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Getting Started with XMOS’ Starter Kit

January 2, 2014 on 12:43 am | In Technology | No Comments

So, last week, I received the Xmos StarterKit I won during their recent StarterKit giveaway. Seeing the lack of simple tutorials that explain things and help get people started, I decided to take things into my own hands. I gathered every document I could find, started reading them, and took notes of the tidbits I found important and/or useful.

Hopefully, this will be the first post in a series of introductory posts about the XMOS StarterKit. So, stay tuned 🙂

So, What are XMOS’ XCore processors?

  • Eight-Core Multicore Microcontroller with Advanced Multi-Core RISC Architecture
    • 500 MIPS shared between up to 8 real-time logical cores
  • Each logical core has:
    • Guaranteed throughput of between 1/4 and 1/8 of tile MIPS
    • 16x32bit dedicated registers
  • 159 high-density 16/32-bit instructions
    • All have single clock-cycle execution (except for divide)
    • 32×32!64-bit MAC instructions for DSP, arithmetic and user-definable cryptographic functions
  • Programmable I/O:
    • Up to 64 General-purpose I/O pins, configurable as input or output (per XCore tile, depending on package)
    • 2 xCONNECT links
    • Port sampling rates of up to 60 MHz with respect to an external clock
    • 32 channel ends for communication with other cores, on or off-chip
  • Memory:
    • Up to 128KB internal single-cycle SRAM for code and data storage
    • 8KB internal OTP (One Time Programmable) for application boot code
  • Hardware resources
    • 6 clock blocks
    • 10 timers
    • 4 locks
  • JTAG Module for On-Chip Debug
  • 600mW at 500 MHz (typical)

There are a few other details like temp grade and the like, which I am omitting here for the sake of keeping things brief and simple. At the time of this writing, there is still no datasheet for the XCore chip used in the StarterKit. The info I listed above is a mixture of info from the datasheets of the XS1-U16A-128-FB217 and XS1-U8A-64-FB96

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