Communication problem with PCG10 when connecting to PCS100


I used for several years a PCG10 and a PCS 100 under Windows 98 without problem. Since I use XP service Pack 2, I’ve got a problem to make the 2 instruments work together. With only the PCG 10 plugs in the parallel port it works fine for long period. The same for the PCS100. If I connect the 2 instruments together, when I try to change a parameter from the PCG10, the signal is no more correct (checked with an analog scope). The PCS100 still works (sometime I just need to press twice the “RUN” button to stop and restart the acquisition). But the PCG10 is defenetely out of order. So the only way I found is to disconnect the parallel port from the PCS100, to stop and reactivate the output of the PCG10 to make its output “right” again. So every time I need to change a parameter from the PCG10 I need to disconnect the scope, make the change on the PCG10 and then reconnect the scope. In that way I cannot use the bode tracer or the wave sequencer.

I checked the drivers, the different things I found in the documentations but no more ideas… I Use PCLAB 2000se. Does anyone meet /solve this kind of problem ?Thanks for your advice.
PS : I’m quite interesting in the PCS500 but I’m a bit afraid to meet the same kind of problem. (I do measurements on instruments that must be kept floating to the ground)

[quote]I used for several years a PCG10 and a PCS 100 under Windows 98 without problem. Since I use XP service Pack 2, I’ve got a problem to make the 2 instruments work together.[/quote]Do you have the XP in a new PC? If this is the case, then the cause of the problem may be following:
This is just my assumption:

  • The LPT port of your new PC may be exceptionally “weak” and can’t power both of the instruments simultaneously.
  • The solution may be to purchase a PCI parallel port card and try to run the instruments via its LPT port.
    In this case you have first to check what is the LPT port address of the parallel port card.
    You’ll find it using the Device Manager: The address is the first hexadecimal value of the I/O range.
    Then enter this address to the combo box on the PcLab2000SE startup screen.
    See also this thread for the solution:

The other solution may be to purchase an optically isolated, USB connected PCGU1000 function generator and run it together with your PCS100 oscilloscope…

Effectively it’s a new PC. I don’t understand when you say that the port may be too “weak”. The main supply is done through 2 adapters (9V and 12V). So when I’ll buy the PCI card, what is the parameter I need to check to not take another “weak” card ?

Other possible reason of the problem may be the LPT communication speed.
You may try the slow LPT communication speed.
In the PCS100 user interface in the Options menu select “Hardware Setup” and select Communication Speed: Slow radio button.

There are LPT ports with a 5V and 3.3V output.
In some PCs there may be some serial resistors at the output of the LPT port terminals. These resistors may “weaken” the port and effect some voltage drop.

To be sure you should select a PCI card with 5V output if possible.
Normally the combination PCS100 + PCG10 should work with 3.3V output too.

It was a bit hard to find a shop which still have 5V parallel PCI in stock. After some problems with the drivers of the card, everythings seem to work fine. So many thanks for your very effecient help!


It’s good to see that you got proper PCI card and now the PCS100 and PCG10 are again working together!