Look at what I get to play with

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Buckler Of Springs

18 Feb 2011, 22:58

Been given access to this as part of a project I'm doing in college -


It's a Xilinx Virtex 5LXT FPGA development board.

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Gasbag Guru

18 Feb 2011, 23:29

That is one huge ass development board.

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19 Feb 2011, 00:41

I do squats for that kind of development.

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19 Feb 2011, 04:05

Julle wrote:I do squats for that kind of development.
That sounds kind of pervert; don't know why.

Daedalus: what does it do?

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Buckler Of Springs

19 Feb 2011, 15:59

It's an FPGA board. For those who are unaware of the concept, an FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array) is a programmable logic device. You use a hardware descriptor language like Verilog or VHDL to describe an electronic circuit, and you program the FPGA with that code, such that the FPGA works like that device. For example, you can write a description of a full CPU, and program the FPGA so that it becomes a CPU (obviously not quite as efficient as a purpose built one). Hell, you could use one to make a pretty swish keyboard controller, but given that FPGAs start at about $1,000 and go well up, it may be somewhat uneconomical for that purpose.

They're often used for prototyping, or for applications where you need some sort of dedicated hardware, but you aren't making enough of them to justify manufacturing a purpose built device.

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22 Feb 2011, 10:24

I worked with an ICE once ( In Circuit Emulator ). That was also a very expensive piece of hardware....


22 Feb 2011, 16:47

pretty cool, so watcha doin' with it?

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06 Mar 2011, 09:24

What's it's dimension? Is it like the size of a sound card?

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Buckler Of Springs

06 Mar 2011, 13:45

In terms of length it's about the size of a graphics card. In terms of height, it's a good bit higher than a standard card, but it should still fit into a standard computer case if needed. I'm using it standalone, and programming it with a JTAG cable.

@instantkamera: Implementing a digital signal filter, using VHDL and C. The FPGA can be programmed with a synthesized CPU, so that you can run C code directly on the FPGA.


06 Mar 2011, 23:13

I've seen a few of those around the lab here at the University.
Those things interface with everything, from serial to mini-GBIC.

A friend of mine worked on a Virtex-II dev. platform as well, a different but similarly sized beast.

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