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How Can I Configure the SPI Timing Parameters for Both SPI Master and SPI Slave Modes?

Question from the Customer:

I have been using the Aardvark I2C/SPI Host Adapter as an SPI Master for several projects. It's worked very well for me, but I'm having some challenges with my current project. I basically need to work at faster SPI speeds to work with the current SPI timing parameters. Is there a way to set the timing parameters on the Aardvark adapter, or is there another SPI adapter that would work better? The table below lists the timing parameters I will be working with:

Custom SPI Timing Parameters
Response from Technical Support:

Thanks for your question! For higher speeds and to configure the SPI timing parameters in both master and slave modes, we recommend the Promira Serial Platform, which is supported with the SPI Active - Level 1 and Level 2 Applications. The Cheetah SPI Host Adapter would meet your SPI master speed requirements as well, as its timing parameters can be configured.  However, the Cheetah adapter only supports the SPI master mode.

The figures below include the SPI timing diagrams for the Promira platform.


Promira Serial Platform supports SPI slave/master  Promira SPI Master/Slave WaveformFigure 2: Promira SPI Master/Slave Waveform
Figure 1: Promira Serial Platform Promira Master/Slave Byte TimingFigure 3: SPI Master/Slave Byte Timing

The tables below show the SPI master and SPI slave timing parameters, and indicate which parameters can be configured. For information about configuring the parameters, please refer to section 7.2.1 of the Promira Serial Platform User Manual.


Table 2: SPI Master Timing ParametersPromira SPI Master Timing Parameters


Table 3: SPI Slave Timing ParametersPromira SPI Slave Timing Parameters


The Promira platform provides a number of advantages over the Aardvark and Cheetah adapters, including:

  • Integrated level shifting from 0.9-3.3V (5V tolerant)
  • High-speed USB connectivity - provides high performance and convenience for benchtop programming, testing, and emulation
  • Ethernet connectivity - convenient for benchtop work, and enables remote control for your automation needs over long distances
  • More target power - provides a total of 200 mA to target devices
  • Scalability - SPI and I2C Active applications allow you to upgrade your Promira platform as needed; new applications will be released on a ongoing basis

A summary of the SPI Active application features are listed below, which can be quickly and easily downloaded to the Promira platform.

The SPI Active - Level 1 Application supports:

  • Master at speeds up to 12.5 MHz
  • Slave at speeds up to 8 MHz
  • Single slave response of up to 32 bytes
  • Program EEPROM, Flash, or other SPI memory
  • Use up to 2 GPIOs
  • Up to 3 Slave Selects: configurable, shared with GPIO
  • Software configurable Slave Select (SS) polarity in master mode

The SPI Active - Level 2 Application  supports:

  • Master at speeds up to 40 MHz
  • Slave at speeds up to 20 MHz
  • 1 default response plus 8 unique slave responses of up to 256 bytes/response
  • Single slave response of up to 256 bytes
  • Program EEPROM, Flash, or other SPI memory - including Dual I/O programming
  • Use up to 12 GPIOs
  • Up to 3 Slave Selects, configurable, shared with GPIO
  • Software configurable Slave Select (SS) polarity in master mode

Note - the Level 1 application must be installed before installing the Level 2 application.

Additional resources that you may find helpful include the following:

We hope this answers your question. If you have other questions about our host adapters or other Total Phase products, feel free to email us at sales@totalphase.com, or if you already own one of our devices and have a technical question, please submit a request for technical support.

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