Speaker Amplifier with the Industry’s Lowest Noise & Lowest Quiescent Power Consumption

20V digital input MAX98396 audio power amplifier provides speakers with an inaudible noise floor, which is 50-percent lower than other, similar amplifiers, enabling placement in near-silent environments

Maxim Integrated Products unveiled the MAX98396 Class D/G speaker amplifier with the industry’s lowest noise and lowest quiescent power consumption, which is nearly five times lower power than similar amplifiers. The 20V digital input audio power amplifier offers 12.7mW of quiescent power to meet and exceed the industry’s power compliance regulations, which support the always-on feature in portable Bluetooth and smart speakers.  The MAX98396’s low 15.5uVrms noise floor is 50-percent lower than the closest competitor, allowing speaker placement in near-silent locations.

The MAX98396 is the newest addition to Maxim Integrated’s portfolio of Class D/G amplifiers, offering the industry’s lowest power, lowest noise and highest thermal efficiency demanded by battery powered Bluetooth and always-on smart speakers. The industry-leading power efficiency allows the speaker to be driven higher and longer before reaching the thermal limit. As well, the MAX98396 is ultrasound ready with 45kHz of bandwidth and a dedicated data path. This feature, combined with artificial intelligence (AI) software and ultrasound, enables touchless gesture sensing, presence detection and proximity sensing.

Key Advantages

  • Ultra-Low Power: The MAX98396 offers 12.7mW of quiescent power consumption at 12V Power Vdd (PVDD), which is nearly five times lower than similar amplifiers. The low quiescent power meets and exceeds the industry’s standby power compliance regulations for always-on speakers.
  • Lowest Noise Floor: The MAX98396’s low 15.5uVrms noise floor is 50-percent lower than the closest competitor, allowing speaker placement in near-silent locations.
  • Ultrasound Ready: The MAX98396 offers an upgraded sampling frequency of up to 192kHz and an ultrasound signal bypass path to prevent ultrasound signal attenuation by the audio processing.

As consumers embrace voice assistance in everyday life, speakers are proliferating throughout the connected home and new use cases are driving the demand for higher audio performance and artificial intelligence-enabled smart speakers,” said Peter Cooney, SAR Insight & Consulting. “And as these modern devices continue to shrink in size, thermal management is becoming even more critical.”

“The MAX98396 Class D/G amplifier was designed to meet the needs of next-generation smart and wireless speakers,” said Kevin Ko, business manager of Mobile Audio Solutions at Maxim Integrated.The high-resolution audio-compatible speaker amplifier features ultra-low noise performance, making it well-suited for placement bed side. Upgraded, ultrasound-ready features enable the newest trend of contactless smart speakers.”

Availability and Pricing

  • The MAX98396 is available at Maxim Integrated’s website for $1.12 (1000-up, FOB USA); also available from authorized distributors
  • The MAX98396EVSYS evaluation system is available for $184