Electronics > FPGA

Looking for instant on FPGA or CPLD for a current project

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Hi all,

I have a project I'm working on that I designed initially around a Microchip ATF1508 (128 macrocell) CPLD, however these are pretty much unavailable now until mid to late 2023.

I'm therefore looking for a replacement. I started looking at Lattice MachXO2 a while back and purchased a dev board and programmer - this would seem to be a great choice as the design has outgrown the 128 macrocells available on the ATF1508 anyway. However MachXO2 are also unavailable at present and I havent been able to find out when they are likely to be back in stock. Does anyone have an idea of how production is going with these things?

Another choice is the Microchip/Microsemi/Actel ProASIC3. These are fractionally more expensive than the MachXO2, less I/O (but I think I could get away with it) and  available in small numbers (I'm not looking to make thousands of boards). I'd have to purchase a programmer as well though, and I'm not sure how long these will be around as they seem to be quite an old design. That said, they do radiation hardened versions so that could keep them in production for a while yet?

With either of these I'll be having to learn a new tool chain, and move up to VHDL or Verilog from CUPL which I've been using on the ATF150x series - I look at this as a positive learning experience though.

Are there any other low cost (<AUD$20) products I should be looking at that will offer around 70+ I/O, instant on, >128 macrocell equivilant?

Look at Gowin

You also have the MachXO3 (but careful about the version - they come in several versions, some with Flash and some with some few-times-reprogrammable NVM.) Also in very limited stock at the moment though.

Have a look at the Actel(/Microsemi/now Microchip) Igloo. Seems to be significant stock on Mouser at the moment.

Pricing on MachXO3 looks great. BGA only though, and 1.2V core (I'd need another supply for this) but cant really get them either atm. Still, if I knew they were just a month or two away, and could get a dev kit, I'd be tempted.

Chipageddon is such a PITA, and it seems recovery to pre-covid stock levels is still a way off.

Gowin looks pretty interesting - there are some TQFP100 devices available and the price is great (for 1152LE anyway). In unclear what that would relate to in terms of macrocells (to inderstand what I'd need) but that would become clear once I have the project converted. Whats the toolchain like? I'll have to look into programmers etc also. Might see if there are any dev boards around for some quick prototyping.

They have less than 100 though, and who knows when they have more?

I think I'll go lattice MachXO3 and just wait till the stock comes in. Ive orded a dev board  so can begin to port my project across, but in the interim I'll continue to work with the Microchip ATF1508 based prototype till the MachXO3's come in. By the time they have stock I should be ready to go :)


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