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  1. #1
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    cheapest fpga

    I am beginner and want to lern Fpgas and all this time (2months) I searched the best, cheapest Fpga for my lerning experiments and Found ofcours ALTERAS Cyclone II series (I am intrested in EP2C8Q208C8) and Xilinx spartan 3 and Lattice and New ACTEL Fusion series M7AFS600. SO which is the best one to start with?

    Other problem is availability! Altera and Xilinx and lattice are available in onlinestors and I can buy them directly without porblems, but Fusion (the best FPGA for me) is a Problem becouse onlineshops don't sell it and all distibutors don't sell in small Quantitys (3-5) so I can't buy Fusion with ARM7 IP-core. maby somebady knows wher to buy this fusion chip (I tried to contact all european distributors but nothing)!
    Second way is to buy Fusion starter kit but it is expensive for me it will totaly cost 500$.
    It seams that cheapest way to get FPGA and programm it is buying Alteras cyclone II ep2c8 Fpga for 20$ +flash 16$ and all small components for PCB, but PCB will be complex and I will have to comunicate with all external compnents like ADC compared to fusion then there all is in one chip and comunication and setup is done in one software Libero IDE and it will simplify greatly all code writing process.
    If I will not finde Fusion Fpga (highest opriority) seller then I will have to buy Cyclone II FPGA and it is last choise (lowest priority).
    I don't know what to do keep serching for Fusion chip or buy cyclone II ??

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  2. #2
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    cyclone ii fpga ep2c8 board

    Where in Europe do you live?

    I am working in Europe with a Actel ProASIC3 FPGA...



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  3. #3
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    fusion fpga

    I live in Contry LATVIA city RIGA

    Added after 11 minutes:

    I need Actel Fusion with ARM7 core it is M7 afs600 in PQ208 package and can be any speed grade or temerture range.
    and I also need flash pro 3 programer for fusion programming.

    and how mutch these pro ASIC 3 cost for example M7A3P600 in PQ208 package?
    to compare to cyclone II+Configuration flash memory!

    If I will not finde Fusion seller then I will have to buy cyclone II form digikey.com onlineshop.



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  4. #4
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    cyclone ii architecture

    Is there ARM option for xilinx FPGAs ?

    thanks



  5. #5
    Advanced Member level 1
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    actel fusion adc

    They have PowerPC core that is more often used I think no ARM is available...



  6. #6
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    cyclone ii arm

    I don't know witch Fpga core is the best but for me
    ACTEl Fusion series FPGAs is the most featured FPGA out there and it offers higher integration which is imortant in PCB space and cost saving aplications so it is the best i can buy for my robotic aplication.
    2 place i give to Alteras cyclone II and third place to xilinx spartan 3 :) becose cyclone is few $ cheaper in digikey store.

    Alteras Nios II Core is good becose it is wery small in smaller version just 700 LE



  7. #7
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    arm cyclone ii

    Hi there,

    What FPGA to go for depends on the application and the features you need/want.
    Also you will probably need some applications support when designing. Trust me you will not be able to do it all by yourself.
    So, it's ok to have the possibility to buy online, but at the end you will need some help from a distributor. This will also have an impact on your final choice.
    Third, you are comparing a non-volatile architecture (Fusion) with volatile (Xilinx/Altera). Lattice is the only one offering non-volatile (no prom needed) as volatile solutions.
    As you are a beginner, it's probably more convenient to get an eval board. All vendors have these (all be it not all through direct channels). The Spartan3 kit is well established, but I've heard from some designers that the board doesn't function all the time. On top, Xilinx doesn't really support the 'small' customer/hobbyist. The same counts for Altera (more or less). Also Lattice offers eval boards at low cost (some are available from a German company - h**p://w3.hardware-design.de)
    A nice mean 'n lean FPGA like architecture is the MachXO from Lattice - very flexible and comes in a variety of packages - and it is non-volatile as well.
    The Fusion has - as you mentioned - quite nice features. But if you don't need them, you will pay for them. Don't think the ARM core comes for free, you'll pay for it.

    Hope this helps to make a choice,
    L



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  8. #8
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    cheapest fpga board

    I receved Fusion price form one distributor and price was about 100$ per pice! it is too mutch for me.
    I think I will buy ALteras Cyclone ep2c8Q208 and instead of buying configurational Flash EPCS16 for 16.25$ I will buy ATMEL ATmega2560 16AU for 17.9$ which have 2Mbits of flash +64KB RAm and EEPROM and 10bit ADC and ather periferals like timers and so on.
    Previously I experimented with ATmega128 and already know this 8bit RISC CPU arhitecture :)



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