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Motorola DSP56k


The Motorola DSP56k series is a 24-bit digital signal processor architecture from Motorola. Nowadays Motorola's DSP production is been continued by Freescale Semiconductors, Inc. For company history see the Freescale Semiconductor's Wiki pages. The DSP56004 which architecture is used by SigmaTel's STMP35xx series chips had been discontinued. The popular SigmaTel STMP35xx digital audio player system-on-a-chip package had been built into a number of portable MP3 players. Even STMP35xx and DSP56004 shares same architecture, the STMP35xx has an extended memory space. The smallest addressable unit in the DSP56k is 24 bits; for pointers, only the lower 16 bits is used, supporting at most 192 kilooctets of RAM.

Compilers for older series, including 560xx, 5616x, 563xx and 566xx are hard to come by; there are several incomplete ports of GCC, and a few open source assemblers, dating back to early 1990s. The 568xx series, however, has a freely downloadable IDE and an adequate-seeming port of GCC from 2004.

DSP56k Chip Documentation

On the Freescale web site a number of DSP56004 documentation can be found. As the DSP56004 had been discontinued the documentation will be found by using Freescale's search engines in their archives. To find the complete set check the table below about available literature.

DSP56000 24-Bit Digital Signal Processor Family Manual Motorola 1995 DSP56000UM?.pdf
24-Bit Digital Signal Processor User's Manual Motorola 1996, Revision 1 DSP56004UM?.pdf
Symphony™ Audio DSP Family
24-Bit Digital Signal Processors
Semiconductor Technical Data
DSP56004 / DSP56004ROM?

1997, Revision 3


Booting and Simple Usage
of the DSP56004/007/009 SHI
Port in SPI Mode
Tom Zudock
Freescale Semiconductor



Designing Freescale DSP56xxx
Software for Nonrealtime Tests
File I/O Using SIM56xxx and ADS56xxx
Tom Zudock
Freescale Semiconductor



DSP56k Code Development Tools

Suite56™ Application Development System

Built by Motorola in the late 90's the Suite56 DSP Application Development System (ADS) is a development tool used to design real-time signal processing systems. The ADS consolidates complex hardware and software development tools within a workstation environment and runs on most operating systems, such as Windows (W'95, W'NT4.0), HP-UX (9.X), Sun (OS 4.x) and Solaris (5.x). The ADS allows initial development, and supports testing of prototype designs. The Suite56™ development bundel consists of a Host-Bus Interface Unit for 16bit ISA bus (PC compatible and HP7xx workstations) and SBus (for Sun and Spark workstations), a Command Converter taking care for communication between host computer and target system, and Control, Development, and Debugging Software. The Application Development Module (ADM) with the DSP chip completes the Suite56™ bundle. Following chip families could be used by the Suite56™:
  • DSP56000
  • DSP56100
  • DSP56300
  • DSP56600
  • DSP56800
  • DSP96000
Following literature is available from the Freescale web site:

Suite56™ Application Development System
Command Converter Server User's Guide

1999, Revision 1


Suite56™ Application Development System
Debugger User's Manual, Release 6.3

1999, Revision 4.0


Suite56™ Application Development System
DSP Simulator User's Manual, Release 6.3

1999, Revision 3.0


Other DSP56k Code Development Tools



DSP563xx and DSP566xx

  • Suite56: Assembler, linker and simulator tools (but no compiler?) for 563xx and 566xx series, available from Freescale web site, for free after registration
  • gcc-dsp563: A port of GCC version 1.37.1 for DSP563xx series. Last known port version 1.29 available at (also includes a port of GDB 3.5)


  • Freescale CodeWarrior IDE with compilers, simulators, debuggers, examples, etc for Windows. The entire 360MB download is available from Freescale web site for free after registration.
  • DSP56800 Toolchain: a port of GCC version 3.3.2, GNU binutils, debugger, assembler, etc. Latest web site activity from April 2004. Available from
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r2 - 08 Mar 2008 - 23:15:37 - RobertWagner
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