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MX.3121 | Spectrum

12 bit transient recorder

  • Up to 10 MS/s on 4 channels
  • Simultaneously sampling on all channels
  • 8 input ranges: +/-50 mV up to +/-10 V
  • Up to 64 MSample on-board memory
  • 32 MSample standard memory installed
  • Window and pulsewidth trigger
  • Input offset up to +/-100%
  • Synchronization possible
  • CompactPCI/PXI 3U compatible
  • Supporting PXI star trigger
  • Supporting PXI trigger bus
  • Supporting PXI reference clock

Application Examples

  • Multi-channel data acquisition
  • Vibration Analysis of engine parts
  • Combustion optimization

General Information

The MX.31xx series allows recording of two or four channels with sampling rates of 1 MS/s, 10 MS/s or 25 MS/s. Due to the proven design a wide variety of 12 bit A/D converter boards for PXI bus can be offered. These boards are available in several versions and different speed grades making it possible for the user to find an individual solution. As an option 4 digital inputs per channel can be recorded synchronously. The installed memory of up to 64 MSample will be used for fast data recording. It can completely be used by the currently active channels. If using slower sampling rates the memory is switched to a FIFO buffer and data will be transferred online to the PC memory or to hard disk.

Based on the CompactPCI 3U standard the PXI (PCI eXtensions for Instrumentation) enhancement was defined especially for the measurement user. In this specification additional lines for measure ment purposes are defined. There is a high-quality 10 MHz reference clock, as well as a star trigger and a trigger bus. The Spectrum boards support all these features, most notably with the help of the reference clock and the star trigger module for an easy combination of products - in including those from different companies. Since September 2003 Spectrum is a member of the PXI system alliance. The Spectrum PXI cards run in a plain CompactPCI 3U slot as well as in a dedicated PXI 3U slot. If using the MX series in a plain CompactPCI slot the PXI features will not be available.

FIFO mode

The FIFO mode is designed for continuous data transfer between measurement board and PC memory (with up to 100 MByte/s) or hard disk. The control of the data stream is done automatically by the driver on interrupt request. The complete installed on-board memory is used for buffer data, making the continuous streaming extremely reliable.

PXI Star Trigger Card (Optional)

The MX.9010 is a special PXI star trigger card designed for the Spectrum PXI products. It allows to route clock and trigger synchronously to all PXI slots that are connected to the star trigger slot. The PXI reference clock is overwritten and external trigger events are synchronized to the sampling clock.

Ring buffer mode

The ring buffer mode is the standard mode of all acquisition boards. Data is written in a ring memory of the board until a trigger event is detected. After the event the posttrigger values are recorded. Because of this continuously recording into a ring buffer there are also samples prior to the trigger event visible: Pretrigger = Memsize - Posttrigger.

Channel Trigger

The data acquisition boards offer a wide variety of trigger modes. Besides the standard signal checking for level and edge as known from oscilloscopes it's also possible to define a window trigger. Trigger conditions can be combined with logical conjunctions like OR to adopt to different application scenarios.

External Trigger

All boards can be triggered using an external TTL signal. It's possible to use positive or negative edge also in combination with a programmable pulse width. An internally recognized trigger event can - when activated by software - be routed to the trigger connector to start external instruments.

Gated Sampling

The Gated Sampling option allows data recording controlled by an external gate signal. Data is only recorded if the gate signal has a programmed level. In addition a pre-area before start of the gate signal as well as a post area after end of the gate signal can be acquired. The number of gate segments is only limited by the used memory and is unlimited when using FIFO mode.

Multiple Recording

The Multiple Recording option allows the recording of several trigger events with an extremely short re-arming time. The hardware doesn't need to be restarted in between. The on-board memory is divided in several segments of the same size. Each of them is filled with data if a trigger event occurs. Pre- and posttrigger of the segments can be programmed. The number of acquired segments is only limited by the used memory and is unlimited when using FIFO mode.

