MaxLinear Cable Receiver & Amplifier Chipset Powers Hitron’s DOCSIS 3.1 Solution

MaxLinear has announced that Hitron Technologies, a leading global telecommunications networking company, has successfully achieved Cable Labs certification of its CODA-45 DOCSIS 3.1 cable modem using the MaxLinear MxL277 Full-Spectrum Capture (FSC) digital cable front-end receiver, the MxL236 upstream programmable gain amplifier, and the Intel Puma 7 DOCSIS 3.1 SoC.

First in Hitron’s new multi-gigabit cable CPE family, the certified CODA-45 is capable of up to 5 Gbps downstream over multi-carrier OFDM channels bonded with 32 single-carrier QAM channels and up to 1Gbps upstream throughput via DOCSIS 3.1. The two GigE ports deliver 1.97 Gbps to the customer’s home.

The CODA-45 not only enables cable operators to offer services that exceed current fiber optic data rates, but also allows them to use their existing cable plant infrastructure to provide multi-gigabit data services.

Capturing up to the entire 1.2 GHz of fully deployed cable spectrum bandwidth to the home, the MaxLinear's MxL277 DOCSIS 3.1 receiver enables cable operators to meet consumer demand for multi-gigabit data rates by the flexible deployment of spectrum bandwidth between the new OFDM and legacy QAM modulation based data services. Designs based on the MxL277 will usher in a new generation of high-capacity, multi-gigabit-per-second IP data gateways, home media gateways, and hybrid or IP-based set-top boxes (STB) that mark significant advances towards all IP-based delivery of multimedia content and cloud services.

The ever-increasing consumer demand for media and over-the-top (OTT) data content is creating enormous demand for bandwidth capacity in gateway devices in order to enable expanded services at home. With the new DOCSIS 3.1 standard, cable MSOs will be able to offer their subscribers real multi-gigabit data bandwidth services on their existing coaxial cable network infrastructure.

Also selected for use in Hitron’s CODA family of DOCSIS 3.1 gateway platforms, the MxL236 cable upstream programmable gain amplifier (PGA) from MaxLinear not only delivers sufficient power for upstream communication with cable head-ends with extremely high power efficiency, but also provides valuable upstream network maintenance capabilities.

The MxL236 can report network health and performance parameters on the upstream link, which can be used by cable operators in managing and troubleshooting their networks and reducing technician truck rolls. This innovative feature allows Hitron to offer network maintenance expense savings capabilities for cable operators by avoiding costly technician visits to customer homes through remotely monitoring and diagnosing potential problems with the cable network.

MxL277

Based on MaxLinear’s leading, low-power 28 nm CMOS process technology, the MxL277 offers a monolithic digital cable front-end with integrated LNA and signal conditioning functions combined with a Full-Spectrum Capture receiver up to 1.2 GHz that supports up to two OFDM channels and up to 32 legacy QAM channels.

When utilizing all OFDM and QAM capabilities, the MxL277 delivers up to 5 Gbps data rates downstream and up to 2 Gbps data rates upstream, all over the existing cable network while consuming less than 1.4W. Furthermore, the MxL277 can be used in an ultra-low power mode, consuming roughly 500mW total, while still meeting cable operator voice call and standby time requirements upon loss of power to the home.

The MxL277 supports remote spectrum analyzer functions on the downstream and upstream links that report network health and performance parameters. This turns every gateway into a tool for operators to diagnose their network health without costly technician visits to the field.

The MxL277 exceeds requirements for DOCSIS 3.1, including the stringent test scenarios under SCTE40 plant loading and impairment conditions. The device supports a high-speed serial interface to a DOCSIS 3.1 modem, and has an integrated single-channel tuner for low-power operation.

MxL236

The MxL236 supports upstream frequencies up to 204 MHz with any combination of OFDM and QAM channels with a combined output power of up to 65 dBmV at the cable connector. Under most installed scenarios, the device can dissipate less than 1.5 W. As cable operators increase upstream data rates to offer more symmetrical services to consumers, reducing power dissipation in the front-end simplifies thermal design efforts and reduces heat mitigation costs. Using only a single 3.3 V supply, the MxL236 allows manufacturers to eliminate the 5 V supply from their gateway design entirely, further simplifying layout and reducing system cost.

The MxL277 DOCSIS 3.1 receiver is available in production quantities in a standard 10 mm X 10 mm QFN package. The MxL236 is available in production quantities in a standard 7 mm x 7 mm QFN package.