By FTDI, Future Technology Devices International Ltd 65
FTDI's Morph-IC-II platform combines an Altera Cyclone®-II FPGA with high-performance USB 2.0 capabilities to facilitate Hi-Speed communications with ultra-fast, sub-100 ms FPGA programming and re-programming. This makes the Morph-IC-II ideal for applications which require users to reconfigure hardware functionality 'on-the-fly' by downloading software over USB, "morphing" the hardware. As well as enhancing application flexibility, hardware reconfiguration via USB can also reduce BoM costs as the FPGA need only be sized for the most complex discrete function rather than all potential functions.
FTDI's platform incorporates all of the hardware, software and documentation needed for 'out-of-the-box' FPGA development. The hardware comprises a compact development module incorporating an Altera EP2C5F256C8N Cyclone-II FPGA and an FTDI FT2232H USB-to-multi-purpose UART/FIFO IC. One channel of the FT2232H is utilized for FPGA-to-PC communications and supports data transfer speeds of up to 40 Mbytes/sec. The second channel of the FT2232H is used to configure and reconfigure the FPGA over USB. USB programming eliminates the need for Flash configuration memory normally required to configure SRAM-based FPGAs.
The Morph-IC-II features up to 80 general purpose I/O (GPIO) lines ensuring optimum flexibility for connecting the FPGA to external circuits and interfaces.
As well as supporting FPGA application development and the FPGA-based prototyping of high-volume ASIC applications, the Morph-IC-II is also an ideal education platform for developers who want to learn more about FPGA design. FTDI also allows customers to use the Morph-IC-II schematics and programming utility as a reference design for their own PCB developments.