Pulsewidth Trigger

Defines the minimum or maximum width that a trigger pulse must have to generate a trigger event. Pulse width can be combined with channel trigger, pattern trigger and external trigger. This makes it possible to trigger on signal errors like too long or too short pulses.

PXI Trigger

The Spectrum cards support star trigger as well as the PXI trigger bus. using a simple software commend one or more trigger lines can be used as trigger source. This feature allows the easy setup of OR connected triggers from different cards.

External Clock

Using a dedicated connector a sampling clock can be fed in from an external system. It's also possible to output the internally used sampling clock to synchronize external equipment to this clock.

PXI Reference Clock

The card is able to use the 10 MHz reference clock that is supplied by the PXI system. Enabled by software the PXI reference clock is feeded in the on-board PLL. This feature allows the cards to run with a fixed phase relation.

Reference Clock

The option to use a precise external reference clock (normally 10 MHz) is necessary to synchronize the board for high-quality measurements with external equipment (like a signal source). It's also possible to enhance the quality of the sampling clock in this way. The driver automatically generates the requested sampling clock from the fed in reference clock.

Digital Inputs (Optional)

This option acquires additional synchronous digital channels phase-stable with the analog data. When the option is installed and activated additional digital inputs are stored in the unused bits of each ADC word (2 digital inputs on 14 bit A/D and 4 digital inputs on 12 bit A/D)

Programmable Input Amplifiers

The analog inputs can be adapted to real world signals using a wide variety of settings that are individual for each channel. By using software commands the input termination can be changed between 50 Ohm and 1 MOhm and one can select an input range matching the real world signal.

Programmable Input Offset

Most of the Spectrum A/D cards offer a user programmable signal offset opening the Spectrum boards to a wide variety of setups. The signal offset at least covers a range of +/-100 % of the currently selected input range making unipolar measurements with the card possible. Besides this the input range offset can be programmed individually allowing a perfect match of the A/D card section to the real world signal.

Synchronous Sampling

All acquisition cards from Spectrum are built with a completely synchronous design. Every channel has its own independent input amplifier as well as an independent ADC allowing to program all input channel related settings individually for each channel.

3rd Party Drivers

A lot of third-party products are supported by the Spectrum driver. Choose between LabVIEW, MATLAB, LabWindows/CVI and IVI. All drivers come with examples and detailed documentation.

Programming Examples

Programming examples for Microsoft Visual C++, Borland C++ Builder, Gnu C++ (CygWin), Borland Delphi, Microsoft Visual Basic, C#, J#, VB.Net, Python and LabWindows/CVI are delivered with the driver. Due to the simple interface of the driver, the integration in other programming languages or special measurement software is an easy task.


All cards are delivered with full Linux support. Pre compiled kernel modules are included for the most common distributions like RedHat, Fedora, Suse, Ubuntu or Debian. The Linux support includes SMP systems, 32 bit and 64 bit systems, versatile programming examples for Gnu C++ as well as the possibility to get the driver sources for own compilation.


SBench 6 is a powerful and intuitive interactive measurement software. Besides the possibility to commence the measuring task immediately, without programming, SBench 6 combines the setup of hardware, data display, oscilloscope, transient recorder, waveform generator, analyzing functions, import and export functions under one easy-to-use interface.


This standard driver is included in the card delivery and it is possible to get the newest driver version free of charge from our homepage at any time. There are no additional SDK fees for the classical text-based programming. All boards are delivered with drivers for Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10, all 32 bit and 64 bit.

