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Altera DE2-115 (Cyclone IV) VS. Altera Cyclone V SoC

Honored Contributor II



I am planning to buy an evaluation board for my courses. One of my courses requires Altera DE2-115 (Cyclone IV) while the other course requires Altera Cyclone V SoC. I hope to buy only one board.  


I need a suggestion on which board to buy thank you.
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Honored Contributor II

Hello, Cyclone V SoC has both processor system (HPS) and the FPGA logic, and they can be used independently. As such, it should be sufficient to cover FPGA logic usage scenarios in Cyclone IV, except for the following cases: 


  1. DE2-115 has total logic element (LE) of 115K, whereas certain Cyclone V SoC board (for example DE1-SoC) has only 85K of LE. If you have designs that require >100K LE (very rarely) then it won't fit in DE1-SoC 

  2. Some Cyclone V SoC boards have resources like USB, Ethernet, UART on the HPS side, which means if you need these peripherals you will need to bring the HPS up. DE2 meanwhile doesn't have HPS so all the peripherals are on the FPGA side. 

  3. Certain IP are different on Cyclone V vs Cyclone IV. If I am not mistaken, one example is that the PLL IP used in Cyclone V is of a different name compared to the one used in Cyclone IV. Thus you may have to figure out some of them manually (not too difficult) 

Honored Contributor II

Thank you for the reply. 

I may go for the Altera Cyclone V SoC then. I was reading some comparison between the two boards, and you have cleared some concepts