Under The Hood: TI's OMAP3630
Inside of the double-DIN enclosure is a Texas Instruments OMAP3630 system-on-chip. The 3630 was particularly popular a couple of years ago, and it's also found in Motorola's Droid 2, X, and Palm Pre 2. It's an older piece of silicon, but it's also mature, which is more important than performance in an automotive application.
The ARMv7-based SoC features a single Cortex-A8 core operating at up to 800 MHz and able to throttle down as low as 300 MHz. Imagination Technologies' PowerVR SGX530 graphics core adds OpenGL ES 2.0 support. Of course, you don't get access to the latest Tegra-optimized titles, but the 2005-era GPU can still make Angry Birds possible on your car's head unit, which is pretty sweet. The 45 nm SoC also includes TI's IVA 2 engine for hardware-based video decode. It's limited to 720p resolutions, well beyond the Asteroid Smart's 800x480 display.
Although the latest smartphones come with as much as 2 GB of memory, the Asteroid Smart's 512 MB is more typical of Gingerbread-era devices. That should be plenty of RAM for an application like this, and we didn't run into any workloads that appeared memory-starved.
Parrot employs a 24-bit/192 kHz four-channel DAC. The company wasn't able to confirm the DAC's make or model, unfortunately. Now, if you're puzzled by the six-channel pre-outs and four-channel DAC, bear in mind that the front and rear channels are only needed for balance and face, while the subwoofer output is simply derived from the front or rear channels with an added crossover.
Audio enthusiasts looking for detailed equalizer settings, more flexible crossover slops, or even active three-way crossovers will want to look elsewhere or employ an external processor. The Asteroid Smart employs a fairly basic configuration. With all of that said, we were happy with the system's output quality using the internal amp and pre-outs.