I'm a PhD student of information engineering at the University of
Kaiserslautern, Germany. This page is about the first FPGA board
built when I was a student.
just a small logbook about the things that are happening with the
project and other things I do.
The board has the following specification:
If you ask why I´m doing this: Just for fun! Of course I also
want to enhance my skills! It's a pity that even in an university a lot
of people tell you to buy the "Xilinx Starter Kit Board", it's so cheap
and easy and bla... :-/ I DON'T CARE! I prefer do accept the dare.
- Xilinx Spartan 3, XC3S400 in a PQ208 package. This is the biggest
version, that still can be soldered by hand.
- 4 Mbit configuration Flash for the FPGA. Since this FPGA type
only needs less than 2Mbit of configuration data the remaining part can
be used as a program memory.
- 18Mbit pipelined, synchronous, ZBT SRAM, organized as 512k*36
using a Cypress chip (CY7C1370CV25). The SRAM theoretically operates
with up to 167MHz (leading to a maximum bandwidth of 667MB/s) and will
be used for video-memory and program-code.
- 4Mbit serial Flash to be able to have more program data available
and save settings of any program.
- 2 VGA-ports, one with a 15 bit (3*5 bit for RGB) and one with a 9
bit(3*3 bit) resolution. Both are realized with R-2R-resistor-ladders.
Since the resistors have a tolerance of 1% this is not a very good
- 1 RS232-interface, realized with a MAX3232. This chip operates
with up to 250 kbit/s.
- 2 PS/2-ports for mouse and keyboard.
- 2 stereo AD-converters and 1 stereo DA-converter. These are
realized with the low cost PCM3010-CODEC-chip of Burr Brown/TI (24Bit,
96kHz ADC, 192kHz DAC). The Master-Clock of the system is chosen
because of the CODECs (49.152MHz) and can be multiplied within the
- 2 expansion connectors, one is meant for a
digital video camera while the other one has a better pin layout (both
connectors use the same FPGA-I/Os).
- 2 buttons and 1 free programmable LED ;-)
- 4 layer PCB. One layer will be used for GND only, one for the
3.3V and the 2.5V power supply.
The project so far caused costs of about 850EUR. These costs include
the software for the PCB design (EAGLE) as well as the components for
two FPGA boards. For more details read the older news in the news
A big THANKS goes to Kolja Sulimma for helping and giving tips!