Instrument Control (GPIB, Serial, VISA, IVI)

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Capturing plots using GPIB-Equipped PC

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I have several instruments that will send output to an HPGL plotter at the
press of a button. Is there a convenient method to capture the plot
information using a PC with natinst GPIB card installed?

tnx
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There are two possible ways that instruments work with a printer or plotter:

1) The way most instruments do direct hardcopy: instrument is a talker-only
(talker always) and plotter is a listner-only (listener always. (This is a
very limited GPIB configuration because no other devices can be added to the
bus. You can't have multiple talekr only devices. You could have multiple
listen only devices, but they would all receive the exact same data whenever
the talker sends it.) I believe you could use some low level board level
IBxxx commands to make a NI488 act as a listener only, but as mentioned this
would not be a very practical system.

2) Many instruments provide GPIB command(s) to setup and initiate a hardcopy
or print screen operation. The detai
ls vary by instrument, but in general you
could SEND the command(s) to start the hardcopy and then do an IBRDF to read
in the data and save it to a file. Of course, the data is whatever the
instrument sent, and the instrument thinks its sending directly to a plotter
or printer. So the file would be suitable for sending to that kind of
printer, but it necessarily be something useful on the PC (or Mac or Sun or
whatever).

Check with the instrument maker's website and/or tech support people for more
info, and examples. For example, www.tektronix.com has example programs to
capture scope hardcopy output.

Good luck!

anon wrote:

> I have several instruments that will send output to an HPGL plotter at the
> press of a button. Is there a convenient method to capture the plot
> information using a PC with natinst GPIB card installed?
>
> tnx

--
Best Regards,
Mike T

Mike Tranchemontagne
Consulting Applications Engineer
TeraComm, Inc.
148 Main Street
Building A, 3rd Floor
North Andover,
MA 01845
877-900-TERA (8372)
978-557-9490 (FAX)
603-598-4773 (Direct Line and Cell)
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