*** DataQuest News 2019 ***

New: Direct signal data transfer to a GPU allows signal averaging over longer periods   January 2019
Signal averaging plays a crucial role in applications where signal details, hidden in random noise, need to be extracted and analysed. When capturing a signal using a A/D signal capture card (digitiser), on-board averaging capability over longer periods is often constrained by small processing systems and the on-board memory. Spectrum's Instrumentations's revolutionary new approach helps overcome these limitations.

The new signal averaging software package for Spectrum's M4i and M2p PCIe digitiser cards utilises SCAPP, (Spectrum's CUDA Access for Parallel Processing). Captured data is sent to a standard off-the-shelf Nvidia GPU, by a process known as RDMA (Remote Direct Memory Access) and allows continual high-speed time and frequency domain signal averaging without the usual data length limits. RDMA transfers go directly to the GPU for PCs running LINUX, or via the CPU for systems using a Windows-based operating system. The GPU offers high-speed parallel processing using multiple (up to 5000) processing cores!

The supplied software package contains a set of examples for interaction with the digitiser and a set of CUDA parallel processing examples for the basic averaging functions.

Click here for more information

   Direct data transfer to GPU for signal averaging processing. The result can then be stored for further analysis and display.   

New: Half-length PCIe 16 bit multi-channel AWG cards with up to 125MS/s output   May 2019
Spectrum Instrumentation has released six new Arbitrary Waveform Generators (AWGs) optimised for signal quality, size and cost. The new M2p "65" series AWGs offer the latest 16-bit digital to analog converters, a fast PCIe x4 interface with up to 700 MByte/s streaming speed and a card length of just 168 mm to allow fitment into nearly every PC.

These AWG's are available in two D/A sample update speeds; 40 or 125 MHz. Sample speeds up to these limits are programmable from software, with a fine sampling granularity of 1Hz. A flexibility in choice comes with 1, 2 or 4 channel models, with each channel featuring its own DAC and output stage. The multi-channel cards share a common clock and trigger to ensure full synchronisation and the output stages incorporate four switchable filter paths to help optimise signal quality. They can produce output swings up to ±6 V into a high impedance (1 MOhm) load or ±3 V into 50 Ohms. The output stages combine with the high resolution 16-bit DACs to enable the generation of signals with very low distortion, exceptional dynamic range and a high signal-to-noise ratio. This flexibility and performance allows users to create ultra-long, single shot waveforms or constantly changing, burst-type signals such as those found in radar, ultrasound, LIDAR or sonar systems. The possibilities are almost limitless!

The cards are fully programmable and drivers are provided, free of charge, to support the most popular languages as well as third party software tools like LabVIEW and MATLAB. Alternatively, users can simply run Spectrum's own software, SBench 6 Professional which allows easy control of all the modes and settings via a simple, easy-to-use, interface.

All Spectrum signal generation hardware come with an outstanding warranty of 5 years and free technical support for the lifetime of the product!

Click here for more information

   M2p.65xx pci-express multi-channel signal generator card with mega sample output update rates.   

New: High-speed PCIe M2p AWG card now come with cost effective 8 channel versions   May 2019
Spectrum's latest M2p "65" series of PCIe arbitrary waveform generators has two new 8 channel cards, cutting the cost per channel dramatically. All eight models of the M2p.65xx series are half-length PCIe cards and only 168 mm in length. The new additions to the "65" family are the M2p.6533-x4 with eight 40 MS/s channels and the M2p.6568-x4 that can be configured with eight channels of 80 MS/s, or four of 125 MS/s. In common with the other M2p "65" series the output has 16 bits resolution with a maximum output swing of ±6 V into 1 MOhm or ±3 V into 50 Ohms.

As standard, all cards of the "65" series offer a deep on-board memory of 512 MSamples to store and replay many waveforms. Using the PCIe-x4 platform, these AWGs provide a fast data transfer speed to the host computer which is up to 700 MBytes/second. Up to 16 M2p cards can be synchronised, increasing the channel count using the Star-Hub option. This option is not only the M2p AWG products, but also the series of M2p.59xx 16-bit signal capture cards released in 2018. This way a mix of signal capture and generation can be performed in a stimulus - response scenario.

All M2p cards have a 5-year warranty and progamming drivers are provided free of charge.

Click here for more information

   M2p.65xx pci-express AWG with 8 channels.   

