Forget about the ML505. The ML605 just made it obsolete. Not because of the Virtex-6 or the 8-lane PCIe or the DDR3… You need the ML605 because it has two FMC expansion connectors, one high-pin count and one low-pin count. You could do practically anything with this board. Why do I like it? Because for once we have a board that lets you interface real data at a high throughput to a beast of an FPGA.

Here are some of the FMCs you might want to plug into this board:

That’s the potential of the FMC standard that I tried to get across in a previous post FMC is a game-changer. With FMC, the FPGA/processing platform can be developed independently from the IO card which spreads the risk for the hardware developer and gives more choice and flexibility to the FPGA designer.

But of course that’s not the only thing that’s great about the ML605, checkout all the features as described on the Xilinx ML605 page:

  • FPGA: XC6VLX240T-1FFG1156
  • Configuration
    • Onboard configuration circuitry (USB to JTAG)
    • 16MB Platform Flash XL
    • 32MB Parallel (BPI) Flash
    • System ACE CF with 2GB Compact FLASH (CF) Card
  • Communications and Networking
    • 10/100/1000 Tri-Speed Ethernet (GMII, RGMII, SGMII, MII)
    • SFP transceiver connector
    • GTX port (TX, RX) with four SMA connectors
    • USB To UART Bridge
    • USB Host Port and USB Peripheral Port
    • PCI Express x8 Edge Connector (card supports up to x4 Gen2 with Virtex-6 LX240T-1 silicon)
  • Memory
    • DDR3 SO-DIMM (512 MB)
    • BPI Linear Flash (32 MB) (Also available for configuration)
    • IIC EEPROM (8 Kb)
  • Clocking
    • 200 MHz Oscillator (Differential)
    • 66 MHz Socketed Oscillator (Single-Ended)
    • SMA Connectors for external clock (Differential)
    • GTX Reference Clock port with 2 SMA connectors
  • Input/Output and Expansion Ports
    • 16×2 LCD character display
    • DVI Output
    • System Monitor
    • User Push buttons (5), DIP switches (3), LEDs (13)
    • User GPIO with two SMA connectors
    • Two FMC Expansion Ports
      • High Pin Count (HPC)
        • Eight GTX Transceivers
        • 160 SelectIOs
      • Low Pin Count (LPC)
        • One GTX Transceiver
        • 68 SelectIOs
  • Power
    • 12V wall adapter or ATX
    • Voltage and Current measurement capability of 2.5V, 1.5V, and 1.2V, 1.0V supplies

If you have an ML605, leave a comment and let us know what interesting things you’re doing with it.


Jeff is passionate about FPGAs, SoCs and high-performance computing, and has been writing the FPGA Developer blog since 2008. As the owner of Opsero, he leads a small team of FPGA all-stars providing start-ups and tech companies with FPGA design capability that they can call on when needed.

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