What Can I Do with the NI X Series?

Publish Date: Mar 15, 2016 | 2 Ratings | 4.50 out of 5 | Print

Table of Contents

  1. Acquiring, Visualizing, and Logging Data
  2. Control Systems
  3. Test Automation
  4. Signal Generation
  5. Next Steps

1. Acquiring, Visualizing, and Logging Data


Whether you are validating a new hardware design, monitoring conditions on a factory floor, or recording temperature changes during a scientific experiment, you need to take measurements, visualize your data, and often log it to disk. With data acquisition, you can develop a user-defined measurement system by using intuitive graphical programming software to build in the exact visualization, analysis, and data-logging capabilities your application requires.

With NI X Series multifunction data acquisition (DAQ) devices, basic analog and digital signal acquisition is easy using included NI-DAQmx driver software and NI LabVIEW SignalExpress LE data-logging software. You can easily add more advanced analysis and logic to your application with the LabVIEW graphical development environment. LabVIEW helps you create a custom user interface with its numerous front panel controls and indicators, such as graphs, knobs, and switches.

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2. Control Systems


If you need to control the temperature of a room, the speed of a motor, or the pressure of hydraulic fluids, you can use data acquisition hardware to connect sensors and actuators to your computer and build the exact control system to meet your application needs. With the application software, you can set parameters for control algorithms and create a custom user interface.

With a low-latency, high-bandwidth PCI Express interface, X Series devices for PCI Express and PXI Express are ideal for closed-loop control applications. You can use LabVIEW software and NI-DAQmx driver software to easily take sensor measurements, compare values to a setpoint, and update output signals.

X Series devices also have four counter/timers for performing quadrature encoder measurements, PWM, frequency measurements, and much more, which means they are well-suited for basic motor control.

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3. Test Automation


Reducing time and costs while increasing productivity is a priority for engineers and management, and automation is one of the main ways to achieve this. Testing and characterizing a device under test (DUT) is typically conducted by implementing a stimulus that mimics a real-world situation and then measuring its response. You can automate this process with off-the-shelf hardware and software to reduce test times and cost.

X Series devices have accurate analog inputs, hardware-timed digital I/O, and four counter/timers on a single device, which makes them a cost-effective option for basic DUT characterization and test automation. With NI-DAQmx software, you can easily synchronize acquisition or generation on multiple subsystems, such as an analog input and analog output channel. In addition, you can easily synchronize two or more X Series devices for further expansion by using a Real-Time System Integration (RTSI) cable for PCI Express devices or over the PXI Express backplane for PXI Express devices.

You can use LabVIEW to easily create automation sequences, establish pass/fail conditions for your tests, and create user interfaces for your test operators to use.

See more information on X Series for test automation

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4. Signal Generation

Certain applications require that you generate only a digital or analog signal. This could be toggling on and off relays in a manufacturing facility, supplying a simple DC voltage to a DUT, or generating analog waveforms to simulate the engine of a car.

X Series devices provide up to four analog outputs and 48 digital output lines on a single device. You can hardware time up to 32 of these digital lines at rates up to 10 MHz, and you can use the four onboard counters to generate pulse trains, including PWM. You can store a waveform of up to 8,191 samples in the output first-in-first-out (FIFO) memory buffer for the analog output channels. This is ideal for applications that repeat, such as sine waves, square waves, or sawtooth waves. For longer, arbitrary waveform output, you can stream data over the high-speed PCI Express interface to the device using the DMA functionality incorporated into the X Series.

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5. Next Steps

Read the X Series overview for key features and technologies

View specs and pricing

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