Understanding the PC Technologies that Can Make or Break Modern Noise and Vibration Instrumentation Systems 2007-01-2337
Almost every automotive noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) engineer who has ever looked at a fast Fourier transform knows the difference between instruments with 90 dB and instruments with 120 dB of dynamic range. NVH engineers understand instrumentation specs such as 24-bit resolution analog-to-digital converters and alias-free signal bandwidth. However, with modern noise and vibration instrumentation systems now being almost completely built on the PC, these specs neglect the most important X factor: the PC itself.
No other aspect can affect the performance of an instrumentation system for a sensor array more than the components of the PC. Fortunately, a variety of off-the-shelf PC technologies built on industry standards are available to make it easier and less expensive than ever before to instrument and manage data from large systems. But an NVH engineer must wade through a sea of options to choose the right PC technologies for desired instrumentation system performance.
This paper covers a variety of PC topics including chipset architecture, hard drive technologies such as redundant array of inexpensive disks (RAID), and bandwidth and latency limitations of internal and external buses such as Gigabit Ethernet, PCI Express, and ExpressCard.