Renesas Launches 5V RX660 Microcontroller with "Superior Noise Tolerance," CAN FD Support

High-performance 5V microcontroller aims to solve noise problems without needing external components.

Renesas has announced a new entry in its 32-bit RX microcontroller family, with which it's taking aim at both smart homes and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT): the RX660 series, boasting "superior noise tolerance" and the range's first integrated CAN FD controller.

"Noise suppression is essential for home appliances and industrial products since ambient electromagnetic waves in the surrounding environment can cause system malfunctions or reduce performance," explains Renesas' Sakae Ito of the new chips' primary selling point. "We introduced the new RX660 MCUs in response to strong demand from customers who need to design products with high power supply voltages. We are happy to assist our customers to make their product design process simpler."

The RX660 range is built on Renesas' RXv3 microcontroller core, offering a claimed performance of six CoreMarks per megahertz and a top speed of 120MHz plus an integrated single-precision floating-point unit (FPU), along with up to 128kB of static RAM (SRAM) and 1MB of flash. By operating at up to 5V, Renesas explains, the parts can withstand noise levels, which would cause errors in lower-voltage chips β€” and can do without external noise-suppression components, reducing the overall bill of materials.

Its noise tolerance isn't the only thing notable about the RX660 range, though: it's also the first in the RX range of microcontrollers to offer an integrated Controller Area Network Flexible Data-rate (CAN FD) controller β€” offering improved data rates over standard CAN networks.

For those upgrading form earlier 5V-capable RX models, like the RX210, Renesas promises a boost in general-purpose input-output (GPIO) capabilities equivalent to roughly ten per cent additional pins, depending on package: the 144-pin RX660 offers a 134-pin effective pin count, the company explains, which is 11 pins over the earlier RX210 equivalent.

Renesas has begun taking orders for the RX660 range now on its official website, though price is available only on application. For those looking for a practical example, the company has put together a sample design for an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) based on the RX660 and other Renesas components.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire:
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