Jul 052014
 

Face it: I love old computer, but I really hate FDD. It’s too breakable technology, so fragile and a little bit expensive nowadays. If you wanna the most possible fidelity and retro feeling, you have to use FDD, but if you love to experiment, like me, you appreciate this tip: Buy Gotek FDD emulator. You can connect it to the standard FDD controller as usual, but fron the front side you have an USB slot to connect USB memory stick, which acts like a lot of diskettes. And, here is a tip 2: Using Gotek as an Amiga FDD. Author hacks its firmware to make it work with Amigas.

Jun 042014
 

Hurry to the Kickstarter, pledge this:

This kit is small, smaller than a credit card at only 1.8 in x 3.0 in. That means you can put it inside some pretty small projects.  It is bread board friendly, so you can quickly connect it to a shield or to a bread board.

It features:

  • The Spartan6 LX9 FPGA from Xilinx, one of the best FPGAs on the market.

  • An on-board USB JTAG Programmer to power and program your FPGA with any open source programmer, like the one inside our own Scarab IDE.

  • An on board USB interface that powers the board and allows communication with the PC at speeds up to 480Mbps. (That’s fast enough to make a logic analyzer. Check our website for updates on projects and tutorials).

  • An on-board HDMI port. Instead of using VGA output on your projects, now you can go HDMI.

  • An 8-channel analog to digital converter running at 1 MSPS with 8 bit resolution. So you can start connecting real world sensors to your FPGA kit.

  • Memory: 32MB of SDRAM, 64Mbit of SPI Flash and a microSD card interface.

  • stereo audio output jack using 1-bit sigma-delta DAC to start playing your music.

  • 24 Digital I/O pins.

  • 8 LEDs.

Jun 022014
 

Jameco provides Xminilab – a Portable Small Mixed Signal Oscilloscope for $129.95. It’s a portable version of (cheaper) XMEGA Xminilab.

Features:

 

  • Mixed Signal Oscilloscope: Simultaneous sampling of analog and digital signals
  • Advanced Trigger: Normal / Single / Auto, with rising or falling edge and adjustable trigger level
  • Meter Mode: Average, Peak to peak and Frequency readout
  • XY Mode:
    Plot Lissajous patterns
    See the phase difference between two waveforms
  • Spectrum Analyzer with different windowing options and selectable vertical log
  • Horizontal and Vertical Cursors with automatic waveform measurements
  • Arbitrary Waveform Generator with Sweep on all parameters
  • Display options: Persistence, Different grid options, and more
  • Curve tracer function

 

May 222014
 

Wanna learn FPGA and that things around? Try Nandland. It gives you a brief insight, deeper explanation and point your attention to the common mistakes.

Nandland intends to be a one-stop-shop for all things digital design. All of the articles on this webpage have been written for people who have little to no background in Engineering. Nandland is constantly being updated with more content. If you are are beginner to the world of Digital Design, check out the lessons at FPGA-101. That will give you a solid foundation in your journey to learning FPGAs and ASIcs.

Apr 152014
 

A smaller and cheaper version of BitScope. It’s an Oscilloscope, Logic Analyzer, Waveform & Clock generator and Spectrum Analyzer all configured as a tiny light weight water resistant mixed signal probe with impressive characteristic:

  • 20 MHz Bandwidth.
  • 40 MSps Logic Capture.
  • 2 Analog Scope Channels.
  • 2 Analog Comparator channels.
  • 6 Logic/Protocol Analyzer channels.
  • 8 & 12 native analog sample resolution.
  • Decodes Serial, SPI, I2C, CAN and more.
  • Windows, Linux, Mac OS X & Raspberry Pi.
  • Built-in analog waveform & clock generators.
  • User programmable, C/C++, Python, VM API.
  • Tiny, light weight (12g) and water resistant.
Apr 092014
 

Multiple Classic Computer (aka MCC) is simple FPGA (Altera) based design with PS/2 mouse and keyboard and VGA / TV output. It can emulate Commodore C64 and Amiga 500, as well as Apple II, ZX Spectrum and Atari 2600. It provides “plug-and-play” concept. Games and architecture emulator are stored on SD card.

Hardware Specification:

 

  • Altera Cyclone 3 FPGA with 16k gates
  • 16 MByte SDRAM
  • 2 MByte Flash
  • Micro SD card interface
  • USB Host interface (USB 1.1) for future expansion
  • USB Device interface (USB 1.1)
  • Video Out (4 Pin S-Video or VGA out)
  • Stereo Audio Out (3.5 mm jack)
  • 2x joystick interfaces (DB-9 connector)
  • JTAG interface (internal for programming and development)
  • GPIO interface (internal addition I/Os for to be defined functionality)

The front panel supports:

  • 2x DB-9 Joystick Interfaces for classic retro joysticks
  • Micro SD card interface for FPGA cores, boot and system rom, games
    and application data
  • USB Host interface for future expansion of the MCC with external devices (e.g. USB keyboard / mouse, USB memory stick, etc.)

The back panel supports:

  • Mini USB interface for power supply
  • Stereo Audio Out (3.5mm aux jack)
  • S-Video Out (4-Pin connector) or VGA high quality video out
  • PS-2 interface for keyboard
  • PS-2 interface for mouse

 

You can buy MCC online: MCC e-shop

 

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