Elan Digital, a provider of interface technology, has launched its CF500 card offering an RS232 connection with constant 5V power output.
This serial card allows serial devices which require the full 5V DC to be run from portable hosts, such as PDAs, which usually only supply 3.3V through the CF bus. Even when the host input voltage is only 3.3V, the card offers a steady 5V @ 100mA on pin 9 meaning peripherals such as barcode scanners and fingerprint readers can be powered without any additional supply, yet the efficient DC-to-DC converter circuitry ensures that there is no unnecessary drain on the host battery.
The card automatically configures to become another COM port by using the built-in OS drivers that are tried and tested and are optimized to work in the Windows environment as well as LINUX and Mac O/S. A hardware switch allows either industry standard rates up to 115KBaud in x1 mode or up to 921KBaud in x8 mode, including in Windows CE-based operating systems (CE, Ce.NET, PPC, and Windows Mobile).
The Type I format CF card can also be used in laptops and other PCMCIA interface systems with a simple adapter. A variety of cable options are offered, with custom cables available for OEM applications.