There's little point in trying to force a product or idea onto the market. Like nature itself, the surefire way to guarantee success is to focus your efforts on responding to the factors that dictate what is required of your latest design.
Perhaps with that in mind, Evo is a fitting name for the latest feature-filled Feather form factor, FPGA development board from Alorium Tech.
It follows in footsteps familiar to us all, with FPGAs featuring on the Feathers well all know and love, such as the OrangeCrab, from our front page favorite Greg Davill, or the iCE40-Feather designed by Josh Johnson.
Where the Evo bucks the trend, however, is with the selection of a seldom seen silicon vendor, at least within the hobbyist scene; Altera, or as they are rather now known, Intel, and their MAX10 FPGA family.
There's very little to go on as far as details for this board go at the moment, but we can tease out a few tidbits that leave us tantalized!
While we're about as likely to see this part picked up by Symbiflow as we are are any of the Xilinx offerings, the MAX10 offers some interesting peripherals, if you can live with IP constraints.
Integrated analog blocks with ADCs and temperature sensor provide lower latency and reduced board space with more flexible sample-sequencing.
As the first non-volatile FPGA with DSP, MAX 10 FPGAs are ideal for high-performance, high-precision applications using integrated 18x18 multipliers.
Single-core voltage support
Single supply offering required for power-up sequence management.
Despite also featuring the Nios® II soft-core embedded processor within the MAX10 part itself, Alorium have also thrown into the ring a physically separate co-processor, one that is quite capable in its own right, having powered many a Feather on its own — the Microchip SAM D51.
With a full 10-bit wide parallel bus implemented between the two parts, in addition to a ports worth of pins and I2C (a handy communication and configuration channel, no doubt), you can be sure that your applications won't be bottlenecked by bandwidth between the boards processing elements.
If you have the time, be sure to check out the full, in-depth description of how the board architecture is set up, by taking a look at the video walk-through from Jason, over at Alorium Technology, below.
Details are scarce at the moment, with little more than we already know, it's a matter of waiting it out until the folks at Alorium have finalized their FPGA Feather, and release it for sale.
If you can't wait to meet the MAX10 based members of their FPGA family, there's a range of other form-factor boards already for sale over on their website — but I think it'd be worth waiting for the MAX10/D51 duo — it's a pair that are guaranteed to perform!