Accuracy-Performance Tradeoffs on an FPGA Through Overclocking

Provided by: Imperial College London
Topic: Hardware
Format: PDF
Embedded applications can often demand stringent latency requirements. While high degrees of parallelism within custom FPGA-based accelerators may help to some extent, it may also be necessary to limit the precision used in the datapath to boost the operating frequency of the implementation. However, by reducing the precision, the engineer introduces quantization error into the design. In this paper, the authors demonstrate that for many applications it would be preferable to simply overclock the design and accept that timing violations may arise. Since the errors introduced by timing violations occur rarely, they will cause less noise than quantization errors.

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