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There are many questions open?
- How large (or small) is an FPGA device that you want to use?
- What about the package (e.g. BGA)?
- Which FPGA family?
- What kind of components should be available on the board?
- and many more...
What features do you plan to put? You may need at least a 4-6 layer pcb, depending on the speed you need. If you plan to design a PCI board you can use a PCI bridge from PLX, unless your aim is not to develop PCI code. You can do the assembly yourself if you use a tqfp chip.
I think that for a first approach you should forget about PCI: in this case you need to make working not only the pci IP, but also the driver. My suggestion is a medium size (100k-300k gates) FPGA, which can be found relativately easy and cheap:
A C E X or C Y C L O N E from @|ter@, or
S P A R T A N 2 E from X I L I | N X
- Don`t forget to get out all the pins
- Don`t forget clocking: try to use FPGA with PLL on board and have the possibility to introduce the external oscillator, via outside clock with a BNC or with something like a clock generator in the board if you don`t have PLL inside the FPGA. (Cypress for example, have some lots of them)
- Possibility to load the FPGA directly from external cable or loading an exteral EEPROM. You can also have the possibility to load from a uController.
- A fast memory on board could be also nice, as well as a flash.
- LEDS, jumpers.
- buttons for reset...
- An ethernet or serial port.
As you see, the board can be as easy or difficult as you want.
I think it would be useful to explain why you want to build such a board, instead of looking for an existing board. Building a new prototype board is quite an investment, and perhaps we can point you to something that satisfies what you want?
Of course, if you want to do it for a hobby, I'd try and go for a smaller FPGA, e.g. supported by Xilinx WebPack software (free).
Thanks for ur valuable replies, here are some details...actually i want an FPGA_board basically for image processing related applications..i was working with the Xess Xs40.
I need to build a prototype board that enables some image processing applications..about the FPGA family, i think this would be application dependant but i think it will be from the XC family...I am confused about from where to start and the downloading protocol will it be available ..?