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Renesas passes USB-IF certification, again

Although we're not entirely surprised, Renesas has passed the USB-IF certification for its most recent USB 3.0 host controllers, the µPD720201 and the µPD720202. We're most likely looking at the last host controllers to get certification this year, although we know that both Etron and ASMedia are looking at the four port market.

Although we're not entirely surprised, Renesas has passed the USB-IF certification for its most recent USB 3.0 host controllers, the µPD720201 and the µPD720202. We're most likely looking at the last host controllers to get certification this year, although we know that both Etron and ASMedia are looking at the four port market.

Back in March Renesas said it would kick off mass production of the µPD720201 and the µPD720202 come September and having passed USB-IF certification it looks like the company is ready to go. Considering that the company (then under the banner of NEC Electronics) was the first to launch a USB 3.0 host controller, the speedy certification might not be so surprising, although we have a feeling that the company got VIP treatment by the USB-IF as well because of its special standing with the USB-IF.

The two new host controllers will offer two or four ports depending on model and Renesas claim that it offers the world's lowest power consumption when it comes to USB 3.0 host controllers. This should hopefully mean more interest from notebook manufacturers, as USB 3.0 is still far from a standard feature even on high-end notebooks. The new chips are also smaller, at 7×7 or 8x8mm compared to 10x10mm for the previous generations and Renesas has moved away from expensive BGA packaging to more affordable QFN packaging.

Add to that a claimed performance increase of 20 percent for reads and 40 percent for writes and it looks like Renesas has an appealing product on hand. Sadly we didn't see these kinds of performance boosts in our USB 3.0 host controller roundup in which Renesas kindly lent us a µPD720201 host controller. That said, our SATA 6Gbps bridge combined with early drivers are likely part of the issue here, although that is just speculation from our side for now.

We haven't heard anything with regards to motherboard manufacturers picking up the new host controllers from Renesas, but we have a feeling MSI is in line to move on to something newer and faster, as the company is still using the older models from Renesas on its motherboards. We'll simply have to wait and see what host controllers the final X79 boards will feature, as that should give us a good idea as to who Renesas new partners are. No official press release have been issued as yet, but both models are listed over at the USB-IF as certified.

TeamVR
http://www.vrzone.com
VR-Zone is a leading online technology news publication reporting on bleeding edge trends in PC and mobile gadgets, with in-depth reviews and commentaries.

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