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TI TMS320C6748 DSP Dev Kit (LCDK)
Note from EEWeb: Congratulations to Robert Lowery! He is our giveaway winner! Restrictions: Must be in the US and over the age of 18.
New DSP Dev Kit
In May of 2012, TI introduced this development kit to target the Biometric Analytics arena. However, it appears to wear many hats. We’ll take a look at a couple of those hats and hopefully provide you with enough information for you, the developer, to decide whether or not it works for your project. The TI TMS320C6748 dev kit comes ready with at least two demos, the FingerPrint and FaceDetect demos. I’ll start with the FingerPrint demo.
Not a sales pitch, but TI has this dev kit on sale for $156.00, normally $195.00. Get one while they last!
What’s in the box
- A cute Quick Start Guide. Fig.1
- The L138/C6748 development Kit PCB, just over 3” square. Fig.2
- A 4GB SD card with almost all the software, SDK, to start developing right away. Actually, there is a microSD card inside an SD adapter. This seems to be the standard these days. Fig.3
- Mini-USB cable. Fig.4
- Power supply, cord and a variety of plug attachments. Fig.5
I downloaded Tera Term and found it incredibly easy. Choose what you want and install it before plugging in the dev board.
If you follow the Quick Start Guide to the letter, you should have it up and running in less than 10 minutes.
Set Up Serial Communications
- As per the guide, I plugged in the demo board into my laptop with the mini-USB cable.
- Then startup Tera Term.
- Select the serial port.
- Change port settings, baud rate from 9600 to 115200.
- At this point, you should have a blank command window open.
- Plug in the 5VDC walwart supply into the PCB 5vdc connector, J1.
- If the serial port baud rates match, the previously blank tera term command window will now display a BIOS program embedded in the TMS320C6748 with two possible programs to run. FingerPrint and FaceDetect. For FaceDetect, you will need a monitor to connect to the VGA (J8) port. A framegrabber instead of separate monitor is another option, an expensive one.
The FingerPrint Demo
- Bios menu.
- Enter a number 1, for the FingerPrint demo.
- This demo has 4 operations: Enroll, Identify, Delete, and Quit.
- To start, select (E) to enroll. You’ll then be asked for a name and a number to assign to the finger to be scanned. The program will ask you to swipe your finger over the finger print sensor, labeled U26, 4 times. After swiping your finger 4 times during enrolling, the program will indicate it is storing the finger number of the user into “template 0 in database.”
- The cursor will then return to the menu options available.
- Select “I” to Identify finger swipe. Swiping my finger over the sensor one more time, the TMS320C6748 verifies the enrollee by indicating the finger number assigned to that enrollee. The first time I swiped my finger it worked! The second and following swipes I did at different angles and nothing happened. The sensor appears to be sensitive to the direction of the swipe. If you swipe in one direction all 4 times, then you swipe at a different angle or direction to verify it will fail. You can see this in figure 15.
The FaceDetect Demo
- To get back to the BIOS menu, hit the “Reset” button labeled S1 on the demo board. It will be at the Ethernet port end of the PCB.
- Back at the BIOS menu, enter number 2 for the FaceDetect demo.
- FaceDetect does not have any additional operations, what should display will be text indicating the FaceDetect Demo is running.
- Here, the C6748 takes over and outputs to J8 the VGA output connector to the attached monitor. The simple program in the C6748 only tracks a face with a blue outline. There isn’t a program similar to the FingerPrint demo for FaceDetect that will allow you to enroll. But, that is left up to the engineer to develop using the software stored on the SD card included in the development kit.
- Low cost, especially now. See second paragraph, above, about the promotion going on in August.
- Out of the box and running the FingerPrint demo in less then 10 minutes!
- Multitude of interfaces to work with.
- Plenty of documentation and examples to begin developing a product with.
- Downloading a terminal emulator.
- No CMOS sensor to play with! This dev kit will accept a Leopard Imager sensor. Which can be purchased at Mousers== , one of several vendors selling Leopard products.
- Missing the kitchen sink!
Additional information on the TMS320C6748 DSP Development Kit
The development board consists of the following interfaces:
- One mini-USB Serial Port
- One mini-USB 2.0 OTG Port
- One USB 1.1 Host Port
- One Fast Ethernet Port (10/100 Mbps) with status leds. Okay, not gigabit speeds but works.
- One SATA Port. Sweet!
- One VGA, 15 pin DSub, Port
- One LCD Port, Beagleboard XM connectors
- One Composite Video Input Port, yellow RCA jack.
- One Leopard Imaging Camera Sensor input 36-pin zip connector
- 3 Audio ports: 1-Line In, 1-Line out and 1-Mic in
- One Authentic fingerprint sensor
- 14-pin JTAG header
ConclusionI was able to get this kit up and running in a short time. I feel this development kit has more to it than at first glance. It has lots of potential as a development platform than the $195.00 price tag would lead you to believe.
TI claims that with the “C6748 StarterWare software package and code generation tools, designers can begin writing code in less than one hour with the latest tool chain GCC 4.5 and the latest TI DSP software components (SYS/BIOS and SysLink).” I believe this is very possible and I may try that for another blog.
- TI’s product brochure
- TMS320C6748 DSP Development Kit (LCDK) website.
- TI youtube video covering the fingerprint demo.