from Altera


The PCI Express® (PCIe®) Avalon® streaming (Avalon-ST) high-performance reference design highlights the performance of the hard implementation of Altera's PCI Express MegaCore® function. The design consists of a chaining direct memory access (DMA) that transfers data between the Stratix® V GX, Arria® V GT, Cyclone® V GT, Stratix IV GX, Arria II GX, or Cyclone IV GX FPGA's internal memory and system memory. This reference design includes a Windows-based software application that sets up the direct memory access (DMA) transfers. The software application also measures and displays the performance achieved for the transfers.


  • Demonstrate high performance (sustained bandwidth) using the hard intellectual property (IP) implementation of Altera's PCIe 3.0/2.0/1.1 x1, x4, and x8 IP cores with a chaining DMA
  • Increase customer confidence with documented results of extensive benchmarking performed by Altera
    • Benchmarking shows close-to-theoretical bandwidth achieved across lane configurations (x1, x4, and x8) and platforms or chipsets
  • Jump-start customer designs or performance evaluation
    • Step-by-step walkthrough instructions, complete design files (including Quartus® II software archive), and Windows-based software application provided

Demonstrated Altera Technology

  • Stratix V GX FPGAs
  • Stratix IV GX FPGAs
  • Arria V GT FPGAs
  • Arria II GX FPGAs
  • Cyclone V GT FPGAs
  • Cyclone IV GX FPGAs
  • Altera® PCIe hard IP core

Figure 1. PCIe Avalon-ST High-Performance Reference Design


  1. RC: Root complex
  2. DMA: Direct memory access

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Reference Designs Disclaimer

These reference design illustrations may be used within Altera Corporation devices only and remain the copyrighted property of Altera. They are being provided on an "as-is" basis and as an accommodation, and therefore all warranties, representations, or guarantees of any kind (whether express, implied or statutory) including, without limitation, warranties of merchantability, non-infringement, or fitness for a particular purpose, are specifically disclaimed. Altera expressly does not recommend, suggest,or require that these examples be used in combination with any other product not provided by Altera.

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