NXP’s 1-, 2-, 4- and 8-Channel Level Translators Optimized for Open-Drain OutputsNovember 15, 2019 by Gary Elinoff
The NTS030x family of voltage level translators feature auto-direction sensing to eliminate the need for direction control.
With an exceptionally low 0.95-volt minimum supply, members of NXP's NTS030x family are a match for today’s low-voltage µC and FPGAs.
The NTS030x compared to older generations. Image from NXP
The units are well-suited for open-drain outputs, such as the I2C and SMBUS, as well as push-pull applications. The transceivers’ smart one-shot serves to greatly reduce ringing, allowing for better operation in the presence of high capacitance.
This family is certainly relevant considering that voltage translation devices are a must for systems that employ logic families utilizing multiple power supply voltages.
Representative application circuit for the NTS030x. Image from Mouser
Members of the NTS030x family employ dual power supplies as indicated in the above diagram. Vcc(B) can be supplied at any voltage between 1.65V and 5.5V, while VCC(A) can be supplied at any voltage between 0.95V and 3.6V.
Pin A is referenced to VCC(A) and pin B is referenced to VCC(B). This facilitates pairing higher voltage peripherals to low-voltage digital ICs, making it possible for the devices to translate between any of the voltage nodes (0.95V, 1.2V, 1.8V, 2.5V, 3.3V, and 5.0V).
Functional diagram of NTS0302. Image from NXP
The 2-bit NTS0302E and the 4-bit NTS0304E feature two 1-bit input-output ports (A and B) and eight 1-bit input-output ports (A and B), respectively. NXP explains that "A LOW level at pin OE causes the outputs to assume a high-impedance OFF-state."
Propagation Delays for the NTS0302 and the NTS0404E
Propagation Delays With VCC(A) at 0.95 Volts
Propagation Delays With VCC(A) at 1.8 Volts
Propagation Delays With VCC(A) at 3.3 Volts
While the B-side port features EC 61000-4-2 Class 4, 8kV contact, for both ports, HBM JESD22-A114E Class 2 exceeds 2000V. CDM JESD22-C101E exceeds 1000V for both ports as well.
Members of the NTS030x family are pin-to-pin compatible with industry-standard voltage translator IC footprints. The NTS0302 is available in a X2SON-8 package, while the NTS0304E is available in both TSSOP-14 and WLCSP-12 packages. The units’ operating temperature ranges from -40°C to +125°C.
Both the NTS0302 and the NTS0404E are currently available.
Around the Industry
There are many voltage translation devices, and they are optimized for different applications.
ST’s ST6G3244ME is a dual supply, low-voltage 6-bit bi-directional CMOS level translator. It is aimed at applications for SD, mini SD, and micro SD cards.
The MAX14611 from Maxim is a quad, bi-directional logic-level translator. The device is targeted at I²C bus as well as MDIO bus applications where open-drain operation may be required.
What's your relationship with voltage level translators? Share your experiences in the comments below.