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Machdyne FPGA USB dongle is equipped with 12-pin PMOD

Apr 19, 2023 — by Giorgio Mendoza 765 views

The Kolibri is a USB dongle that integrates the Lattice iCE40 FPGA, a RP2040 microcontroller and a PMOD connector for I/O expansion. The compact device is also compatible with the Open Source Project IceStorm.

The Kolibri features another Lattice low-power FPGA from the iCE40 family as most Machdyne devices. 


  • ICE40HX4K – 7680 LUTs, 2 PLLs; 1MB SPI NOR Flash (for gateware); 32MB PSRAM
  • RP2040 – Dual 32-bit ARM Cortex M0+; 1MB QSPI NOR Flash (for firmware); 8 GPIOs routed to FPGA

Kolibri top and bottom view
(click image to enlarge)

The product page mentions that the “RP2040 MCU allows the FPGA SRAM and onboard flash to be programmed over the USB connection using ldprog. Additionally, the USB connection also acts as a USB-UART bridge to the FPGA.”


The Kolibri GitHub repository includes schematics, documentation, example gateware and a 3D-printable case model. The RP2040 firmware (Müsli based) initializes the system and configures the system clock to 48MHz by default. 


Kolibri also supports Zucker which is “an experimental System-on-a-Chip (SOC) designed for Lone Dynamics FPGA computers that provides a RISC-V CPU (PicoRV32), a simple GPU, memory controllers, a keyboard controller and a UART”. See this other GitHub repository for more information.

Kolibri FPGA dongle + LED8 Pmod
(click image to enlarge)

The device is also compatible with other Machdyne products (i.e., QQSPI 32MB PMOD, LED Matrix PMOD, Ethernet PMOD, Wi-Fi/Bluetooth PMOD, etc.).

Specifications listed for the Kolibri USB dongle:

  • I/O Interfaces:
    • 12-pin Digilent Pmod
    • 1x white LED
    • 1x Boot button 
  • USB:
    • 1x USB Type-A male plug
  • Mechanical:
    • 32 x 16mm 

Further information

The Kolibri FPGA Dongle can be obtained for $49.95 from the Machdyne online store.

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