Yes, if the signal chain is simple; just an amplifier, mixer, a filter, maybe some companding, but analog delay is pretty awful stuff. Remember the old bucket brigade chips? Yes, they worked, they were cheap and they were fun, but they were darn noisy. I still love the sound of a spring or a plate reverb, but I really think that a DSP does a better job, although a DSP can't deliver the nifty sustain like a spring reverb when it starts to feedback.
There were always, and still are, people who believe that the optimum audio processor is a low distortion, low noise analog amplifier. (Anyone remember the TDA2030? LM386/LM384/LM380 ? )
The original audio signal is analog. Digitised and compressed for transmission and storage, yes, but the sooner it reverts to an analog signal the better. Mess with it on the way, and you will not be re-creating the original signal.
One thing that has happened in the past is that putting more functionality in a smaller package has not reduced the power consumption, which resulted in higher chip temperatures. I didn't see any direct reference to reduced power in the post, although it seemed to be implied.
It will indeed be useful to have the audio processing in one package and only need to supply commands, since creating audio processing algorithms is complex and time consuming. Thanks to AD for a potentially very useful product.
I agree, naperlou. One of the things I like about it is that it takes development out of the hands of the programmer. I talk to an amazing number of engineers who are audiophiles but aren't necessarily programmers. I think this is a great idea for them.
Chuck, This is a cool device. It is not really necessary to have a regular processor on an audio chip except for a few functions allowing the audio processor to work in the digital world. Eliminating this saves space on the die, as you mention. With the quantities being used, this is a viable proposition.
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