing, today announced the Zynq® RFSoC DFE, a new class of Breakthrough adaptive radio platform designed to meet evolving 5G NR wireless application standards. Zynq RFSoC DFEs combine hardened digital front-end (DFE) blocks with adaptable programmable logic to create a high-performance, low-power and cost-effective 5G NR radio solution for a broad range of use cases covering low, mid and high frequency spectrum plan. The Zynq RFSoC DFE offers the best technology balance between the cost-effectiveness of ASICs using hardened modules and the flexibility, scalability, and time-to-market advantages of programmable and adaptive SoCs.

Figure: Xilinx Unveils Breakthrough Zynq RFSoC DFE for Mass Deployment of 5G Radios

5G radios require solutions that not only meet the bandwidth, power, and cost challenges posed by widespread deployment, but must also accommodate three key 5G use cases: enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB), massive machine-type communications (mMTC), and Ultra-Reliable Low-Latency Communication (URLLC). Additionally, solutions must be able to scale with evolving 5G standards such as OpenRAN (O-RAN), new disruptive 5G business models. The Zynq RFSoC DFE integrates DFE application-specific blocks hardened for 5G NR performance and power saving requirements, while also providing the flexibility to incorporate programmable adaptive logic, enabling the evolving 5G 3GPP and O-RAN radio architectures Future-proof solutions.

Liam Madden, executive vice president and general manager of the Wireline and Wireless Business Unit at Xilinx, said: “For the first time in Xilinx’s history, this radio platform has more hardened application-specific IP than adaptive logic to meet the unique needs of 5G. 5G-related market demands are constantly evolving, and integrated RF solutions need to adapt to future standards. The Zynq RFSoC DFE provides the best balance of flexibility and fixed-function IP.”

Compared to the previous generation, the Zynq RFSoC DFE provides up to twice the performance per power and the ability to scale from small cells to massive MIMO (mMIMO) macro cells. The solution is a unique direct RF sampling platform capable of carrier aggregation/sharing, multi-mode, multi-band 400MHz instantaneous bandwidth in all FR1 and emerging frequency bands (up to 7.125GHz). When used as a mmWave IF transceiver, the Zynq RFSoC DFE provides up to 1600 MHz of instantaneous bandwidth. The architecture of the Zynq RFSoC DFE allows customers to bypass or customize hardened IP blocks. For example, customers can either utilize Xilinx’s field-proven DPD supporting existing and emerging GaN Pas, or plug in their own unique DPD IP.

Dimitris Mavrakis, Senior Research Director 5G at ABI Research, said: “As 5G commercial deployments and new use cases continue to evolve, it is important for the entire supply chain to provide suppliers with flexible components to create cost-effective, adaptable and future-proof Equipment is critical. OpenRAN in particular is more demanding in this regard, and flexible design is critical to its success. Zynq RFSoC DFE achieves a balance between hardened and adaptive programmable logic and is a A unique product with the cost advantages of ASICs and the design flexibility and customization advantages of FPGAs.”


Zynq RFSoC DFE design documentation and technical support are now available to early access customers, with high-volume availability expected to begin in the first half of 2021.

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