Validator 1: A Versatile USB Powered or Standalone Arbitrary Digital Pattern and Analog Signal Generator
Sequim Tek announces Validator 1, a low cost benchtop development tool for quickly generating stimulus for debug and control setups.
Preparation of digital and analog signals for debugging electronic components and systems typically starts with writing code. For example, a C program might be created to setup the GPIO or DACs resources available on a favorite microcontroller. Or specialized vendor software is used to program lab instruments. Often these methods have constraints for pattern size, voltages, and timing that are not ideal. In addition, preparation of complex patterns is sometimes tedious because copy and paste is not an option. Sequim Tek has developed an affordable and practical alternative for the problem solver’s personal toolbox.
Validator 1 offers USB programmability for 16 X 4K DIO channels and 2 DACs, with a range of +/- 10V. Patterns are created by traditional tester methods. At each time step, voltage values and logic states are specified. Line by line time steps create a matrix that naturally fits a spreadsheet. Spreadsheets allow the advantage of auto cell indexing for copy and paste. Analog waveforms can be specified by equation as a function of time.
Logical formulas add another layer of flexibility for data entry. Create custom translators that input your preferred data format to deliver a protocol such as SPI, UART, parallel, etc. Examples are available.
Validator 1 also provides functional flexibility. For example because the number of clocks per line is a variable, the maximum pattern length can be 4 Meg. For debugging, any DIO channel can be tested at any line for its logic state. Program control instructions are available too. For example, jump on test fail to somewhere else in the pattern.
Pattern preparation starts with a template worksheet. One time Setup variables include selection of clock frequency and choice of how the pattern is initiated. Pattern control commands available at each step include Jump, Jump on fail, and Pause. Run, Step, and Reset buttons are available on the unit as well as the host Control Panel. Example templates include continuous loops of arbitrary waveforms and SPI protocol. All examples are available at the website. New and interesting solutions are posted when available. With the Arbitrary Pulse and Sine templates, Validator 1 becomes a waveform generator requiring only inputs of amplitude and frequency.
With the accompanying Breakout Board, the Digital output voltages can be translated from the standard 3.3V to any level from 1.5V to 5.5V. In addition, with simple external connections between multiple units, synchronous operation of 32 or 64 channels is possible.
- DC to 50 Mhz digital pattern
- 24 Mhz internal clock with option to use an external clock source
- 2 DACs programmable from -10V to +10V specified in volts at each step
- Stop on Fail option and failed channels continuously logged by host
- Nonvolatile program memory allows reloading the pattern without a computer
- Power by USB or external 5V supply
- Start patterns by pushbutton or selectable external signal edge
- Host application runs on Windows computers