The miniSpartan3 is our new, low cost, tiny, FPGA kit. It starts at just $25, and there is a more powerful FPGA chip available for $35.
- The Spartan 3A XC3A50 FPGA ($25), or the Spartan 3A XC3A200 FPGA ($35) from Xilinx.
- An on-board USB JTAG Programmer to power and program your FPGA.
- An on board USB to Serial Interface.
- One HDMI port.
- 41 digital I/O pins.
- A 4-channel analog to digital converter running at 200 KSPS with 8 bit resolution.
- 4 Mbit SPI Flash.
- 32Mhz oscillator.
- 3 LEDs for debugging.
- 2 DIP switches.
miniSpartan3 – [Link]
What is the JTAG interface and Boundary Scanning, how does it work, and what is it useful for?
What is JTAG and Boundary Scan? – [Link]
It is designed around Spartan 6 chip from Xilinx and it has on board JTAG programmer based on FT2232D from FTDI.
- Spartan 6 LX9
- SDRAM of 32 MByte
- SPI Flash of 8 MBit
- 36 I/O
- USB to UART link
- USB JTAG on board
- 8 LEDS connected to the FPGA
- 4 DIP switches connected to the FPGA
miniSpartan6, another Spartan 6 Kit – [Link]
SC-CPU SolderCore Main Board is a complete development platform consisting of an Arduino form-factor microcontroller “CPU” board with a new and exciting software development environment called CoreBASIC. The SC-CPU SolderCore Main Board features a TI LM359D92 Cortex-M3 processor capable of running at clock speeds of up to 80MHz and provides a compact, flexible solution for rapid product development. SolderCore is compatible with a large range of third party plug-in PCBs to expand its capabilities.
- 80MHz ARM Cortex-M3 processor
- 512kB of flash
- 96kB of RAM
- 20 user-programmable I/O pins + 6 power pins; can be programmed to perform alternative functions including
I2C, SPI, UART, PWM, CCP, ADC, QEI, and CAN
- 10/100Mbit Ethernet port
- Micro-AB USB On-The-Go connector
- Spring-loaded microSD card holder
- 2.2mm barrel jack for power supply, 6 – 9V; reverse polarity protected
- Standard Cortex 10-pin JTAG connector
- Two power indicator LEDs
- Five user programmable LEDs
- Reset button
SolderCore CPU with Interactive and Internet-enabled CoreBASIC Interpreter – [Link]
Carl found out a way you could use TI’s Code Composer Studio IDE for free. Normally it only has a 30day evaluation period after which you have to pay $495 for the license. But by activating the Free limited license you are able to fully use it as long as you have a XDS100 based JTAG debugger, which almost all development boards for LM3s have. [via]
A quick look at the product page shows you can get a 30 day evaluation version but otherwise you will need to spend $495 per seat. Well that is unless you have a XDS100 based jtag which almost all TI’s LM3S dev kits come with! You simply activate the “Free Limited License” it’s only limit is that it will only work with XDS100 jtags, so no code or time limit.
Using Ti’s Code Composer Studio IDE for free – [Link]
chris @ pyroelectro.com writes:
If you dabble at all with building your own circuits with CPLD or FPGA devices then you have likely used a JTAG programmer made by Altera or Xilinx. While these programmers are essential for getting your FPGA designs onto the chip, they are horribly expensive and not practical for any electronics hobbyist. But don’t despair, we can actually make one DIY style for less than $10!
This article will show you how to use standard electronics parts easily purchased at any electronics store to build your very own Altera FPGA and CPLD device programmer. The programmer will work flawlessly with Altera’s Quartus II software and take less than an hour to build.
ByteBlasterMV FPGA Programmer – [Link]
Goepel Electronic has developed a new demonstration kit for the goJTAG initiative. The kit includes a PicoTAB boundary scan controller with USB 2.0 interface, accompanying software, and a demo board for practical tutorials. The goJTAG initiative is a joint project of a number of universities and Testonica Lab, with the aim of providing the electronics industry boundary scan tools and expertise based on an independent, non-commercial platform in order to accelerate the widespread use of standardized IEEE 1149 test methods.
The goJTAG package software includes simulation routines that reveal every bit movement along the scan chain with single-TCK precision. This allows users to step through tap states and observe the response of the circuit under test in a real time in an on-screen simulation. This is the first time such a detailed demonstration of the capabilities of JTAG boundary scan technology has been available. [via]
New JTAG boundary scan demo kit supports hands-on training – [Link]
Versaloon is a full-opensource multi-functional platform based on generic USB_TO_XXX protocol, which can now support more than 10 kinds of interfaces including JTAG, SWD, SPI, IIC and so on. Schematics (KiCAD format), PCB(KiCAD format), firmware, software are available at http://vsprog.googlecode.com/svn/trunk
Versaloon can program various MCUs – [Link]
It is always good to have handy microcontroller development board where you could test, debug embedded programs. Generally speaking development boards have to be universal and also convenient for interfacing. So usually when people make these tings usually build in some periphery to be ready to use like RS232 interface, MMC/SD slots.
So here is one development board with ATmega128 microcontroller which is small but has lots of functionality ready to go like RS232, RS485, ISP, JTAG, MMC/SD connectors. Also it has 62kB of external RAM – so you can run really serious programs without wary. Don’t forget other interfaces like I/O, I2C, SPI, and RTC that are positioned in two additional pin-headers. [via]
Atmega128 development board with MMC/SD slot – [Link]