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Digilent Digital Discovery with High Speed Adapter - Review

Scoring

Product Performed to Expectations: 9
Specifications were sufficient to design with: 10
Demo Software was of good quality: 10
Product was easy to use: 10
Support materials were available: 10
The price to performance ratio was good: 10
TotalScore: 59 / 60
  • RoadTest: Digilent Digital Discovery with High Speed Adapter
  • Buy Now
  • Evaluation Type: Test Equipment
  • Was everything in the box required?: Yes
  • Comparable Products/Other parts you considered: Saleae Logic 8/16

  • Detailed Review:

    Overview/Comparison

     

     

    Specifications

     

    24-channel digital logic analyzer (1.2…3.3V CMOS, up to 800MS/s(with the High Speed Adapter))

    16-channel pattern generator (1.2…3.3V CMOS, 100MS/s)

    16-channel virtual digital I/O including buttons, switches, and LEDs – perfect for logic training applications

    Two input/output digital trigger signals for linking multiple instruments (1.2…3.3V CMOS)

    A programmable power supply of 1.2…3.3V/100mA. The same voltage supplies the Logic Analyzer input buffers and the Pattern Generator input/output buffers, for keeping the logic level compatibility with the circuit under test.

    Digital Bus Analyzers (SPI, I²C, UART, I2S, CAN, Parallel)

     

    Competing Modules

     

    When I first saw this, I thought, is this just another cheap Saleae Logic knockoff.

    Well not even close.The numbers don't lie.

     

    Saleae 8/16 Pro $479/$599

    4 channels @ 500 MS/s

    Digilent Digital Discovery $250

    8 channels @ 800 MS/s (with HS adapter)

    (number of active channels at highest sampling rate)

     

    With the High Speed adapter this unit has some real capability at a price point that can't be touched.

    Still the Saleae has been the leading mini format analyzer for so long, only fair to make some comparisons.

    Both are based on the Spartan-6 FPGA.

     

     

     

     

    And while Saleae may have a slightly more 'polished' software interface, Digilents Waveforms interface is very easy to use and frequently updated with new features.

    With a few more added bus analyzers, Saleae could find themselves easily surpassed by this new addition to the Digilent line of logic products.

     

    Test Setup

     

     

    Using my handy Microchip board, I tried the I2C bus.

     

     

     

    First the logic analyzer, no problems decoding the data.

     

     

    Next the bus protocol analyzer, again easy as can be.

     

    Final Thoughts

     

    I can easily say this is one device everyone should have in their tool kit.

    While not as diverse as the Analog Discovery 2 in features, it certainly makes up

    for that in it's sheer power by focusing only on digital signals.


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