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Do ISA Cards lower the performance of a PC ?

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  • Do ISA Cards lower the performance of a PC ?

    Hi,
    I was also thinking of buying a touchscreen overlay for my 5" TFT . But the problem is that I have already used all my com ports ( GPS & IR remote ) so I was thining of putting a ISA card which gives me additional comports an LPT ports into my carputer.
    But know like my system is slow i care about performance .

    What experiences did you do? Do ISA Cards have imapct on PC performance?


    Thanks

    Felix
    =>> Carpc Version2 -- Epia M 10K based<<=
    ::Epia M10k,7"VGA/40GB2.5",GPS,Opus90W ::
    ::trying to build second low cost carpc::
    ::Automp3.de :: CAR= Renault Clio2 - 2 seats 1.9D

  • #2
    Afaik (i remember reading something in one of Intel's technical documents on their 440BX chipset), installing ISA cards does decrease system performance, because the board needs to meet more requirements (timing for the ISA bus, watching IRQs, etc).

    But i don't know if the performance hit is actually noticable!

    Can't you use a PCI card to give you some more com and printer ports? Over here, a PCI card with those costs less than an equivalent ISA card.

    Comment


    • #3
      USB to 4 port serial hub

      You should try the keyspan USA49W USB 4 port serial hub. It gets the power from the USB port, so no AC power adapter needed and no IRQ conflict. Ports are configureable from 2 to 99 I think. It works with my Xenarc touch screen, IRman, Garmin GPS16, ODB-II scanner and serial relay control module. Once the driver is installed, its plug and play. If you want another printer port, maybe try a USB port replicator. It also adds another serial port. With both hub and replicator and your computer, you can have 6-7 serial ports, enough to plug everything you can think of.
      NEW complete and updated My project with 100+ pics on 7-4-03
      If you have a Shuttle FV24 motherboard in perfect working condition for sale, please PM me.

      Comment


      • #4
        The answer to your question is : maybe.

        As to the USB 4port com hub... $$$$... wow

        Simply sticking an ISA card into your system should not decrease performace, as it is on a seperate bus... just like your PCI and AGP cards are on their own respective busses. However most ISA cards require the use of I/O ports and IRQs... both of these require the CPU to stop doing anything else that it was doing to service these requests which takes a LONG time to complete (relatively to other CPU operations). Do you remember when hard drives went from PIO mode to DMA? PIO (programmable I/O) mode required the processor to stop to service the data passing between the hard drive and memory, whereas DMA mode allows the data to transfer from the IDE controller directly into memory (hence DMA : direct memory access) without bothering the CPU, thus not slowing down your system.

        However with any com ports (or just about any, save for USB coverters) require the use of IO ports and IRQs, but since you're pushing such a small amount of data around you should not notice any difference. Additionally the 16-bit ISA bus can only provide 16MB/s (PCI is 133MB/s and AGP depends on the multiplier, 1x=266MB/s 2x=534MB/s 4x=1068MB/s ...) So 16MB/s *maximum* bandwidth is not much to worry about at all.

        Now lets say that you were running an ISA sound card that actually maxxed out the ISA bus, then you might notice a *few percent* slowdown in benchmark tests, but with average use you probably wouldn't notice much at all.
        IN DEVELOPMENT -- '96 Mustang, lilliput with PII/450 laptop, custom DC-DC power supply, 60GB; Garmin GPS; 802.11g; compact keyboard, small graphical LCDs, OBDII.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Telek
          The answer to your question is : maybe.

          As to the USB 4port com hub... $$$$... wow

          Yeah It is a bit much but I think it's worth the money. I got mine at www.thenerds.net. They were the cheapest at the time I ordered mine.
          NEW complete and updated My project with 100+ pics on 7-4-03
          If you have a Shuttle FV24 motherboard in perfect working condition for sale, please PM me.

          Comment


          • #6
            $130 for the 4-port, or you can get 4 single 1-port ones, $10 each and a 4-port USB hub for $15, total cost is $55... less than half the price! You don't have to worry about power for the hub either since the 4 ports can't draw more than 500mA combined anyway.
            IN DEVELOPMENT -- '96 Mustang, lilliput with PII/450 laptop, custom DC-DC power supply, 60GB; Garmin GPS; 802.11g; compact keyboard, small graphical LCDs, OBDII.

