from Altera

Altera's Cyclone® IV GX Transceiver Starter Kit provides a low-cost platform for developing transceiver I/O-based FPGA designs. This kit includes the complete hardware and software for you to:

  • Develop your FPGA design for cost-sensitive applications
  • Measure the FPGA's low power consumption
  • Test signal quality of the FPGA transceiver I/O pins (up to 2.5 Gbps)
  • Develop and test PCI Express® (PCIe®) 1.0 endpoint x1 lane designs (~250 MBps transfer rate)

Ordering Information

IMPORTANT NOTE: CDs and DVDs are no longer included in Altera® development kits. All development kit content can be downloaded from this web page. To get a copy of the Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Kit installation content and Quartus® II Web Edition software delivered to you on CDs or DVDs, please go to the main literature web page to order online or contact Altera sales at 1-888-800-0631. Table 2 below contains links to all of the kit documentation and installation content.

Table 1. Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Kit Ordering Code and Pricing Information

Ordering Code Price Ordering Information
DK-START-4CGX15N

$395

Buy online via Altera's eStore or contact your local Altera distributor to place your order.

Transceiver Starter Kit Content

The Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Kit features the following:

  • Cyclone IV GX transceiver starter board (see Figure 1)
    • Featured device
      • Cyclone IV GX EP4CGX15BF14C8N FPGA
    • Configuration status and set-up elements
      • MAX® II CPLD EPM2210 System Controller enabling passive serial (PS) configuration from flash
      • Embedded USB-Blaster™ for using the Quartus II Programmer
      • JTAG header for external USB-Blaster
      • Altera serial configuration device
    • Clocks
      • FPGA clock sources: 50 MHz, 125 MHz, and SMA clock input
      • Other on-board oscillators: 6 MHz, 24 MHz, and 25 MHz
    • General user input/output
      • LEDs
      • Two-line character LCD display
      • Push-buttons
    • Memory devices
      • 16 MB of flash memory
      • 2 MB of synchronous SRAM
    • Component and interfaces
      • PCIe edge connector
      • 10/100/1000BASE-T Ethernet PHY with RJ-45 connector or one transceiver to SMA connectors (requires a minor board modification)
      • On-board power measurement circuitry
    • Power
    • Other features
      • PCIe low-profile (6.6" x 2.713") board form factor
      • Restriction of hazardeous substances (RoHS) compliance
  • Power adapter and cables

The Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Kit design examples and documentation can be downloaded from Table 2 below. Included are the following:

  • Design examples
    • Board Update Portal featuring the Nios® II processor and remote system update
    • Board Test System (BTS)
  • Complete documentation
    • User guide
    • Reference manual
    • Board schematic and layout
    • Bill of material

Quartus II software is required in order to create designs for the Cyclone IV GX device on this board. Cyclone IV GX devices are supported by both the subscription edition and the "no license required" web edition software, which can be downloaded by following this link. The following tools are included:

  • Quartus II Software Web Edition (Windows only)
    • MegaCore® IP Library including PCI Express, Triple Speed Ethernet, and the Nios II processor MegaCore function (IP evaluation available through OpenCore Plus)
  • ModelSim®-Altera Starter Edition
  • Nios II Embedded Design Suite

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Figure 1: Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Board

Figure 1: Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Board

Downloads

To get a copy of the Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Kit installation content and Quartus II Web Edition software delivered to you on CDs/DVDs, please go to the main literature web page to order online or contact Altera sales at 1-888-800-0631.

Table 2. Collateral for the Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Kit

Document Description Version
Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Board Reference Manual (PDF)Detailed document containing information about the on-board components and interfaces1.0 (1)
Kit installation (via FTP)(Updated) Full installation of all kit-specific files including the reference manual, user guide, Quick Start Guide, bill of materials, layout, PCB, schematics, and design examples12.1.0 (2)
Kit installation
(via FTP)
(Archive) Full installation of all kit-specific files including the reference manual, user guide, Quick Start Guide, bill of materials, layout, PCB, schematics, and design examples12.0.0 (3)
Kit installation
(via FTP)
(Archive) Full installation of all kit-specific files including the reference manual, user guide, Quick Start Guide, bill of materials, layout, PCB, schematics, and design examples11.1.0 (4)

Notes:

  1. This file is also included in the kit installation.
  2. This kit installation executable (released March 2013) is Windows-based only. This kit installtion works with Quartus II Web Edition software version 12.1.0.
  3. This kit installation executable (released September 2012) is Windows-based only. This kit installtion works with Quartus II Web Edition software version 12.0.0.
  4. This kit installation executable (released November 2011) is Windows-based only. This kit installtion works with Quartus II Web Edition software version 11.1.0.

Reference Designs and Example Designs

Table 3 provides a list of Cyclone IV GX designs not delivered with the kit, but available for download.

Table 3. Designs for the Cyclone IV GX Transceiver Starter Kit

Design Name

Other Software
Requirements (1)

Other Hardware
Requirements

Availability

PCI Express High Performance Reference Design
  • PCIe x4-to-x1 lane converter
  • Two computers, one with a PCIe x8/x4/x1 slot
Now
EZDMA Reference Design for Cyclone IV GX FPGA (PLDA)

-

-

Now

Note:

  1. The Quartus II software Full Subscription version and MegaCore IP Library are software requirements for these designs.