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J&W

PmodRF2 - IEEE 802.15 RF Transceiver Use with Basys2 board

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Hi,

 

We want to build wireless transceivers with our fpga's (Basys2 boards). we want to sent and receive text between 2 fpga's.

we are thinking about to use the PmodRF2 - IEEE 802.15 RF Transceiver from digilent, but they say it's designed for microchip controllers (PIC).

Is it possible to use this one, or do you guys know any other devices that we can use with the basys2 board.

 

http://www.digilentinc.com/Products/Detail.cfm?NavPath=2,401,927&Prod=PMOD-RF2

(link to the transceiver)

 

J&W

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We have a few demo projects using the Basys2 in RF communications that we haven't gotten had time to document yet. 

Although it's different, there are a lot of similiarities that you may be able to use. 

 

Take a look at the attached Zip File. 

The demo project is using the Pmod RF1 to communicate keyboard presses to another Basys2 that is controlling a speaker. 

 

Posted ImagePmodRF1 Basys demo project by digilentinc, on Flickr

 

Here is a link to get the files for the project: https://www.dropbox.com/s/83winp3zyio7or7/Basys2AudioRfPmodHID.zip?dl=0 

 

Hope that helps!

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Hi J&W,
 
From my understanding, the short answer is yes, you will be able to use the PmodRF2 with the Basys2 board to send and receive text. This is because, from a "high-level" point of view, the Pmod will communicate with the host board (the FPGA in this case) using high and low voltage signals.
 
The reason the reference manual indicates that the PmodRF2 should be used with microcontrollers is because the associated software stack (I think) handles the all of the checking for radio signals, controlling power consumption, and dealing with all of the addresses on the chip.
 
That being said, it is possible to create code for the Basys2 that essentially mimics SPI (at least that is my understanding of how FPGA coding works) since the FPGA is just talking directly with the Pmod, not directly the second Basys2. You could then have the FPGA transmit values that write (via high and low voltage signals) your data to the appropriate transmit register in the MRF24J40 chip present on the Pmod and also read data from the receive register that is in the chip. 
 
Having never really dealt with wireless communication of any kind, I will be honest in saying that this sounds like a lot of work in getting the communication up and running. But from what I understand, this is the case for any kind of wireless communication; radio frequency, bluetooth, WiFi or otherwise. 
 
So, as the Pmod Guy, the answer to your question is yes, it is possible to use the PmodRF2 with your Basys2 boards to send messages to its twin board. Please let me know if you have any more questions, and I will do my best to find out.
 
Thanks,
James

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