@CPU I believe ILA still does ; blockRAMs, for example, depending on how deep a snapshot you want to have when debugging. With Vivado (new tool release for the newer chips), it is now called ILA2 ; haven't played with this (yet)...
Warren, thank you for this class. I learned alot, I plan on learning much more once I get the board and get to play with it. Any suggestions for other boards that can be used as stand alone demo boards but can also be used for modular unit for training and demonstrations? Such as dsp modules, adc / dac modules for building up more complex sysetms and mix and match?
@78RPM When I wrote my little test benches, it was an additional section of HDL code at the end of the design. Looks like "if this combination of inputs and signals is in this state, the expected output is..." (but written in HDL, not written in words like that).
Obsolescence is a big thing ; Xilinx FPGAs (sorrry, I don't know too much about Altera & Lattice) usually are sold for ~ 10 years ; you need to follow the PCNs (Product Change Notices) and Last-time-buys when the chip end of life (not necessarily the end of life of your product !) approaches ! Rarely are there drop-in-replacements (Rochester Electronics do make the afterlife), meaning a board respin...
@StephT I used an early version of ChipScope in an FPGA design several years ago. Back then you had to "hook it up" during the implementation. I recall it used some chip resources (or maybe it didn't). These days, does ChipScope consume any on-chip logic or routing?
I've written only small test benches, but they grow in complexity so rapidly. I think an engineer could really specialize in writing these. But maybe some logic designers want to design the test bench themselves.
@wmadden58 Altera and Xilinx are in a perpetual arms race. They keep going to smaller geometries and higher density. Some of the chips do last a few years. But I've had to deal with obsolete parts too.
Is anyone aware of articles on sustainable design with fpga's? I have noticed many times that boards designed around fpgas have failures and you need to rebuild the whole system due to the fpga being obsolete and no longer available, and not enough spares were built for replacements.
@KayakDiver - ran into similar issue a STM32 Discovery eval board in a previous webinar. Demos were built using IAR workbench and all ran with the free size-limited, time-unlimited IDE except for the graphics demo. That one required the 30-day time-limited, size-unlimited version due to the graphics library. Could be similar issue here?
@Warren. I kind'a expected that the Pico board would come with a Demo program that could be recompiled with the free version of Diamond. I've made no changes or additions - simply trying to rerun the project.
@lepuckited If you are interested in prototyping a dense BGA package on something easy to work with, you can buy BGA to pins adapters from companies like Aries. Also Schmartboard, sold on Digi-Key. But using the BGAs on PCBs, PCB designers do that in their sleep these days.
You might already know that Xilinx & Avnet (distributor) have an SDR kit with an ADI (Analog Dev.) MIMO front-end, if you're "seriously" into SDRs... [I was at their 'live' (free) seminar yesterday...]
@emertp- I'm not sure of the most current articles that do a comparison. Typically you need to go to each manufactures site and see what they say their parts are best at. Look at there refeence designs and that also gives you a good indication of their best fit.
Thanks Warren for these five classes. They have been very useful to me because they helped to expand my knowledge about designing with FPGA. Thanks you, Ann, Steph and DigiKey for bring this course to us.
? An interesting future project could be to have an FPGA receive multiple sources of video (like home security) and put them into a single video frame. Then stream it out an ethernet port for monitoring over the web. Just tossing some ideas out there. Maybe you could buy a pre-built system for only a few $, but putting that together using FPGA blocks would be cool.
IT will be helpfull a class on FPGA ..specific Ref DEMO, etc (5 days), since this is an overview, and thanks to Mr Warren and DigiKey, and design News...But for attacking FPGA, is better the study of one REF Design with a DEMO PCB, and STEP BY STEP (Don't care the Vendor, Microsemi, Xilinx, Altera, etc).
Python is for the RapsberryPi board control... answer to previsou question... I have No designs in teh works at the moment. Hopefully soon though. Looking for work programing PLCs for industrial automation.
I am not ready to do my design now because I need configure my SW and need more information about the software. After reviewing the classes and some information on Lattice website, I think I could do a basic design
"I would like to see the last day or two of this class expanded into a full week. Maybe a week of day 4 with one day given to each step of the dev process and a week of the last day's class with expanded discussion" - I second this - an excellent idea
I would like to see the last day or two of this class expanded into a full week. Maybe a week of day 4 with one day given to each step of the dev process and a week of the last day's class with expanded discussion.
A week long overview of Verilog language, with excercises to do after each class, would also be great.
@kayakdiver - are you using Diamond 3.1? Here is my tech support response so far:
The issue is due to Diamond Strategy settings. This project was initially created on Diamond version 1.2, with Diamond 1.2 default strategy settings. But, in the newer Diamond version, say Diamond 2.2, the default strategy settings are different, and hence when the same project is opened in higher Diamond versions, the software would assume the default strategy of the newer version, and would synthesize accordingly.
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Installed Lattice Diamond OK. Have PICO board (ordered through Mouser on Monday; got it Wedsnesday - slightly less expense than Digi-Key). Board fired up OK. Already had FTDI drivers installed (Windows 8). Board presents 2 COM ports not just one (that's the FT2232H chip); the second COM port worked with the preinstalled demo. Tried the low power demo; built and downloaded. Demo partly works; needs some debugging.
@All- If you were able to install the software OK, could you leave a message to that effect in the chat window? If you have the board, could you let me know that too? Interested in how many of you are 'enabled'.
?? Warren, on page 9 of the tutorial it says I should see a File List view. I only see Process, Design Summary, and LEDtest Project Summary. I'm supposed to right click on an item in File List but I don't see File List.
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@78RPM- Here is a good tutorial that does a click by click walk thru of an example design. This should get you familiar with the flow. Once you are comfortable with the flow you can then take an example design and make a simple change to it (maybe chaning the frequency of a couter to speed-up slow down a flashing LED) by changing an IP Block definition or making a simple edit to a HDL file.
I'm really struggling with this software. I think I need a sequel to this course which would be a click-by-click demo of how to do a simple app. Here's how to pull in an external sensor Here's how to pull in an op amp Here's how to pull in a motor controller Here's how to connect the I/O ports and do all the wiring Here's how to access the MCU in C code to program them all together.
I'm kinda lost on developing applications at this point. I hope this lecture pulls it together.
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