"VHDL Coding Styles and Methodologies... an in depth tutorial" by Ben Cohen

I came upon this book trying to find some read on the more advanced side of VHDL - hoping for something like "Code Complete". It turned out, however, to be more of a general VHDL tutorial, with some specks of "methodology" here and there.

The books covers the whole VHDL language - basically the stuff you'd expect from any book on the subject (even the traditional UART design example). Each chapter consists of an introduction to a topic, followed by some basic examples and "best practices" advices. While to beginners these may seem valuable, experienced VHDL designers won't benefit much, because most of the notes are quite obvious.

There are a couple of very interesting sections in the book, but unfortunately those are very short. Attempting to cover the whole language, the author tried to dedicate the same amount of description to every feature. However, VHDL has many esoteric and highly idiomatic dark corners most engineers don't care about. It would be far better to concentrate on some of the most demanded topics, like synchronous design and synthesis.

The book is written quite well and includes a lot of code, which is always helpful. However, in my opinion it doesn't serve the promise of the author. I don't think I've gained much useful information from it, and beginners probably have better books to look at - books that chew the basics well, with lots of examples.

I'm still in search of a good book on advanced VHDL (or Verilog, it doesn't matter). Something like "Effective C++" or "Perl Cookbook". Unfortunately, my search has been unsuccessful so far...


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