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What is burst mode when using a PC data acquisition board?


What is burst mode when using a PC data acquisition board?


Burst mode is a sampling technique that performs very fast scans of selected channels at specific intervals. Under Windows, this technique is often needed, especially if sampling rates greater than 100,000 samples per second are needed or if data processing is required. Sample rates under burst mode are precise because the burst is always done synchronously. PC RAM is filled with the burst data while the main application is inactive and no processor resources are needed. As soon as the buffer is full, the application software can take over again and processing of the data can take place. Another burst of data can be started manually or by a software command. Every time a burst takes place, there will be a gap in the data as this is not a continuous mode of collecting data. Burst mode requires the specification of the number of samples to be taken. The only limitation to this number will be the amount of PC RAM. If the PC Data Acquisition board has its own on-board RAM, the burst function can run even faster, but the data will still need to be transferred to the PC RAM for post-processing.

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