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TI CC2640 Vs CC2540 BLE

July 25th, 2015

If you are planning to design something that makes use of Bluetooth Low Energy integrated in a single processors, TI's latest CC26xx series of processors make immense sense. The CC2640 integrated the latest ARM Cortex M3 processor, that ensures fast processing and low power consumption, improving upon the earlier CC25xx series of processors that is based upon 8051 series processors. We will make quick comparison of these two series of processors

1. Integrated USB

Unfortunately, the newest does not mean the greatest. The CC2540 has integrated USB devices which means that it will integrated seamlessly with externally USB host. We are not sure why TI decided to knock off the USB from the newer CC26xx series. The integration of the USB would have allowed developers to take advantage of the integrated USB. If you do wish to use the USB with CC26xx, you may use the USB to serial port chip, like PL2303, which unfortunately adds to cost and its integration with software is not as straight forward.

2. Processor

TI obviously is following the industry standard of following the ARM Cortex Mx line when it upgraded the 8051 to the Cortex M3. If your application requires something more complex in computation, you will benefit from the newer CC26xx line of processors.

Another important aspect of CC26xx is that it has a separate Cortex-M0 to run the lower layers of BLE stack. The Cortex-M3 on the other hand, runs the application and the upper layers of the Bluetooth stack. This separation reduces the burden on the M3 and makes it faster.

3. Power Consumption

One critical area to notice is the leap improvement in the power consumption. The CC2540/CC2541, the power consumption is 17mA to 18mA compared to 5.9 mA in Rx and 6.1 mA in Rx ( @ 0 dBm) with CC2640. So if power consumption and long battery life is your concern, the newer CC2640 is the right choice.

4. Power Consumption

For the same given power, the TI proposes better receiver sensitivity, which may translate into better slightly better RF performance.

5. Hardware Design Tools

The CC26xx is newer device and the support for tools is not as great as for CC25xx. For example we have a USB stick for CC25xx for $49 here . We do not have anything like that for CC26xx.



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