Speedcore Custom Blocks
Speedcore eFPGA IP has brought the power and flexibility of programmable logic to ASICs and SoCs. Customers can integrate a Speedcore eFPGA into an SoC for high-performance, compute-intensive and real-time processing applications such as AI, machine learning, 5G wireless, networking and automotive. Speedcore custom blocks greatly increase the capabilities of eFPGAs by allowing customers to define custom functions that can be added as additional blocks in the eFPGA fabric, alongside the traditional building blocks of LUTs, RAMs, and DSPs.
Speedcore custom blocks massively improve performance, power, and area, enabling functionality that has never before been possible in standalone FPGAs. With Speedcore custom blocks, customers gain ASIC efficiency while retaining FPGA flexibility, resulting in a highly efficient implementation that minimizes power and area while maximizing data throughput with ASIC-level performance.
Custom Blocks Application Examples
Speedcore custom blocks can be defined collaboratively with Achronix through a detailed architecture analysis of acceleration workloads in the customer’s target application; for example:
- A CNN-based object recognition algorithm. Conversion of this logic to use custom blocks reduced the area by over 40% by optimizing the DSP and memory blocks for matrix multiplication.
- Large string search functions requiring parallel comparator arrays. Conversion to custom blocks resulted in area reduction of over 90%.
- The core functionality of a 400 Gbps packet processing data-path running at 800 MHz implemented as Speedcore custom blocks with the programmable logic managing the analysis and control functionality. The resulting implementation supports the high throughput needed for packet processing applications — performance not possible in standalone FPGAs.
Design Tool Support
Achronix ACE design tools fully support Speedcore custom blocks from design capture to bitstream generation and system debug. Achronix creates a unique GUI for each Speedcore custom block that manages all configuration rules. ACE contains the full timing details for all configurations of the Speedcore custom block, which allows ACE to complete timing-driven place-and-route for designs. Customers can use the powerful floorplanner tool for design optimization and to make regional or site assignments for all block instances. ACE also includes a critical path analysis tool to analyze timing. Customers also have access to ACE’s powerful Snapshot embedded logic analyzer to create complex triggers and show run-time signals within a Speedcore instance.