SUMP2 100 MSPS 32bit Logic Analyzer for icoBoard+RaspberryPi

2016.12.22 : After publishing SUMP2 96 MSPS Logic Analyzer for $22 iCEstick, BML was contacted by the icoBoard team in Austria inquiring the feasibility of running SUMP2 on their Lattice FPGA on the icoBoard and the RaspberryPi. BML was up for the challenge and has successfully ported the Windows + iceStick SUMP2 to work on Linux on Pi + icoBoard. This post describes how to configure the RaspberryPi and icoBoard to be a standalone 32 channel 100 MSPS logic analyzer.

File Download Area ( BML’s Dropbox ):

Note: See BML’s GitHub also

What is needed:

  1. A Raspberry Pi Model3 ( or faster ), a USB mouse and a HDMI display.
  2. An icoBoard from
  3. Free open-source software and firmware for SUMP2 from Black Mesa Labs.

Step-1 ) Download the 2GB custom Jessie-Lite image. Full details on this image ( and how to recreate from scratch if desired ) are available here. This image is a console only Linux that has Python modules pre-installed and a boot mechanism for installing files from a AppData.tgz file on a USB stick. Users may choose to manually install contents of AppData.tgz on their existing Linux Pi images, but no support for this is offered by BML.

Step-2) Burn the 2GB image to a uSD card using Win32DiskImager or similar tool. Warning – if you use a 2GB card, it might not work if it has fewer sectors than the 2GB card used in the generation of the image. Recommend using a 4GB uSD just to be safe.

Step-3 ) Boot the Pi with the new card.  It should boot up to a “Hello World” message.

Step-4) Download and Copy AppData.tgz and install_software.txt files from BML to a USB flash drive’s root directory.

Step-5) Boot the Pi with the USB flash drive. It should now install and launch the SUMP2 GUI.

Step-6) Configure the FPGA PROM by right-clicking in the waveform area of the screen ( not the signal name area ) and select System, Load_FPGA.  After this has completed, right click again and select System,Reboot. Remove the USB stick to prevent software from re-installing on the next boot.

Step-7) After the reboot the SUMP2 firmware and software should be fully functional.


[ About the design ]

bml_sump2_on_ice_stick (1).png

SUMP2 is entirely open-source hardware ( Verilog RTL FPGA design ) and open-source software ( Python GUI ).   The open-source Hardware and Software design files for the icoBoard version are all available here.  Please read the original SUMP2 for iCEstick blog for more detailed information on SUMP2. The icoBoard version uses a Lattice iCE40HX8K which roughly has 8x the FPGA fabric resources as the iCE401K on the iCEstick. Instead of using asynchronous 1 MHz serial communication ( FTDI 921,600 baud over USB ), the icoBoard uses the Raspberry Pi’s built in SPI interface running at 32 MHz. Both versions of SUMP2 use Mesa Bus Protocol for transferring 32bit virtual PCI write and read cycles over serial interfaces. for icoBoard communicates directly with the hardware, unlike for used TCP sockets for communication to as a hardware/software abstraction layer. Setup for SUMP2 on icoBoard is much easier as the open-source nature of the Pi platform allows BML to design for a walled garden environment ( made completely of open-source mind you ). BML provides the OS and the Application and the user provides the hardware of which there is a single choice, icoBoard and a Pi Model 3. Only variable to test for is differing HDMI screen resolutions.


[ PMOD Pinouts ]

Screenshot at 2016-12-25 18-11-03.png

The icoBoard has 4 0.100″ 2×6 PMOD connectors labeled P1-P4. Each connector is 1 of 4 byte inputs to SUMP2 for LVCMOS 3.3V signals.  P1 corresponds to events[7:0], P2 events[15:8], P3 events[23:16], P4 events[31:24].

[ SUMP2 on a small HDMI Display ]


Large LCDs are fantastic, but if you want a small footprint dedicated logic analyzer to sit next to your bench scope, SUMP2 can do that too. With the exception of optional signal renaming, the SUMP2 software interface is entirely mouse driven, no bulky keyboard required to operate. No Linux login required. SUMP2 boots and runs like an oscilloscope – OS is completely in the background, hidden from the end user ( but absolutely still available to them for tinkering ). The final BML setup for SUMP2 on icoBoard uses a small 7″ 800×480 LCD and the Pi+icoBoard easily attaches in the rear with some doubled sided velcro tape. Although the standard Linux text console (shown above) is much too small to read at 800×480 on 7″, the SUMP2 menu option Misc,Font_Larger or Font_Smaller allows for changing font size on the fly to make for a compact and readable display (shown below).  Note that this setup uses the -bundle option in the sump2_wave.txt file to group multiple signals into a single “bus” that is then displayed as hexadecimal instead of a binary waveform. More details are available in the file sump2_manual-txt.