New: Portable DN2.65xx multi-channel AWG unit with easy Ethernet/LXI connection   August 2019
The new DN2.65x series of generatorNETBOX instruments are available with 4, 8 or 16 fully synchronous channels and offer output rates of 40 MS/s or 125 MS/s. Signals can be generated with a programmable output swing of up to ±6 V into high impedance, or ±3 V into 50 ohms. These signals can be created from equations, imported from other devices (such as digitisers and oscilloscopes), or other software programs. The generatorNETBOX incudes a large on-board memory of up to 2 x 512 MSamples. Signals can loaded once, generated repeatedly, or continually generated whilst new waveform data is being loaded to the on-board memory.

The units come with drivers, so that users can write their own control programs in almost any popular programming language.

Weighing as little as 6.3 kg, the generatorNETBOX products are portable, so allowing use almost anywhere, (a 12 or 24 V DC power input option is also available). Simply connect to a host computer (e.g. laptop or workstation) or anywhere on the corporate network via the Ethernet port.

Delivery includes an industry leading five-year manufacturer's warranty from Spectrum Instrumentation GmbH. Software and firmware updates are available free of charge, so too is the U.K. based technical support from their experienced distributor DataQuest Solutions Ltd.

Click here for more information

   DN2.65xx portable ethernet/LXI AWG with 16 channels.   

New: Mixed-Mode option adds addtional digital I/O lines to M2p A/D and D/A cards  October 2019
A new add-on option provides 16 additional digital I/O for the high-speed M2p.59xx A/D (digitiser) and M2p.65xx D/A (AWG) cards. The additional connections are made using multiple SMB or a single FX2 connector sited on a second smaller card alongside the main card. These lines can be configured for asynchronous (polled) operation, or in the case of the M2p.59xx digitiser for synchronous to sampling too.

The "Mixed-Mode" option is easily configured to requirments from the software development kit (SDK), which is suitable for many programming languages. Spectrum's own software, SBench 6, also supports the major part of the option's functionality and used an easy pull-down menu system. The digital Mixed-Mode option comes with Spectrum's 5 years warranty.

Click here for information on the Mixed-Mode option.

   Mixed-Mode digital option. SMB version shown here.   

Update: DN6 waveform generator units now have more channels to reduce big system cost.  November 2019
Spectrum Instrumentation's latest line of Arbitrary Waveform Generators offers 24 to 48 synchronous channels in a single rack-unit with a very economic cost-per-channel relationship. They compliment the recently introduced and smaller DN2.65x products (that offer from 4 to 16 channels). Such a high channel count sets a new standard for AWGs, as most conventional products only offer 1, 2 or 4 channels

The eight different "DN6.65x" models achieve full remote control through a simple Ethernet connection to any PC or local area network (LAN), making them easy to integrate into almost any test system. Like the smaller versions, these new units feature state-of-the-art 16 bit digital to analogue 40 or 125 mega sample converter technology, combined with low-noise outputs. This allows the generation of almost any test signal in the DC to 60 MHz frequency range. A wide range of signal amplitudes can be generated with programmable output swings of up to ±6 V into high impedance or ±3 V into 50 Ohm. In addition, the units include large on-board memories (64 mega samples per channel), that can be utilised in a number of different operating modes to allow the generation of long and complex waveforms.

The new AWGs are fully self-contained and come with all the tools necessary to generate an unlimited variety of waveforms. The drivers are included for many programming languages. It also comes with SBench 6 Professional at no extra cost. This software controls all the operating modes and hardware settings from a easy-to-use, graphical user interface with pull down menus. The software also has a host of built-in features for waveform creation, data analysis and documentation. Waveforms can also be created from equations, imported from other devices (such as digitisers and oscilloscopes). SBench 6 Professional even allows data import and export in the most popular formats such as ASCII, binary and WAV.

The DN6.65x series of generatorNETBOX come with Spectrum's exceptional 5-year-warranty.

Click here for more information

   DN6.65xx AWG with 48 channels. This has BNC's, also available with SMA connectors.   

Update: M2p waveform genertors now have a boosted output voltage range.  December 2019
The recently released M2p.65 xx series of PCI-Express arbitrary waveform generators (AWG's) now have six new enhanced versions with a boosted output range of up to ±12 V into 1 MΩ, ±6 V into 50 Ω. To achieve the higher output voltage ranges the cards have been fitted with additional amplification and larger cooling plates. This makes the cards a little wider, so they occupy two PCIe slots, however the compact 168 mm length allows them to fit into almost any PC, turning it into a powerful and flexible waveform generator.

