Optimized and efficient access to the DRAM is critical to the performance of any chip. As the number of processing elements on a chip increases, so does the demand for data. With DRAM technology transitioning to DDR4 for infrastructure and LPDDR4 for mobile and consumer applications, not only does the frequency of DRAM operation increase significantly, but also the complexity of making the best use of the DRAM bandwidth to deliver high Quality of Service (QoS) at low power, increases. Managing the differing demands of multiple processing elements while delivering maximum DRAM bandwidth is the primary challenge addressed by the Dynamic Memory Controller (DMC).

The Dynamic Memory Controller family

CoreLink DMC-500 Dynamic Memory Controller

CoreLink DMC-500 Dynamic Memory Controller

  • Specifically designed for low power operation in mobile, consumer and embedded applications that utilize LPDDR4 and LPDDR3 memories
  • Optimized for best memory bandwidth at low latencies with Arm CoreLink CCI and NIC

CoreLink DMC-520 Dynamic Memory Controller

CoreLink DMC-520 Dynamic Memory Controller

  • Targeted at applications in server, networking and high-performance computing, using DDR4 and DDR3 memories
  • Supports enterprise-class requirements for high-density DIMMs, error correction codes and reliability with ease-of-use Optimized for highest performance with the CoreLink CCN family


CoreLink DMC-620 Dynamic Memory Controller

  • Builds on top of DMC-520 features to provide the best performance with RAS and end-to-end QoS support with CoreLink CMN-600.
  • Reduces static pipeline latency by up to 50% compared to DMC-520. Expands support for 3DS DRAM with extended virtual rank support.
  • Improves memory access latency for Arm Cortex v8-A processors significantly under common operating conditions.

Product Comparison

Infrastructure Systems

The CoreLink DMC-520 and DMC-620 Dynamic Memory Controller are designed to provide a high-performance solution for SoC deployed in infrastructure applications including servers, high-performance computing (HPC), and networking. The CoreLink DMC-520 is optimized to work with the CoreLink CCN-5xx family of Cache Coherent Network products using native AMBA 5 CHI. CoreLink DMC-520 provides a high-bandwidth interface to shared off-chip memory, such as DDR3, DDR3L, and DDR4 DRAM along with full support of UDIMM, RDIMM, and LRDIMM. Enterprise class RAS (Reliability, Availability, and Serviceability) features such as ECC for x72 DRAM, TrustZone security, and end-to-end QoS are integral components of this memory controller. The CoreLink DMC-520 is integrated with industry-standard DFI 3.1 DDR PHYs using 1:1, 1:2 or 1:4 configurable DFI frequency ratios. 

For High-end Infrastructure Systems

The Corelink DMC-620 is a superset of the DMC-520 in terms of the features supported, and is optimized to work with CoreLink CMN-600 interconnect using the CHI system interface protocol while also maintaining backwards compatibility with CoreLink CCN-5xx family of products. It has extended virtual rank support to enable addressing of very high-density 2H, 4H, or 8H 3DS DRAM devices. With this support, a single channel of CoreLink DMC-620 can address up to 1TB of DRAM memory, providing system designers with sufficient headroom for growing the DRAM footprint of their high-end systems. The Corelink DMC-620 offers support for sophisticated RAS features such as end-to-end data parity protection, corrected data writeback, retry on uncorrectable ECC errors, memory scrubbing, and standardized error reporting. It supports both the standard SECDED (Single Error Correct Multiple Error Detect) and advanced symbol-based ECC for correcting complete failure of a x4 memory device.

Both DMC-520 and DMC-620 have been proven interoperable with multiple 3rd party DFI-compliant DDR PHYs.

For Mobile and Consumer Systems

The CoreLink DMC-500 is optimized for Arm systems to deliver high performance and power efficient access to LPDDR4 x16 and LPDDR3 x32 memory. The CoreLink DMC-500 offers excellent integration with the CoreLink interconnect products, sharing QoS mechanisms and power management. End-to-end QoS for each of CPU, GPU, and other bus masters guarantees performance while increasing memory and wire utilization, as well as TrustZone technology Address Space Control that provides security across the system. A single DFI 4.0 memory interface offers 128-bit DFI data width at speeds of up to 533MHz. PHY management is included as part of the memory interface, allowing for faster integration to the memory subsystem.

Feature  CoreLink DMC-500 CoreLink DMC-520 CoreLink DMC-620 
System Interfaces
2x AXI4 interfaces
1x for direct connection to CCN products using AMBA 5 CHI
1x for direct connection to CCN-5xx or CMN-600 products using AMBA5 CHI
System Data Width
 256-bit or 128-bit
Memory Interfaces
Single interface per channel connected to PHY with DFI 4.0
Single interface per channel connected to PHY with DFI 3.1
Single interface per channel, connected to PHY with DFI 4.0
Memory Types
DDR3, DDR3(L) and DDR4 with support for UDIMM, RDIMM and LRDIMM
DDR3,  DDR3(L), and DDR4 with support for UDIMM, RDIMM, LRDIMM, and NVDIMM-N
Memory Width
x16 or x32-bit
x72 or x40-bit (including 8-bit ECC)
 x72 or x40-bit (including 8-bit ECC)
SECDED or symbol-based ECC
SECDED or symbol-based ECC
Maximum DDR Speed
Up to LPDDR3-2133 or LPDDR4-4267 Mbps
Up to DDR4-3200 Mbps
Up to DDR4-3200 Mbps
# Chip Selects
2 8
QoS QoS based scheduling algorithm through Cache Coherent Interconnect
QoS based scheduling algorithm, QVN support, non-blocking paths to DRAM through Cache Coherent Network
QoS based scheduling algorithm, QVN support, non-blocking paths to DRAM through Coherent Mesh Network
Latency QoS mechanisms ensure critical masters can achieve minimum latency

Low Power All DRAM power modes supported and hierarchical clock gating throughout the DMC

Static Memory Controllers

Static memory controllers communicate with SRAM and NAND or NOR Flash devices. The following products are supported by Arm: 

  • SMC-351 is a fully programmable NAND Flash static memory controller with a support for a single NAND Flash memory interface.
  • SMC-352 is a fully programmable static memory controller with a single SRAM or NOR Flash memory interface.
  • SMC-353 is a fully programmable static memory controller with an SRAM/NOR Flash interface and a NAND Flash memory interface.
  • SMC-354 is a fully programmable static memory controller with two SRAM/NOR Flash memory interfaces.