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Zynq-based “Zyntegrated” high-end audiophile system accepts variety of digital-audio sources. Delivers clean, quad-amped sound

by Xilinx Employee ‎07-05-2017 02:31 PM - edited ‎07-05-2017 02:46 PM (32,022 Views)


True audiophiles often know no bounds on the energy they’ll put into their quest for “perfect” sound and Patrick Cazeles, who goes by “patc” online, is no exception. His attraction to high-end audio started in 2002, veered into FPGAs as early as 2004, and his quest to develop a high-end digital-audio playback system has been intertwined with the Zynq SoC since in 2014, not too long after Xilinx started shipping the first Zynq devices. First, Patrick bought an Avnet MicroZed dev board; then he switched to a Zynq-based Parallela board; and now he’s using the low-cost snickerdoodle board from krtkl, which is based on a Zynq Z-7020 SoC. "What an amazing piece of hardware the Zynq is!" he writes.


Here’s a photo of the Patrick’s Zyntegrated Digital Audio system in its current incarnation with an inset photo of his complete audio system:



Zyntegrated Audio System by patc.jpg 



And here’s a block diagram showing all of the Zyntegrated Digital Audio system’s capabilities:




Zyntegrated Audio System block diagram by patc.jpg 




As you can see, the Zynq SoC implements nearly everything in the Zyntegrated Digital Audio System from interfacing to the audio sources (a SATA CD player and an SD card) to controlling the touch-panel LCD user interface, receiving remote IR commands, accepting SPDIF digital-audio input, driving eight class-D audio amps in a quad-amped arrangement (four amps per channel driving separate audio frequency bands, where the Zynq SoC’s programmable logic performs the bandpass and low-pass filtering for all four bands—for each stereo channel), and taking room acoustic measurements from a digitized microphone for digital room correction (again over a SPDIF interface).


Whew! This guy knows how to drive a Zynq SoC!


So, how does it work? Here’s a new, 4-minute video of the Zyntegrated Digital Audio System in action, playing audio from a digitized vinyl-record turntable, a standard audio CD, and WAV files stored on an SD card:





Isn’t that touch-screen interface amazing? The audio sounds nice too, but I suspect there’s considerable compression taking place to pack the quad-amped audio into YouTube’s teeny, tiny sound channel.


Here’s a recent 3-minute video, in which Patrick provides a detailed walkthrough of the current Zyntegrated Digital Audio system’s design:






Interested in even more details? Here’s a detailed, chronological forum message stream detailing the development of this amazing audio system back to the year 2014 on the Parallela Community forum.


About the Author
  • Be sure to join the Xilinx LinkedIn group to get an update for every new Xcell Daily post! ******************** Steve Leibson is the Director of Strategic Marketing and Business Planning at Xilinx. He started as a system design engineer at HP in the early days of desktop computing, then switched to EDA at Cadnetix, and subsequently became a technical editor for EDN Magazine. He's served as Editor in Chief of EDN Magazine, Embedded Developers Journal, and Microprocessor Report. He has extensive experience in computing, microprocessors, microcontrollers, embedded systems design, design IP, EDA, and programmable logic.