|Dataquest Solutions are pleased to provide advice on:-
|* Choosing the best system *
|* Providing installation advice *
|* Post-sale technical support *
Support is normally provided free of charge. For special situations, for example writing
special application software software and on site installation a consultancy service is available
and we are happy to discuss this with you. DataQuest Solutions aim to provide an honest advice!
If we feel that our hardware is not suitable for a particular application we will use our experience
in the data acquisition field to make further recommendations.
Installation help - Spectrum cards
DataQuest Solutions strive supply systems that install without problem. However here is
some general advice that may help. Remember that an unexpected results/signals, or indeed
nothing at all, can be for a number of reasons not necessarily due to a fault.
- Ensure your hardware connections are all tight, both the cables and the cards themselves.
PCI boards in particular may seem seated, but are generally a tight fit, so look closely
and ensure the edge connector is sitting well down and level in the slot.
*PLEASE REMEMBER TO ALWAYS TAKE ANTI-STATIC PRECAUTIONS WHEN HANDLING THE BOARD,
BY ELECTRICALLY GROUNDING YOURSELF TO EARTH, OTHERWISE STATIC ELECTRICITY COULD DAMAGE COMPONENTS!*
- Does the problem exist on all channels? Try swapping to another channel. All
channels have separate A/D's and amplifiers. If only one is working but the others are
fine, then its highly likely there is a hardware fault.
- If you have another signal connection cable try this. A simple fault like this
can be overlooked.
- For Spectrum analogue signal capture hardware it is recommended that you install the Sbench software that came
on CD with the hardware - and run a test with this. This is a very useful cross check both for
software and hardware problems. Use the Sbench oscilloscope screen to observe a test signal.
This signal is best verified by secondary bench equipment e.g. oscilloscope.
(NOTE: The Spectrum PCI.248 and 258 models have jumper selectable AC coupling for blocking DC signals).
Ensure you set the gain range to encompass the maximum voltage you are likely to see.
A factor that can often cause strange results is an input signal with a floating ground. This can
cause an input voltage to drift beyond the boards range. For example it could also be that the
ground of the power supply to your signal generating equipment is sitting at a very different voltage
level to that of the acquisition hardware! If you are using 50 ohm input impedance setting,
ensure your signal is not being pulled low by this load.
Digital I/O hardware can also be tested with the Sbench software. Use a TTL (0 to 5 volt)
signal. Do not exceed 5.5V. Click the run arrow on the top menu bar and select a digital
display for the "NEW" pull-down menu.
For signal generator hardware test the cards function using SPEasyGenerator,
this provides a virtual control panel for all formats of the 60 and 61xx range,
and generates standard waveforms (sine, square etc.).
Does your card produce that which is expected?
- Should the card be working but you are achieving unreliable results or error messages please
install the latest drivers. These are freely available (with a history of any bug fixes)
from the maunfacturers site at:-
The Spectrum Control Center
This is installed automatically with the Spectrum M2i and M3i driver and found
most easily from the Spectrum Cards icon in the MS Windows Control Panel. It also
provides a technical support function, which can greatly help our support team finding
any problems you might encounter in the rare situations as described in (5) above.
Click the support tab in the Control Center to open the window as shown below).
Set the logging to "log all including library calls". This
generates a ASCII text file to a chosen file path. With this it is possible to see
what driver calls were made and in what order with a standard text editor.
Should you require further help, please forward this file together with your:-
- Board model number
- Board serial number
- M2i / M3i Driver version
This information can be found under the Control Center "card" and "versions" tabs.
Our support contact details are given at the bottom of this page.
Using Linux? You can also use the Spectrum Control Center! However it is not installed
automatically as a number of associated packages are required to be installed,
before using the script; "install_control_center.sh" (found on the driver CD).
Please see the Linux section in the Software Driver Installation chapter of your
Spectrum card manual for more information.
Portable Solutions - PCI Expansion Docking Stations
Frequently asked questions and answers about PCI Docking Stations
Using the PCMCIA (a.k.a PCcard) PC host slot
Docking Station problems may relate to an unsuccessful install, manifesting itself as
the inability of the computer system to see the installed card. For XP/2000
check in the MS Windows Control Panel - Device Manager, see if your card is showing.
If it is but it has an exclamation mark "!" showing adjacent to it, try installing
a simple PCI card e.g. Ethernet card. Is the problem still there? If so it is a
more a compatibility problem with the PCCard bus. Take a look at the PCMCIA
adapters in the same window, is there a "!" next to this?
This indicates an incomplete driver install or a incompatibility problem to your
notebooks system. If a re-install fails to help, try another Notebook PC if available and compare.
If problems continue contact DataQuest solutions for help,(see link at the bottom of this page.
Using the Expresscard Notebook PC host slot
Generally there should be no compatbility isssues across the different computer models
however do call should you have any problems. Use this newer interface slot in preference to PCMCIA (PCcard)
Drivers for 1, 2 and 4 slot PCI-Docking Station - all available PC interface types, Windows XP only.
Driver installation NOT required for 1 , 2 and 4 slot PCI-Docking
Stations, for any host PC interface when using Vista, 7 or MacOS X platforms.
If you are experiencing an Error Code 12 (unable to allocate resources) in MS Windows on attempting
to operate the docking station please contact DataQuest Solutions for an alternative driver
Portable Solutions - PCI-Express (ExpressBox) Docking Stations
Frequently asked questions and answers about PCI-e Docking Stations
PCI Express Docking Station should not require additional drivers except for those
for your installed card. Only under XP can Docking Station drivers be occasionally required.
This requirement will be manifested by the inability of the computer system to see the installed card.
Check in the MS Windows Control Panel - Device Manager, see if your card is showing.
If an exclamation mark "!" showing adjacent to the PCMCIA adapters load the free drivers which follow:-.
Drivers for PCI-Express Docking Stations.
Windows XP only.
Driver installation NOT required for Vista, 7 and Mac OS X.
Portable Solutions - Portable PC's, the "Pro" series.
Internally many of electronic items such as CPU's, drives etc share a commonality
with standard PC's, however it is recommended that you contact DataQuest Solutions
in the first relative to problems with hardware. With PC's it is frequently better and
more economic to replace most items rather than repair. We would normally request
the return of the portable PC for this. It is recommended that these units
be returned to Data quest Solutions for servicing, whether or not it is in within
warranty. In the latter case a repair/parts estimate will be provided.
For support on operating system related issues we would normally request you contact
Microsoft support or for Linux search
the numerous forums on-line, but we will help if we can;
e.g. configuration of PC hardware with the operating system.
Call or e-mail using the link at the bottom of this page, explaining the situation
and we will do our best to help.
Returns procedure and associated terms and conditions.
Returns documentation .PDF (135KB)
SUPPORT CONTACT DETAILS
|Telephone: 01462 857877
|Fax: 01462 811492 (A diagram speaks a thousand words!)
|E-MAIL. (We aim to reply within 1 working day).
© DataQuest Solutions 2003, last modified 30.03.12