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PCA-8428, PCA-8429, PCA-8438, PCA-8439

The PCA-842x and PCA-843x are powerful general-purpose multifunctional PCI Express cards offering all common I/O features.

The card provides 8 or 16 isolated analog inputs, fitted with 14-bit A/D converter and with the biggest data buffer in its class (32 kB); it provides data for more than 150 ms at the highest sampling frequency.

The card also provides two analog outputs with 12-bit D/A converters, two programmable counters with encoders (features like the PCT-8303 card) and three 8-bit bidirectional digital ports, software configurable as input or output. Moreover, the power-up configuration of analog outputs and DIO ports can be easily modified by the software utility and stored into onboard EEPROM memory.

Although analog outputs work with a single range, they are equipped with freely configurable maximum and minimum limiters. As a result, each output can be configured for the required range.

The card also provides includes IRQ logic with interrupt sources derived not only from EOS (end of the measurement sequence), programmable FIFO flag and from the internal timer, but from rising or falling edge of each digital port signal (i.e. 48 individually programmable interrupt sources).

The PCA-842x and PCA-843x cards are based on a FPGA unified core providing implementation of PCI Express bus and all peripheral circuitry, e.g. solution that gives maximum control and supervision over full functionality. High concentration of control algorithms within FPGA allows to add or modify functions without redesign the board.

All DAQ PCI Express cards are equipped CardID - two segment DIP switch that allows to recognise up to 4 cards (especially when installing multiple cards of the same type).

PCA-8428, PCA-8429, PCA-8438 and PCA-8439 diferences

PCA-8428: 8 analog inputs and analog outputs
PCA-8429: 8 analog inputs
PCA-8438: 16 analog inputs and analog outputs
PCA-8439: 16 analog inputs

All other features including isolation of analog I/O block are identical.

Standard and low-profile version

The cards are supplied in two versions - standard as PCA-84xx and as PCA-84xx/LP. Except for the different I/O connectors (see the following paragraphs), all other features of both versions are identical.

In the case of a standard version, the analog inputs and outputs are accessible via the D-Sub 25 connector, first digital port with the counter function via the D-Sub 9 connector then (PCE-8019 cable); both of them are located on the card mounting bracket. Next two digital ports are accessible via the PCE-16xx series adaptor (not included), using the card mounting bracket with two D-Sub 25 or D-Sub 9 connectors.

In the case of a low-profile version, the analog inputs and outputs are accessible via the D-Sub 25 connector located on the card mounting bracket. All three digital ports are accessible via the PCE-8025/LP adaptor (not included), using the card mounting bracket with one D-Sub 25.

Delivery details

The product packet includes the PCI Express card only, all documentation and software are available in the Download section.


Type PCA-8428 (standard version)
PCA-8428/LP (low-profile version)
PCA-8429 (standard version)
PCA-8429/LP (low-profile version)
PCA-8438 (standard version)
PCA-8438/LP (low-profile version)
PCA-8439 (standard version)
PCA-8439/LP (low-profile version)
Analog inputs 8x S.E. (PCA-8428, PCA-8429)
16x S.E. (PCA-8438, PCA-8439)
ADC resolution 14-bit
Input ranges ±10V, ±5V, ±2,5V, ±1,25V, ±0,625V, ±0,3125V
Overvoltage protection ±24V continuously
5A, 8/20 µs, IEC 801-5 (TVS diodes 28V/230W)
Sampling frequency
see note below
100kHz max.
Sampling mode software polling
internal pacer timer
external pacer signal (via digital input)
Data buffer 32kB (FIFO)
Analog outputs 2 (PCA-8428, PCA-8438)
2 (PCA-8429, PCA-8439)
DAC resolution 2x 12-bit
Output range ±10V
(configurable max./min. limiters for every outputs)
Output load 2kΩ min. (5mA/channel max.)
(sustained short-circuit proof)
Settling time 0.005ms typ.
Analog inputs/outputs
isolation voltage
1kVDC (600VDC when ESD-X1 used)
Isolation protection Surge arrester CG5-600L
(ESD-X1 option)
Number and type of counters 2x 32-bit bidirectional with programmable encoders
Encoder modes quadrature (X1, X2, X4)
Counter inputs frequency 2MHz max. (quadrature modes, phase frequency)
4MHz max. (all other modes, clock frequency)
(maximum frequency is defined for signal asymmetry 40/60% max., the rule applies to all modes)
Counter inputs signal level see DIO ports description below
Number of digital inputs 24/16/8/0
(three 8-bit bidirectional ports, see digital outputs)
Digital inputs signal level TTL/HC
Number of digital outputs 0/8/16/24
(three 8-bit bidirectional ports, see digital inputs)
Digital outputs signal level TTL/HC
Interrupt sources EOS (end of the measurement sequence)
programmable FIFO flag
internal timer 1÷255ms
rising/falling edge of each digital port signal
Bus type PCI Express (x1, Gen 1)
Dimensions approx. 56x128 mm
(low-profile version, or main board of standard version, see pictures above)
Weight approx. 80 g (standard version)
approx. 60 g (low-profile version)
Weight and dimensions
of product packaging
approx. 130 g (standard version)
approx. 110 g (low-profile version)
cardboard box approx. 180x130x40 mm

Note: The maximum sampling frequency shown above is defined for the signal source input impedance of 1 kΩ max.