Single-Chip IEEE 802.11b/g/n 1T1R WLAN Controller with SDIO Interface

General Description

The Realtek RTL8189ES-VB-CG is a highly integrated single-chip 802.11n Wireless LAN (WLAN) network SDIO interface (SDIO 1.1/ 2.0/ 3.0 compatible) controller. It is a WLAN MAC, a 1T1R capable WLAN baseband, and WLAN RF in a single chip. The RTL8189ES-VB provides a complete solution for a high-throughput performance integrated wireless LAN device.

The RTL8189ES-VB WLAN baseband implements Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM) with 1 transmit and 1 receive path and is compatible with the IEEE 802.11n specification. Features include one spatial stream transmission, short guard interval (GI) of 400ns, spatial spreading, and transmission over 20MHz and 40MHz bandwidth.

For legacy compatibility, Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum (DSSS), Complementary Code Keying (CCK) and OFDM baseband processing are included to support all IEEE 802.11b and 802.11g data rates. Differential phase shift keying modulation schemes, DBPSK and DQPSK with data scrambling capability, are available, and CCK provides support for legacy data rates, with long or short preamble.  The high-speed FFT/IFFT paths, combined with BPSK, QPSK, 16QAM, and 64QAM modulation of the individual subcarriers and rate compatible punctured convolutional coding with coding rate of 1/2, 2/3, 3/4, and 5/6, provide higher data rates of 54Mbps and 150Mbps for IEEE 802.11g and 802.11n OFDM respectively.

The RTL8189ES-VB WLAN Controller builds in an enhanced signal detector, an adaptive frequency domain equalizer, and a soft-decision Viterbi decoder to alleviate severe multi-path effects and mutual interference in the reception of multiple streams. Robust interference detection and suppression are provided to protect against Bluetooth, cordless phone, and microwave oven interference.

Efficient IQ-imbalance, DC offset, phase noise, frequency offset, and timing offset compensations are provided for the radio frequency front-end. Selectable digital transmit and receive FIR filters are provided to meet transmit spectrum mask requirements and to reject adjacent channel interference, respectively.

The RTL8189ES-VB WLAN Controller supports fast receiver Automatic Gain Control (AGC) with synchronous and asynchronous control loops among antennas, antenna diversity functions, and adaptive transmit power control function to obtain the better performance in the analog portions of the transceiver.

The RTL8189ES-VB WLAN MAC supports 802.11e for multimedia applications, 802.11i for security, and 802.11n for enhanced MAC protocol efficiency. Using packet aggregation techniques such as A-MPDU with BA and A-MSDU, protocol efficiency is significantly improved. Power saving mechanisms such as Legacy Power Save, and U-APSD, reduce the power wasted during idle time, and compensates for the extra power required to transmit OFDM. The RTL8189ES-VB provides simple legacy and 20MHz/40MHz co-existence mechanisms to ensure backward and network compatibility.


  • 32-pin QFN
  • CMOS MAC, Baseband PHY, and RF in a single chip for IEEE 802.11b/g/n compatible WLAN
  • Complete 802.11n solution for 2.4GHz band
  • 72.2Mbps receive PHY rate and 72.2Mbps transmit PHY rate using 20MHz bandwidth
  • 150Mbps receive PHY rate and 150Mbps transmit PHY rate using 40MHz bandwidth
  • Compatible with 802.11n specification
  • Backward compatible with 802.11b/g devices while operating in 802.11n mode
    Host Interface
  • Compatible with SDIO 1.1/ 2.0/ 3.0 for WLAN with clock rate up to 100MHz
  • GSPI interface for configurable endian for WLAN
    Standards Supported
  • IEEE 802.11b/g/n compatible WLAN
  • IEEE 802.11e QoS Enhancement (WMM)
  • 802.11i (WPA, WPA2). Open, shared key, and pair-wise key authentication services
    WLAN MAC Features
  • Frame aggregation for increased MAC efficiency (A-MSDU, A-MPDU)
  • Low latency immediate High-Throughput Block Acknowledgement (HT-BA)
  • PHY-level spoofing to enhance legacy compatibility
  • Power saving mechanism
  • Channel management and co-existence
  • Transmit Opportunity (TXOP) Short Inter-Frame Space (SIFS) bursting for higher multimedia bandwidth
    WLAN PHY Features
  • IEEE 802.11n OFDM
  • One Transmit and one Receive path (1T1R)
  • 20MHz and 40MHz bandwidth transmission
  • Short Guard Interval (400ns)
  • DSSS with DBPSK and DQPSK, CCK modulation with long and short preamble
  • OFDM with BPSK, QPSK, 16QAM, and 64QAM modulation.
    Convolutional Coding Rate: 1/2, 2/3, 3/4, and 5/6
  • Maximum data rate 54Mbps in 802.11g and 150Mbps in 802.11n
  • Switch diversity for DSSS/CCK
  • Hardware antenna diversity on per packet base
  • Selectable receiver FIR filters
  • Programmable scaling in transmitter and receiver to trade quantization noise against increased probability of clipping
  • Fast receiver Automatic Gain Control (AGC)
  • On-chip ADC and DAC
    Peripheral Interfaces
  • General Purpose Input/Output (8 pins)
  • One configurable LED pin


  • Single-Band 11n (1x1) Solution