Broadcom sampling BCM87400 7-nm 400G PAM4 gearbox PHY

Broadcom Inc. (NASDAQ: AVGO) says it now offers the BCM87400 400 Gigabit Ethernet (400GbE) 8:4 gearbox PHY. The device leverages the company’s 7-nm Centenario 112G PAM4 DSP platform to enable low power capabilities for use in sub-8-W optical modules, the company says.

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Broadcom Inc. (NASDAQ: AVGO) says it now offers the BCM87400 400 Gigabit Ethernet (400GbE) 8:4 gearbox PHY. The device leverages the company’s 7-nm Centenario 112G PAM4 DSP platform to enable low power capabilities for use in sub-8-W optical modules, the company says.

Use of the 7-nm platform provides a significant power reduction over devices based on 16-nm processes, which are suitable for optical modules with 12-W dissipation, Broadcom asserts.

“With the general availability of 12.8-Tbps switches such as Broadcom’s Tomahawk 3, hyper-scale data center operators and cloud providers will be leveraging the 400GbE ports in these switches to address increasing demand for higher bandwidth. Our low-power 7-nm Centenario PAM4 DSP is essential to support high-density 400G connectivity using QSFP-DD and OSFP optical modules, accelerating the adoption of 400GbE network infrastructure,” said Lorenzo Longo, senior vice president and general manager of the Physical Layer Products Division at Broadcom. “The currently available 16-nm 400G PHYs have been used to enable engineering prototypes and testing of 100G per lambda optical components. Our 7-nm Centenario 400G PHY enables high-volume deployment of 400G optical modules in hyperscale data centers.”

“Broadcom demonstrates its technology lead in the PAM4 market segment with the sampling of the industry’s first 7-nm 400G PAM4 PHY,” agreed Dale Murray, principal analyst at LightCounting Market Research, via a Broadcom press release. “A savings of 4 W per 400G optical module in comparison with currently available CMOS solutions is significant as it will ease market concerns about power consumption in the transition to 400G optical modules in hyperscale network deployments.”

Additional features Broadcom lists for the BCM87400 include:

  • “Industry leading” DSP performance and power efficiency that enable DR4/FR4 optical modules to meet IEEE standards and MSA specifications
  • Support for DR/FR optical modules for legacy switch applications
  • Client-side interface compliance to CEI-28G/56G LR specification supporting long reach (LR) channels
  • IEEE 802.3bs standard-compliant KP4 and end-to-end FEC bypass operation
  • A PAM4 architecture that supports multiple optics front ends including EML, DML, and silicon photonics
  • Optimization for interoperability with Broadcom switch ASICs and ASSPs using 28-Gbaud PAM4 and NRZ SerDes architecture.

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