# Information about GPIB and its application

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#### davyzhu

IEEE-488 GPIB Problem

Hello all,

My lab owns a Agilent oscillograph, and I want to use the GPIB on it, is this GPIB program easy to learn, and what pre-knowledge shall I learn?

Can the graph show on Agilent be downloaded to PC through GPIB, and where is the GPIB port on PC?

Regards,

Davy Zhu

#### onemilimeter

##### Member level 3
IEEE-488 GPIB Problem

GPIB is originated from HPIB (Hewlett Packard). To communicate with GPIB equipped instrument through PC, you need to install a GPIB card (either on ISA or PCI slot). The card usually comes with your instrumental equipment. The programming part is not difficult as it's usually well written in the equipment's manual. Since your equipment is from Agilent, you can download the manual from Agilent website.

<< Correction >>
Probably I should said the GPIB card is an add-on module. Need to spend extra $to buy it. In our lab, it cames with the equipment. But I think the cost was added into the lump sum cost already. ### davyzhu Points: 2 Helpful Answer Positive Rating #### superluminal ##### Member level 4 Re: IEEE-488 GPIB Problem GPIB is General Purpose Interface Bus now mainly used for instrument communications & control. It is relatively easy to program & it is more powerful than,say ,serial control. GPIB will make you do whatever you want with your device, even some functions you can't make with the real "interface". You can transfer the graphs, in form of data points, to your computer and then plot it. You can control when to measure, what to measure... etc. Usually GPIB cards didn't come with instruments! If you are to get one from Agilent or NI it will cost you ~ 300-500 US$. Don't forget cables! Some cards are internal & some external, but usually it works fine for both types.

The most effective software to work with GPIB is either LabVIEW, from NI, or VEE , from Agilent. They are "ready" to use and learn. You can locate drivers with the instrument functions already implemented on vendor's site.

By the way, if you have MATLAB you can also control the GPIB bus. The only disadvantage is you will need more time to develop your application BUT the big gain is the useage of MATLAB power in the analysis of data.

Any programming language could be used to control the bus, but it depends on you :roll:

Points: 2