A Cycle-Accurate Simulator for a Reconfigurable Multi-Media System

Min ZHU  Leibo LIU  Shouyi YIN  Chongyong YIN  Shaojun WEI  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Information and Systems   Vol.E93-D   No.12   pp.3202-3210
Publication Date: 2010/12/01
Online ISSN: 1745-1361
DOI: 10.1587/transinf.E93.D.3202
Print ISSN: 0916-8532
Type of Manuscript: Special Section PAPER (Special Section on Parallel and Distributed Computing and Networking)
SimREMUS,  simulator,  reconfigurable multimedia system,  compiler,  debugger,  

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This paper introduces a cycle-accurate Simulator for a dynamically REconfigurable MUlti-media System, called SimREMUS. SimREMUS can either be used at transaction-level, which allows the modeling and simulation of higher-level hardware and embedded software, or at register transfer level, if the dynamic system behavior is desired to be observed at signal level. Trade-offs among a set of criteria that are frequently used to characterize the design of a reconfigurable computing system, such as granularity, programmability, configurability as well as architecture of processing elements and route modules etc., can be quickly evaluated. Moreover, a complete tool chain for SimREMUS, including compiler and debugger, is developed. SimREMUS could simulate 270 k cycles per second for million gates SoC (System-on-a-Chip) and produced one H.264 1080p frame in 15 minutes, which might cost days on VCS (platform: CPU: E5200@ 2.5 Ghz, RAM: 2.0 GB). Simulation showed that 1080p@30 fps of H.264 High Profile@ Level 4 can be achieved when exploiting a 200 MHz working frequency on the VLSI architecture of REMUS.