IC Friday: Mystery PMA19 (iPhone)


It is already Thanksgiving and I am still posting chips from the iPhone. This is a mystery chip from the iPhone with limited information on the package and “PMA19″ on the die. After taking a close look at the surface at 400x total magnification, I still couldn’t see any hint of the origin of the chip. The only guess that I could make is that it it might be an RF modulator/demodulator with a built in DSP. If anyone has some insight, feel free to post a comment.


pma19-10x-01.jpg pma19-10x-02.jpg pma19-10x-03.jpg

pma19-40x-01.jpg pma19-40x-02.jpg pma19-40x-03.jpg

pma19-40x-04.jpg pma19-40x-05.jpg pma19-40x-06.jpg

Update: Here are two pictures of the passive component as per request.

pma19-p-4x-01.jpg pma19-p-10x-01.jpg

10 thoughts on “IC Friday: Mystery PMA19 (iPhone)

  1. nico Post author

    The best I can do without going back to the scope is the following post:


    These are images of various wire thicknesses at the various available magnifications. The magnifications (4x, 40x, etc) in the file names and those in the scale bar images refer to the magnification of the objective. The scope optics also add another 10x resulting in the 400x mentioned above. I hope this makes sense, let me know if I should clarify something.

  2. g.sylvain

    Well, I’m not sure because I don’t know if the photos are automatically scaled or not.
    Do you know what are the IC dimensions ??
    Or other dimensions that you may have noticed ??

  3. nico Post author

    The camera that I use with the microscope only outputs 1600×1200 images, so all of the non-stitched image have the same pixel sizes across the same magnifications. This means that if 10 pixels equals some size in the 4x scale image, 10 pixels is the exact same size in all of the 4x individual images. Having said that, the stitcher software preserves the number of pixels generated. So 10 pixels in the 4x scale bar image represents the same distance as 10 pixels in the 4x stitched image.

    The main die size is 3.5mm by 2mm. The original size of the package may have been something like 4mm by 8mm, but I am not sure. The package contained the die imaged, a pair of what looked like SAW resonators and a pair of other passive components that could not be identified. Unfortunately, what looked like the resonators did not survive one of the processing steps. I have the passive components mounted, however, I can’t see anything useful. Finally, the package only had a grid of BGA pads on the bottom, no large central pad that may have been used to take off some of the heat.

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