People often get caught up with either to get their FPGA boards from suppliers or to design, fabricate and assemble the boards, themselves. If one weighs the pros and cons of these two options, it will make a lot of sense to get the FPGA board from a reputable supplier. The complexity surrounding the design of the FPGA board, for instance, can discourage you from taking a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) approach. Here are some of the reasons why you should consider getting your FPGA board or microcontroller from a supplier like http://www.directics.com/microcontroller/.
#1: FPGA board fabrication and emulation companies are designed for mass production.
Most FPGA board manufacturers don’t like producing FPGA board components on a small scale, and that is why you will have to purchase the board components at higher prices, compared to suppliers who pay lower rates because they will purchase such components in bulk. You should know that FPGA board components manufacturers hate individual board makers, but they enjoy a good relationship with suppliers, therefore it makes more sense to purchase FPGA board at a lower price from suppliers.
#2: Meeting up with schedules is an issue
It can take between 1-4 weeks for suppliers to deliver an FPGA board, whereas, it can take between 8-16 weeks for an individual to complete the same task. If you are building a simple board at home, you may spend 3 weeks to complete the design of hardware, 2 weeks to complete the layout, another 2 weeks to complete the fabrication and then you may spend 1 week to assemble the board. This perhaps can be an ideal schedule for a simple FPGA board when there are no technical glitches or bugs. If there is an error or technical glitch you may have to add several weeks to your schedule, depending on the magnitude of the glitch.
#3: Suppliers can fix technical bugs and glitches quickly
You are likely to make errors or suffer technical glitches when you take a DIY approach to FPGA boards, whereas suppliers do have capable hands who work on completing a single task at a time, this will reduce the chances of bugs on the boards and even if the bugs or glitches happen , they can quickly rectify them without slowing down the process.
In conclusion, a DIY method of designing, fabricating and assembling FPGA boards can be ideal when you have sufficient time and resources to handle the entire process. DIY approach is also ideal because you will have unlimited flexibility to try different designs and requirements. With FPGA prototyping, resources are often limited for individuals taking a DIY approach, this is not the case with suppliers who can save more than enough to get their supplies directly from manufacturers, perform layout, design, fabricate and assemble the boards at a very fast speed. If you can get your supplies cheap directly from the manufacturer, you can ask your friend or family to help you in designing and assembling the FPGA board- this will definitely save more time and the risks of technical glitches are highly reduced.