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FPGA Group

71 posts
Why learn FPGA Design?  I have been asked in the comments why invest time and money to learn how to use FPGAs? First of all, if you are interested in advanced digital hardware design FPGAs are essentially the only game in town. Unless you are working on million dollar ASIC designs, the only way to do really advanced hardware design at a reasonable cost is with an FPGA.   Yes, there are DSPs and embedded micro-controllers and if you want to just toggle an LED a few times a second then ...
Hello all,   I wanted to create a post letting everyone know about a new white paper that was generated by one of my colleagues, I have linked it below.  In this white paper, he goes through and describes a design flow that would allow primarily a software engineer to easily work with an FPGA solution that leverages Open-Source C code to produce a Fast Fourier Transform (FFT).  Utilizing the Avnet SOM strategy would allow someone that is not as hardware oriented to be able to pro ...
Running Out of Excuses  Can you do FPGA design or teach yourself the skills required to do that with a $0 budget? Electrical engineers (and hobbyists and students and young - or old for that matter - people interested in electronics) are running out of excuses for not trying to learn FPGA design. In the past we heard that the FPGA software tools are expensive, they cost thousands of dollars, FPGA evaluation boards were an arm and a leg and you needed very expensive lab equipment like osci ...
fpgaguru

The Art of FPGA Design

Posted by fpgaguru Jul 10, 2018
Hi,   This is a new blog on the Art of FPGA Design. For those who want to follow along, I will try to add a new post every week.   While intended mainly for beginners initially, this is not an FPGA 101 kind of material. There are many of them that can be found online, including some excellent ones here on the Element 14 site. Some familiarity with FPGAs, HDLs and hardware design in general will be assumed. Some software programming experience might help (or hinder, we will have to se ...
Recently I discovered a clever way in MATLAB to interact with my HDL IP cores in situ, running in the programmable logic. Yes, of course, there are many ways to probe logic in an FPGA, but this one is particularly helpful when I need to analyze bits that represents sampled signals.   A few benefits of this method: Simple setup – ARM subsystem is not involved Pass buffers of data to/from MATLAB workspace Post-capture analysis natively in MATLAB (no need to transfer vector files) &# ...
yosoufe

Make Z-turn board buzz

Posted by yosoufe Mar 31, 2018
Hi, This is my first blog here in element14 community. I am learning FPGA and totally newbie. I've got a bachelor degree in Mechanical Engineering and finishing my master (hopefully next week is my presentation ) and I learned some MCU by myself and now I am trying to learn FPGA by my own. I've got a Z-turn board from MYIR and bought it for second hand from ebay-kleinanzeige because at that time that was the cheapest option to get a Zynq FPGA development board. This is my first vhdl code as well ...
Question: How did Avnet arrive at the DDR Delay values published in the MiniZed board definition file?   That's a good question! We developed the MiniZed board definition file with Vivado 2016.4. The settings you will find in the Avnet MiniZed board definition/awareness preset.xml are: Calculating these requires you to know the routing length in millimeters for the DDR clocks, DQS, and DQ traces. For MiniZed, we publish this in the net length report. You need clock and strobe for each 8 bi ...
A Field Programmable Gate Array or FPGA is an integrated circuit that could contain millions of logic gates that can be electrically configured to perform a certain task. But how does an FPGA compare to a microcontroller, microprocessor or an application specific IC?.   Microcontroller vs FPGA: The structure of a microcontroller is comparable to a simple computer placed in a single chip with all of the necessary components like memory and timers embedded inside. It is programmed to do some ...
Field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) are reprogrammable silicon chips. They can be programmed for different algorithms after fabrication. Modern FPGAs consist of up to millions of logic cells that can be configured to implement a variety of software algorithms. Although the traditional FPGA design flow is more similar to a regular IC than a processor, an FPGA provides significant cost advantages in comparison to an IC development effort and offers the same level of performance in most cases. & ...
Though MiniZed be but small, she is fierce.   A terrible use of Shakespeare’s famous quote, but still a perfect fit for MiniZed™ and its Xilinx Zynq™ SoC.   In this blog we’ll explore a new way to program this fierce little board without being an SoC expert.   At first glance it may be daunting to start your design, but there’s good news for anyone new to SoC programming. Avnet created a support package to enable you to program MiniZed using code gene ...
Throughout my career as an engineer, one thing has always stuck out to me.  Process.  There is always a process for everything.  Be it for somewhat complex reasons, such as the need to heat soak a board properly when attaching BGA components to a PCB, or more or less simple reasons, such as the compounds in flux making solder move where you want it!  Why bring up process?  Process is the key to the scientific process.  The validation, verification, reporting, all th ...
The new Arty S7 development board is the most recent addition to Digilent's Arty Family designed with makers and hobbyists in mind. Developed as an update to the earlier Spartan-6 FPGA solution, this board features the new Xilinx Spartan-7 FPGA to better support a variety of applications and design needs.       With innovations in the new Spartan-7 FPGA family, makers and hobbyists alike can now benefit from the Arty S7 development board. This is first development board to feat ...
I was looking for a cheap dev board for the Altera/Intel MAX 10 parts. There's an Altera branded 10M50 board for about $200 with a mass of stuff on it but I don't usually find very complex dev boards to be helpful. I'm interested in the MAX10 - not a whole load of other stuff. They do have a very cheap and commendably simple 10M08 board ($49 but I didn't find that in time !). I did find the MAXimator board and bought one - it arrived quickly and without any problems, cost was £58.15 (actua ...
This is the project I've been working on recently. Just assembled the first prototype. I've only populated 2 of the 8 analogue input sections, some values in filters may change and I don't need to waste expensive parts by building all 8 channels just yet. The signals go into an 8 channel simultaneous sampling 24 bit ADC which will run at about 256k samples per channel per second. The FPGA, an Altera MAX10M16, controls the ADC and does the heavy digital signal processing work. It has a little 128 ...
Following the mega useful suggestion from aventuri about the existence of this board I bought one because I couldn't find any other way to get hold of a Lattice UP5k FPGA chip in 48 pin QFN.   This is an interesting FPGA in that it has 5k LUTs, the usual block RAM (15kbytes), 4 single port RAMs totaling 128kbytes and 8 16 bit wide multipliers, all this in a 48 pin prototype friendly QFN package and quite cheap - if only anyone had them in stock.   The UPduino board has A UP5k, an abs ...

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