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Altera touts 'first' 65nm low-cost FPGAs

Posted: 21 Mar 2007     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:DSP  Altera  Cyclone FPGA  low-cost FPGAs  TSMC 

Altera's Cyclone III low-cost FPGA

Altera Corp. ships the industry's 'first' 65nm low-cost FPGAs, the Cyclone III family. Leveraging for the first time Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.'s low-power (LP) process, the latest Cyclone devices consume 75 per cent less power than competing FPGAs, deliver 120,000 logic elements under 0.5W static, up to 4Mbit of memory, and up to 288 DSP multipliers.

"Most of the customers have power consumption concerns, with most of the applications requiring low-power use," notes Susan Chang, product marketing engineer, low-cost products at Altera."Plus, there's the cost [concern]. That's why we believe the LP process fit these [new] FPGAs."

With these pioneering low-cost FPGAs, new applications can be addressed. The Cyclone III family will primarily service the display, video imaging and wireless segments, but Chang points out that they see the devices also targeting the domains of automotive/telematics, portable medical devices and software-defined radio (SDR). In fact, Chang reveals that about 90 per cent of the SDR vendors in North America have shown interest in using Cyclone III.

Meanwhile, more than 250 companies worldwide have participated in the Altera early access program, and are already designing Cyclone III FPGAs into a wide range of applications, including the consumer, automotive, military, industrial and wireless communications markets.

In addition, customers can start designing for the Cyclone III family in version 7.0 of the Quartus II design software with support for all family members in the subscription and free Web editions of the software. The Cyclone III family support in Quartus II Web Edition marks the highest device density available within any FPGA vendor's free software package. The free Quartus II Web Edition can be downloaded at the Altera Website.

Shipping to customers today is the Cyclone III EP3C25. All eight members of the Cyclone III family will be available by November. For more information about Cyclone III FPGAs, visit Altera.

- Celeste dela Torre
EE Times-Asia

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