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Low-Cost Data Acquisition Instruments Offer Integrated Isolated Amplifiers and Record to SD Memory Cards

AKRON, OH, May, 2005 — DATAQ® Instruments announces the release of the DI-718B Series, a family of low-cost data acquisition instruments with integrated, isolated amplifiers that record to Secure Digital (SD) memory cards.

The DI-718B Series instruments are the first to combine the features of integrated, low-cost isolated amplifiers and the ability to record to Secure Digital (SD) memory cards. SD cards are removable compact storage devices used in many consumer digital media devices such as MP3 players and digital cameras.

Depending on the model, the 14-bit, eight-channel instruments either stream data to a PC or collect data as a stand-alone data logger. They are available with either USB or Ethernet interface.

At the same time, DATAQ has announced the release of its isolated amplifier modules. The DATAQ DI-8B Modules integrate with DI-718B instruments and are half the cost of competing products. They are the world's smallest, fully functional, isolated analog signal conditioners.

When the new modules are inserted into a DI-718B instrument, the resulting system is one small box measuring only 5.4 × 4.1 × 1.5 inches (14 × 11 × 4 cm). Competitive solutions require two boxes — one for signal conditioning and a second for data acquisition. Because of their compact design, the DI-718B instrument and DI-8B modules combine to form the smallest data acquisition/logging system in its class.

Most Features in Its Price Range

At a cost-per-channel as low as $163 for eight isolated inputs, the DI-718B Series is the most competitively priced, amplified and isolated data acquisition/logging solution on the market. Yet it offers advanced features usually reserved for more expensive instruments. These include a channel scan list, high-resolution analog-to-digital conversion, high sample-rate throughput, and advanced computer interface options.

Channel Scan List

A built-in programmable scan list allows channel numbers to be dynamically selected during scanning to precisely match signal requirements on a channel-by-channel basis.

High Resolution

14-bit resolution analog-to-digital conversion provides a responsive instrument capable of registering changes as small as one part in 16384 (0.006% of the full scale measurement range).

High Sample Rate Throughput

All DI-718B products have eight analog input channels, each of which is capable of accepting a DI-8B amplifier module. PC-tethered instruments stream data to the PC at a 4800-sample-per-second throughput rate. Stand-alone instruments store data to their SD memory cards at a maximum sample throughput rate of 14400 samples per second. SD memory cards are commonly available and support memory capacities of 8 MB to 1 GB.

Server Capability

These systems are the first in their price range to offer data-acquisition server capability. Operating in stand-alone mode, a DI-718B instrument can supply data upon request, via an Ethernet network. This eliminates the need to remove the SD memory card and physically carry the data to a PC for analysis. Instead, engineers can obtain data remotely, over a LAN to a PC on the other side of a facility, or over the Internet to a PC on the other side of the world.


The DI-718B is a robust instrument that can be applied to nearly any industrial data acquisition or logging situation that requires a tough, amplified, and isolated solution.

Data acquisition applications include monitoring industrial machinery for maintenance and troubleshooting, in-vehicle automotive testing, and timing and amplitude measurements on presses and mill equipment. Stand-alone data logging is used when a PC cannot be located near the instrument for fear of theft or damage, when the location is remote, or when a PC cannot be dedicated to an ongoing data collection application.

DI-8B amplifier modules may be mixed and matched withinthe DI-718B to precisely address any application requirement. Typical measurements are AC/DC voltages from ±10 mV to ±60 V, 4-20 mA process current,thermocouples, string potentiometers, strain gage-based transducers, and frequency/rpm. Further, the intrinsic isolation of DI-8B amplifiers allows successful measurements in the presence of common mode voltages that would literally destroy similarly priced, but non-isolated competitive products Input-to output isolation is maintained up to 1000 VDC or peak AC. Channel-to-channel isolation is 500 VDC or peak AC.

Power for the instrument may be any 9-36 VDC source. An AC adapter is provided that supports U.S. and international power standards.

Supporting Software

The DI-718B series of data acquisition instruments is supported by a suite of included software modules. WinDaq/Lite software provides a ready-to-run, no programming environment for acquiring, displaying, recording, reviewing, analyzing, and exporting waveform information for PC-tethered or stand-alone configurations. WinDaq/HS is similar to WinDaq/Lite, except it allows throughput-to-disk rates of 4800 Hz.

In addition, a stand-alone utility is included that allows a complete data acquisition configuration to be designed and downloaded to the DI-718B from any local or remote PC for stand-alone applications. Also it provides the ability to upload data stored to the SD memory over the instrument's optional Ethernet interface.

Finally, an ActiveX Control library permits access to DI-718B functions using Windows® programming languages such as VisualBASIC and C++.

Price and Availability

All models in the DI-718B Series are available from stock beginning July 1, 2005. SD memory cards are priced at $35 to $79, depending on the amount of memory. An SD memory card reader is available for $25.

Model Stand-alone Data Logger Capability? Interface Price
DI-718B-U No USB $595
DI-718B-US Yes USB $695
DI-718B-E No Ethernet $795
DI-718B-ES Yes Ethernet $895

Go to the Product Page for more information


DATAQ Instruments, Inc., based in Akron, Ohio is a leading producer of PC-based, real-time data acquisition hardware and software. DATAQ supplies the PC-based instrumentation needs for medical research, and industrial test and measurement customers. For more information on the DI-718B Data Acquisition / Data Logger Series, call DATAQ Instruments at 330-668-1444 or write to: DATAQ Instruments, Inc. 241 Springside Drive, Akron OH 44333, or visit the DATAQ Web site at Email requests for information to