Friday 7 August 2020

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Designing for Performance

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Course Description

Attending the Designing for Performance class will help you create more efficient FPGA designs. This course will enable you to optimize your design for usage in a smaller FPGA or a lower speed grade for reducing system costs. In addition, by mastering the tools and the design methodologies presented in this course, you will be able to create your design faster, shorten your development time, and lower development costs.

Training Duration

2 days

Who Should Attend?

FPGA designers interested in FPGA design optimization with intermediate knowledge of HDL and some experience with the Xilinx ISE® software tools.


  • Essentials of FPGA Design course or equivalent knowledge of FPGA architecture features; the Xilinx implementation software flow; reading timing reports; basic FPGA design techniques; global timing constraints and the Constraints Editor
  • Intermediate HDL knowledge (VHDL or Verilog)
  • Solid digital design background

Recommended RELs

Software Tools

  • ISE Design Suite: Logic System Edition 12.1


  • Architecture: Spartan®-6 and Virtex®-6 FPGAs*
  • Demo board: Spartan-6 FPGA SP605 board*

* This course focuses on the Spartan-6 and Virtex-6 architectures. Check with your local Authorized Training Provider for the specifics of the in-class lab board or other customizations.

Skills Gained

After completing this comprehensive training, you will know how to:

  • Describe the architectural features of the Virtex-6 FPGA and Spartan-6 FPGAs
  • Create and integrate cores into your design flow by using the CORE Generator™ software system
  • Describe the clocking features of the Virtex-6 and Spartan-6 FPGAs and how they can be used to improve performance
  • Increase performance by duplicating registers and pipelining
  • Increase system reliability by adding an appropriate synchronization circuit
  • Describe different synthesis options and how they can improve performance
  • Describe a flow for obtaining timing closure
  • Pinpoint design bottlenecks by using Timing Analyzer reports
  • Apply advanced timing constraints to meet your performance goals
  • Use advanced implementation options to increase design performance

Course Outline

Day 1

  • Review of Essentials of FPGA Design
  • Designing with FPGA Resources
  • CORE Generator Software System
  • Basic FPGA Clock Resources
  • Virtex-6 and Spartan-6 FPGA Clock Resources
  • Lab 1: Designing with FPGA Resources
  • FPGA Design Techniques
  • Synthesis Techniques
  • Lab 2 : Synthesis Techniques

Day 2

  • Achieving Timing Closure
  • Lab 3 : Review of Global Timing Constraints
  • Path-Specific Timing Constraints, Part 1
  • Path-Specific Timing Constraints, Part 2
  • Lab 4 : Achieving Timing Closure
  • Advanced Implementation Options
  • Lab 5 : Designing for Performance
  • Lab 6 : FPGA Editor Demo (optional)
  • ChipScope Pro Software (optional)
  • Lab 7 : ChipScope Pro Software (optional)

Lab Descriptions

  • Lab 1: Designing with FPGA ResourcesCreate block RAM and clocking FPGA cores using the CORE Generator™ tool. Instantiate these cores and other clock resources and implement the design.
  • Lab 2: Synthesis TechniquesExperiment with different synthesis options (including timing constraints, resource sharing, synthesis optimization effort, and register balancing) and view the results.
  • Lab 3: Review of Global Timing ConstraintsUse the Constraints Editor to enter global timing constraints.
  • Lab 4: Achieving Timing ClosureReview timing reports and enter path-specific timing constraints to fully describe your performance requirements.
  • Lab 5: Designing for PerformanceImprove performance and maximize results solely with implementation options and SmartXplorer.
  • Lab 6: FPGA Editor Demo (optional)Use the FPGA Editor to view a design and add a probe to an internal net.
  • Lab 7: ChipScope Pro Software (optional) – Add an internal logic analyzer to a design to perform real-time debugging.

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