HiFive Unleashed RISC-V Linux Development Board Gets a $2000 FPGA Expansion Board

If you’re a RISC-V architecture’s enthusiast or represent a company working on products with the new ISA, you may have spent $999 or more on Hifive Unleashed RISC-V Linux development board a few months ago.

You now have the opportunity to spend an extra $1,999 for HiFive Unleashed Expansion Board powered by a MicroSemi PolarFire FPGA programmed with a PCIe root port bridge, and allowing you to test all sorts of peripherals such as HDD’s & SSD’s,  HDMI output, and audio cards, network adapters, graphics cards, and so on.

Expansion board specifications:

  • FPGA – Microsemi Low Power PolarFire FPGA with 300K Logic Element
  • 4 Gbit DDR4 x16
  • SPI Flash for remote FPGA updates, QSPI Flash connected to GPIO
  • 24 lane PCIe Switch
  • x1 PCI Express card connector
  • x16 PCI Express card connector with 4 lanes of PCIe gen2 connected
  • SSD M.2 connector
  • SATA connector
  • HDMI connector
  • eMMC Nand Flash
  • uSD Card Slot
  • USB to UART bridges
  • 2 CAN transceivers
  • FMC connection to HFU540-4A00 kit
  • Dimensions – 27.2 x 11.7 cm
Block Diagram

The board comes with a power supply, USB cable, and a FlashPro4 FPGA programmer. It is currently pre-programmed with a Chiplink to PCIe Root Port bridge enabling easy connectivity to PCIe add in cards, but a 1-year Libero GOLD license ($995 value) is also offered with the kit, which can be used to modify the bitstream in the FPGA. One potential application for the board is to build a complete RISC-V Linux PC with graphics card, HDD, USB ports, Gigabit Ethernet, and so on.

SiFive went to Crowdsupply again to sell the expansion board, and so far one backer went ahead. Shipping is free to the US, $40 to the rest of the world, and the expansion board is expected to ship at the end of May 2018.

Via LinuxGizmos

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3 Replies to “HiFive Unleashed RISC-V Linux Development Board Gets a $2000 FPGA Expansion Board”

  1. Just been reading about work being done regarding security on these

    ” Esperanto Technologies will present at the RISC-V Workshop in Barcelona next week, (May 7-10) potential changes to high-performance RISC-V processors intended to eliminate speculation-based timing attacks, such as Spectre and Meltdown ”

    And today 7th May marks the end of the embargo on other possibly security issues found in other ISA too.

    1. Yep. Things look good for them. We’ve been contemplating what next to do with things in this space over in the SpinalHDL community for VexRiscv’s implementation road-map. Some of us are pondering the means to avoid/block these issues. We’re waiting eagerly to see the slide deck and video from this presentation.

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Weller PCB manufacturer
Weller PCB manufacturer