Xilinx invented the FPGA in 1988 and has delivered state-of-the-art FPGA technology ever since. The Kintex-7 represents the pinnacle of that technology. The device family features a perfect balance of FPGA fabric clock rate performance versus power consumption, high-speed I/O, capacity, security, and reliability.
This highly balanced feature set makes the device well suited to serve a broad number of test and high-performance embedded applications, such as custom triggering, hardware-timed test sequencing, medical imaging, big physics control and monitoring ultra-wide bandwidth communications and radar, signal intelligence, protocol-aware digital test, real-time vision algorithms, and software defined radio.
The new Kintex-7 FPGAs are ideally suited for many products that use the LabVIEW reconfigurable I/O (RIO) architecture. This device family has the capacity and performance of previous high-end FPGAs, but at half the power consumption. The impressive reduction in power means devices can pack more than twice the digital signal processing capability per device as the previous generations of FPGA-enabled hardware from NI. With this increase in logic and DSP resources, engineers can implement more complex algorithms with more extensive use of signal processing and real-time analysis, and address the growing I/O data rates and complexity of today’s applications.
In addition to more DSP resources, the DDR3 memory controller has helped NI implement a 10 GB/s (theoretical) interface to temporary storage compared to the previous-generation rates of 3.2 GB/s. Furthermore, the built-in PCI Express controller bandwidth increased from 800 MB/s to 1,600 MB/s, enabling even faster data transfers from the FPGA to the host.
NI platforms and products that capitalize on Kintex-7 advantages include R Series multifunction RIO, PXI Platform, FlexRIO, Digital I/O, CompactRIO platforms , and USRP (Universal Software Radio Peripheral)platforms (Software Defined Radio).