Clock gating is one of the power-saving techniques used on many synchronous circuits including the Pentium 4 processor. To save power, clock gating support adds additional logic to a circuit to prune the clock tree, thus disabling portions of the circuitry so that its flip-flops do not change state: their switching power consumption goes to zero, and only leakage currents are incurred.

Although asynchronous circuits by definition do not have a "clock", the term perfect clock gating is used to illustrate how various clock gating techniques are simply approximations of the data-dependent behavior exhibited by asynchronous circuitry. As the granularity on which you gate the clock of a synchronous circuit approaches zero, the power consumption of that circuit approaches that of an asynchronous circuit: the circuit only generates logic transitions when it is actively computing.

Chip families such as OMAP3, with a cell phone heritage, support several forms of clock gating. At one end is manual gating of clocks by software, where a driver enables or disables the various clocks used by a given idle controller. On the other end is automatic clock gating, where the hardware can be told to detect whether there's any work to do, and turn off a given clock if it isn't needed. These modes interact. For example, an internal bridge or bus might use automatic gating so that it's gated off until the CPU or a DMA engine needs to use it.

當然,積極的電源管理是降低耗電的一大關鍵。多媒體平台應讓主CPU盡可能處於預備中(Idle)、低時脈(Doze)和接近靜態(Sleep)等省電模 式中。為了降低靜態電流的洩漏問題,整個Nomadik晶片除了RTC和PMU外,都可以處於不供電狀態,但在少於千分之三秒內就能被叫醒。此外,可採用 時脈閘控(Clock-gating)和運算元隔離(Operand Isolation)來關掉晶片中非運作的部分。





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