Brainboxes launches new range of PCI Express cards

December 4, 2007 / News

Brainboxes, a leader in serial and Bluetooth connectivity, today launched its new range of PCI Express (PCIe) serial cards offering industry leading reliability, functionality and support. These have been developed in-house by the Brainboxes technical team to meet the growing market for PCIe, with slots predicted to be included on more than 250 million motherboards in the coming year.

The first new PCIe cards to be launched are eight port cards – the PX-279 (DB9) and PX-275 (DB25), available in December from Brainboxes distributors worldwide. The cards are supplied with Brainboxes’ acclaimed Serial Solutions software, which is installed in hundreds of thousands of systems worldwide and is recognised to provide industry leading stability and reliability. The PX-279 and PX-275 cards both offer eight RS232 ports to add reliable and high-speed connectivity via any standard PCIe slot (x1, x2, x4, x8 or x16 lane slots). True megabaud line drivers carry information at 921,600 baud, and 32 byte FIFOs with a user definable trigger level ensure the highest levels of data integrity, reducing the likelihood of dropped packets.

PCI Express is a 2-way, serial I/O technology that carries data in packets, similar to the way it is transferred over Ethernet. Unlike standard PCI technology, the PCIe bus is no longer a single parallel data bus through which all data is routed at a set rate. PCIe is an assembly of serial, point-to-point wired and individually clocked ‘lanes’ which each consist of two pairs of data lines carries data upstream and downstream.

“Brainboxes is now seeing more and more companies incorporating PCIe slots into PC and server designs, which is speeding up the move to the new technology,” comments Stephen Evans, Managing Director of Brainboxes. “Current forecasts show that PCIe slots will have replaced PCI in the majority of PCs by late 2009. “Brainboxes’ new range of PX serial cards offer reliable and high-speed serial communications, while our software and support reassure our customers that reliability or compatibility are never issues they need to worry about”.

The Brainboxes ‘PX’ PCIe range benefits from a complete suite of software included with the cards and an acclaimed lifetime customer support package – elements that have made Brainboxes the serial card supplier of choice for companies around the world. Brainboxes PX cards are compliant with PCIe version 1.0a and supplied software includes sample programs and test and terminal software, complete with source code. PX cards incorporate signed drivers for Microsoft Vista, XP, and Server 2003 in x32 bit x64 bit editions and Windows 2000.

“PCIe has grown rapidly from less than 10 million slots three years ago, to its current levels of 200-300 million” continued Evans. “Initially many companies preferred to stick with the PCI technology that they are familiar with, but as PCI slots decrease and are replaced by PCIe, this will no longer be an option. By providing the PX range Brainboxes will ensure a smooth transition for customers from one technology to the next. Current trends show that the usage of PCIe slots will continue to rise to a predicted figure of over 300 million a year in 2010*.”

* Figures taken from In-Stat Report ‘PCI Express, the Journey to 2.0’