DP5-A: An Altera FPGA video development platformWell, here's an interesting one. When you act as the editor for a site like the EE Times Programmable Logic Designline, you tend to get used to seeing announcements from the "usual suspects."
So when I received a message from the folks at SingMai Electronics saying that they have just introduced a range of low-cost boards targeted at SD and HD video development, my first thought was "Great" and my second thought was "Who the heck is SingMai Electronics?"
Well, I'm glad I asked… Based in Thailand, SingMai Electronics specializes in creating products for Video, Imaging, and Broadcast applications. If we go to the About Us page on the SingMai website, we find that one of the founders – Daniel – was born in the UK in 1957 (that was a good year, because it's the same year I decided to grace this planet with my presence) and he enjoys art history, opera, writing, cooking, and cricket.
Meanwhile, co-founder Phuttachad Thiencharoenwong is fluent in English, Thai, and Mandarin; she also has some knowledge of Japanese and Laos. In addition to enjoying cooking, travel and languages, Phuttachad was an extra in the movie Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason.
Well, you can color me impressed (one of my aunts was an extra in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang) , and you can bet that the next time I watch Bridget Jones I will be keeping a keen eye open for Phuttachad. But we digress…
…returning to SingMai's low-cost boards targeted at SD and HD video development, the main board – the DP5-A – is based around an Altera EP3C25 Cyclone III FPGA, which offers sufficient resources to run all of the SingMai video IP cores, yet is also cost-effective enough to be used in consumer equipment.
The DP5-A is also bundled with an unlimited use/time license for the SingMai PT13 compact microprocessor IP core for all Altera FPGAs.
The main board can accept up to three add-ons boards. Currently available add-on boards include analog and digital interfaces, including NTSC/PAL, YPbPr or RGB analog component video at either SD or HD resolutions, HDMI/DVI, and SDI/HD-SDI interfaces. Each board is also provided with Verilog example code and software drivers for the PT13.
Additional boards include a QVGA LCD display panel and interface, a CMOS image sensor interface for both SD and HD sensors and fast ADC and DAC cards for the acquisition and display of non-standard video.
A range of user interfaces for user control is also provided, including an 8x2 character backlit LCD display, a digital encoder, switches and an IR remote control sensor.
The development platform is also supported with the SingMai range of video IP cores including analog video decoders and encoders, 3D video noise reduction, video pattern generators and character overlays, and a complete suite of image processing functions for use with the CMOS image sensors.
For more information, please visit www.singmai.com
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