Spectrum’s New Digital I/O Card Shrinks Size and Cost

Spectrum Instrumentation has released a new Digital I/O card offering engineers and scientists a cost-effective way to generate and acquire fast digital signals.

April 22, 2021. By Manu Tayal

Spectrum Instrumentation has released a new Digital I/O card offering engineers and scientists a cost-effective way to generate and acquire fast digital signals.

The model M2p.7515-x4 is a half-length PCIe card that measures just 168 x 107 mm (6.6 x 4.2 inches) in size. The tiny form factor means that it can be inserted into almost any desktop PC, turning it into a powerful tool for applications such as logic analysis or pattern generation. The card features 32 parallel channels that can be clocked at speeds up to 125 MHz.

The channels are accessed from two standard Hirose FX2 connectors located on the front panel. When set for digital acquisition, the channels offer 3.3 V and 5 V TTL compatibility, making them suitable for use with a wide range of digital signals.

In generation mode, the cards typically deliver output levels of 0.2 V for low states and 2.8 V for high states into high impedance.

Designed for maximum versatility, the cards come with 1 GByte of on-board memory as standard and a variety of different acquisition and replay modes.

Commenting on the development, Carsten Gralla, Managing Director at Spectrum Instrumentation, said “the M2p.7515-x4 is our smallest Digital I/O card to date. It’s been designed to deliver a nice balance between price and performance, giving users a cost-effective solution whenever fast digital signals need to be acquired, generated and analysed. It also compliments our analogue signal acquisition and generation products, fitting in perfectly with the mid-range M2p.59xx Digitizer-series with 5 to 125 MS/s and 16-bit, plus the AWGs of the M2p.65xx series with 40 to 125 MS/s and 16-bit. These Digitizers and AWGs of the M2pfamily offer up to 8 channels per card.”

For applications that require synchronization between multiple cards, the M2p.7515-x also supports Spectrum's unique Star-Hub clock and trigger distribution system. This option allows up to 16 cards of the M2p-family (Digitizers, AWGs and Digital I/O cards) to all share a common clock and trigger. For example, using Star-Hub together with 16 of the new M2p.7515-x4 cards could create a single system with 512 fully synchronized Digital I/O channels!

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