NI SCXI-1600 USB DAQ Enables 40 Measurement and Switching Modules

7/22/2004 - Engineers and scientists using National Instruments SCXI signal conditioning hardware now can convert their SCXI chassis into complete plug-and-play data acquisition (DAQ) systems with the new SCXI-1600 USB DAQ module. The new module contains an integrated DAQ device that makes all 40 NI SCXI signal conditioning and switching modules USB-enabled, ensuring that DAQ system setup is as easy as plugging a mouse into a computer.

The SCXI-1600 is a USB 2.0 compatible, 16-bit, 200 kS/s DAQ module that works with all NI SCXI signal conditioning modules to cover a broad range of measurements such as temperature, strain and high voltage. Engineers can simply plug the new SCXI-1600 into an SCXI chassis to digitize all of their signal conditioning modules and instantly convert their chassis into a complete USB data acquisition system. In addition, the SCXI-1600 is one of the first USB digitizers designed to work with high-performance, sensor-specific and high-voltage signal conditioning modules.

“By using the new SCXI-1600 and other new NI USB devices, engineers and scientists can create a complete plug-and-play data acquisition system from sensor to software,” says Ryan Wynn, National Instruments DAQ systems product manager. “The SCXI-1600 makes every SCXI chassis a plug-and-play data acquisition system, complete with both data acquisition and sensor-specific signal conditioning.”

Creating and using a total plug-and-play system can save engineers and scientists valuable time and resources previously spent installing hardware and manually entering configuration information from sensor data sheets. A recent NI survey of data acquisition customers and prospects found that system setup can comprise 18 percent of overall measurement cost.

In addition, National Instruments LabVIEW is the first general-purpose application software to fully support the IEEE 1451.4 standard for smart sensors. By using the free Transducer Electronic Data Sheet (TEDS) library for NI LabVIEW 7.1, dozens of worldwide sensor vendors are programming and using their smart TEDS sensors in the same development environment. This common platform facilitates the implementation of the newest USB and smart sensor technology, further reducing overall system costs and increasing measurement accuracy.

NI SCXI modules are especially useful for high-performance, high-channel-count sensor measurement applications, such as automotive in-vehicle and civil engineering structural integrity tests. The small size and easy connectivity of all NI USB DAQ devices make them ideal for operations such as in-vehicle data logging and environmental monitoring. They also are useful in academic settings where students and researchers must share hardware between labs.

National Instruments DAQ
By integrating commercial PC-based technologies and investing in innovative research and development, NI continues to lower the cost of measurement and control while improving system performance, accuracy and reliability. NI recently increased value for its DAQ customers by reducing prices up to 25 percent worldwide for 13 of its most popular DAQ modules. Readers may learn more about the price reduction and view new prices on the Web at

About National Instruments
National Instruments ( is a technology pioneer and leader in virtual instrumentation – a revolutionary concept that has changed the way engineers and scientists approach measurement and automation. Leveraging the PC and its related technologies, virtual instrumentation increases productivity and lowers costs through easy-to-integrate software, such as the NI LabVIEW graphical development environment, and modular hardware, such as PXI modules for data acquisition, instrument control and machine vision. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, NI has more than 3,100 employees and direct operations in 40 countries. In 2003, the company sold products to more than 25,000 companies in 90 countries. For the past five years, FORTUNE magazine named NI one of the 100 best companies to work for in America.

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