LVDS vs M-LVDS | Difference between LVDS and M-LVDS

This page compares LVDS vs M-LVDS and mentions similarities and difference between LVDS and M-LVDS interface types.

Introduction: LVDS and M-LVDS interfaces are differential signaling used for high speed communication using two wires. LVDS is designed for point to point links where as M-LVDS is used for multipoint links. LVDS stands for Low Voltage Differential Signaling. The character "M" in M-LVDS stands for "Multipoint". In receiver, data is decoded based on difference in voltages between two complementary electrical signals. Both signal interfaces improve noise immunity and minimizes electromagnetic emissions.

LVDS Point to Point Link

The primary standard is defined in TIA/EIA-644 and alternative standard is defined in IEEE 1596.3. It is considered as low power alternative to ECL and PECL interfaces. It is used for various applications such as clock distribution, high speed backplane, data communication between boards, data communication between links on the single PCB.

LVDS interface
Image Courtesy : Analog Devices, Inc.

Advantages of LVDS are as follows.
• Data communication at speed up to 1 Gbps or higher.
• Increased immunity against noise.
• Reduced EM emissions.
• Low power operation.
• Common mode range which allows differences of up to +/- 1 V in GND offset.

M-LVDS Multipoint Link

The M-LVDS is used to extend LVDS to address multipoint applications. The specifications of M-LVDS are defined in TIA/EIA-899 standard. M-LVDS supports high speed communication links compare to RS485 and CAN interfaces at low power. M-LVDS supports greater distances compare to original LVDS signal interface.

M-LVDS interface
Image Courtesy : Analog Devices, Inc.

M-LVDS supports total 32 nodes on single bus. Following are the additional features supported by M-LVDS.
• Extended common mode range
• Increased driver output strength
• Controlled transition times
• Option of failsafe receivers for bus idle condition

Like LVDS, it is also used for various applications such as clock distribution, termination, data encoding and synchronization, isolation etc.

M-LVDS uses higher differential output voltage and supports extended common mode range.

Tabular difference between LVDS and M-LVDS

Following table mentions difference between LVDS and M-LVDS signal interface types and their links.

Specifications LVDS M-LVDS
• Full Form LVDS stands for Low Voltage Differential Signaling Multipoint LVDS
• Standard TIA/EIA-644 TIA/EIA-899
• Data rate > 1 Gbps 100 to 200 Mbps (typical)
• Transmission distance (Maximum) 5 to 10 meters (short distances) 20 to 40 meters (medium distances)
• Common mode range Low ( 0V to 2.4V) Higher than LVDS (-1V to 3.4V)
• Differential output voltage Low (Min VOD : 250 mV, Max VOD : 450 mV) Higher than LVDS (Min VOD : 480 mV, Max VOD : 650 mV)
• Application Point to point Multipoint

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