“Lark” development board based on Altera's Cyclone V SoC

November 11, 2014 // By Graham Prophet
Distributor Farnell element14 has announced the Lark Board, a high-performance development board based on Altera's Cyclone V SoC and intended for the development of high-volume applications including automotive, medical equipment, video surveillance and industrial control.

The Lark Board features a 5CSXFC6D6 SoC FPGA, the largest SoC device in the Cyclone V SX family. This device integrates a FPGA and ARM-based dual-core Hard Processor System (HPS) that operates at speeds of up to 800 MHz and is coupled together through an AXI high-speed interconnect backbone to the FPGA fabric. A single monolithic device combines the performance and power savings of hard intellectual property with the flexibility of programmable logic.

The board provides 1 GB DDR3 SDRAM to each of the HPS and FPGA as well as 4 GB eMMC Flash and a Transflash card slot for mass storage. It features several standard I/O interfaces including PCI Express, Gigabit Ethernet, USB2.0 Host ports, UART, JTAG, and 3G SDI. The combination of HDMI, VGA and LCD screen support gives the Lark Board a competitive advantage; moreover, it supports VGA display up to 1920 x 1080 and 1080 HDMI digital output making it suitable for video intensive applications. It also features a 30-pin digital camera connector ideal for surveillance type applications.

A webinar on 2nd December will give a tour of the board's features; “Developing Advanced Embedded Systems with Altera Cyclone V SoC and element14 Lark board” - Todd Koelling from Altera and Craig Stiegman from element14 will discuss how its flexible architecture allows multiple configuration options and customisable hardware designs to be implemented. Register at; www.element14.com/community/events/4223

The Lark Board also integrates a 12-bit high-speed and a dual-channel 3.3 GHz RF/IF differential amplifier alongside a 12-bit 105 Msample/sec high-accuracy ADC to enable analogue signal amplification, filtering and sampling. The Lark Board uses an Altera Enpirion power solution to provide a stable and efficient output for all the Cyclone V SoC's power rails.

A USB Blaster II has been integrated to increase the efficiency of FPGA debugging. The onboard USB Blaster supports Quartus II and ARM DS-5 development environments. The Lark Board comes pre-installed with Yocto, an embedded distribution of