I have Cyclone IV FPGA and I run a software that reads images from a sensor and apply some image processing algorithm on it, I use Nios II and soft DDR controller .
My question is that if I convert my project to other newer chip (Cyclone V, Cyclone 10...etc), would that lower my power consumption? ( running the same project with a newer DDR also - DDR2 or DDR3- ) .
And also I face really hard time with soft cores for something like DDR, does having physical DDR controller and CPU would increase power consumption? Because if it doesn't I prefer to use it.
Depends.. smaller chip usually have lower static power consumption, but newer have lower dynamic power consumption.
The power supply subsystem is also pretty important.
There are many variables, but you can have an estimate using powerplay power analyzer with different devices.
Hard DDR controller usually use less power than Soft DDR controller because it's optimized silicon area.
A Raspberry or another chip designed for mobile phones can be more energy efficient than an FPGA, but there are other tradeoffs too.
You can confirm with EPE (Early Power Estimator-excel spreadsheet) or Power Analyzer tools in Quartus to compare your design. By right, using extra controller in your device will increase power consumption, but it is recommended to run the Power Analyzer to get the exact numbers.
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