FTDI introduces Multi-Chip Solution for developing USB-to-RS232 systems

The USB solutions specialist FTDI Chip has extended its portfolio of semiconductor solutions for USB-to-RS232 interfacing, with the new USB-DUO that bundles the company’s latest high performance USB bridge controller ICs with its RS232 transceiver IC, and which provides engineers with a platform on which they can create their own USB-to-RS232 converter cabling systems – supporting speeds of up to 250 kbits/s.

The FT231XS provides the USB-to-UART conversion operation while the FT3243S transceiver provides the digital-to-RS232 conversion, translating the 3.3 V level UART signal from the FT231XS to RS232 voltage levels.

The USB-DUO product benefits from the feature-rich composition of two ICs. The FT231XS’s internal EEPROM memory handles storage of USB configuration data and allows for customising of the device descriptors to match an OEM’s particular description preference. An internal phased-locked-loop (PLL) provides system timing.

The FT3243S transceiver has a built-in transient voltage suppressor (TVS), complying with the EN6100-4-2 standard of ±15 kV for air gap discharge. This means that additional electro-static discharge (ESD) protection circuitry is not called for.

According to FTDI by streamlining this offering, with a minimal number of external components being required, OEMs will be able to reduce both the bill of materials (BoM) and the PCB area required to implement their complete system design.

The USB-DUO solution exhibits very low overall power consumption, drawing just 9 mA when it is active and a mere 135 µA while its FT231XS X-Chip element is in suspend mode. Additionally, as it is capable of supporting an operational temperature range covering -40 °C to 85 °C, this solution is suitable for use in demanding industrial settings.

“By combining two of our interface chips into one highly integrated product we can offer the industry a solution that is optimised for space constrained and cost-sensitive designs. This will allow engineers to bring the convenience of USB connectivity to legacy systems.” states Fred Dart, CEO and founder of FTDI Chip.


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