FPGAs and other misc

Bob Bruhns bbruhns at erols.com
Fri Apr 6 16:12:33 CDT 2007

Hi Frank,

I work with some Xilinx and Actel devices on the job. The Actel parts are called FPGAs, and the Xilinx parts are called CPLDs.
Don't ask me what the difference is.

They are both in-circuit programmable, and they can do all sorts of things.  I never wrote the programs for them, though, I just
load the executable code into the devices.

PC prototyping is pretty cheap these days.  It would be great to be able to build up a DSP module that has a high-speed A to D
on the input instead of just an audio-grade one.  It would also be highly cool to be able to configure the FPGA for various
specific tasks, in addition to being able to program the DSP.  Well, I can dream, can't I?

  Bob, WA3WDR

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Frank Gentges" <metavox at earthlink.net>
To: "Bob Bruhns" <bbruhns at erols.com>
Cc: <tacos at amrad.org>
Sent: Friday, April 06, 2007 5:28 PM
Subject: Re: FPGAs and other misc

> Bob,
> You spoke of some of the really cool work you did earlier on DSP
> demodulation one day at tacos.  You should get back in there with that work.
> Things do seem to be opening up for use of FPGAs on lesser "taco grade"
> projects.  The Xilnx people have a free development package at
> http://www.xilinx.com/ise/logic_design_prod/webpack.htm
> but they require you to register. I have not done that and have not seen
> what it really looks like.  One option is to download and the other is
> to request multiple DVDs.
> Perhaps one of us should request the DVDs and see just how useful this
> stuff really is.  It suggests we might have to pay for shipping and I
> would be glad to chip in.  We should avoid having a bunch of us piling
> in with requests right now.
> A couple of Xilinx development systems were sold on eBay the other day
> for around $75 and $130 but I am not sure if they would be useful for
> what we are looking at.
> I also found the National Semiconductor "Analog By Design" web page that
> has a group of seminars on it.  Two are about high speed data transfer
> and seem very relevant to SDR designs.  Bob Pease, a famous analog
> design guru, hosts these seminars.  I have enjoyed them and learned some
> finer points of design.
> See http://www.national.com/nationaltv/
> These seminars also suggest how we might digitize some of our monthly
> meeting presentations and put them on the web for our remotely located
> members.  I am not sure many of our presenters would agree if we made
> the files open to the general public so we may want to restrict access
> to members only.  Thoughts?
> Frank K0BRA
> Bob Bruhns wrote:
> > Hi Terry,
> >
> > www.fpga4fun.com is a cool site.
> >
> > It's time for me to get back into this.  I have an application that requires either a 200K sample rate, or undersampling for
> > 40K bandwidth.  Then I want to apply DSP.
> >
> > Nobody makes anything to do that at any reasonable price, so it's time to make my own.  I remember that there was a
> > available 500K/S ADC a few years back.  I see ultra high speed ADC as the next step in SDR, and FPGA makes the logic
> > much easier to do.
> >
> > I had something cool going for synchronous AM, DSB and BPSK signal reception a few years back, but it was using a
> > block-converting FFT.  It was still pretty good.  Hal has suggested a streaming-serial oriented FFT.
> >
> > And of course there is the never-ending parade of wierd logic analysis needs...
> >
> > Also I have to remember to send in my dues again.
> >
> >    Bob, WA3WDR
> > _______________________________________________
> > Tacos mailing list
> > Tacos at amrad.org
> > http://www.amrad.org/mailman/listinfo/tacos
> >
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