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March 15, 2011 AT 1:18 am

Apple A5 floorplan

Apl0498 Apl0498E01 Backside
Apple A5 floorplan

We had decapsulated the A5 a couple of days ago, but as you could see in those early pictures, you can’t tell much of a chip’s layout from the top metal – it’s all power and ground buses.  So we have to de-layer the chip down to a level where we can see the block layout of the chip; not an easy thing when there’s nine layers of metal!  In fact, these days it’s easier to go in from the back and remove the substrate silicon, and look at the gate level from below.  Then we can identify the circuit blocks that make up the full device.


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5 Comments

  1. I like to think that one of the blocks in the corner is a Z80, and the rest of the die is a fully-integrated Jobs Reality Distortion Engine 🙂

  2. What Apple product is this used is? iPad, iPhone, Mac?

  3. It’s their A5 ARM-based uprocessor, designed by P.A Semi (who they acquired) and used in their iPad 2. Probably will also be used in the next iPhone.

  4. @Rick
    It is used in the iPad 2 and is likely to be in the next iPhone (5).

  5. Cool. I did something similar: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/11891854/4004/4004_poster.svg (inkscape svg), original; http://dl.dropbox.com/u/11891854/4004/4004_map.png

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