Dragon Li's Bajiu Lite Is a Flexible FPGA Development Board with RISC-V SoC Capabilities

Using the VexRiscv CRiscV soft-core, users can tailor the device for workloads ranging from computer vision to robotics.

Gareth Halfacree
3 months ago β€’ FPGAs / HW101

FPGA specialist Dragon Li Studio is looking to launch a "resource-rich" open source development board with an integrated RISC-V system-on-chip (SoC): the Bajiu Lite.

"Bajiu Lite is a resource-rich FPGA development board with 20k LE [Logic Elements], 36 multipliers, and up to 5 PLLs [Phase-Locked Loops]," the company explains of its design. "It can easily run at frequencies above 150MHz with very low power consumption. It is small, convenient and dedicated to facilitating rapid FPGA development right out of the box."

It's also not just an FPGA: the board is designed to play host to a custom RISC-V development system dubbed CRiscV, based on the VexRiscv project β€” giving the user, Dragon Li claims, a quick route to implementing a range of workloads from computer vision processing and on-device neural networks to robotics and other real-time control systems.

CRiscV implements the 32-bit RV32I with optional MAFDC instruction set architecture, with pipelining from two to five or more stages, branch prediction, cache for instructions and data, a dedicated multiplication and division unit, and debugging capabilities compatible with OpenOCD.

The Bajiu Lite board itself, meanwhile, offers just under 20k logic elements, 36 multipliers, five PLLs, and 1MB of embedded RAM from an Efinix Trion T20F169 FPGA, one each of MIPI Camera Serial Interface (CSI) and Display Serial Interface (DSI) ports, three LEDs, three buttons, ten general-purpose input/output (GPIO) pins, 128Mb of flash, two UART buses, and JTAG debug support.

"Fun fact: 'Bajiu' means 8 * 9 = 72, which means the mythical Monkey King's thousand variations," Dragon Li explains of the board's moniker. "We chose this name because you can use Bajiu Lite to implement any logic."

More information on the project is available on the Bajiu Lite GitHub repository, where CRiscV and example source code is made available under the reciprocal GNU General Public License 3. Dragon Li is also planning to sell boards through Crowd Supply, but has not yet confirmed a campaign launch date nor pricing.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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