Embedded vision is one of the major themes we’re seeing in industry right now, and this is especially applicable to FPGA design as FPGAs are particularly well suited to processing large amounts of data quickly and efficiently. Accordingly, Digilent is doing more and more in the embedded vision space.
We’ve recently released an updated version of our popular Zybo Z7 SoC development board that trades the VGA port for dedicated HDMI in and out plus adds a MIPI CSI-2 connector. Soon to be known as a Pcam connector, this interface is for direct attachment of a Rasperry Pi compatible camera. In addition to this (spoiler alert), we will be releasing our first Pcam product, the Pcam 5C, next week, which is a camera add-on module using the Pcam/MIPI CSI-2 interface.
To enable our customers to advance with us in the embedded vision space, we are providing ample software support and educational materials alongside the hardware. We recently taught a workshop in Japan and were pleased to receive excellent reviews on the material. We are now making the material available to anyone who would like to learn about video processing using a Zynq SoC and what some of the advantages are in using FPGA fabric alongside a processor. The tutorial starts with some theoretical background including a brief lesson in FPGA architecture and parallelism, then moves through familiarizing users with the Vivado HLS tool, designing a video pipeline, and culminating in the implementation of an edge detection application.
A great thing in the advancement in FPGA design tools is the ability to make use of two different programming models, RTL design and high level synthesis in C/C++. Therefore, you do not need to be an expert in FPGAs and hardware definition language (HDL) to successfully implement this workshop. Although an understanding of the underlying hardware architecture is necessary to write highly efficient programs, the Vivado HLS tool makes this workshop accessible to those more familiar with traditional software implementation using C/C++.
To access the full workshop, go to the Zybo Z7 resource center and scroll to the bottom. On this page, you will also find other useful resources such as tutorials on getting started with Vivado and the Vivado IP integrator, as well as HDMI and VGA demos plus a lot more. Make sure to actively check back for more content from Digilent to get you going on your embedded vision applications as additional applications are around the corner.
Questions or comments? Post in the comment section below or visit the Digilent Forum!