About the A2B Analyzer Hardware

Document created by Anil on May 1, 2017Last modified by Anil on May 1, 2017
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Q: What are the exact dimensions of the A2B Analyzer?

A: The size is 112mm x 86mm x 39mm (Length/Width/Height). The Analyzer weighs 180 grams.


Q: Does the A2B Analyzer support firmware update?

A: Yes, the ability to flash and update firmware is supported with a software utility provided by Mentor Automotive. A Windows-based USB Updater tool, and the latest available firmware image are provided with the A2B Analyzer Hardware package on SupportNet.


Q: Is S/PDIF directly supported?

A: Yes. The A2B Analyzer supports one S/PDIF stereo input and one S/PDIF stereo output, both are optical. Multiple S/PDIF channels (beyond stereo using 2 slots) are not supported.


Q: Are the S/PDIF input and output on the A2B Analyzer independent of the analog input and output?

A: No. The S/PDIF output is a mirror of the analog output. Only one of the inputs can be used at any given time, and this is configured using the A2B Analyzer SDK (please refer to the anlzr_strmapiSetCodecModeReq() function).


Q: Is it possible to capture individual upstream audio channels (coming from slaves), encode and send to a PC via USB for capture/recording

A: Yes.  the ability to simultaneously sink/source bit-perfect PCM audio over USB, is a primary feature of the A2B Analyzer and currently supported by both the A2B Analyzer and our A2B Analyzer SDK.  This feature is equally available in both Master and Slave nodes.

Access to this feature is also supported through the Node Simulation Tool (i.e. being able to select and record/play WAV files over USB).


Q: Can the Analyzer support recording of 8 upstream ch @48Khz?

A: Yes, in general there should be no problem recording 8 upstream channels.  However, please note the following caveats.

Under Linux, 8 upstream channels (and more) is very reliable for both 32 and 16 bit audio transfers.

Under Windows, occasionally USB latency can result in dropped audio at high bandwidth.  For 8 channels, 16 bit audio words would be recommended for improved reliability.


Q: How many simultaneous audio outputs can each analyzer support?

A: While in master mode, The A2B Analyzer uses a fixed dual line 8 slot 32 bit TDM configuration supporting 16 inputs and 16 outputs on the A2B line. Also the A2B Analyzer has one analog output and one digital output that are mirrored.


Q: How many analyzers can be controlled by a single PC simultaneously?

A: The maximum allowed nodes in a daisy chained A2B network is 8 nodes so you can connect up to 8 A2B Analyzers (1 master and 7 slaves) and the master only in this case will be connected to the PC. In addition, you can still connect different Analyzers to the PC with different USB connections and control them separately using their serial number.


Q: What are the power supply requirements for the A2B Analyzer? Is battery-powered usage possible?

A: The A2B Analyzer is powered via USB in simulation mode. For stand-alone usage, power over the USB port must also be supplied with 5 volts (although data lines can be eliminated, as for EMC testing for instance). There is a barrel jack for connecting a 12 volt supply (center positive) to the A2B Analyzer, but this is only to provide additional power for external nodes on the A2B network when the A2B Analyzer is acting as the master. The 12 volt input is protected against reversed polarity.


Q: Is the A2B Analyzer EMI/EMC tested? Is the Analyzer automotive EMI/EMC compliant?

A: From the perspective of EMC/EMI, the A2B Analyzer is officially considered a Class A digital device (in the US), and a Class B ITE equipment (in EU), for use in commercial/industrial environments. The Analyzer exceeds both FCC and CE emission and susceptibility requirements.  However, those requirements are generally not as stringent as automotive EMC/EMI requirements.
For some users, this is usually fine, and they are successfully using A2B Analyzers as part of their test setups.  Some other customers have incorporated our A2B Analyzer into their own customized EMC/EMI shielding boxes. For users that have concerns that the PC connected to the A2B Analyzer might leak much EMC/EMI, Mentor Automotive offers services to develop custom firmware for the A2B Analyzer to eliminate the PC (runs the Analyzer is an autonomous mode) for very specific tests. Please contact Mentor Automotive for more information.


Q: How much power does the A2B Analyzer consume? Please clarify Watts/Amperes. Please clarify heat dissipation.

A: The Analyzer alone consumes 210mA off of the 5V supply for about 1.05W. Additional power can be dissipated when the Analyzer is powering downstream nodes. When solely powered off of USB, about 1.25W is still available to power downstream devices. The SEPIC supply in the Analyzer is typically 80% efficient, so up to 0.25W of additional power can be dissipated. When the bus is powered off of the 12V supply, the full power of 4W can be delivered. In this case, an additional 0.8W may be dissipated.  This results in a maximum power dissipation of about 1.85W.