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Newbie justinc
Registered: ‎06-09-2018

Spartan 3AN need some help...

Hi there,

I m new arround here and also in cpu stuff...

i have a piece of “dead electronic” oscilloscope made in china which i think it has some cpu problems... i m sure the problem is related to poor soldering of the ic, since the ocilloscope was dropped and stopped working after a few days...

the manufacturer company has erased the chip surface and it was a little tricky to find out what cpu they used, but google is our best friend :)

i will attach a footprint with the GNd points on the motherboard after indesoldered the cpu. They look 98% identical with the one from spartan 3an. It has 3 extra pins tied to gnd but they correspond to I/o ports and i assume they are configured so.

I am asking for your opinion, i must be sure i’m not wrong with my identification...

The other problem i am trying to find out, if this cpu is “toasted” and i need a new one, do i have to flash it? Or it can be simply swapped? 




ps: new from old stock of this motherboard is $400. A new oscilloscope from old stock on ebay is $370-$420. Item discontinued by factory. No diagrams available...


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2 Replies
Registered: ‎01-23-2009

Re: Spartan 3AN need some help...

If this is a Spartan 3AN, then you should just forget it...


First, this ground pattern is probably not all that uncommon for a package of this type.


Second, if it is a Spartan-3AN, then there are probably several devices in that family that share the same package (and you won't be able to tell which one).


But even if you could - the Spartan-3AN (and most Xilinx devices) are FPGAs (Field Programmable Gate Arrays). These are not processors (CPUs), but chips that implement hardware. The function they perform is completely determined by how they were programmed, and the programming file is stored in non-volatile (flash) memory. The Spartan-3AN is the only (Xilinx) family where the flash is internal to the package (and not in an external flash device). As a result, you would need to get the flash programming file (.mcs) for the device, which is only available from the manufacturer. I don't think it is even possible to read (and duplicate) the bitstream from a "working" one (it may depend on what security measures the original manufacturer set when programming the device originally). You would also need a Xilinx programmer (a parallel or USB platform cable) to do the programming...


Likely this thing is dead...



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Newbie justinc
Registered: ‎06-09-2018

Re: Spartan 3AN need some help...

Well :( that is are very sad news :(

i will try and resolder the original chip... if it works fine otherwise, trash :(((

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