PCI?

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i want to make a PCI card with built in RS232 converter, that means, there's a PCI controller (?) connectec to a max 232 chip. is this possible? what chip i should use? i really have no idea where to start nor what chip i should use.

any comment will be appreciated.

thanks...

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i'd start in a local computer store. 2 serial/1 parallel for $20.

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i already know about serial and parralel. i just wanna make my own PCI to RS232 converter card.

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Go to the computer store, look at the boards, and try to buy the chips they use.

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anyone knows the basic structure of the PCI bus?

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32-bit parallel bus, plus maybe 10-15 control lines; speeds start at 33MHz,
with strict timing requirements.

There's some information at pcisig.com, but unless you're a
member ($$$) you'll have to buy their book PCI Hardware and Software:
Architecture and Design
(800-some pages).

I'm not clear what part you're actually looking to design, but unless you're
quite experienced (and maybe not even then) you'll find the bus interface
quite difficult. Your best bet is to buy a bus controller off the shelf (thus
mneary's suggestion); a few years ago PLX was a big player in such
controllers, but I don't know who's best now.

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how bout xilinx? im not really sure what im looking for. sorry... i'd like to make my own PCI card which will convert signals to RS232. you think i'll have to buy a PCI controller chip?

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I've seen experienced engineers (senior level, 10 years experience) taking 3 months full time to get a PCI interface working right. I would expect that if you're not an experienced electronic engineer (10 or more years of digital experience) you won't get a PCI bus working until long after it's obsolete.

Just buy a card: There are a lot more worthwhile design experiences, start at the beginners level and work your way upwards.

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PLX have a chip that was popular with many of the earlier serial interface cards (as well as others) that converted the PCI bus to something the ISA bus where you could interface standard devices to it so for a serial interface you'd add a 16550 or similar along with the requisite MAX232 or similar. You could also use a fpga like from Xilinx and do the whole PCI and uart logic in one device. Like Mneary stated, you'll want to be experienced in this sort of stuff otherwise you'll get bogged sown having to grasp a hell of a lot of knowlege to do something even simple.

Why not try USB - there's many USB to serial interface chips that are infinitely easier to use than PCI.

What is you specific application? We might be able to give you a better direction.

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yeah, i was thinking about USB. i'll try to research first.

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Quote:
having to grasp a hell of a lot of knowlege

not to mention a fair amount of "lore". Since it's a shared bus, you not only
have to make your unit behave itself, you have to deal with the questionable
behavior of other units on the bus. Sometimes the behavior is on the fringe
of the standard (it really looks wrong, but there's no way to quote chapter-
and-verse), and sometimes it's just plain wrong, but you have to live with it
since you can't tell your customers to throw out their other "working" boards.

Sorry, I'm drifting into War Stories now (:-)).

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no prob. thanks for the early warning. :) maybe i should shift to USB?! :)

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A USB project would not only be more tractable, it would (I think) have
more of a future -- in what you learn as well as in the product itself.

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ok, thank you all.