In common with the M2p.65xx series, these AWGs use the latest 16-bit Digital-to-Analog Converters and feature a fast PCIe x4-lane interface giving up to 700 MByte/s streaming speed. Users can select generator speed rates up to a maximum of either 40 MS/s (M2p.654x series) or 125 MS/s (M2p.657x series) and models with one, two or four channels per card. Each card comes equipped with a deep 512 mega samples of on-board memory. This combination allows short or long replay of signal data and each channel can simultaneously output a different waveform shape. The replay rate is not divided down across channels so there is no performance penality when generating multiple waveforms.

As with all other cards manufactured by Spectrum Instrumentation GmbH, card drivers are included at no extra cost for code programming, or for using the AWG with MATLAB™ or LabVIEW™.

Click here for more information

   DN6.65xx AWG high voltage output model. Note the black heatsink for cooling.   


Click here for previous releases in 2018:-
  • Obtain the latest product information in DataQuest's 2018 newsletter!
  • The Spectrum M2p.59xx series of 16 bit PCIe digitisers are now 50% faster!
  • DN2.59x series offers Ethernet connectivity, 16 bit A/D's, 16 channels & up to 125 MS/s
  • Memory saving 8 bit ADC mode for Spectrum 14 and 16 bit digitisers
  • DN6.59x series of 16 bit digitizers have Ethernet connectivilty and up to 48 channels
  • Spectrum's signal capture cards are shortlisted for a Elektra reliability award!
Click here for previous releases in 2017:-
  • Spectrum's 2017 instrumentation catalogue released
  • New PXI-Express digitsers with 1.5 GHz bandwidth and data processing FPGA
  • Ethernet based digitiser system now offers GS/s Acquisition on up to 24 Channels
  • Digitisers sampling at GHz now have a high gain range option
  • Boxcar Averaging feature lowers signal noise level and increases resolution
  • More signal generator channels for the Ethernet based generatorNETBOX
  • Warranty on Spectrum Instrumentation products is now 5 years!
  • The next generation of compact fast 16 bit digitisers are here. M2p!
  • Powerful GPU based signal processing using the new SCAPP option
Click here for previous releases in 2016:-
  • Spectrum's 2016 instrumentation catalogue released
  • New 720 mega sample/sec PCIe Gen2 digital pattern capture card
  • DigitizerNETBOX acquires a stand alone operation capability
  • Free academic tool kit illustrates the creation, capture and analysis of waveforms
  • PXIe modular digitizer cards range released. 14/16 bit and up to 500MS/sec
  • Programmable waveform generation up to 1.25GS/sec with Ethernet data connectivity
  • The digitizerNETBOX series now provides up to 48 A/D channels in one enclosure
  • New MHz to GHz, high resolution PXIe AWG cards
Click here for previous releases in 2015:-
  • DC option now available for the digitizerNETBOX
  • A/D card bandwidth up to 1.5GHz and new cables for high frequencies
  • Portable Docking Station with three PCIe slots and Notebook PC connectivity
  • The digitizerNETBOX data logger now captures signals at GHz speeds
  • Signal Pre-amplifier modules with GHz bandwidth
  • 625 Mega sample/sec AWG with 16 bit resolution and PCIe GByte/sec interface
  • 16 bit AWG M4i card series now with 1.25 giga sample/sec D/A converter
  • Server utility allows Spectrum card setup and monitoring across LAN Network
Click here for previous releases in 2014:-
  • Cost effective 16-bit digitzer card with multiple 60 MS/sec channels
  • 14 & 16 bit digitizerNETBOX Ethernet/LXI instruments with up to 0.5GHz sampling speed!
  • Clock and trigger signal distribution card is now available in PCI-Express format
  • Synchronise Spectrum M2i instrumentation cards across multiple computer installations
  • Card based FPGA signal average module for enhanced measurement resolution and SNR
  • Signal peak detection and statistics functions added to digitiser hardware
  • Ultra high-speed M4i series PCIe digitizer cards with up to 5GS/sec sampling
Click here for previous releases in 2013:-
  • Enhancement options now included with all Spectrum instrumentation cards!
  • PXI format multi-channel 16 bit 50 Mega Sample/sec A/D converter card
