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[Discuss-gnuradio] Hardware extending

From: Tomas D.
Subject: [Discuss-gnuradio] Hardware extending
Date: Sat, 23 Jul 2011 21:01:32 +0300
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I see that many guys here are using USRP hardware which is really great. However, I am interested in extending compatible hardware list by using any manufacturer FPGA development kit. The majority takes Altera development kits using HSMC port for additional hardware or Xilinx using FMC. Basically, yes, I am considering doing a new motherboard like the USRP which could be connected to the any FPGA development kit from Altera or Xilinx. All other ports for daughterboards should be the same and fit the new motherboard. My plan is to use Altera Stratix II GX development kit, which has PCIe x8 and 1Gbit ethernet and I will add CY7C68013 for USB connection. Now the more interesting part is ADC and DAC selection. We all know that USRP2 use at least 100MSPS ADC and DAC, 14bit and 16bit accuracy accordingly, so that would be the point of base:
DACs: AD9777 from Analog devices.
ADCs: LTC2284 from Linear Technologies.
These devices are selected for 2 channels I/O or one pair I-Q, but can we consider other (possibly cheaper) options? For example it is possible to buy pretty cheap dual channel ADC 250MSPS here: http://cgi.ebay.com/ADS62P48-ADC-250MSPS-14bit-DDR-Parallel-Out-/180671130732?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2a10d6ac6c , but are there any special hardware requirements? This particular option would be better for any student/amateur to buy, instead of using Digikey, Farnell, etc. I see a lot of documentation regarding GNU Radio, but there are almost nothing about hardware. I am not interested in taking over Ettus Research, but I hope to attract more people in hardware development :-)

Stratix II GX development board: http://www.altera.com/products/devkits/altera/kit-pciexpress_s2gx.html EP2SGX90F1508C3 FPGA, 36384 ALMs (90960 eq. LEs), 48 DSP blocks, 192 18x18 multipliers, 8 PLLs, 4.5MB on chip memory.

Thank You.

Tomas D.

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