Yes it's very nice - currently listed as $449. However, just as the FPGA Zedboard lead to the cheaper Microboard, I keep hoping for a "Pitaya Lite".
One ADC, one DAC, slower 100M ethernet [or just USB], dump the micro SD... under $200. Stack 2 together and you have the IO of the original, without the high speed network support, for almost the same price.
Call it the White Pitaya, Dragonfruit, or just Hylocereus.
The Red Pitaya project defines a new product category. The open source software structure combines ease of use and development platform functionality. The intuitive web based applications turn Red Pitaya into a palette of single click accessible software defined instruments. From the other side the source code is available in order to enable new application development. Here different entry levels are supported and the Red Pitaya developer can incrementally apply changes to the pre-existing code and learn through direct experience. The beauty of Red Pitaya is that building blocks can be reused by different applications and there is no need to start developing from scratch each time a new functionality is required. For example, once the signal acquisition and signal generation building blocks are defined is relatively easy to turn a spectrum analyser into a frequency response analysis tool. This saves a lot of development effort and enables the developer to focus on the algorithms, avoiding the distraction of implementation details. Moreover developers can share their applications with the community in order to enrich the set of available applications and building blocks. Red Pitaya as a self standing network attached operating system based instrument does not need additional modules to operate. The 14 bits 125 Msps two channel signal acquisition and generation functionality give to the instrument enough flexibility to cover many applications in the DC to 50 MHz frequency range. Additional analog input and output channels are available and there are other extension possibilities. www.redpitaya.com
I also have used NI kit. I have a MyDAQ, which is intended for student use and was cheap, but it is only 200 KSPS which I find woefully inadequate (Compare Red Pitaya at 50 MSPS). Digilent do make the Analog Discovery which is more comparable to the Red Pitaya and is $99 if you can get the student price. 100 MSPS 14-bit channels and they claim effective 5 MHz bandwidth. But it's not intended for development - just as an instrument - and the Red Pitaya can be reprogrammed to be part of a bigger system I think?
I am interested, how would you envision this being implemented in the easiest way of being used? Is there a. specific method that you would like to see? like I said, Rok and his group are watching the comments for ideas.
It can be used to speed up hardware design, but not in the exact way youu may be mentioning. The core of the device is a reprogrammable FPGA that is supported by ARM A series coprocessors. This allows the device to have an OS as well as reconfigure how it processes the data coming in from both analog and digital sources. With the fact that it has both analog and digital outputs, you could potentially use it as a device simmulator for a part that you currently have yet to design.
Yes, they did upgrade the network connection to gigabit speed and increased the ram from 1 to 4 gig. All the units will ship with these improvements. There was a small delay caused by the upgrade to the gigabit network connection, but they have communicated this well with their backers. There was a small board level redesign in the ethernet connector region. The great thing is that even thought this was a small intermittant problem that most manufacturers would have swept under the rug and shipped hardware while silently making a revision, they choose to stop shipment and redesign. I can think of more than a few companies lately that have been shipping defective hardware hoping it would either go un noticed or that there would be some goodwill because they shipped on time. I commend them for the path they took.
I have used some of the NI equipment, and can say that they do have great support, but most of their hardware is very expensive. For. a simple 4 bridge strain gauge module it was on the order of 1000 dollars, plus you still needed the main board to plug the module into. I am sure that they have faster analog input devices, but I am sure that they would be more costly without any outputs.
The Red Pitaya early bird price was $299 each and the subsequent price was $359 each (with higher prices for additional features). As of today they have 5x the original target in funding. If they reach strecth objective funding levels then all the units ship with improved specifications.