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Home » Applications & Technologies » Programmable Logic Electronics
Applications & Technologies
Programmable Logic

There are many types of Programmable Logic Devices (PLDs), beginning with simple combinations of digital logic that are integrated on one chip. Complex Programmable Logic Devices (CPLDs) and Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) are general-purpose semiconductor devices that can be programmed after shipping. They are very design-flexible and user-customizable hardware devices that can implement any logical function that an application-specific integrated circuit could perform, but the ability to update the functionality offers advantages for many applications.

Typical FPGA consists of many small logic blocks interconnected by programmable routing resources.
Programmable Logic block diagram

FPGA block diagram

The Field-Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) is a general-purpose semiconductor device containing a large number of digital logic building blocks. In terms of speed-to-market, design flexibility, and cost, FPGAs are hardware used when a traditional software-programmable processor system is not enough, but a customer Application Specific Integrated Chip (ASIC) is too much. FPGAs are denser and more complex than CPLDs.

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CPLD block diagram

Complex Programmable Logic Devices (CPLDs) are large-scale logic devices with hundreds or thousands of programmable logic gates, non-volatile memory, and an I/O block in one chip. CPLD architecture has a predictable timing performance and speed, and offers a range of logic capabilities. Connections between the logic gates on these semiconductor chips are customized by the user with development tools.

Implementing design changes is flexible and easy to do with a CPLD, because CPLDs can be re-programmed, and some CPLDs can be re-programmed in-circuit, which means that changes can be made at any time, including on the production line, in the field, or in finished goods. CPLDs are relatively low in power consumption and cost, so they are ideal for battery-operated portable or hand-held applications.

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Development tool example

Development tools are essential for quickly building a design and are useful for learning, developing software and settings, and testing. Development tools are created for a specific product or series of products. A development kit can provide an excellent experience for a design engineer if it is complete and easy to use as it arrives, just out of the box. They are often used as a springboard to getting up and running before customizing and prototyping.

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Software Tools

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Altera MAX® 10 FPGA Evaluation Board
Altera MAX®
10 FPGA Evaluation Board

Quickly evaluate ultra-low cost Altera MAX 10 FPGAs. Altera's MAX 10 FPGAs revolutionize non-volatile integration by delivering advanced processing capabilities in a low-cost, instant-on, small form factor, programmable logic device.
Learn more about Altera MAX® 10 FPGA Evaluation Board
Microsemi SmartFusion2 SoC FPGAs
SmartFusion2 SoC FPGAs

SmartFusion2 integrates an inherently reliable flash-based FPGA fabric, a 166MHz ARM® Cortex®-M3 processor, advanced security processing accelerators, DSP blocks, SRAM, eNVM, and industry-required, high-performance communication interfaces—all on a single chip.
Learn more about Microsemi SmartFusion2 SoC FPGAs
Lattice MachXO3™ FPGAs
MachXO3™ FPGAs

Lattice MachXO3 FPGA family is the smallest, lowest-cost-per I/O programmable platform aimed at expanding system capabilities and bridging emerging connectivity interfaces using both parallel and serial I/O.

Learn more about Lattice MachXO3™ FPGAs
Cypress PSoC®5 Programmable System-on-Chip
Cypress PSoC®5
Programmable System-on-Chip

PSoC 5LP is a low power ARM® Cortex®-M3 based programmable SoC offering unmatched high-precision analog and the flexibility to design custom system solutions. Use PSoC 5LP with PSoC Creator™ components to shorten design schedules, accelerating your time to market.
Learn more about Cypress PSoC®5 Programmable System-on-Chip
TDK-Lambda iJB12 Non-Isolated DC/DC Converters
Non-Isolated DC/DC Converters

PMBus compliant, parallel capable 60A ultra high density PoL for driving CPUs, FPGAs & ASICs. Featuring intelligent auto-turning technology, these converters provide better dynamic performance, improved system stability and extremely accurate current read-back.
Learn more about TDK-Lambda iJB12 Non-Isolated DC/DC Converters
Terasic Cyclone V GX Starter Kit
Cyclone V GX Starter Kit

SuperSpeed Plus USB 10Gbps (USB 3.1) with improved efficient data transfer and I/O power efficiency. Works and is backward compatible with existing USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 Fast Sync-N-Go.
Learn more about Terasic Cyclone V GX Starter Kit
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