MATRIXSYNTH: SoC+FPGA Synthesizer

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

SoC+FPGA Synthesizer


video upload by Laura Regan

"This is a demonstration of my final degree project for my Bachelor's Degree in Electronic Systems Engineering. For my project I designed a digital music synthesizer on a SoC+FPGA, the Zynq 7020, on a Zedboard development board. All audio synthesis and digital signal processing is performed in real time on custom hardware modules designed in VHDL using Xilinx Vivado.

The synthesizer includes the following modules:
- Numerically Controlled Oscillator
- ADSR envelope generator
- Numerically Controlled Amplifier
- Numerically Controlled Filter
- Low Frequency Oscillator
- Mixer

The synthesizer has a polyphony of 128 voices. The filter is a digital implementation of the famous Moog Ladder filter. Control of the synthesizer's modules is managed by the on-chip ARM processor. The processor also receives commands from the synthesizer's interfaces. A virtual interface was designed in Qt and a physical interface was designed using the on-chip XADC for reading the values of the interfaces dials. A MIDI interface PCB was designed to allow MIDI equipment such as keyboards to be connected to the synthesizer.

In the video the effects of multiple modules are demonstrated, the virtual interface was used to control the synthesizer and Digilent's WaveForms oscilloscope was used to view the synthesizer's output."

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