File_000 (1).jpeg

[ Executing from USB Flash Drive ]


BML opted to execute the SUMP2 software from an external USB stick instead of the on board Pi uSD card. To accomplish this, simply copy the folder ~/AppData to /media/usb0 ( or do this from a PC ).  The advantage of running SUMP2 from USB is that transferring screen captures ( PNG, JPEGs ) and VCD exports from SUMP2 from the Pi to a PC much easier. If running SUMP2 with only a mouse ( no keyboard ), signal renaming is still possible by removing the USB stick with the Pi off and manually editing the ./AppData/sump2_wave.txt file using Vi or similar editor prior to booting the Pi. Configuration of the GUI is all clear text within sump2.ini and sump2_wave.txt files.

[ Flying lead adapter to PMOD ]

For just $1, this PCB may be ordered from OSH-Park that labels and adapts a PMOD connector to signal and ground pair 0.050″ pitch vias for making a flying lead adapter with dedicated signal ground returns for optimal signal integrity.


A slightly different version available here instead breaks out the PMOD to a 1×8 0.100″ row along with a single GND pin and 3V pin suitable for slow signals and dupont cables.


This PMOD2PMOD board allows 2 PMODs Masters to plug into each other, for example 2 icoBoards can interact with 2 of these for 16 IOs between them. Useful for using SUMP2 on one icoBoard for debugging another FPGA design. 3V are not connected, only signals and grounds. Note that the signals are twisted 0->7, 1->6, etc and should be untwisted in the FPGA fabric.


[ Making PMOD inputs 5V Tolerant ]


The PMOD inputs of the icoBoard are 3V only and are NOT 5V tolerant. Since both the iCEstick and icoBoard use the same PMOD connectors, the 5V tolerant input adapter designed by BML for the original SUMP2 on iCEstick may also be used on the icoBoard. The bare PCBs may be ordered at this link direct from OSH-Park for $5.  With the bare PCB, a simple 2×6 0.100″ right angle male header and a DIP SN74LVC244AN may then be soldered to provide a 3V input to icoBoard that is also 5V tolerant.  Total cost of parts and PCBs for 3 PMOD connectors total is only about $10. WARNING: Care must be taken not to configure the FPGA GPIO features as outputs to prevent damaging the FPGA. By default, the FPGA powers up with PMOD pins configured as inputs, allowing safe operation with this adapter.

[ GPIO Feature ]


But wait, there is more.  The Lattice iCE40HX8K FPGA on the icoBoard has 8x the resources of the iCEstick, so along with the SUMP2 logic analyzer engine, the FPGA design also includes 8 PWM ( pulse width modulators ) and GPIO ( General Purpose Input Output ) capabilities for all 32 PMOD signals.  Completely unrelated to SUMP2, this feature bundled in the same FPGA bitstream may be used as a general purpose port expander for the Raspberry Pi.  With time-multiplexing, the design actually supports controlling 32 RC servos ( only 8 in motion at once ).  By default, the GPIO portion of the FPGA design powers up with a 32 PMOD signals as inputs, allowing SUMP2 to operate on external signals without programming the GPIO registers. Refer to the ./source/reg_space.txt file for detailed register descriptions on programming the GPIO module. The example file included in AppData.tgz demonstrates how Python and Mesa Bus Protocol can be used for configuring the GPIO features. Conversely, the SUMP2 FPGA bitstream may be used without ever using SUMP2 if a Pi user simply wants to add more IO capabilities to their Pi.  Look for future GPIO FPGA only design from BML for the iCEstick that may be used for bit-banging any 3V device from a PC using Python ( including writing and reading SPI and I^2 PROMs ). $22 makes for a very nice platform for controlling devices and monitoring switches from any PC with a USB port.

[ Built in Self Test (BIST) Feature ]

The GPIO feature of the FPGA design and the included software may be used to drive test stimulus to all 32 PMOD pins.  This feature is useful for testing that all the SUMP2 software and hardware is operational. The electronic stimulus is provided by the SPI interface between the FPGA and Pi and the 8 PWM units.  WARNING : Enabling this feature drives the test data as FPGA outputs to the PMOD connectors, so it is important that nothing be connected to them ( including the 5V to 3V translation boards ). Running which enables all the output buffers of the FPGA may damage the FPGA if other devices are also driving the PMOD pins. Only run if you are certain nothing is electrically connected to the PMOD pins.

Step-1 ) From SUMP2 GUI, select System, Quit.

Step-2 ) From Linux command line, type %python   ( Configs GPIO outputs )

Step-3 ) From Linux command line, type %source   ( relaunches GUI )

[ Demo at 33C3 ]

Clifford of demonstrated SUMP2 running at the 2016 Chaos Communication Congress (33C3) festival in Hamburg Germany.

A post shared by Clifford Wolf (@cliffordvienna) on


[ In Closing ]

Please enjoy SUMP2, a 32 channel 100 MSPS open-source logic analyzer for icoBoard and RaspberryPi.  Follow BML on Twitter for updates on SUMP2 and other open-source software and hardware projects from Black Mesa Labs.


SUMP2 100 MSPS 32bit Logic Analyzer for icoBoard+RaspberryPi

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