An NI CompactDAQ system consists of a chassis, NI C Series I/O modules, and software. Chassis can connect to a host computer over USB, Ethernet, or 802.11 WiFi or operate stand-alone with a built-in controller. With over 50 measurement-specific modules and 1-, 4-, and 8-slot chassis, NI CompactDAQ provides a flexible, expandable platform so you can build an optimized, custom solution to meet the needs of any electrical or sensor measurement system.
NI CompactDAQ chassis control the timing, synchronization, and data transfer between up to eight C Series I/O modules and an external or built-in computer. A single NI CompactDAQ chassis can manage multiple timing engines to run up to seven separate hardware-timed I/O tasks at different sample rates in the same system. For example, you can install a 75 S/s thermocouple module next to a 51.2 kS/s accelerometer module and acquire from both simultaneously. To learn more about how NI CompactDAQ chassis work, read the white paper, NI CompactDAQ Technology.
NI CompactDAQ USB chassis provide the plug-and-play simplicity of USB to sensor and electrical measurements. Available with one, four, and eight slots, NI CompactDAQ USB chassis are designed for small, portable, mixed-measurement systems on the benchtop or in the field.
NI CompactDAQ Ethernet chassis extend the reach of high-speed DAQ to remote sensor and electrical measurements. Available with one, four, and eight slots, NI CompactDAQ Ethernet chassis are ideal for distributed measurement systems on the bench or deployed in the field, using standard Ethernet infrastructure.
NI CompactDAQ wireless chassis provide the ultimate solution for remote and distributed measurements. With a simple, zero configuration setup over 802.11 WiFi and support for over 50 measurement-specific modules, the NI cDAQ-9191 can read data from any sensor, regardless of the location.
NI CompactDAQ stand-alone chassis offer a high-performance platform for embedded measurements and data logging. The 8-slot chassis feature an integrated computer and nonvolatile storage, so that NI CompactDAQ can be deployed without an external computer.
Each C Series module is specifically designed for a particular electrical or sensor measurement and contains the signal converter, connectivity, and conditioning circuitry in a single rugged package. Signal conditioning, such as amplification, filtering, excitation, and isolation, is essential for acquiring accurate sensor measurements. You can easily acquire signals from thermocouples, resistance temperature detectors (RTDs), strain gages, load cells, accelerometers, microphones, and many more using the appropriate C Series module.
The software required for any PC-based DAQ system consists of a hardware driver and a development environment. Hardware drivers provide communication between the PC and the DAQ device, allowing software control of the hardware. The driver contains a built-in set of rules called an application programming interface (API) that gives you the ability to control the hardware from within a programming environment. From the programming environment, you can visualize and log data, automate tests, send alarms, and create output waveforms. The hardware driver for NI CompactDAQ and nearly all National Instruments DAQ devices is NI-DAQmx, which uses the same API for NI LabVIEW software, NI LabWindows™/CVI, Visual Studio .NET languages, and ANSI C development.
NI-DAQmx is more than a basic hardware driver. It delivers increased productivity and performance with included configuration and troubleshooting tools, step-by-step configuration utilities, and a powerful, intuitive API for advanced control.
Measurement & Automation Explorer (MAX) gives you instant access to your hardware. With MAX, you can immediately ensure that your NI CompactDAQ chassis and modules are installed and working properly, simulate devices for use in development, manage network settings, configure measurement tasks, and even take simple measurements.
The DAQ Assistant, a step-by-step configuration wizard, guides you through the process to quickly create measurement programs. After you select your device, channel, and measurement type, the DAQ Assistant automatically builds the code for acquiring your data.
The NI-DAQmx API gives you the ability to create custom scales, exposes powerful timing and synchronization capabilities, and allows advanced task control and monitoring. With hundreds of examples, a vibrant community, and world-class, local support, synchronizing a high-channel-count system, creating a decision-based logger, or automating laboratory experiments quickly moves from concept to deployment.
While LabVIEW has emerged as a standard for developing test, measurement, and control applications, NI-DAQmx provides the same interface for many popular programming languages, including Visual Studio .NET languages, ANSI C, and C++. The functions and properties, as well as the order of the functions you use, are the same across all languages so, regardless of programming expertise, you can develop powerful DAQ applications with NI-DAQmx.
LabVIEW is a comprehensive, graphical development environment that helps you quickly build powerful test and measurement systems. With LabVIEW and NI CompactDAQ, you can automate measurements from many sensor and electrical channels, analyze data in parallel with acquisition, and create custom reports all in a matter of minutes. From simple, 1-channel measurement to capturing data from a complex 10,000-channel system, LabVIEW can help you acquire, analyze, and log data in less time.
Measurement Studio provides a collection of managed .NET controls tightly integrated within the Visual Studio .NET environment that are designed specifically for engineers and scientists building virtual instrumentation systems. With Measurement Studio, you can configure plug-in DAQ devices, GPIB instruments, and serial devices from interactive wizards that also generate Visual Basic .NET or Visual C# source code.
NI-DAQmx offers more than 80 example programs for ANSI C while providing the same high-performance multithreaded driver features. If you prefer ANSI C, consider LabWindows/CVI for a proven, integrated development environment that provides a comprehensive set of programming tools for creating test and control applications.
With Chameleon, a software product built by an NI Partner, PVI Systems, and powered by NI LabVIEW system design software, you can get data acquisition and logging systems up and running in minutes. Acquire and log static and dynamic signals from microphone arrays, accelerometers, bridge sensors, thermocouples, and other sensors without programming. The combination of Chameleon and the NI CompactDAQ platform is ideal for a variety of structural test and monitoring applications and creates turnkey systems for NI data acquisition hardware that is simple and intuitive to operate.