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A new class of neural prosthetic systems aims to assist disabled patients by translating cortical neural activity into control signals for prosthetic devices. Based on the success of proof-of-concept systems in the laboratory, there is now considerable interest in increasing system performance and creating implantable electronics for use in clinical systems. A critical question that impacts system performance and the overall architecture of these systems is whether it is possible to identify the neural source of each action potential (spike sorting) in real-time and with low power. Low power is essential both for power supply considerations and heat dissipation in the brain. In this paper we report that state-of-the-art spike sorting algorithms are not only feasible using modern complementary metal oxide semiconductor very large scale integration processes, but may represent the best option for extracting large amounts of data in implantable neural prosthetic interfaces.