File NameInfoLast modifiedFile Size
mx31_datasheet_english.pdfData sheet of the MX.31xx family29.08.17322 kBytes
mx31_manual_english.pdfManual of MX.31xx family29.08.173 MBytes
spa_amplifier_datasheet_english.pdfData sheet of SPA pre-amplifier29.08.17352 kBytes
sbench6_datasheet_english.pdfData sheet of SBench 629.08.17737 kBytes
mi31xx_labview_english.pdfLabVIEW Manual for MI/MC/MX.31xx28.05.13253 kBytes
matlab_manual_english.pdfManual for MATLAB drivers for MI/MC/MX28.05.1368 kBytes
sbench6_manual_english.pdfManual for SBench 629.08.176 MBytes
WINDOWS Drivers + Software
File NameInfoLast modifiedFile Size
drv_7_8_10_32bit_v409b13000.zipMI/MC/MX/ Windows 7/8/10 32 Bit Drivers22.03.17388 kBytes
drv_7_8_10_64bit_v409b13000.zipMI/MC/MX/ Windows 7/8/10 64 Bit Drivers22.03.17589 kBytes
drv_98_2k_32bit_v339b5632.zipMI/MC/MX/ Windows 98/NT 32 Bit Drivers22.03.17344 kBytes
drv_xp_vista_32bit_v408b8515.zipMI/MC/MX/ Windows XP/Vista 32 Bit Drivers22.03.17372 kBytes
drv_xp_vista_64bit_v408b8515.zipMI/MC/MX/ Windows XP/Vista 64 Bit Drivers22.03.17565 kBytes
sbench5_install.exeSBench 5 Installer29.08.174 MBytes
sbench6_v6.4.2b14211.exeSBench 6 (32-bit) Installer / Windows 7, 8, 1022.12.1732 MBytes
sbench6_64bit_v6.4.2b14211.exeSBench 6 (64-bit) Installer / Windows 7, 8, 1022.12.1735 MBytes
micx_drv_labview_install.exeMI / MC / MX LabVIEW Driver22.03.177 MBytes
micx_drv_matlab_install.exeMI / MC / MX MATLAB driver + examples22.03.17696 kBytes
micx_examples_install.exeMI / MC / MX Examples for C/C++, Delphi, VB, LabWindows/CVI, ...22.03.17649 kBytes
LINUX Drivers + Software
File NameInfoLast modifiedFile Size
micx_linux_drv_v409b13000.tgzMI / MC / MX Linux 32 bit and 64 bit Drivers22.03.1717 MBytes
sbench6_6.4.02b14211-2_i386.debSBench 6 Linux 32 (.deb)22.12.1725 MBytes
sbench6-6.4.02b14211-1.32bit.rpmSBench 6 Linux 32 (.rpm)22.12.1723 MBytes
sbench6_6.4.02b14211-2_amd64.debSBench 6 Linux 64 (.deb)22.12.1724 MBytes
sbench6-6.4.02b14211-1.64bit.rpmSBench 6 Linux 64 (.rpm)22.12.1723 MBytes
samples_gnu.tgzMI / MC / MX Linux Examples (C/C++)23.03.1752 kBytes
Product Note
NameInfoLast modifiedFile Size
Digitizer Acquisition ModesUsing modular Digitizer Acquisition Modes19.02.152 MBytes
Digitizer Front-EndProper Use of Digitizer Front-End Signal Conditioning19.02.152 MBytes
High-Res High BW DigitizersAdvantages of High Resolution in High Bandwidth Digitizers19.02.152 MBytes
General Digitizer IntroductionGeneral Introduction to Waveform Digitizers19.02.15572 kBytes
Trigger and SyncTrigger, Clock and Synchronization Details at high-speed Digitizers19.02.151 MBytes
SBench 6 IntroductionSBench 6 - Data Acquisition and Analysis of Digitizer Data19.02.151 MBytes
Application Note
NameInfoLast modifiedFile Size
Common Digitizer Setup ProblemsApplication Note: Common Digitizer Setup Problems to avoid18.03.161 MBytes
Using Probes & SensorsUsing Probes and Sensors with Modular Digitizers09.04.15838 kBytes
Signal Processing ToolsUsing Signal Processing Tools to enhance Digitizer Data19.02.151 MBytes
Teaming AWG with DigitizerTeaming an Arbitrary Waveform Generator with a Modular Digitizer11.01.16897 kBytes

Contact Information