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FPGA's and CPLD's

Date:    19990531
From:    Christian Diefenbach
To:      Multiple recipients of Chipdir Mailing List
Subject: Re: FPGAs and CPLDs

Brian Bornino asked:

I've been trying to search the internet to find out how much various FPGAs and CPLDs cost. Apparently, companies post the data sheets no problem, but they don't put up the associated prices. I've tried all of the popular corporations: Actel, Altera, Cypress, Lucent, Motorola, QuickLogic, and Xilinx.

I'm just trying to find out how much various FPGA and CPLD MSI* class chips cost. It is for my senior project at school. I'm also needing to find out how much the packages cost which one uses to program the chip. I think they are called Logic Programmer Cards, but I'm not quite sure...

First of all, you're missing AMD (Vantis) and Philips. You can find lots of pricing information, like graphics, trends, price per gate through time, technology and so on, at Xilinx Website: www.xilinx.com. They don't have specific pricing though. For that, pick your choice and go to www.insight-electronics.com. They start at $1.95 for the low voltage version of XC9536, up to more than $4000 for the top of the line. Altera is a bit more expensive for the equivalent gate count, but they have simpler devices, the classic series, which they bought from Intel. To program Xilinx, you can use their JTAG* download cable ($99 with demo board) or an universal device programmer, which can program most of the other brands, from $400 to $1250 depending on device support and features. Software is another issue altogheter. I do not know the current price for Altera's Max2Plus (or wathever they are using now), but it was close to Xilinx Foundation Series, more than $5000 with VHDL support. I have an unconfirmed information that Xilinx was selling their complete package for $2500! Altera AND* Xilinx give those to engineering courses for free though. Smart move...

Hope that helps!
Christian Diefenbach


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