            Comment


            • #7
              The problem with buying 4 individual usb>serial adapters is that many of them only allow one per machine, the driver/translation software wiggs out if you have more.
              -Nick

              _____________________________
              Since when is insanity a bad thing?
              www.mp3vw.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Telek
                $130 for the 4-port, or you can get 4 single 1-port ones, $10 each and a 4-port USB hub for $15, total cost is $55... less than half the price! You don't have to worry about power for the hub either since the 4 ports can't draw more than 500mA combined anyway.
                Those cheap $10 ones dont work all that well. Some of them only works with PDAs. I rather have 1 hub and get it over with.
                NEW complete and updated My project with 100+ pics on 7-4-03
                If you have a Shuttle FV24 motherboard in perfect working condition for sale, please PM me.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Shrug... I saw a few models for ~$23 that advertised being able to have up to 99 attached to one system, works with all windows versions win98 and up. Even then, you're still a lot cheaper than using the single 4-port, by almost $30, but I guess it's up to you.

                  Also, that's assuming that you need 4 extra ports. If you already have 2 on your PC, do you really need a total of 6? Or even if you have done, maybe if you did need a whole extra 4 ports then you can do that route, however if you only need 1 or 2 more, then the hub + individual ones is definitely much much cheaper.

                  I suppose it depends how much money you have to spend
                  IN DEVELOPMENT -- '96 Mustang, lilliput with PII/450 laptop, custom DC-DC power supply, 60GB; Garmin GPS; 802.11g; compact keyboard, small graphical LCDs, OBDII.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Garmin GPS16 receiver
                    Xenarc Touch screen
                    OBD-II scanner
                    Serial Relay Control Module
                    IRman
                    Cliffnet Alarm control

                    And yes, I do use all 6 serial devices. 1 on FV24 mobo, 4 on Keyspan 4 port serial hub, 1 on CompUSA's USB port replicator. All works on XP cept Cliffnet as the com control doesnt work with XP yet. The port replicator also adds plug and play PS/2 keyboard and mouse. You dont have to reboot to get the PS/2 KB and mouse to work. It is perfect for those who have wireless KB and mouse. Once the battery dies, pull out the backup corded mouse or KB and plug it in with out rebooting. My system is totally catered for convience.
                    NEW complete and updated My project with 100+ pics on 7-4-03
                    If you have a Shuttle FV24 motherboard in perfect working condition for sale, please PM me.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      ok, I stand corrected, but I'll bet you that most people don't have that many

                      Hey, can you elaborate on all of that stuff, specifically what you're using and what software? Do you have a site with all of that stuff? What are you using the relay for? How does the alarm thingy work? What ODBII module are you using and what software?

                      Thanks!
                      IN DEVELOPMENT -- '96 Mustang, lilliput with PII/450 laptop, custom DC-DC power supply, 60GB; Garmin GPS; 802.11g; compact keyboard, small graphical LCDs, OBDII.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Telek
                        ok, I stand corrected, but I'll bet you that most people don't have that many

                        Hey, can you elaborate on all of that stuff, specifically what you're using and what software? Do you have a site with all of that stuff? What are you using the relay for? How does the alarm thingy work? What ODBII module are you using and what software?

                        Thanks!
                        I'm still working on my system. I dont have a site up yet since im not a HTMList. Let's put it this way, if Darmie's system makes you wet, mine's gonna make you jizz all over. BTW, a lot of cool gadgets require serial ports. PDAs, Cell phones, SONY joystick hack, my Panasonic DV Cam, bar code scanner just to name a few. Some people might not go as far as putting a bar code scanner on their car PC but hey the option is there. You never know. In the future you need wanna ring someone for gas for a ride or something.
                        NEW complete and updated My project with 100+ pics on 7-4-03
                        If you have a Shuttle FV24 motherboard in perfect working condition for sale, please PM me.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Telek


                          Also, that's assuming that you need 4 extra ports. If you already have 2 on your PC, do you really need a total of 6? Or even if you have done, maybe if you did need a whole extra 4 ports then you can do that route, however if you only need 1 or 2 more, then the hub + individual ones is definitely much much cheaper.

                          Aside from the probs about the driver/OS not allowing more than one individual adaptor.

                          My Plan is. Universal Remote with Serial Ira. There is one gone.
                          Winamp button Control (probably the front from an old car stereo) there is another one.
                          Serial LCD there is another one.
                          Evenually touch screen for a TFT and there is number 4. Now if you are building using an Epia or a Laptop, quite often you only get 1 if any serial ports, so USB might be the only way forward.

                          Having a spare to maybe be used to control externals such as car alarms or other things might be usefull too.

                          I think a 4way Serial hub would be easier to hide as a block (on a flat plan bare boards(everything removed from it's original casing) case), but more of a problem to custom fit into a very sculpted setup (everything built behind the dash).
                          4x4 in a turbo stylee.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Just out of curriosity, where can you said said $23 usb-serial.
                            -Nick

                            _____________________________
                            Since when is insanity a bad thing?
                            www.mp3vw.com

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              To go back to the original topic, you should be fine adding an ISA serial card to your computer. In fact, on most modern motherboards the onboard COM ports are on an internal ISA bus anyways.

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