The Designer's Guide to VHDL

2nd Edition

Authors: Peter Ashenden
Paperback ISBN: 9781558606746
eBook ISBN: 9780080477152
Imprint: Morgan Kaufmann
Published Date: 29th May 2001
Page Count: 759
Tax/VAT will be calculated at check-out
Compatible Not compatible
VitalSource PC, Mac, iPhone & iPad Amazon Kindle eReader
ePub & PDF Apple & PC desktop. Mobile devices (Apple & Android) Amazon Kindle eReader
Mobi Amazon Kindle eReader Anything else

Institutional Access

Table of Contents

1 Fundamental Concepts

1.1 Modeling Digital Systems

1.2 Domains and Levels of Modeling

1.3 Modeling Languages

1.4 VHDL Modeling Concepts

1.5 Learning a New Language: Lexical Elements and Syntax


2 Scalar Data Types and Operations

2.1 Constants and Variables

2.2 Scalar Types

2.3 Type Classification

2.4 Attributes of Scalar Types

2.5 Expressions and Operators


3 Sequential Statements

3.1 If Statements

3.2 Case Statements

3.3 Null Statements

3.4 Loop Statements

3.5 Assertion and Report Statements


4 Composite Data Types and Operations

4.1 Arrays

4.2 Unconstrained Array Types

4.3 Array Operations and Referencing

4.4 Records


5 Basic Modeling Constructs

5.1 Entity Declarations

5.2 Architecture Bodies

5.3 Behavioral Descriptions

5.4 Structural Descriptions

5.5 Design Processing

Exercises <


Since the publication of the first edition of The Designer's Guide to VHDL in 1996, digital electronic systems have increased exponentially in their complexity, product lifetimes have dramatically shrunk, and reliability requirements have shot through the roof. As a result more and more designers have turned to VHDL to help them dramatically improve productivity as well as the quality of their designs.

VHDL, the IEEE standard hardware description language for describing digital electronic systems, allows engineers to describe the structure and specify the function of a digital system as well as simulate and test it before manufacturing. In addition, designers use VHDL to synthesize a more detailed structure of the design, freeing them to concentrate on more strategic design decisions and reduce time to market. Adopted by designers around the world, the VHDL family of standards have recently been revised to address a range of issues, including portability across synthesis tools.

This best-selling comprehensive tutorial for the language and authoritative reference on its use in hardware design at all levels--from system to gates--has been revised to reflect the new IEEE standard, VHDL-2001. Peter Ashenden, a member of the IEEE VHDL standards committee, presents the entire description language and builds a modeling methodology based on successful software engineering techniques. Reviewers on have consistently rated the first edition with five stars. This second edition updates the first, retaining the authors unique ability to teach this complex subject to a broad audience of students and practicing professionals.

Key Features

  • Details how the new standard allows for increased portability across tools.
  • Covers related standards, including the Numeric Synthesis Package and the Synthesis Operability Package, demonstrating how they can be used for digital systems design.
  • Presents four extensive case studies to demonstrate and combine features of the language taught across multiple chapters.
  • Requires only a minimal background in programming, making it an excellent tutorial for anyone in computer architecture, digital systems engineering, or CAD.


Database programmers; application developers


No. of pages:
© Morgan Kaufmann 2002
Morgan Kaufmann
eBook ISBN:
Paperback ISBN:


@qu:"The second edition of The Designer's Guide to VHDL sets a new standard in VHDL texts. I am certain that you will find it a very valuable addition to your library." @source:—From the foreword by Paul Menchini, Menchini & Associates

About the Authors

Peter Ashenden Author

Peter J. Ashenden received his B.Sc.(Hons) and Ph.D. from the University of Adelaide, Australia. He was previously a senior lecturer in computer science and is now a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Adelaide. His research interests are computer organization and electronic design automation. Dr. Ashenden is also an independent consultant specializing in electronic design automation (EDA). He is actively involved in IEEE working groups developing VHDL standards, is the author of The Designer's Guide to VHDL and The Student's Guide to VHDL and co-editor of the Morgan Kaufmann series, Systems on Silicon. He is a senior member of the IEEE and a member of the ACM.

Affiliations and Expertise

Adjunct Associate Professor, School of Computer Science, University of Adelaide, Australia