Xilinx, Inc. (Nasdaq: XLNX), the world’s leading provider of programmable solutions, announced the availability of the new logiCRAFT3 Compact Multimedia Display Development Platform, based on the low-cost family of Xilinx(R) XA Spartan(TM)-3E field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs). Developed in collaboration with Xylon, a leading supplier of development systems and intellectual property (IP) for the automotive market, this robust platform provides greater flexibility and scalability, enabling module designers to use Xilinx XA programmable devices in a wider array of in-vehicle display systems.
The number of displays used in vehicles today continues to rise dramatically for navigation, center stacks and rear seat entertainment (RSE) systems. In addition, the emergence of applications such as hybrid clusters — consisting of analog gauges, LCD/TFT displays for vehicle diagnostics information, and in-vehicle cameras for real-time video applications like back-up monitoring — is further fueling market growth and increases the need for small form factor, rapid development platforms.
The logiCRAFT3 Compact Multimedia Display Development Platform addresses this market requirement with a configurable solution that combines the low-cost and small footprint of XA Spartan-3E FPGAs and the Xilinx 32-bit MicroBlaze(TM) soft microprocessor with pre-configured graphic and display controller IP modules from the Xylon logicBRICKS(TM) library. This platform also supports Altia Graphical User Interface (GUI) tools for faster development of custom display content and user interfaces without the need for custom software.
“The automotive market is an important application focus for Xilinx, and today our XA solutions are being designed into a multitude of automotive infotainment systems,” said Nick DiFiore, automotive systems architecture and solutions manager of the Automotive Division at Xilinx. “We’re building on this track record of success to stimulate the development of new FPGA-based graphics and video control applications. The combination of our low-cost Spartan-3E programmable platform, Xylon IP modules, and Altia tools makes it possible for automotive system developers to improve the efficiency of existing systems and realize a new class of in-vehicle display products with even more features and capabilities.”
Targeting Multiple Display Applications
“The logiCRAFT3 solution for XA Spartan-3E FPGAs provides a small form factor board with a great deal of functionality. It is the ideal solution for feature-rich single and remote display applications, and built to scale for just about any type of display within the confines and restrictions of the automotive environment. It can fit behind and drive any TFT display 7″ or larger, and can even go directly into headrests for in-vehicle demonstration, prototyping and testing,” adds Davor Kovacec, CEO at Xylon.
For RSE systems, the logiCRAFT3 platform provides a completely field configurable environment that enables developers to quickly deal with changing customer requirements. It also allows for reduced wiring complexity between the infotainment master board and vehicle headrests with the capability to transport audio, video, user control information, and power over a simple four wire (two twisted pair) high-speed serial link.
With the use of TFT LCD displays in instrument clusters also growing in popularity, the logiCRAFT3 platform features 2D graphics acceleration and a 60-frame/second display rate for smooth rotation of on-screen gauges. Vehicle diagnostic data can be brought to the board and displayed using the available CAN interface. A camera, for applications like parking aid, can also be connected with available video scaling for any display size/resolution. These capabilities are also useful in the development of multi-function head units with menu systems to display radio, navigation assistance, and other infotainment and driver information functions.
About the logiCRAFT3 Platform
The logiCRAFT3 offering is a derivative of the logiCRAFT2 platform that is optimized for single and remote display applications. With the logiCRAFT3 platform, development and prototype is faster than ever before. Available software drivers allow Altia GUI development tools to directly generate MicroBlaze 32-bit microprocessor code for the display controller. This completely eliminates the manual software coding usually required for graphics generation, allowing automotive designers to get a custom look and feel with minimal overhead and very quick turn-around. Also, the Altia generated code takes full advantage of the available 2D graphics accelerator IP, ensuring that overall system performance is maintained.
Detailed technical information about the logiCRAFT3 Compact Multimedia Display Development Platform can be found in the article entitled, “A Compact Multimedia Display Platform for Automotive and Industrial Markets,” published in the latest XCell Journal, Issue 63.
Pricing & Availability
The logiCRAFT3 boards can be purchased from Xylon starting in the first quarter of 2008. Prices range from $1,295 USD for the logiCRAFT3 board with the smallest XA 3S250E device up to $1,895 USD with the largest XA 3S1200E device.
Altia, Inc. is a software company that provides user interface design and development tools that can be used from concept to final product code. Altia was founded in 1991 and its customers include GM, Ford, Chrysler, Honda, Toyota, ACMI, Guidant, Panasonic, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin, and hundreds of other leading manufacturers.
Xylon is a leading provider of FPGA-based developments systems for the industrial, medical and automotive markets. It provides optimized IP cores, from its logicBRICKS library, interfaces and services that improve designers’ effectiveness and lower overall production costs. Xylon headquarters and R&D team are located in Zagreb, Croatia, Europe, with offices in Germany and distributors in Japan for marketing, sales and support.
About Xilinx Automotive Solutions
Xilinx is the automotive programmable logic device market leader with its Xilinx Automotive (XA) line of FPGAs and CPLDs tested to the AEC-Q100 automotive qualification standard, and full automotive solutions that include LogiCORE(TM) and AllianceCORE IP portfolio, operating systems, middleware, software, and development boards.
Xilinx is the worldwide leader in complete programmable logic solutions.