  • New DigitizerNetbox provides a portable Ethernet enclosure for Spectrum cards
  • M4i 14 Bit 500 MS/s digitiser with PCIe x8 lane
  • Faster digitzerNETBOX with up to 200MHz sampling
Click here for previous releases in 2012:-
  • DataQuest Solutions extends its ACME portable computer range.
  • Extended range of tough waterproof rugged tablet PC's now available.
  • Ultra high speed multi-channel 16 bit signal capture card.
  • PCI Express docking station range now includes 4 and 7 slot options
  • DataQuest Solutions are moving to a new location in Lincolnshire
Click here for previous releases in 2011:-
  • Spectrum releases fully updated instrumentation catalogue
  • Dual time base sampling available for all digitiser cards
  • SPA series of high bandwidth and gain external amplifiers
  • Sequence Replay Mode enhances pattern generation programming.
Click here for previous releases in 2010:-
  • Logic analyzer display for SBench6
  • Lighter, faster MRC2300 presents the latest in PC tablet technology
  • M3i series cards now with SMA connector option
  • M3i.4800 series card uses the latest generation 16 bit 180Msample converter
Click here for previous releases in 2009:-
  • Spectrum drivers now support .NET users
  • Slim portable PC now features hot-swap battery option
  • SBench Version 6 signal visualisation software release
  • M3i.32xx and M3i.41xx series provides exceptional resolution and speed
  • New Spectrum M3i.21xx series extends signal capture up to 1GHz!
Click here for previous releases in 2008:-
  • 12 bit digitisers now have software selectable differential inputs
  • All M2i cards now come with 256Mbytes of memory as standard!
  • Radar signal and antenna position capture card
  • Slim ultra portable PC with PCI and PCI-Express
  • 400MS/sec high resolution digitiser heralds M3i release
Click here for previous releases in 2007:-
  • 64 bit Windows and Linux drivers arrive for M2i
  • Full LABVIEW™ support for all M2i boards
  • Docking Station for PCI-Express Cards
  • Spectrum expands range to incorporate PCI-Express card connectivity
  • Clock and trigger distribution board adds flexibility to system connectivity
  • 125MS/sec Arbitrary Waveform Generators with PCI-Express connectivity
Click here for previous releases in 2006:-
  • Orders now being taken for the new M2i A/D digitisers.
  • New DEWEtron range of rugged portable PC's
  • M2i range extends to digital I/O boards
  • M2i.46xx range gives fast 16 bit resolution and true differential inputs
  • M2i.47xx range provides 16 bit resolution on 16 inputs
Click here for previous releases in 2005:-
  • Tough additions to our range of go anywhere portable PC's. (New rugged Notebooks and a Tablet PC).
  • Easy virtual control panel for waveform generation. (SPeasyGenerator software release )
  • Two slot PCI Docking Station with drive space.
  • Amplifier option adds ±10 V output level to existing Spectrum arbitrary waveform generators.
  • Rugged Notebook Pro PC now with higher specification.
  • Spectrum announces pending release of the second series of digitisers.
Click here for previous releases in 2004:-
  • Spectrum Mega sample CompactPCI and PXI release.
  • Digital pattern generator board Mi72xx with output -2 and +10 volts.
  • Memory efficient Mi7005 dig I/O with 1, 2, 4 bit settings.
  • Disk streaming software SPviewIT.
  • New Spectrum MI/Mc/Mx3027 2 channel 100Ms/s board

© DataQuest Solutions 03.01.07.
(last revised 20.05.20)
Images courtesy of Spectrum Instrumentation GmbH
Text may be based upon marketing material produced by Spectrum Instrumentation GmbH and hence copyrighted by them.
LabVIEW is the registered trademark of the National Instruments Corporation
MATLAB is a trademark of the MathWorks Corporation Windows 7, 8, 10 XP and Vista are registered trademarks of the Microsoft Corporation
Thunderbolt is a trademark of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and/or other countries.
ExpressCard and the ExpressCard Logo are registered trademark of PCMCIA.
The registered trademark Linux® is used pursuant to a sublicense from LMI, the exclusive licensee of Linus Torvalds, holder of the mark on a world-wide basis.
MAC OS is the registered trademark of Apple Inc.