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Using DE2-115 for Labs designed for DE2

Honored Contributor II


We have some DE2 boards that will be replaced with DE2-115 boards. We have labs that were designed for the DE2 board and i am wondering how difficult it will be to convert those labs from DC2 to DC2-115. 

Any ideas? 

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3 Replies
Honored Contributor II

I'm not familiar with the DE2 board, but in general, when porting a design to another board, here are some things to check: 


1) accessories - make sure that all of the chips being used in the project are present in the new board AND that they are configured in the same way. For example, both may have a seven segment display but one uses a driver chip to save pins and another connects segments directly to the FPGA. Both may have Ethernet but use a different PHY chip and/or expect a different protocol from the FPGA, etc.  


2) Pin assignments - If you find you can use the same FPGA code to drive something that is present on both boards, you may find they are assigned to different pins. Check every single pin on the board. You can hurt chips if you leave CMOS inputs un-driven. You can hurt the FPGA if outputs are connected and are being driven to different levels. You need to be aware of this on everything connected to the FPGA even if you aren't using it. 


3) Make sure any external circuits operate at the same voltage as the new board. Change external circuits as needed to present the proper voltages to all components. 


4) Clocks - Most FPGA boards have clocks going to the FPGA. The new board might not be providing the same frequency of clock as the older board did. If you are porting a design that uses transceivers, make sure you follow the clocking instructions in the documentation.
Honored Contributor II

Along with the prior post information (all good points) be aware that the FPGA device on the boards is a different generation, going from Cyclone II on DE2 to Cyclone IV on DE2-115. So typically any instantiations of Altera specific modules in your verilog (PLL clock generators, memory arrays, any IP blocks) may also have to be modified. Vanilla verilog code that is being synthesized is usually not an issue, Quartus will take care of that. 


Altera DE2 Board : Cyclone II EP2C35F672 with ~35,000 LEs 


Altera DE2-115 Board : Cyclone IV EP4CE115 with ~114,480 LEs
Honored Contributor II

DE2-70 and DE2-115 also have different Ethernet chips. The Ethernet chip of the DE2-115 88E1111 does not have a datasheet that is included in the board or that is available to the public (i wonder why Terrasic chose this chip for a university environment).  


Best Regards,