Recommended requirements for PC and the Automotive Kit

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Recommended requirements for PC and the Automotive Kit

Postby Richard Cohen » Fri Nov 22, 2002 2:40 am

Could you please tell me what you would suggest the lap top specs (i.e. ram,proccesor speed,hard drive size) should be to take full advantage of the Automotive kit. I work on mostly domestic (North American) and Asian vehicles and specialise in engine, transmission, ABS, and other electronic control systems.

Thanks
Richard
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Minimum Laptop Specification

Postby matthew » Fri Nov 22, 2002 1:36 pm

Any modern Laptop will be fine for use with the automotive kit (I'm assuming that you will not be aiming below a pentium class processor).

The minimum specs are more likely to be governed by how fast you want windows to run rather than our software. I would, however, strongly recommend that you choose Windows 98, 98SE or Me (preferably the latter). These can have a speed advantage with our products.

...also, when you buy the laptop, ensure that it has a parallel port (or purchase one of our USB-Parallel Port adapters).

Best Regards,
Matt Everett

Pico Software Engineer
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It doesn't take a fancy system to make this work.

Postby Steve » Mon Dec 02, 2002 9:40 am

For what its worth, I am currently using the ADC212-100 with an old 486-33 laptop with 16MB RAM, parallel-port interface, WIN95OSR2,
260MB HDD. (Sharp PC-8650)

I believe the ADC212/3 is basically the same thing, just not as fast or deep. I use mine for watching motors on robots and switching power supply startups, which take a very long record length to provide me useful information.


One restriction I have noted is when I take a substantial sample ( say, greater than 1000 readings ), there is a delay as the data transfers. Like a second or so.

If I take it up to the 32K sample/channel limit of the ADC212/100, I may have to wait several seconds for the data to transfer. I kinda expected that. Some of those files are slightly over 100K. My laplink software did not do any better on a file of that size over the parallel port. ( This limitation does not concern me that much, as it takes me much longer than that to view and think about the data I see ).

On the bench, I have been using a Pentium 133/WIN95OSR2/32MB RAM with very good results, but around the robot, I like running the whole setup ( laptop and digitizer) from a 12V battery to eliminate any ground loops that might contaminate my measurements.

On the faster machines, you get more of a live display. From what I have seen, it appears the point of diminishing returns seems to be around a 300MHz Pentium/WIN98.

Beyond that, it looks like the primary limitation is data transfer speed across the parallel bus.

I do take a little performance hit for using a 486, but for what I am doing, its all I need. But I also think this is also the bare minimum one can get away with.
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Pentium Class Processors

Postby matthew » Wed Dec 04, 2002 5:51 pm

You're indeed correct, you can run the software / hardware on a 486, the minimum requirements are detailed here; and it will run quite happily.

... but as you correctly suggest, there can potentially be a small performance penalty on very old systems which is why I tend to recommend pentium class processors :wink:.

You may also notice improved performance on Win 95/98/Me PCs over Win NT/2000/XP PCs though, due to the internal architecture of the operating system.

Best Regards,
Matt Everett

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