Ruud's Commodore Site: FPGA Home Email


What is FPGA?

FPGA stands for "Field Programmable Grid Array". I assume you are familiar with EPROMs. In most cases these devices are used to store programs. "In most cases", as there is no objection against using it as a circuit. I once used an EPROM as "4 bit to 7 segments display" converter. Just as demonstration because there CMOS and TTL ICs available that do the job as well.

See the FPGA as en EPROM that can be programmed with complete circuits, including flipflops, counters, registers, multipliers etc. as long it is digital. The pins of an EPROM are dedicated: they are either input or output. In case of the FPGA, in most cases the designer can allocate a specific function to each pin.

Two Dutch examples where FPGAs are used:
- The 1541Ultimate emulates the 1541 drive, including an extra cartridge like the "Final Cartridge III". But having a FPGA as core, plans are discussed to turn it into a SuperCPU.
- The Minimig emulates the Amiga 500. If you are familiar with the motherboard of the A500, just have a look at the picture of the Minimig and no further explanation is needed IMHO.

My (planned) FPGA projects

Projects based on the Godil:
- RB6502: a new 6502 for any 6502 based computer
- RB6510: a new 6510 for the C64
- RB6588: a 6502 for the IBM-XT
- RB8810: Running MS-DOS on the C64
- RBZ80: Running CP/M on the C64

Projects based on the 1541Ultimate:
- SuperCPU
- CP/M 3.0 for the C64
- Running MS-DOS on the C64 (enhanced version)

Having questions or comment? You want more information?
You can email me here.