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How to Choose Your USB Serial Adapter?

The following are considerations when selecting a USB serial adapter


Are you aware of the need for a serial adapter? Maybe your computer doesn't have a serial port but has a USB port. A USB to serial adapter can be a tough choice, it handles the three different protocols RS232, RS422 and RS485 and the application you use to communicate. Read on for helpful information to guide you in choosing the right serial adapter for you.



RS232, RS422 and RS485 USB Serial Adapter


Determine Your Serial Adapter Needs


First, take a look at your computer's architecture; does it already have a serial port, or just a USB port, or both?

You need to know what kind of serial adapter you need. If your computer does not have a serial connection port, you will need a USB-to-serial adapter. This converts the serial signal you're connecting to a digital signal that your computer will read through the USB cable it's connected to (aka the host).



USB to serial adapter cable



List of USB-to-Serial Adapters


1 See which protocol you need to use, RS-232, 422 or 485. Your application may require one or more of these protocols.


2 Determine how many COM port connections you need, you may need multiple DB-9 ports. You may need a single-port serial adapter or a 16-port USB-to-serial adapter.


3 Where will you be using the adapter, i.e. home, office or a harsher environment like a warehouse or industrial environment?


4 What device are you connecting to? Barcode scanners, stenographers, medical devices or networks. These are examples of devices used with USB-to-serial adapters.


5 Do you need an adapter with an FTDI or Prolific control chip?

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