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USB Streaming Performance Tips For USRP-2900/2901

Last Modified: May 14, 2020

USB streaming requires the ability for a device to process multiple streams at the same time and move data quickly to and from PC memory.

You may experience issues with USB streaming because, unlike PCI designs, USB and other external buses such as Ethernet and wireless lack the bandwidth and latency specifications of internal buses. USB, Ethernet, and wireless data acquisition devices are limited by a host-driven protocol with no DMA channels. The following tips may improve streaming performance:

  • Ensure you are using the USRP-2900/2901 device with USB 3.0/USB (SS) to maximize streaming throughput. You can check which USB you are using by opening the NI-USRP Configuration Utility.
  • Use the Producer/Consumer design pattern. Refer to and enter the Info Code ex5sbi for more information.
  • Shut down any non-critical process like anti-virus scanners, as they can slow down streaming throughput.
  • Keep the number of streams to the minimal amount required for your application to maximize throughput.
  • Use a USB controller with greater compatibility with the USRP-2900/2901. NI recommends Intel Series 7, 8, and 9 USB controllers.

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