Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Time to talk about what other machines can run on the Next hardware!
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mitja_i
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Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby mitja_i » Mon Feb 24, 2020 1:26 pm

https://www.facebook.com/groups/203350050750409/
This group's purpose is to discuss 3rd party UNOFFICIAL cores for the ZX Spectrum Next. All content and cores posted herein ARE NOT in any way associated with SpecNext Ltd, will not be supported by SpecNext Ltd and are not endorsed in any way by SpecNext Ltd. Official core information for ZX Spectrum Next will always be found in the main group and there will always be support for these cores there. All content posted herein is the property of its respective author.
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Original 48K (issue 4b) with IF1, two microdrives and vDrive.
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ZX Spectrum Next glossary

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SpectralEnergy
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Re: Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby SpectralEnergy » Sat May 23, 2020 5:06 pm

The group is private, which means people not on FaceBook can't access it.

Some people aren't on FaceBook.

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mitja_i
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Re: Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby mitja_i » Sat May 23, 2020 6:24 pm

Yes.
You can also find info on https://www.patreon.com/vtrucco/
Backer 423 @ 37% funded, 10th hour. Base version. Shipping nr. 533. Received February 19, 2020.
Backer 1027 @ 141% funded, 10th minute.

Original 48K (issue 4b) with IF1, two microdrives and vDrive.
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ZX Spectrum Next glossary

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SpectralEnergy
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Re: Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby SpectralEnergy » Sun May 24, 2020 5:47 am

Yes, it's really cool that Victor is working on a QL core. I wasn't sure that the next's Spartan SLX16 FPGA would have enough space to hold a 68008, which is a bigger CPU than the Z80 in the Spectrum, but apparently it can. Yay!

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Re: Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby sol_hsa » Sun May 24, 2020 12:03 pm

SpectralEnergy wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 5:47 am
Yes, it's really cool that Victor is working on a QL core. I wasn't sure that the next's Spartan SLX16 FPGA would have enough space to hold a 68008, which is a bigger CPU than the Z80 in the Spectrum, but apparently it can. Yay!
Next does contain much more than just the z80 though =)

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Re: Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby Sweeney » Mon Aug 31, 2020 11:47 am

sol_hsa wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 12:03 pm
SpectralEnergy wrote:
Sun May 24, 2020 5:47 am
Yes, it's really cool that Victor is working on a QL core. I wasn't sure that the next's Spartan SLX16 FPGA would have enough space to hold a 68008, which is a bigger CPU than the Z80 in the Spectrum, but apparently it can. Yay!
Next does contain much more than just the z80 though =)
You’d be surprised at how small a 16 bit CPU core is. A full 68K core needs about 3K LE. The NEXT has about 16K LE, and the QL doesn’t have much in the way of support logic, so there should be plenty of space for one in a NEXT.

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Re: Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby sol_hsa » Mon Aug 31, 2020 11:54 am

Sweeney wrote:
Mon Aug 31, 2020 11:47 am
You’d be surprised at how small a 16 bit CPU core is. A full 68K core needs about 3K LE. The NEXT has about 16K LE, and the QL doesn’t have much in the way of support logic, so there should be plenty of space for one in a NEXT.
I wouldn't be surprised if the FPGA contained some fixed cells (like adders) which weren't fully used with the next, too.

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Re: Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby Sweeney » Mon Aug 31, 2020 12:33 pm

sol_hsa wrote:
Mon Aug 31, 2020 11:54 am
I wouldn't be surprised if the FPGA contained some fixed cells (like adders) which weren't fully used with the next, too.
There are 32 DSP blocks on the NEXT FPGA (designed to do fast 18 x 18 bit multiply, add and accumulate operations), plus BRAM (fast on-chip RAM blocks) and even an SDRAM memory controller, but for the likes of CPU it’s unlikely that the design will touch them as they tend to be manufacture specific and visible as VHDL/Verilog components that are linked in rather than chosen by the compiler if appropriate.

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Re: Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby sol_hsa » Mon Aug 31, 2020 12:54 pm

Sweeney wrote:
Mon Aug 31, 2020 12:33 pm
sol_hsa wrote:
Mon Aug 31, 2020 11:54 am
I wouldn't be surprised if the FPGA contained some fixed cells (like adders) which weren't fully used with the next, too.
There are 32 DSP blocks on the NEXT FPGA (designed to do fast 18 x 18 bit multiply, add and accumulate operations), plus BRAM (fast on-chip RAM blocks) and even an SDRAM memory controller, but for the likes of CPU it’s unlikely that the design will touch them as they tend to be manufacture specific and visible as VHDL/Verilog components that are linked in rather than chosen by the compiler if appropriate.
Ah, I assumed they would be used if deemed appropriate by the compiler, and underused in next's case due to doing 8 bit operations only.

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Re: Spectrum Next Unofficial FPGA Cores on Facebook

Postby Sweeney » Mon Aug 31, 2020 1:31 pm

sol_hsa wrote:
Mon Aug 31, 2020 12:54 pm
Ah, I assumed they would be used if deemed appropriate by the compiler, and underused in next's case due to doing 8 bit operations only.
Add/subtract logic is pretty fundamental to FPGA design, so that carry in, carry out and block chaining are part of the standard fabric. Roughly half of the logic slices on the Spartan 6 fabric have carry in/out, and half of those add shift register and distributed RAM capabilities as well (SLICEL and SLICEM types according to the Xilinx docs), so unless you are working with particularly wide data then there’s no need.


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