National Instruments Introduces New USB Device for I2C and SPI Communication

  • December 13, 2005
  • National Instruments Corporation
  • News
NEWS RELEASE – Dec. 2005 – National Instruments today released a new USB device for use with inter-integrated circuit (I2C) and serial peripheral interface (SPI) communication devices. Engineers and scientists can use the new NI USB-8451 interface with NI LabVIEW software to easily create programs to test, validate and program devices such as analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) and EEPROMs. Because the module operates on the USB bus, it offers plug-and-play setup and is ideal for use in close proximity to the system components.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, easy-to-use LabVIEW functions for quickly 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.About National InstrumentsNational Instruments is a technology pioneer and leader in virtual instrumentation – a revolutionary concept that has changed the way engineers and scientists in industry, government and academia approach measurement and automation. Leveraging PCs and commercial technologies, virtual instrumentation increases productivity and lowers costs for test, control and design applications through easy-to-integrate software, such as NI LabVIEW, and modular measurement and control hardware for PXI, PCI, USB and Ethernet. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, NI has more than 3,700 employees and direct operations in nearly 40 countries. In 2004, the company sold products to more than 25,000 companies in 90 countries.For more information, Submit NI Info Request Form or visit their web site at

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