Using USB123 USBee AX Pro $5 USB Logic Analyzer with PulseView in Linux

I recently wrote about an ultra low cost USB logic analyzer called USB123 USBee AX Pro, which I bought for $9.58 on DX, but I was later informed it also goes for $5.44 on Aliexpress including free shipping to most countries, and a few dollars extra for shipping to some other countries. Nevertheless, I’ve now received it, and instead of testing it with a closed source (and cracked) Windows software, I installed and ran PulseView open source graphical interface for sigrok, which I previously tested on UNI-T UT61E digital multimeter. The package includes USBee AX PRO mini logic analyzer, 10 dupont wires for 8 channels (digital only) and 2 ground pins, as well as a mini USB to USB cable for connection to a computer. The instructions to use the logic analyzer can be found on Sigrok Wiki. My computer runs Ubuntu 14.04, but Sigrok and PulseView can also be […]

USB123 USBee AX PRO is a $10 USB Logic Analyzer Clone Compatible with Sigrok

A few months ago, I wrote about low cost logic analyzers selling for $75 and up, but yesterday, I stumbled upon an even cheaper, and admittedly lower end, logic analyzer called USB123 USBee AX PRO, allegedly a clone of the original USBee AX PRO minus the analog inputs, that sells for $9.99 on Dealextreme. [Update: It can also be bought for $5.60 on Aliexpress including shipping to most countries] USBee AX PRO specifications: Sampling rate – 24Msps Sample rate – 24MHz @ 8 channels Input voltage range: 0~5V Digital channel: 8 Low input voltage: < 0.8V; High input voltage: >1.4V Supported Protocols – SPI, IIC, UART, SMBus, I2S, CAN, Parallel, Custom, Search, Async, 1-Wite, PS/2 Dimensions – 5.4 cm x 2.7 cm x 1.8 cm Weight – 60 grams The tool ships with 10 Dupont cables and a USB cable to transfer data to your PC. DealExtreme also provides CDROM […]

ee203 Real-time Current Monitor Supports 1 μA to 1A Range, Outputs Data to Oscilloscope

Measuring current can be tricky, as I found out during my various attempts at measuring power consumption of TV boxes, as when the current gets too high, your measurement setup impedance may be too high (cables or multimeter), and the voltage delivered to the device under test too low for it too keep running, while accuracy may be an issue while measuring very low currents. EE Equipment ee203 Current Monitor solves some of these issues for people working on low power embedded systems as it can measure currents between 1 μA and 1A, and even output data to an oscilloscope to see real-time power consumption of the devices. Key features for ee203 current monitor: 6 Decades of Current Range: 1 μA – 1 A (2A fuse) No Range-Switching Interruptions or Delays Wide System Voltage Range 1.5V – 5.5V (12V Max) USB interface for calibration, control, and data logging View Current […]

Sigrok and Pulseview in Ubuntu 14.04 with UNI-T UT61E Digital Multimeter

A couple of months ago, I received a new digital multimeter UNI-T UT61E that can send data to a computer via a serial cable, and allows you draw some nice charts. I’ve already done that in Windows 7 with the provided tools, and reported on the power consumption of some Chinese Android TV boxes. However, since I use Ubuntu 14.04 as my main operating system, Linux based tools would be more convenient, and open source sigrok-cli command line client and its graphical interface pulseview are supposed to support UT61E DMM, so I had to give it a try. A Quick Look at UNI-T UT61 Digital Multimeter Before going into Sigrok, I’ll quickly show what the multimeter received from DealExtreme . It took longer than expected to ship because of of  included 9V battery, and at the first shipping attempt it was returned to DX, but after 8 weeks or so, […]

Voltera V-One is a Low Cost PCB Printer and Solder Paste Dispenser (Crowdfunding)

The traditional hardware development cycle involve sending PCB Gerber files to a manufacturer, wait a few days (or weeks), get the boards back, find and fix bugs, send a new revision of the gerber files to the manufacturer and so on. This wastes a lot of time, so PCB printers capable of handline single and dual layer PCBs have started to see the light of the day, for example with BotFactory Squink. The latter can also do pick and place, but costs over $3,500. Luckily if you’d like something cheaper, Voltera V-One will do many of the same tasks, for but for only $1,500. Voltera V-One specifications: Minimum Trace Width – 8mil (~0.2mm) Minimum Passive Size – 0603 (0402 for solder paste) Minimum Pin-to-Pin Pitch – 0.8mm (0.5mm for solder paste) Resistance – >12 mOhm/sq @ 70um height Max Heated Bed Temperature – 250C Heated Bed Ramp Rate – ~2C/s […]

Power Consumption of Amlogic S812 and Rockchip RK3288 TV Boxes

The recent post comparing the power consumption of ODROID-C1 vs Raspberry Pi boards, as made me want to give another try at power consumption measurements. Regular reader already know I made a power measurement board and cables capable of hading different connectors (micro USB, mini USB, power barrels,  etc..), but eventually it failed to deliver enough current to the boards for any meaning testing. But since I now have a better power supply, and multi-meter, it was worth another try, especially since I could draw some pretty charts. I decided to test the three most popular Chinese SoCs for mini PCs namely Amlogic S812 (4x Cortex A9), Rockchip RK3288 (4x Cortex A17), and Allwinner A80 (4x Cortex A15 + 4x Cortex A7) using respectively Eny M8S, Open Hour Chameleon, and A80 OptimusBoard. If you are paying attention, you must have noticed Allwinner A80 is not part of the title, that […]

LA1016, LA2016, and LA5016 Logic Analyzers Cost as Low as $75

I remember 10+ years ago, when my managers argued whether buying a logic analyzer, because some of its functions could be done by an oscilloscope, and logic analyzers were selling for a few thousands dollars at the time. Fast forward to 2014, it’s now possible to acquire lower end logic analyzers that connect to a PC for as low as $75 thanks to products such as LA1016, LA2016, and LA5016, all supports 16-channels and respectively 100, 200 and 500 Mbps sampling rate. Key features and specifications: Input channels – 16 Max Sampling Rate: LA1016: 100M; LA2016: 200M; LA5026: 500M Measurement Bandwidth – LA1016: 20M; LA2016: 40M; LA5016: 80M Min pulse width – LA1016: 20ns; LA2016: 12.5ns; LA5016: 6.25ns Hardware memory size – LA1016/LA2016: 1Gbits; LA5016: 512Mbits Hardware sampling depth – LA1016/LA2016: 50M/channel; LA5016: 32M/channel Max compressed depth – LA1016/LA2016: 10G/channel; LA5016: 5G/channel Input voltage range – -50V ~ +50V Input […]

$50 UNI-T UT61E Digital Multimeter Supports Data Logging to a Windows Computer

Since I don’t use a multimeter that often, and don’t need high precision, I bought an ultra cheap multimeter (Sunwa DT830B) locally a couple of a years ago. I normally use it for continuity testing (no beep though) for repair work / checking solder point, and some quick voltage measurement, and it works well for these simple tasks, although the lack of buzzer makes it a little inconvenient. But I discovered its limits when I tried to measure current. The 200 mA range works fine, but I started to encounter issues when switching to the 10A range, as device under tests would just start rebooting if the current draw was too high, and the manual indicates that you  “cannot measure more than 15 seconds in the 10A range”. Since I did not want to spend $100+ on a Fluke multimeter, I did some research for a better multimeter, and finally […]

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