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High-speed PC communications?

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by dsg, Oct 6, 2005.

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  1. dsg

    dsg Guest

    Hi all,

    I have an idea for an electronics project (don't I always?), but have hit
    a bit of a stumbling block.

    The idea was to make a PC-based logic analyzer. I would build a board with
    an FPGA and some buffer SRAM, and the PC would read from this buffer. The
    problem is that I would need at least 32 channels at 20MHz, and I have yet
    to find a way to transfer data to the PC at sufficient speed to handle
    this, other than PCI (which would be a lot of work and very expensive).
    USB2 Hi-speed (480Mbit/s) is not enough, according to my calculations.

    Anyway, I was wondering if anyone here had better ideas? Perhaps someone
    sells a peripheral card with a high-speed external bus?

    With regards,
  2. How about giga-bit etherent? 1000Mb/s or Firewire which is 800Mb/s.
    Either of these are much faster than USB or USB 2.0

    - Mike
  3. Just had another thought Fast-320 SCSI it transfers at 320 MB/s (thats Mega
    Bytes not bits!)

    - Mike
  4. Kevin Brace

    Kevin Brace Guest

    Hi dsg,

    Assuming that this is a personal project, you may want to
    consider purchasing a personal version of BDS XPCI PCI IP core.
    Furthermore, you will have to perform bus master (initiator) transfer to
    get the performance you are thinking of.
    BDS XPCI PCI IP core supports bus master transfer, but the user will
    have to design quite a bit of backend user logic to make it happen.
    BDS XPCI PCI IP core is a Xilinx (TM) LogiCORE (TM) PCI
    compatible (replacement) PCI IP core developed by Brace Design Solutions.
    BDS XPCI32 PCI IP core is available for as little as $100 for
    non-commercial, non-profit, personal use, and the same 64-bit version
    BDS XPCI64 PCI IP core (Includes BDS XPCI32 PCI IP core) goes for $200.
    Since the pricing starts at only $100, it is ideal for HDL learners,
    FPGA beginners, FPGA hobbyists, computer hardware enthusiasts, or
    student graduation projects.
    BDS XPCI PCI IP core comes with a PCI testbench for Verilog HDL which
    allows the user to simulate the design extensively on an HDL simulator
    like ModelSim before firing up the FPGA.
    VHDL support is currently poor, but VHDL porting of reference designs
    and PCI testbench should be available by end of the month.
    BDS XPCI PCI IP core officially supports the following PCI boards.

    - Insight Electronics Spartan-II 150 PCI (Already discontinued)

    - Insight Electronics Spartan-II 200 PCI Development Kit

    BDS XPCI PCI IP core "unofficially" supports the following PCI boards.

    - Avnet Xilinx Spartan-3 Evaluation Kit,...8806%26PVW%3D%26BID%3DDF2%26CTP%3DEVK,00.html Spartan-3 Evaluation Kit - Brief 022504F.pdf

    - Enterpoint Broaddown2 Development Board

    So with BDS XPCI PCI IP core, almost anyone can make their own PCI
    device for about $400 to $500. ($300 to $400 for the board + $100 for
    BDS XPCI32 PCI IP core)
    For commercial users who want to modify a Xilinx LogiCORE PCI or want to
    convert a design that uses Xilinx LogiCORE PCI to an ASIC (FPGA to ASIC
    conversion), BDS XPCI PCI IP core is also available in Verilog HDL RTL.
    For more information, visit Brace Design Solutions website at

    Kevin Brace

    Brace Design Solutions
    Xilinx (TM) LogiCORE (TM) PCI compatible BDS XPCI PCI IP core available
    for as little as $100 for non-commercial, non-profit, personal use.

    Xilinx and LogiCORE are registered trademarks of Xilinx, Inc.
  5. dsg

    dsg Guest


    Hi all, sorry for the late reply - I've been busy with a lot of thing

    Gigabit ethernet would be doable, but speed is not really guaranteed.
    Still an interesting option, if I find a decent PHY/MAC chip.

    Fast-320 SCSI sounds really nice. Are there readily-available chips
    supporting those speeds, though?

    Thanks for the suggestions.

  6. CJT

    CJT Guest

    Typical PCs won't saturate gigabit ethernet.
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