How often do you hear that the typical PC system is more powerful than the supercomputer of only two decades ago? While this is an amazing testament to the advances of computing technology over the last 20 years, you hear very little about another less visible, yet equally remarkable trend: one complex programmable logic device (CPLD) and a little code can replace literally hundreds of discrete logic components.

Discrete logic devices, long considered the workhorses of the semiconductor industry, held a unit cost advantage over programmable logic devices for several decades. However, times have changed significantly. Advances in semiconductor process technology for CPLDs have driven the costs of these devices down to a point where they now offer a highly compelling discrete logic replacement alternative. This white paper covers the advantages and cost savings of using Xilinx CPLDs instead of 7400 Discrete Devices.