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November 1, 2009

Altera launches Cyclone IV FPGA family

Adds support for serial protocols

By CBR Staff Writer

Altera has launched new Cyclone IV FPGA family, which adds support for serial protocols while offering an optimal balance of low cost, low power and a supply of logic, memory and DSP capabilities.

According to Altera, the Cyclone IV FPGA family offers two variants. Cyclone IV GX devices have up to 150K logic elements (LEs), up to 6.5Mbits of RAM, up to 360 multipliers, and up to eight integrated 3.125Gbps transceivers supporting protocols including gigabit ethernet (GbE), SDI, CPRI, V-by-One and Cyclone IV GX has hard IP for PCI Express (PCIe).

The company claims that the Cyclone IV E devices deliver an combination of low cost and high functionality, and lower power by up to 25% compared to previous Cyclone products for power-sensitive applications such as handheld software-defined radio. The new devices require two power supplies that simplifies PCB design and reduces board space and cost.

By integrating transceivers, the new products eliminate external component costs and reduce power consumption up to 30% compared to previous Cyclone products combined with external transceiver PHYs, Altera said.

Vince Hu, vice president of product and corporate marketing at Altera, said: Cyclone IV FPGAs will expand the reach of FPGAs like never before. By rivaling the cost of ASSPs and offering unmatched flexibility, Cyclone IV FPGAs are the obvious choice for next-generation designs. The innovative features of the Cyclone IV family make it easy for designers to support multiple protocols, simplify board design and create obsolescence-proof solutions that will outlast ASSPs.

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