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'[EE] FPGAs that plug directly into the motherboard'
2012\04\09@204158 by V G

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www.reddit.com/r/ECE/comments/s1nai/anyone_know_of_fpgas_that_plug_directly_into_the/

http://www.drccomputer.com/pdfs/DRC_Accelium_Coprocessors.pdf (pdf)

Wow. I didn't even know that these existed. What exactly are they? What are
they used for? What can one do with them?

Anyone else know other interesting stuff like this?

Update: added tag

2012\04\10@005918 by RussellMc

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> www.reddit.com/r/ECE/comments/s1nai/anyone_know_of_fpgas_that_plug_directly_into_the/
> http://www.drccomputer.com/pdfs/DRC_Accelium_Coprocessors.pdf (pdf)

Of interest (to me at least) is that the data  transfer rate
capabilities of these devices so far exceeds the current requirements
of the vast majority of still-image applications that Moore's law is
liable to make such capabilities affordable before they become too
slow. ie we can look forward (one can hope) to affordable photo data
handling rates that exceed the capability of the top camera sensors
when they become so ludicrously capable that sensor resolutions exceed
the capability of "reality" to provide the image data.  Good dream any
way :-). A RAW files occupies around 1 to 3 megabytes per megapixel.
so when/if we get to 300 Mp sensors (!) you need 1 GB/s transfer rates
to handle 1 RAW-image/second.

The Accelium processor would thus handle data externally at 15 images
second at 1 GB/image and around 300 x 1 GB images per second
internally.
A 300 mP image is about 21,000 x 14000 pixels on will allow a print of
about 6 foot x 4 foot at 300 dpi.

That was based on an upper size RAW file - you cou;d probably produce
a 12 foot x 8 foot image from an extremely high quality JPEG at 300
dpi with that sort of image size.
ie about big enough to shoot billboard sized images at 300 dpi.

For an A4 source image the resolution is about 15 micrometres per
pixel - ie this is beyond what wedding photographers are going to
"need" for portraits anytime soon.



            Russel

2012\04\10@062754 by V G

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On Tue, Apr 10, 2012 at 12:58 AM, RussellMc <spam_OUTapptechnzTakeThisOuTspamgmail.com> wrote:

{Quote hidden}

To summarize: this is awesome for photo processing.

Why can't we just use a PCI express card with an FPGA on it to do the same
thing?

I'm more interested in the fact that it plugs into the CPU socket and I
don't know why they would do that. What can we do with it

2012\04\10@102138 by Bob Ammerman

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> Why can't we just use a PCI express card with an FPGA on it to do the same
> thing?

Because it doesn't have anywhere near the bandwidth. Although really high bandwidth with this baby is only possible to the RAM installed directly on the module, not to system memory.

This thing also has very high bandwidth to the system processor.

> I'm more interested in the fact that it plugs into the CPU socket and I
> don't know why they would do that. What can we do with it?

It plugs into *a* CPU socket on a multi-CPU motherboard. It works in conjunction with the standard Opteron.

Anything that requires moderately large amounts of very fast memory with the processing power (think parallel) of a very large/fast FPGA.

Maybe cracking encryption? Playing a mean game of chess? Crunching protein folding problems?

Probably should be on ITAR :-) Certainly more so than the Chronos :-)

-- Bob Ammerman
RAm System

2012\04\11@080319 by M.L.
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On Tue, Apr 10, 2012 at 10:21 AM, Bob Ammerman <.....picramKILLspamspam@spam@roadrunner.com> wrote:

> Anything that requires moderately large amounts of very fast memory with the
> processing power (think parallel) of a very large/fast FPGA.
>
> Maybe cracking encryption? Playing a mean game of chess? Crunching protein
> folding problems?
>
> Probably should be on ITAR :-) Certainly more so than the Chronos :-)
>

This would be awesome to play with. OTOH you can probably do equally
amazing things with high-end CUDA boards. For less of a premium than
specialized motherboards.

-- Martin K

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