External IO and Metastability

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Contributors: Alchitry, Ell C
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Introduction

If you’ve gone through the first couple of Alchitry tutorials, you may have been wondering how the inputs and outputs of the top-level module know where to connect on the board. What about the LED name tells the tools what pin on the FPGA to use? Well wonder no more! In this tutorial I’m going to explain the basics of constraint files and dive into some of the dangers of using external signals in your designs.

Alchitry Cu FPGA Development Board (Lattice iCE40 HX)

Alchitry Cu FPGA Development Board (Lattice iCE40 HX)

DEV-16526
$49.95
3
Alchitry Au FPGA Development Board (Xilinx Artix 7)

Alchitry Au FPGA Development Board (Xilinx Artix 7)

DEV-16527
$99.95
5
Alchitry Au+ FPGA Development Board (Xilinx Artix 7)

Alchitry Au+ FPGA Development Board (Xilinx Artix 7)

DEV-17514
$298.95
1

Required Materials

This tutorial is primarily conceptual, but if you'd like to follow along, you'll need the following materials.

Suggested Reading

If you aren’t familiar with the following concepts, we recommend checking out these tutorials before continuing.

Programming an FPGA

Come look at the basics of working with Field Programmable Gate Arrays.

How Does an FPGA Work?

The What, How, Why, and When of Field Programmable Gate Arrays, aka FPGAs

First FPGA Project - Getting Fancy with PWM

An initial project using Alchitry's onboard FPGA to manipulate PWM