National Instruments has released a new USB device for use with inter-integrated circuit (I2C) and serial peripheral interface (SPI) communication devices.
Many consumer electronics such as DVD players and computer motherboards contain hundreds of components that work with each other and communicate through I2C or SPI. Previously, engineers often faced programming challenges when implementing I2C and SPI protocols for use with digital I/O boards. The new USB-8451 interface includes driver software that provides high-level, LabVIEW functions for developing applications without requiring in-depth knowledge of I2C and SPI communications.
In addition to providing both I2C and SPI communication, the new USB-8451 also includes eight digital lines for general-purpose I/O and is capable of full-speed USB connectivity. The USB-8451 interface is ideal for applications involving consumer electronics such as programming, testing and communicating with devices including LCDs, ADCs and sensors.
Hardware design engineers can use the USB-8451 interface to test and validate component prototypes. For example, engineers wanting to validate the functionality of a microcontroller that includes I2C or SPI communication lines no longer need to place the microcontroller on the printed circuit board (PCB) and hope that it interacts well with the other components. Instead, they now can send I2C or SPI commands to the microcontroller through the USB-8451 interface to validate its functionality before placing it on the PCB.