There are already some RISC-V development boards with silicon featuring RISC-V instruction set such as SiFive’s HiFive1 or Kendryte KD233 board. But beauty of RISC-V is that you can customize the instructions set, and if that’s your goal, an FPGA board provides the flexibility you need.
While in theory you could use pretty much any FPGA board with enough logic elements, it may help to get started with boards that are designed for this purpose since the company already ported a RISC-V core to their platform and you can start from there. We’ve already covered a few of those including LicheeTang and Fomu boards, as well as ARIES M100PF PolarFire FPGA system-on-module.
Today, I’ve come across another of those RISC-V FPGA board. Meet Perf-V board with the following specifications:
- FPGA – Xilinx Artix-7 XC7A35T-1FTG256C with 33280 Logic Cells, 90 DSP, 41600 CLBs, 1800 Kbit Block RAM, and 5 CMTs; Optional FPGAs up to Xilinx XC7A100T with 101,440 logic cells
- System Memory – 256MB DDR3 (16Megx16x8Banks)
- Storage – 8MB FPGA FLASH, 8MB RISC-V flash
- Arduino compatible headers
- 1x PMOD connector
- “High speed interface” for expansion of HDMI, VGA, USB2.0/3.0, camera, Bluetooth, expansion boards, etc
- Debugging — User JTAG/UART interface
- Misc – Power & user LEDs; 6x soft-touch buttons; power key
- Power Supply – Via power barrel jack
The board can be programmed with Vivado software development, and the company claims it is designed for “the RISC-V open source community and FPGA learning enthusiasts”. There’s download page but only with hardware documentation like datasheets and PCB layout (PDF), but nothing obvious about RISC-V… To get more information, you’ll need to go to the forums (Chinese only), and there’s apparently a Perf-V IDE for Windows (and soon Linux) for RISC-V development, but I could not find any download link, only screenshots.
If for some reasons, you’d like to purchase this board, you can do so by getting a $79 kit with the board and a USB burner / FPGA USB cable.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.