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Xilinx FPGA with Erased QR Code

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Advanced Member level 4
Sep 25, 2015
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Hi everyone,
I have bought ten Kintex-7 FPGA from China which their QR codes are erased and I tested them on my boards. I was expecting problems since I thought they are fake parts, but they are working without a problem. Even 10Gbit GTX pins are seems to work perfectly without an issue. They are commercial grade FPGAs and I also tested them in high temperatures to see maybe if they failed in temperature tests, and again they worked without a problem.

I bought them nearly 1/10 price comparing the price in Digikey.

Also, some vendors sell FPGA development boards at very low price, lower than the FPGA itself. Okay, you can say that they buy FPGAs in very large quantities at very low prices. Well, I got quotations from distributers for 100 even 1000 FPGAs and still not even close. And I don't think they accept couple of dolars as profit. So, my question is what is going on here. I can't understand the FPGA market.

Thanks in advance.

I can’t explain why your suspicious chips worked, maybe they weren’t counterfeit. as far as low price dev boards, I think that’s a marketing thing. they get get you to try out their device, even at a loss, and then you buy thousands of them.

The assembly & test "back end" is complex and porous, with groups of product
"falling off the truck" for legit and other reasons. Lot-level qual steps can /
should (if failed) result in parts sent to reclaim / destruction but there you find
a "lunchbox" problem. But one that has financial reward and a lot of willing
buyers in the gray market. Stuff goes on at a whole lot higher level than
Johnny Cash, "Cadillac One Piece At A Time".

A fail like "brand permanence" or a lot level lifetest fail can "deliver" parts
with no t=0 signature and they -could- in fact have nothing at all wrong,
a matter of the defect rate close-in. 99% fully-good-all-steps lot quality
is marginal for high-touch, highly inspected production flows like MIL
but commercial / automotive grade acceptance will discard large lots
on statistics as they (esp. commodity commercial) don't have the backend
per-part testing to call it at the part, only the lot, level. So there's the
opportunity and means, to go with your motive (free money).

"No warranty on electrical or electronic parts" means that it's on you
and they just keep on.

Contact a direct Xilinx representative and ask for an official quotation instead buying directly from Digikey or other distibuters. Depending of your volume, application and required delivery time, you may have a pleasant surprise. But if you are looking to buy few components for prototyping, then you are destined to use the distributors, I guess.

Also note, the component shortage had a big impact on FPGA market (prices and delivery time wise).

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