Author Topic: Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things  (Read 3851 times)

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Offline NivagSwerdnaTopic starter

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Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things
« on: November 02, 2023, 09:40:53 am »
So to date I have done standalone projects which have had a small FPGA and some glue logic and I have survived with my own spun boards but now I would like to try and make my VHDL/Verilog skills more marketable by getting into the FPGA acceleration game specifically implementing some kind of network acceleration type ideas... just for education.
So I'm looking for suggestions on a dev board that implements PCIe since that seems trendy and a board that has some networking capability, copper wired Ethernet will be fine.
Any suggestions?  Doesn't have to be bleeding edge just something that will let me play with the concepts.
Both PCIe and Networking will be new to me in this environment.
 

Offline Someone

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Re: Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2023, 10:32:43 am »
Talk to your rep, most of the boards in that space require licensed tools.
 

Offline SiliconWizard

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Re: Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2023, 09:56:13 pm »
I can suggest the Lattice Certus-NX Versa board:
https://www.latticesemi.com/products/developmentboardsandkits/certus_nx_versa_eval

It's quite affordable ($277), you can use it with Lattice Radiant with the free license. The only thing to check is whether the IPs for PCIe are also under a free license - AFAIR, that was the case when you bought a Versa board.
 
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Offline colorado.rob

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Re: Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2023, 04:40:51 pm »
So I'm looking for suggestions on a dev board that implements PCIe since that seems trendy and a board that has some networking capability, copper wired Ethernet will be fine.
Any suggestions?  Doesn't have to be bleeding edge just something that will let me play with the concepts.
Both PCIe and Networking will be new to me in this environment.
This board works well, allowing you to play with PCIe and 10G networking.

https://www.aliexpress.us/item/3256801088848039.html

The board files from the vendor includes everything needed to program the board with Vivado.

If you have the cash and want to go further, the same vendor has a nice 420T board that includes QSFP ports, and a Zynq 7100 board with an FMC HPC port. Both are quite reasonably priced.
 

Offline Someone

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Re: Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2023, 09:41:41 pm »
a Zynq 7100 board with an FMC HPC port. Both are quite reasonably priced.
Which would be the only one of the 3 that can be used (at all) without licensed tools.
 

Offline asmi

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Re: Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2023, 10:15:47 pm »
This board works well, allowing you to play with PCIe and 10G networking.

https://www.aliexpress.us/item/3256801088848039.html

The board files from the vendor includes everything needed to program the board with Vivado.

If you have the cash and want to go further, the same vendor has a nice 420T board that includes QSFP ports, and a Zynq 7100 board with an FMC HPC port. Both are quite reasonably priced.
Don't forget to mention that you would need to buy a license to do anything with that board.

Offline colorado.rob

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Re: Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2023, 03:24:22 pm »
This board works well, allowing you to play with PCIe and 10G networking.

https://www.aliexpress.us/item/3256801088848039.html

The board files from the vendor includes everything needed to program the board with Vivado.

If you have the cash and want to go further, the same vendor has a nice 420T board that includes QSFP ports, and a Zynq 7100 board with an FMC HPC port. Both are quite reasonably priced.
Don't forget to mention that you would need to buy a license to do anything with that board.
LOL.

What part of "The board files from the vendor includes everything needed to program the board with Vivado" did you not understand?
 
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Offline Someone

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Re: Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2023, 10:54:21 pm »
What part of "The board files from the vendor includes everything needed to program the board with Vivado" did you not understand?
Stealing IP (the cores to build the things the OP is taking about are licensed too) is a sure way to get you priced out of any future endeavours with the owner(s). Good luck pulling together something of that complexity without support.
 

Offline nimish

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Re: Suggestions for a dev board for learning some FPGA things
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2023, 03:58:16 am »
What part of "The board files from the vendor includes everything needed to program the board with Vivado" did you not understand?
Stealing IP (the cores to build the things the OP is taking about are licensed too) is a sure way to get you priced out of any future endeavours with the owner(s). Good luck pulling together something of that complexity without support.

Fortunately nextpnr has xilinx 7 series support

I wouldn't buy it as a first board but you don't need to crack vivado licensing like everyone already does to get useable stuff.

Frankly the kria dev boards are better and don't need need licensing hacks
 


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