8 channel PCIe card enables 80 synchronized 16bit AWG channels in one PC: Page 2 of 2

May 16, 2019 //By Nick Flaherty
8 channel PCIe card enables 80 synchronized 16bit AWG channels in one PC
Spectrum Instrumentation has developed an 8 channel arbitrary waveform generator (AWG) PCI-express card that allows up to 80 channels in a single PC.

All eight models of the M2p.65xx series are half-length PCIe cards and only 168 mm in length. The maximum output swing, even with the 8 channel versions, is ±6 V into 1 MOhm or ±3 V into 50 Ohms. The cards are shipped with Spectrum’s SBench 6 control software that allows out of the box operation for card control and signal generation.

“Spectrum’s card-based solutions provide the user with complete flexibility to have a perfect fit for current needs and then add or change cards as the test environment changes,” said Gisela Hassler, CEO of Spectrum. “Importantly, our API is universal across all our products so that the investment in developing test programmes is always protected. And our unique 5-year warranty as standard provides further protection for the longevity of test solutions based on our products. They are used in industrial, scientific and research projects with lifespans of many years and demanding the most reliable test and measurement instrumentation.”

For applications that require the connection of AWGs and Digitizers, such as stimulus-response or closed-loop applications, Spectrum’s Star-Hub piggy-back module synchronizes up to 16 different M2p class products. The new M2p.65xx AWGs match perfectly with the M2p.59xx 16-bit digitizers released in 2018. The M2p.59xx digitizers offer one to eight channels with sampling rates between 20 MS/s and 125 MS/s. The Star-Hub distributes a common clock and all trigger signals to each card ensuring fully synchronous operation. Star-Hub systems are also perfect for situations where multiple test points, or arrays of sensors, need to be stimulated by different test signals at the same time.

The cards are fully programmable and drivers are provided, free of charge, to support the most popular languages (such as C++, VB.NET, C#, J#, Delphi, Java or Python) as well as third party software tools like LabVIEW and MATLAB. Alternatively, users can simply run Spectrum’s own software, SBench 6 Professional.

Once installed in a PC, the AWG cards are easy to integrate with other test and measurement devices. The signal outputs as well as clock and trigger inputs are provided via front-panel SMB connectors. The front-panel also hosts four multi-function MMCX connectors, which can be used for different tasks such as additional digital output channels (marker channels), clock, trigger or status output as well as asynchronous I/O lines. This high level of connectivity allows the AWG cards to be easily adapted into most automated test system environments.


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