Allwinner R329 Smart Speaker Processor Features Arm China’s AIPU (Artificial Intelligence Processing Unit)

Allwinner R328 is a dual-core Cortex-A7 processor with 64MB or 128MB built-in RAM designed for low-cost smart speakers that was introduced last year and found into smart speaker sold in mainland China.

According to a recent press release (in Chinese only), the company has now released a 64-bit update with Allwinner R329 dual-core Cortex-A53 processor equipped with dual HIFI4 DSP for audio post-processing and pre-processing, as well as Arm China’s AIPU (Artificial Intelligence Processing Unit) delivering up to 0.256 TOPS at very low power.

Allwinner R329

There’s no product page for Allwinner R329 yet, so I extracted some specifications from the press release:

  • CPU – Dual-core Cortex-A53 @ up to 1.5 GHz
  • DSP- Dual-core HIFI4 DSP @ 400 MHz
  • AI Accelerator – Arm China AIPU with 0.256 TOPS
  • Built-in DDR RAM
  • Audio
    • Embedded second-generation VAD hardware
    • 5x audio ADCs
    • 2x audio DACs with 100dB SNR
    • I2S and DMIC controller
    • 5-1-channel and 7.1 channel support
  • Integrated dual LDO

The company will also provide WIFI & BT chip and an Audio codec to provide a turnkey solution to its customers.  The company did not provider clear power consumption numbers but claimed a 2,500mAh battery can last one week in standby mode.

Arm China’s AIPU performance of 0.256 TOPS is said to represent 25 times the AI computing power of a single Cortex-A7 core clocked at 1.2GHz or a HIFI4 DSP clocked at 600MHz. Initially, I was confused as to why they would refer to AIPU as an “Arm China” design instead of simply an “Arm” design, and that’s because Arm China is a separate joint venture that was formed in 2018.

Allwinner R329’s dual-core HIFI4 DSP should also improve the audio quality via HiFi audio algorithms enabling ordinary smart speakers to match the sound quality of  HIFI speakers above 1,000 RMB (~$140 US).

Thanks to theguyuk for the tip.

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