Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform that has had an amazing impact on electronic hobbyists and makers. If you’ve worked with Arduino, you would be pretty comfortable with microcontrollers. Now, the company has launched a new flagship product, the MKR Vidor 400, which it says is the very first official Arduino board with a field programmable gate array (FPGA).
New Arduino board makes FPGAs accessible to developers
The MKR Vidor 400 aims to make FPGAs accessible to makers and innovators. Unlike microprocessors or microcontrollers, FPGAs provide a reconfigurable hardware platform. Developers can configure these chips to implement custom hardware functionality apart from designing software.
The product adds to the firm’s 25 x 75mm MKR (maker) series of boards aimed at developing Internet of things (IoT) products.
MKR Vidor 4000 is based on an FPGA chip, a SAMD21 Microcontroller, and u-blox’s Nina W102-00B WiFi connectivity. It also features the ECC508 crypto-chip to securely connect to local networks and the Internet.
The board is coupled with an innovative development environment, which aims to democratize and radically simplify access to the world of FPGAs.
Key features of the new Arduino board:
- Onboard 8 Mbyte SDRAM
- 2 Mbyte QSPI Flash (1MB for user applications)
- Micro HDMI connector
- MIPI camera connector
- Wifi & BLE powered by U-BLOX NINA W10 Series
- classic MKR interface on which all pins are driven both by SAMD21 and FPGA
- MiniPCI Express connector with up to 25 user programmable pins
The FPGA contains 16K Logic Elements, 504Kbit of embedded RAM and 56 18×18 bit HW multipliers for high-speed DSP; Each pin can toggle at over 150 MHz and can be configured for functions such as UARTs, (Q)SPI, high res/ high freq PWM, quadrature encoder, I2C, I2S, Sigma Delta DAC, etc.
The MKR Vidor 4000 will be available on the Arduino online store at the end of June.