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Serial instruments can now connect with USB
14 August 2002, Test & Measurement

Engineers can seamlessly connect to existing serial instruments using the widespread USB technology with two new high-speed USB serial converters from National Instruments.

The NI USB-232 and NI USB-485 serial converters transform a USB port into asynchronous serial ports for communication with serial devices. The NI USB-232 converter uses the RS232 Serial protocol and the NI USB-485 converter uses the RS485 or RS422 serial protocols. Both converters are available in two or four-port configurations. The serial converters feature high-speed data throughput - up to 230,4 Kb/s (NI USB-232) and up to 460,8 Kb/s (NI USB-485). With the NI USB-485, engineers can communicate with up to 31 devices. The new converters also comply with the new high-speed USB Specification 2.0. The converters are ideal for scientific laboratory research applications in which engineers and scientists need USB technology to quickly configure and run their applications.

The NI USB-232 serial converter allows one to select the transceiver mode - data terminal equipment (DTE) or data communications equipment (DCE) - in software, or have the converter automatically detect the transceiver mode. These selectable transceiver modes give more flexibility for communicating with serial devices. With the NI USB-485 serial converter the system can be quickly configured with software selectable biasing.

The NI USB-232 and NI USB-485 serial converters include NI-Serial driver software for Windows 2000/XP. The serial converters can be installed as standard serial ports from existing applications or with applications written with NI-VISA bus interface software.


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