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Old 8th September 2011, 07:58 PM   #1
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Default Make your own custom ICs for very cheap !

Amazing !
I just found out that you can order your own design ICs at very low prices (relatively speaking) !
Here is the link:

http://www.europractice-ic.com/docs/...general-v7.pdf

The cheapest is EUR 360/mm^2 with a minimum of 5mm^2.

So for EUR 1800 you can have 30 ICs of your own design ! Packaging, testing and shipping is extra.

The process is 0.7um. So I'm wondering if you can do interesting stuff with that process.
What kind of op amp can you make with such a process ? For example what the slew-rate or gain bandwidth can you achieve ?
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Old 8th September 2011, 08:35 PM   #2
wahab is offline wahab  Algeria
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Voltage rating will be very low , a few volts at most..
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Old 8th September 2011, 08:52 PM   #3
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You're right the cheapest one is rated at 5V.

On the same list there are also 0.7um processes with quite high voltages:
-0.7um 30V for EUR 440-500/mm^2, so min. price is: EUR 3520-4000
-0.7um 100V for EUR 550-600/mm^2 so min. price is: EUR 5500-6000

They are more expensive, but 30V should be enough for an interesting audio circuit like op. amp., preamp., head phone amp. etc..
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Old 8th September 2011, 09:26 PM   #4
wahab is offline wahab  Algeria
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Undoubtly , good frequency caracteristic is inherent to such small
nodes, but the price is a total rip off as even high performance
X86 processors waffers cost is less than 0.4 eur/mm2 , although the
mask cost is substancial with low volumes.

Also , you should have the relevant tool for designing the layout,
and such softs are not exactly what would be called affordable..
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Old 8th September 2011, 10:21 PM   #5
tomchr is offline tomchr  United States
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For this kind of service, there's also MOSIS. Last I looked, their scalable CMOS process was 1.6 um, 2P/2M.

For audio circuits - or most other low- to medium-speed op-amps - the feature size isn't the limiting factor. Most devices are drawn at 2x or 4x minimum for matching or noise reasons. But as others point out, the thin gate oxides limit you to low voltages. Also note that the high-voltage modules may be extended drain devices, hence, only the Vds supports 30 V, but Vgs is limited to, say, 3.3 or 5.0 V.

Most importantly, though, I'd look at the design kits that are offered. If I'm to blow $2k on a fab run, I want reasonable confidence that the chips will work when they come back from the fab. The simulation models better be reasonably accurate for that...

In my professional life I've designed CMOS op-amps in a process similar to what you describe - though with many more metals than two... They've shown good performance with 80~100 dB of loop gain, good current drive, stability into capacitive loads, etc. As I recall, the area was around 300x400 um. So you can fit a good handful of circuitry on a 5 mm^2 chip.

~Tom
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Old 8th September 2011, 11:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomchr View Post

In my professional life I've designed CMOS op-amps in a process similar to what you describe - though with many more metals than two... They've shown good performance with 80~100 dB of loop gain, good current drive, stability into capacitive loads, etc. As I recall, the area was around 300x400 um. So you can fit a good handful of circuitry on a 5 mm^2 chip.

~Tom
Interesting ! What process and what software did you use ?
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Old 8th September 2011, 11:10 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wahab View Post

Also , you should have the relevant tool for designing the layout,
and such softs are not exactly what would be called affordable..
For an audio circuit with ~ 50 transistors or less one can probably use an open source software (like Electric, etc.).
Of course, if you want to design a mixed signal circuit with >100k gates you have to get a much more expensive commercial software.
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Old 9th September 2011, 12:59 AM   #8
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Default DIY semiconductors ?

Any know how possible it is to make transistors at home (along the lines of the 1949 Shockley, Bardeen, Brattain invention, or better) ?

Click the image to open in full size.


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Old 9th September 2011, 04:17 AM   #9
jcx is offline jcx  United States
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brainwagon DIY FET/home-made transistor Scientific American June 1970
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Old 9th September 2011, 04:25 AM   #10
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Google for "Jeri Ellsworth" ,she's made some FET's in her basement.
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