The laptop computer my team uses for programmer our robot does not have an RS232 port on it, given that it is a newer model. For the competition, I have been using a USB to RS232 converter, but the download time is painfully slow! While at our regional competition, I had another team tell us that there was another port that we could use instead of the USB port for programming if we got a different converter.
Does anybody know what kind of converter this mght be, or where I could get one? If it helps, we’re running Windows XP Media Center Edition, so it has some extra media ports for cards and the like. I think the team we heard this from referenced one of these ports, but I might be wrong.
what brand usb --> rs232 adapter are you using?
i have a parralax one and it only takes like 2 seconds more that our other programmer with a native serial port.
this is the one i have
I advise caution with the Quatech cards. The connector between the actual card and the cable is crap. I have three of the Quatech 4 port cards (QSP-100) at work and they are all but useless. I can’t keep the cables connected to the card. I also tried the Socket brand of PCMCIA to Serial and they are OK but buffer the data. I use them at work to collect field data from instruments and when your GPS time tag data is 5 minutes older than your instrument data it tends to cause problems later in processing. I have had no problems since switching to USB-RS232 converters from IOGear.
Our team had this exact problem and after a bit of troubleshooting it came down to the brand/model of the USB-RS232 (Serial) convertor you use and the way it translate/converts the data in either the hardware (chipset) or software.
Our team has great success with the following adapter(s):
Keyspan Serial to USB Adapter
Also changing some settings in the adapters has helped us improve the speeds
to near native Serial speeds. This includes
- Making sure in the Windows device manager your virtual serial port is SET to the default settings WITH 115,200 baud rate
- Make sure that FIFO buffers are enabled in the adapter in the driver settings. This is a bit complex but it boils down to the way the adapter negotiates with the RC.
I tried about 4 different USB to serial converter cables and found the IOgear to work the best and fastest. I think it takes 4/5 seconds to load the program.
I just bought the Parallax one for my macbook if the cable goes bad I’ll chop the connector off and solider it to the board. The VEX cable is slow it a capital “S”.
I had been using the cable from the VEX programming kit. It is SLOW.
I have good luck with the IOGear(I think) adapter from WalMart.