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RE: XGMII Clocks

HI Howard and Curt

I would agree with Curt on the SSTL2 vs HSTL levels.  Several month
ago I also wrote about the same topics.  

About 3 years when I and Dave Gample started the FC HSPI group 
bases for 2.5 Gig SerDes with SSTL2. Even then I was debating between
HSTL and STTL2.  At the time HSTL would require another power supply 
and most SerDes where Bipolar and ASIC were base on 0.35 um CMOS.  
Three years ago we probably made the right decision and  we have the legacy
today.  But, I am not sure choosing SSTL2 would be right decision today.  

As long as the XGMII interface is internal to your ASIC, then it does not
matter what logic family we define. Otherwise, I would strongly recommend moving 
forward with time and specifying HSTL instead of SSTL2.  I would also help write 
the interface.



> From: Curt Berg <cberg@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> To: "'Howard Frazier'" <hfrazier@xxxxxxxxx>, stds-802-3-hssg@xxxxxxxx
> Subject: RE: XGMII Clocks
> Date: Wed, 6 Sep 2000 10:16:00 -0700 
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> Hi Howard,
> One of the big problem with XGMII is the large voltage swing 
> of SSTL. It would be of great benefit to use a different interface
> standard that is more compatible with today's ASIC technology.
> (Moving forward most ASICs will use 1.2-1.8 V core, and
> having 2.5V I/O is painful.) If we reduced the swing, power consumption
> will drop, timing gets easier, and EMI should be cut significantly.
> We have done significant SPICE simulations of SSO, ISI, of DDR interfaces
> like XGMII, and lowering the swing definitely gets much better eye pattern.
> I would be willing to help writing a proposal for standard that use
> HSTL, with extended VDD, so you could also use 1.8 V LVTTL/HSTL. 
> Anyone else that would support this ?
> Having two clock make little impact on the timing budget, and you would
> have to match two clock paths instead of one. Asymmetry comes mainly
> from level shifting and that your internal threshold is different form
> Vref. Much better again would be to minimize level shifting be using
> a lower external swing. Hopefully it helps you both on the MAC and
> PHY side.
> -Curt-
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Howard Frazier [mailto:hfrazier@xxxxxxxxx]
> Sent: Wednesday, September 06, 2000 9:30 AM
> To: stds-802-3-hssg@xxxxxxxx
> Subject: XGMII Clocks
> In a previous email thread, we debated the merits of using
> a single clock in each direction on the XGMII, versus using
> 4 (frequency locked, but phase independent) clocks in each direction, 
> with a clock dedicated to each of the four "lanes".
> Without repeating the discussion, it is safe to summarize that
> the majority opinion (from among those who expressed an opinion)
> was to stay with one clock in each direction.
> So, I would like to toss out another question for your consideration.
> Should we use a two phase clock? Clock and ClockBar?
> Some designers have suggested that this will make the ASIC and
> system timing more managable, because it is difficult to get
> symetric drive strengths from the clock output buffers, and
> the asymetry degrades the timing.  With a two phase clock, you
> would still have asymetry on the data signals, but at least
> you won't have to account for the asymetry on the clock.
> At first blush, this seems like a modest addition. One more pin
> in each direction.
> Any opinions out there?
> Howard Frazier
> Cisco Systems, Inc.