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April 2000
Geode™ GX1 Processor Series
Low Power Integrated x86 Solution
General Description
The National Semiconductor® Geode™ GX1 processor
series is a line of integrated processors specifically
designed to power information appliances for entertain-
ment, education, and business. Serving the needs of con-
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and business professionals alike, it’s the perfect
for IA (information appliance) applications such as
thin clients, interactive set-top boxes, and personal internet
access devices.
The Geode GX1 processor series is divided into three main
categories as defined by the core operating voltage. Avail-
able with core voltages of 2.0V, 1.8V, and 1.6V, it offers
extremely low typical power consumption (1.2W, 1.0W, and
0.8W, respectively) leading to longer battery life and
enabling small form-factor, fanless designs. Typical power
consumption is defined as an average, measured running
Microsoft Windows at 80% Active Idle (Suspend-on-Halt)
with a display resolution of 800x600x8 bpp at 75 Hz.
Geode™ GX1 Processor Internal Block Diagram
SYSCLK
Clock Module
SYSCLK
multiplied
by “A”
Core
Clocks
X-Bus
Clocks
16 KB
Unified L1
Cache
(128)
C-Bus (64)
x86 Compatible Core
Integer
TLB Unit
Instruction
Fetch
MMU
Load/Store
INT/NMI
Interrupt
Control
FP_Error
Floating Point
Unit
INTR
IRQ13
SMI#
SUSP#
SUSPA#
Power
Management
Control
Core Suspend
Core Acknowledge
X-Bus Suspend
X-Bus Acknowledge
X-Bus (32)
Arbiter
Write
Buffers
X-Bus
Controller
Read
Buffers
Arbiter
PCI Host
Controller
2D Accelerator
VGA
BLT Engine
ROP Unit
X-Bus CLK
divide by “B”
Display Controller
Compression Buffer
Palette RAM
Timing Generator
3
REQ/GNT
Pairs
PCI
Bus
4
SDRAM
Clocks
64-bit
SDRAM
RGB
YUV
Geode™ Graphics
Companion Interface
National Semiconductor and Virtual System Architecture are registered trademarks of National Semiconductor Corporation.
Geode, WebPAD, and VSA, are trademarks of National Semiconductor Corporation.
For a complete listing of National Semiconductor trademarks, please visit www.national.com/trademarks.
© 2000 National Semiconductor Corporation
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While the x86 core provides maximum compatibility with
the vast amount of Internet content available, the intelligent
integration of several other functions, such as audio and
graphics, offers a true system-level multimedia solution.
The Geode GX1 processor core is a proven x86 design
that offers competitive performance. It contains integer and
floating point execution units based on sixth-generation
technology. The integer core contains a single, five-stage
execution pipeline and offers advanced features such as
operand forwarding, branch target buffers, and extensive
write buffering. Accesses to the 16 KB write-back L1 cache
are dynamically reordered to eliminate pipeline stalls when
fetching operands.
In addition to the advanced CPU features, the GX1 proces-
sor integrates a host of functions typically implemented
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components. A
a VGA (video
full function graphics acceler-
graphics array) controller, bit-
BLT engine, and a ROP (raster operations) unit for
complete GUI (Graphical User Interface) acceleration
under most operating systems. A display controller con-
tains additional video buffering to enable >30 fps MPEG1
playback and video overlay when used with a National
Semiconductor Geode I/O or graphics companion chip
(e.g., CS5530 or CS9211). Graphics and system memory
accesses are supported by a tightly coupled SDRAM con-
troller which eliminates the need for an external L2 cache.
A PCI host controller supports up to three bus masters for
additional connectivity and multimedia capabilities.
The GX1 processor also incorporates Virtual System
Architecture® (VSA™) technology. VSA technology
enables the XpressGRAPHICS and XpressAUDIO sub-
systems. Software handlers are available that provide full
compatibility for industry standard VGA and 16-bit audio
functions that are transparent at the operating system level.
Together the National Semiconductor I/O companion and
GX1 processor Geode devices provide a scalable, flexible,
low-power, system-level solution well suited for a wide
array of information appliances ranging from hand-held
personal information access devices to digital set-top
boxes and thin clients.
