Opal Kelly Blog

Opal Kelly Announces New USB 2.0 FPGA Module – XEM3050 Speeds Product Development and Accelerates Time to Market

PORTLAND, OR – Opal Kelly, a leading producer of powerful FPGA USB 2.0 modules ideally suited for development engineering, prototyping, and OEM integration, today announced the volume availability of its new XEM3050 module. Based on the 4,000,000-gate Xilinx Spartan-3 FPGA and high-transfer-rate USB 2.0, the XEM3050 features on-board SDRAM, Flash, SSRAM, integrated power supplies, abundant I/O, and is controlled by Opal Kelly’s FrontPanel software and API. The XEM3050 is being used by early adopters at leading engineering firms and universities as the “heart” of electronic product design, prototyping, and simulation. It is eliminating months of engineering development time and expense, as well as dramatically accelerating time to market.

The XEM3050 is used for turnkey device-to-computer integration for “logic-heavy” applications such as image capture and signal processing, data acquisition, and digital communication. The XEM3050 module includes, at no extra charge, Opal Kelly’s FrontPanel software for interfacing “virtual” instruments, HDL simulation models for multiple platforms, and its complete Application Programmer’s Interface (API) for several languages.

Radix20 Design Services, an ASIC design and EDA consulting firm, is using the XEM3050 to develop a GPS receiver for Magellan Systems Japan that will be implemented as an ASIC in the final product. “With the XEM3050, we are able to run simulations faster than real time, dramatically reducing the time required for design verification. For a typical 20-minute GPS simulation, a mid-range commercial Verilog simulator would take 260 hours and an expensive, high-end Verilog simulator would take 40 hours. Using the XEM3050, we are able to do 20 minutes of verification in just 13 minutes,” said Gil Herbeck, Chief Engineer of Radix20 Design Services. “Opal Kelly has saved us months of design verification time, eliminated the need for several thousand dollars worth of Verilog simulation software, and allowed us to get our product to market six months faster. We are so happy with the performance and form factor of the XEM3050 that we are considering reworking our entire design verification system and demo unit to use this module.”

The XEM3050 is the most powerful module in the range of Opal Kelly’s FPGA USB 2.0 modules. Smaller than a credit card, the XEM3050 is packed with features, such as:

  • 64-MB SDRAM using two completely independent 32-MB SDRAMs
  • 8-Mb SPI Serial Flash for non-volatile storage with a separate Xilinx Platform Flash for FPGA configuration data
  • Two high-efficiency switching power supplies to reduce design burden and generate clean, stable power to the FPGA
  • Opal Kelly’s unique FrontPanel software at no charge, which handles all the interaction between the customer’s software and the customer’s FPGA design
  • Multi-platform API (available for Microsoft Windows XP/Vista, Mac OS X, and Linux FedoraCore 7, with a variety of languages including C, C++, C#, Ruby, Python and Java)
  • DLL support for a variety of third-party tools including Matlab and LabVIEW.

The XEM3050 is being used for a wide range of applications by early adopters in both the commercial and academic sectors including General Dynamics, National Semiconductor, Radix20 Design Services, Texas Instruments, and Advanced Communications Concepts. The XEM3050 is also used by researchers and teachers at leading universities including Johns Hopkins University, MIT, Stanford University, and the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab.

“We are excited by the enthusiastic customer response to the new XEM3050 module–Opal Kelly’s most robust and feature-rich module to date,” said Jake Janovetz, founder and president of Opal Kelly. “The XEM3050 is being rapidly adopted by innovative designers worldwide who are leveraging its power and flexibility to develop a broad range of amazing new applications. Customers are using it for logic heavy design and prototyping projects, such as simulations for design verification, specialized co-processors, image and signal processing, and as embedded components in their hardware products.”

Opal Kelly XEM3050 modules are available immediately, off-the-shelf, from the Opal Kelly Online Store. Prices range from: $749.95/ea. for quantity 1-9; $699.95/ea. for quantity 10-49; and $649.95/ea. for 50 or more modules.

About Opal Kelly

Opal Kelly, founded in 2004, offers a range of powerful, off-the-shelf, FPGA USB 2.0 modules including the easy-to-use Opal Kelly FrontPanel software interface and robust API. Opal Kelly products provide the essential device-to-computer interconnect for efficient and fast product prototyping, testing, development, and OEM integration. Development engineers, researchers, teachers and serious hobbyists, worldwide, use Opal Kelly modules for an efficient and economical interconnect solution that shortens development time, fills expertise gaps, and dramatically accelerates time to market. For more information, or to purchase Opal Kelly products, please visit https://opalkelly.com.