Enhanced I2C (FAST Mode)

Since the first I2C spec release (which dates back from 1982), a couple of improvements have been made. In 1992, a newer version of the I2C spec was released. This new spec contained some additional sections covering FAST mode and  10-bit addressing.

In the FAST mode, the physical bus parameters are not altered. The protocol, bus levels, capacitive load etc. remain unchanged. However, the data rate has been increased to 400 Kbit/s and a constraint has been set on the level of noise that can be present in the system. To accomplish this task, a number of changes have been made to the I2C bus timing.

Since all CBUS activities have been canceled, there is no compatibility anymore with CBUS timing. The development of ICs with CBUS interface has long been stopped. The existing CBUS IC's are discontinued. Furthermore, the CBUS devices cannot handle these higher clock rates.

The input of the FAST mode devices all include Schmitt triggers to suppress noise. The output buffers include slope control for the falling edges of the SDA and SCL signals. If the power supply of a FAST mode device is switched off, the bus pins must be floating so that they do not obstruct the bus.

The pull-up resistor must be adapted. For loads up to 200 pF, a resistor is sufficient. For loads between 200pF and 400pF, a current source (active pull-up) is preferred.