PCI Express Mini Card Products (mPCIe)

PCI Express Mini Card, commonly abbreviated as mPCIe, or Mini PCIe, is a newer form-factor for PCI Express devices. Designed with the older Mini PCI standard in mind they are the same basic form-factor (commonly used in small-form-factor devices like laptops and other portables) but lack the retention clips of Mini PCI. Unlike the original PCI Express bus, Mini PCIe provides both the standard PCI Express and USB 2.0 signals, allowing flexibility in peripheral design. The standard is highly suitable for industrial automation and test in vehicle, mobile, or any other shock / vibration sensitive application.

mPCIe was originally developed for adding wireless features to notebook computers, isolating the notebooks' logic board design cycles from the ever-evolving Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and cellular specifications. Unlike its predecessor the PCI Mini Card, mPCIe cards include mounting provisions, preventing any vibration or shock issues common to the older standard. A full size mPCIe device is less than 30 x 51 x 6mm in size, and the Industrial and Military DAQ market has pounced on the standard as a rugged-yet-tiny replacement for the larger legacy options. Perfect for space-constrained systems such as laptops, embedded systems, or industrial PCs.

Selecting mPCIe makes it possible to increase flexibility while reducing size and weight, without sacrificing ruggedness. A COM carrier board or SBC can be designed with all the DAQ I/O and PC interfaces the requirement demands, yet have one, two, even four or more expansion slots available for handling the contingencies of the real world.

Another benefit of the smaller mPCIe standard is a focused approach to I/O expansion: the limited PCB and connector real estate eliminates the unused I/O types and channels common to the one-size-fits-all "multifunction data acquisition system" devices often seen on the larger legacy interfaces.

Performance is assured with the mPCIe's PCI Express interface, but real flexibility in I/O design is also possible: the mPCIe connector includes a USB 2.0 interface, as well as SMBus and support for future expansion busses. These extra interfaces greatly reduce the time-to-market and upfront costs of bringing new I/O devices to the mPCIe bus, which assures a broad selection of I/O to match application requirements.

Mini PCIe cards have an advantage when it comes to size. They are also designed for rugged environments with mounting holes to keep the boards in place. Cables also tend to be smaller in diameter, often simplifying cable routing.

ACCES mPCIe expansion modules include analog in, analog out, serial RS-232, RS-422, RS-485, CAN, digital I/O, relay I/O and more. By using mPCIe, design engineers can easily and economically provide numerous configurations to customers, and expand product features or signal-handling capability.

Read our article "mPCIe Takes on Shrinking Footprints/Growing Challenges" here to learn more about the PCI Express Mini Card form factor.

Mini-PCI Express (mPCIe) Serial Communication Cards
4 Software Selectable921.6k3EEPROM 128-Bytemicro header + cable
 4 Software Selectable921.6k3EEPROM 128-Bytemicro header + cable
  43MbpsYes128-Bytemicro header + cable
 4 3MbpsYes128-Bytemicro header + cable
4  921.6k 128-Bytemicro header + cable
4  921.6kYes128-Bytemicro header + cable
2 Software Selectable921.6k3EEPROM 128-Bytemicro header + cable
 2 Software Selectable921.6k3EEPROM 128-Bytemicro header + cable
  23MbpsYes128-Bytemicro header + cable
 2 3MbpsYes128-Bytemicro header + cable
2  921.6k 128-Bytemicro header + cable
2  921.6kYes128-Bytemicro header + cable
  13MbpsYes128-Bytemicro header + cable
 1 3MbpsYes128-Bytemicro header + cable
Coming Soon!
1 Port 1394B interface
aka FireWire 800
800 Mbit/sn/amicro header + cable
Coming Soon!
1 Dual-Wire CAN-bus port25k-1MBitn/amicro header + cable
PROT CFG = protocol configuration *mPCIe full-length ** mPCIe half-length = Smallest mPCIe specification = Optionally available RoHS Ready

Mini PCI Express (mPCIe) Bus Digital I/O DAQ Products
Products # I/O Buf Prog OPTOs Relays CTRS COS RoHS
24 I/OYesYes   Yes
24 I/OYesYes   
16 InYes Yes  Yes
8 InYes Yes  Yes
4 InYes Yes  Yes
8 In/8 OutYes Yes8SS* Yes
8 OutYes  8SS*  
4 In/4 OutYes Yes4SS* Yes
8 In/8 OutYes Yes8 Yes
8 OutYes  8 
4 In/4 OutYes Yes4 Yes
Buf = Buffered I/O   Prog = Programmable I/O   OPTOs = Optically Isolated   * Solid State
CTRS = Counters/Timers   COS = Change Of State Detection   = Optionally available RoHS Ready

Acquisition, Control, Communication: Engineering and Systems

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