Reinforcing its position as the acknowledged industry leader in USB bridging technology, FTDI Chip is adding to the breadth of supporting products within its X-Chip portfolio. Firstly, there is the introduction of the highly advanced LC231X USB-to-serial UART bridging module, which is based on the company’s FT231X interface IC. This compact (15.24mm x 28.19mm) and highly cost-effective unit presents engineers with jumper-selectable power to external I/O (either 3.3V or 5V, as required) and UART interface with full modem handshaking control at up to 3MBaud data rate. Optional male and female headers are provided to allow for multiple configuration options. LEDs associated with the TX and RX functions indicate when data transfer is occurring on the UART. The rear 6 way header corresponds to the industry standard FTDI TTL cable interface
This is complemented by the LC234X USB-to-serial UART module, which uses the FT234XD IC for bridging purposes. In addition to its 4 data lines (RXD, TXD, RTS, CTS) there is also the option for it to serve as a means of power distribution for external hardware (delivering an output of 5V). Like the LC231X, this module has a configurable I/O voltage – with provision for the data I/O levels be set to either 3.3V or 5V. It has dimensions of just 15.24mm x 22.89mm. As well as USB-to-UART bridging, the LC234X and LC231X units can be employed in the programming and debugging of embedded MCU platforms (such as Arduino), as well as providing USB I/O extenders for small, entry level 8-bit MCUs that do not have such functionality integrated directly. For both of these modules, an operational temperature range of -40oC to +85oC is supported.
FTDI Chip also announces the new TTL-234X family of USB-to-TTL serial UART converter cables, each of which incorporates an FT234XD interface IC. The cables provide a fast, easy way to connect hardware that features TTL level serial interfaces to current USB technology. The FT234XD IC is able to take care of all the USB signaling and protocols, in order to simplify system connectivity. The cables are USB 2.0 full speed compatible, supporting data transfer rates up to 3Mbits/s, and have a 1.8m length. 5V and 3.3v signal level variants are available.