Re: what is ASIC

From: John Paul Adrian Glaubitz <>
Date: Fri, 29 Jul 2016 11:49:28 +0200
Message-ID: <>
On 07/28/2016 09:18 PM, Terry Raymond wrote:
> I'm posting this for others here (including myself) that don't know what
> ASIC is and its Libraries:
> (snip)

While this is a very detailed and long explanation, I think the key difference
of an ASIC as compared to an FPGA, GAL, PAL or similar is that the ASIC is
a custom design which was made for its specific application purpose which
means that the whole logic is actually put into the die of the chip while
FPGAs and co have their functionality programmed in.

ASICs are usually much faster than any of the programmable type, require
less power and are smaller, simply because they were specifically designed
for their particular application. However, since designing a chip in die
is quite expensive, it's normally only chosen when large numbers of the
chip are expected to be produced.

If a chip designer orders a design from a fab, they have to meet a minimum
number of orders and pay for the chips upfront which means it's really only
chosen when the designer can expect to be able to sell it in large
quantities, e.g. an MP3 decoder.


 .''`.  John Paul Adrian Glaubitz
: :' :  Debian Developer -
`. `'   Freie Universitaet Berlin -
  `-    GPG: 62FF 8A75 84E0 2956 9546  0006 7426 3B37 F5B5 F913

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Received on 2016-07-29 10:00:07

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