Ixthos, Inc., a designer and supplier of real-time multiprocessing digital signal processing (DSP) boards, has announced a user-programmable and highly flexible general purpose PMC card that allows the designer to uniquely configure the module to meet virtually any I/O need for most every application, including a RapidIO implementation.

The new PMC GPIO-1™ provides 64, user-defined, bi-directional, single-ended or differential I/O signals, with each signal presenting the option of driving or receiving either LVDS, LVTTL, CMOS, and other levels, with on-board termination. The GPIO-1 presents a high performance 64 bit wide, 66 MHz PCI interface to the baseboard with up to 256 MB of on-board SDRAM memory and furnishes DMA and interrupt capabilities. These features make this product ideal for implementing custom serial or parallel I/O protocols, even RapidIO with or without data buffering.

The new GPIO development Kit provides users with programming and loopback test hardware and a CD-ROM containing a comprehensive series of license-free software examples. Also included are VxWorks board support packages and drivers, FPGA configuration files and royalty-free Verilog RTL design sample code and simulation test benches for the PCI interface IxBus and on-chip FIFOs to speed development. In addition, a Built In test capability allows users to easily determine with high confidence if the PMC module hardware is operating within specifications. The PMC GPIO-1 Development Kit also contains sample software for implementing a high speed, buffered message-passing data port.

The dedicated, Xilinx Virtex user-programmable FPGA readily accommodates the design of custom digital interfaces for sending and receiving data through a front panel connector or to the backplane. This device features two major external ports — an Ixthos-defined IxBus for connecting to the PCI bridge and a connection to the 64 I/O signals that are, in turn, joined to the front panel connector and rear-panel connectors.

The PCI interface is through a Lucent FPSC (field-Programmable System Controller) that also interfaces to the SDRAM and user-defined FPGA. This allows data transfer directly from the PCI to the SDRAM or the FPGA at a peak rate of 528 Mbytes/sec. The Lucent FPSC element contains a fixed PCI IP core, surrounded by configurable FPGA logic, with a capacity for generating master PCI cycles through the use of an internal DMA for moving data to and from the PCI bus.

An 80-pin, pre-terminated flat ribbon cable is provided for mating with the standard, 80-pin header for front panel I/O for fast system I/O prototyping and custom development.

The GPIO-1 PMC modules are available in either air- and conduction-cooled, extended temperature versions.