Features
General Features
 Packaging:
— 352-Terminal Ball Grid Array (BGA) or
— 320-Pin Staggered Pin Grid Array (SPGA)
 0.18-micron four layer metal CMOS process
 Split rail design:
— Available 1.6V, 1.8V, or 2.0V core
— 3.3V I/O interface
 Fully static design
 Low Typical Power Consumption:
— 0.8W @ 1.6V/200 MHz
— 1.2W @ 2.0V/300 MHz
Note:
Typical power consumption is defined as an aver-
age, measured running Windows at 80% Active
Idle (Suspend-on-Halt) with a display resolution of
800x600x8 bpp @ 75 Hz.
 Speeds offered up to 300 MHz
 Unified Memory Architecture
— Frame buffer and video memory reside in main
memory
— Minimizes PCB (Printed Circuit Board) area require-
ments
— Reduces system cost
 Compatible with multiple Geode I/O companion devices
provided by National Semiconductor
32-Bit x86 Processor
 Supports Intel’s MMX instruction set extension for the
acceleration of multimedia applications
 16 KB unified L1 cache
 Six-stage pipelined integer unit
 Integrated Floating Point Unit (FPU)
 Memory Management Unit (MMU) adheres to standard
paging mechanisms and optimizes code fetch perfor-
mance:
— Load-store reordering gives priority to memory reads
— Memory-read bypassing eliminates unnecessary or
redundant memory reads
 Re-entrant System Management Mode (SMM)
enhanced for VSA technology
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Flexible Power Management
 Supports a wide variety of standards:
— APM (Advanced Power Management) for Legacy
power management
— ACPI (Advanced Configuration and Power Interface)
for Windows power management
– Direct support for all standard processor (C0-C4)
states
— OnNOW design initiative compliant
 Supports a wide variety of hardware and software
controlled modes:
— Active Idle (core-only stopped, display active)
— Standby (core and all integrated functions halted)
— Sleep (core and integrated functions halted and all
external clocks stopped)
www.DataSheet4U.comSuspend Modulation (automatic throttling of CPU
core via Geode I/O or graphics companion chip)
– Programmable duty cycle for optimal performance/
thermal balancing
— Several dedicated and programmable wake-up
events (via Geode I/O or graphics companion chip)
PCI Host Controller
 Several arbitration schemes supported
 Directly supports up to three PCI bus masters, more with
external logic
 Synchronous to CPU core
 Allows external PCI master accesses to main memory
concurrent with CPU accesses to L1 cache
Virtual Systems Architecture Technology
 Innovative architecture allowing OS independent (soft-
ware) virtualization of hardware functions
 Provides XpressGRAPHICS subsystem:
— High performance legacy VGA core compatibility
Note: The GUI acceleration is pure hardware.
 Provides 16-bit XpressAUDIO subsystem:
— 16-bit stereo FM synthesis
— OPL3 emulation
— Supports MPU-401 MIDI interface
— Hardware assist provided via Geode I/O companion
chip
 Additional hardware functions can be supported as
needed
2D Graphics Accelerator
 Accelerates BitBLTs, line draw, text:
— Bresenham vector engine
 Supports all 256 Raster Operations (ROPs)
 Supports transparent BLTs and page flipping for
Microsoft’s DirectDraw
 Runs at core clock frequency
 Full VGA and VESA mode support
 Special "driver level” instructions utilize internal
scratchpad for enhanced performance
Display Controller
 Display Compression Technology (DCT) architecture
greatly reduces memory bandwidth consumption of
display refresh
 Supports a separate video buffer and data path to
enable video acceleration in Geode I/O and graphics
companion chips
 Internal palette RAM for gamma correction
 Direct interface to Geode I/O and graphics companion
chips for CRT and TFT flat panel support eliminates the
need for an external RAMDAC
 Hardware cursor
 Supports up to 1280x1024x8 bpp and 1024x768x16 bpp
XpressRAM
 SDRAM interface tightly coupled to CPU core and
graphics subsystem for maximum efficiency
 64-Bit wide memory bus
 Support for:
— Two 168-pin unbuffered DIMMs
— Up to 16 simultaneously open banks
— 16-byte reads (burst length of two)
— Up to 512 MB total memory supported
Diverse Operating System Support
 Microsoft’s Windows 2000, Windows 95, Windows 98,
and Windows NT in non PC applications; along with
Windows CE and Windows NTE
 WindRiver System’s VxWorks
 QNX Software Systems’ QNX
 Linux
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