DSP tools receive speed boost

A Xilinx product story
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Edited by the Electronicstalk editorial team Aug 23, 2007

Developers of multi-rate DSP designs will see up to a 38% improvement in Fmax performance when using version 9.2 with no modification to existing designs.

Xilinx' DSP development tools now deliver up to a 38 % faster Fmax performance for multi-rate DSP designs and improved ease of use.

With the release of version 9.2 of the AccelDSP synthesis tool and System Generator for DSP, the development tool component of the Xilinx XtremeDSP solution, provides higher levels of performance as well as a tighter integration between the two tools to simplify the FPGA design flow for developers who use both the Matlab and Simulink modelling environments concurrently.

"DSP optimised FPGAs such as the low-cost Spartan-3A DSP family and Virtex-5 platform FPGAs are quickly being adopted into new and emerging markets by design teams without traditional FPGA design expertise", said Tom Feist, Marketing Director for Xilinx Embedded and Signal Processing Solutions.

"The System Generator for DSP and AccelDSP tools enable these design teams to quickly assess the performance, cost and power benefits of an FPGA-based implementation for their applications and to develop final implementations that fully leverage the FPGA device resources using tools and languages familiar to algorithm and system level designers".

Using System Generator for DSP, developers of multi-rate DSP designs, typical of wireless and defence applications, will see up to a 38 % improvement in Fmax performance when using version 9.2 with no modification to existing designs.

A new mapping algorithm has been implemented that uses register duplication and placement based on recursive partitioning of loads on high fanout nets typical of multi-rate designs.

This and other enhancements deliver the ease of use, levels of abstraction, and quality of results demanded by designers new to FPGAs who are increasingly selecting programmable logic as their hardware platform of choice.

"Until two years ago, our surveys showed that maximum MIPS were always the top criteria in a development team's choice of chip to use in a DSP application", said Will Strauss, President of Forward Concepts.

"But with today's increasing chip complexity and time to market pressures, development tools are now the key item for chip selection, and Xilinx is taking a leadership role in addressing designer needs".

The System Generator for DSP tool, AccelDSP synthesis tool and a rich set of DSP intellectual property cores are the main components of the XtremeDSP design environment for implementing DSP designs developed in Matlab and Simulink software into Xilinx FPGAs.

Unlike disjointed design flows which require separate algorithm development and RTL coding steps, System Generator for DSP provides an integrated modelling and verification environment that enables a smooth path from initial design capture in Simulink to FPGA design closure, without the need to learn or use traditional RTL design methodologies.

The AccelDSP synthesis tool is a high-level Matlab language based tool for designing DSP blocks for Xilinx FPGAs that automates floating to fixed-point conversion, generates synthesisable VHDL or Verilog, and creates a test bench for verification.

Designers can generate a fixed-point C++ model or System Generator block from a Matlab algorithm.

The System Generator for DSP tool and AccelDSP synthesis tool are each sold separately and available immediately through the Xilinx Online Store.

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