A history of architectural and process advancements has enabled Altera Cyclone V FPGAs to be used in numerous low-cost and low-power applications in the industrial, automotive, military, communication and consumer markets, among others. This white paper outlines a real-life PCI Express (PCIe) Gen1x4 reference design including a DDR3 memory controller, and shows just how effective Cyclone V FPGAs are in minimizing total system cost while achieving performance and power targets.