Author Topic: National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity  (Read 1148 times)

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Offline Dave

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National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity
« on: November 25, 2021, 08:04:25 pm »
I recently purchased a new old stock NI GPIB-USB-HS adapter from eBay. The seller claims it is a genuine NI device.
Comparing it to the images on TiN's website, I would guess that my unit is a counterfeit, because there is no metallization on the inside of the plastic enclosure. The GPIB connector also has slight play (the enclosure doesn't pinch it tightly enough, something that would be taken care of by the EMC gasket in the picture of TiN's unit). Attached below is the image of my unit.

I reached out to NI for their opinion on the matter and contrary to what I expected, they believe my unit is authentic. ???

Please, put my mind at ease, if you happen to have access to one that was purchased through official NI channels. Check inside (you can unscrew the enclosure without leaving a mark on the device) and see if your unit has metallization on the inside like TiN's unit does.

I don't want to figure out a year from now that my unit failed because it was a cheap Chinese clone (that I wasted 400€ on) and at the same time, I do not want to hassle a legitimate eBay seller without unquestionable evidence that he sold me a knock-off.
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Offline coromonadalix

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Re: National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2021, 08:08:05 pm »
How did you paid for it, the price is normally an indicator ...

Did you got some badly written certicicates with it ?

Do you see the serial number repeated on the others NI adapters sold ...
« Last Edit: November 25, 2021, 08:12:27 pm by coromonadalix »
 
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Offline Dave

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Re: National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2021, 08:12:46 pm »
How did you paid for it, the price is normally an indicator ...
As I said, 400€. A fair bit more than the knock-offs usually sell for (they're around $100).

Did you got some badly written certicicates with it ?
I didn't get any paperwork with it, just the adapter in a static shielded bag with the seal and ESD warning stickers in tact. The cardboard box it came in has a NI logo on top and "ni.com" written on the side. No stickers on the box other than a piece of tape that the seller used to keep it closed.

Do you see the serial number repeated on the others NI adapters sold ...
No. Connecting it to a computer with the latest version of NI MAX (and drivers) also doesn't make it complain or misbehave (I've found reports that recent versions of the driver throw errors if they detect a counterfeit).
« Last Edit: November 25, 2021, 08:22:47 pm by Dave »
<fellbuendel> it's arduino, you're not supposed to know anything about what you're doing
<fellbuendel> if you knew, you wouldn't be using it
 

Offline bdunham7

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Re: National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2021, 08:17:26 pm »
IIRC, the counterfeits will not work with the latest software and drivers from NI, as it detects them as fake.  Other than that, given how these are sourced originally, the counterfeit and genuine unit may have a lot in common.
A 3.5 digit 4.5 digit 5 digit 5.5 digit 6.5 digit 7.5 digit DMM is good enough for most people.
 
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Offline Dave

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Re: National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2021, 09:10:47 pm »
IIRC, the counterfeits will not work with the latest software and drivers from NI, as it detects them as fake.
See above.
I was editing my response after coromonadalix added more questions to his, so my comment regarding precisely this was sent just after you wrote your post. :)

Other than that, given how these are sourced originally, the counterfeit and genuine unit may have a lot in common.
This sentence gave me the idea to check the manufacturing date and compare it to the component date codes.
I checked the warranty information for my serial number and it expired at the end of July 2012. NI gives a 1 year warranty on their stuff, so it must have been sold mid 2011.
The ICs that did have date codes on them all say early 2011.

It seems like this might actually be the real deal. I am still hopeful that someone will pop into the thread and confirm that they have a genuine unit without EMC shielding.
<fellbuendel> it's arduino, you're not supposed to know anything about what you're doing
<fellbuendel> if you knew, you wouldn't be using it
 

Online Hydron

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Re: National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2021, 11:02:42 pm »
The shielding costs non-trivial money; if they were initially conservative then decided that it didn't need it after all (or made some small changes to reduce emissions/susceptibility) then the change makes perfect sense.
 

Offline DH7DN

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Re: National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2021, 04:11:08 am »
I recently purchased a new old stock NI GPIB-USB-HS adapter from eBay. The seller claims it is a genuine NI device.
Comparing it to the images on TiN's website, I would guess that my unit is a counterfeit, because there is no metallization on the inside of the plastic enclosure. The GPIB connector also has slight play (the enclosure doesn't pinch it tightly enough, something that would be taken care of by the EMC gasket in the picture of TiN's unit). Attached below is the image of my unit.

I reached out to NI for their opinion on the matter and contrary to what I expected, they believe my unit is authentic. ???

Please, put my mind at ease, if you happen to have access to one that was purchased through official NI channels. Check inside (you can unscrew the enclosure without leaving a mark on the device) and see if your unit has metallization on the inside like TiN's unit does.

I don't want to figure out a year from now that my unit failed because it was a cheap Chinese clone (that I wasted 400€ on) and at the same time, I do not want to hassle a legitimate eBay seller without unquestionable evidence that he sold me a knock-off.

We bought one unit from eBay for like 90-100 EUR. It was a counterfeit. They obviously stole the NI Serial Number from a different device and programmed it into the ROM. The driver software NI MAX did not complain, it was a recognized as a "genuine" NI device. As soon as we registered the device on the NI homepage, the NI GPIB-USB-HS was recognized as a model 6xxx Digital IO card which simply was not true.

Besides that, it worked flawlessly for our purposes and we didn't file a complain to the seller. According to NI, the counterfeit units may or may not work. Either way, it's not supported by the manufacturer.
vy 73 de DH7DN, My Blog
 

Offline Dave

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Re: National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2021, 10:18:14 pm »
The shielding costs non-trivial money; if they were initially conservative then decided that it didn't need it after all (or made some small changes to reduce emissions/susceptibility) then the change makes perfect sense.
That would make sense. I just now wrote an email to NI asking them to confirm that they do/did sell these without EMC shielding.

We bought one unit from eBay for like 90-100 EUR. It was a counterfeit. They obviously stole the NI Serial Number from a different device and programmed it into the ROM. The driver software NI MAX did not complain, it was a recognized as a "genuine" NI device. As soon as we registered the device on the NI homepage, the NI GPIB-USB-HS was recognized as a model 6xxx Digital IO card which simply was not true.
The serial number corresponds to the correct model on their website. Manufacturing date aligns with the date codes on the ICs.

Besides that, it worked flawlessly for our purposes and we didn't file a complain to the seller. According to NI, the counterfeit units may or may not work. Either way, it's not supported by the manufacturer.
That's the reason why I'm fussing so much over this. I have a fake Agilent 82357B that used to work perfectly back in the day, but after about 2 years of not using it, it now simply doesn't work. The Cypress controller is alive and seems to be working, but the "Agilent" ASIC is rather hot to the touch and doesn't respond at all. Wasted a LOT of time trying to get it to work with linux-gpib, convinced that the problem lied in the software, only to later find that the hardware was the culprit all along. I'd prefer to avoid a similar sort of scenario the second time around.

... and yet I was still dumb enough to buy another one through eBay.
<fellbuendel> it's arduino, you're not supposed to know anything about what you're doing
<fellbuendel> if you knew, you wouldn't be using it
 

Offline CrazyTiger

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Re: National Instruments GPIB adapter authenticity
« Reply #8 on: November 27, 2021, 06:54:18 am »
Over the years i have purchased close to 10 piece of USB GPIB HS and the high speed HS+. All purchased from NI order made thru NI Factory in Malaysia. But some how rather they always die at the same point (usually on the 3rd year onwards) where it will stop to detect on NI Max, my suspect been the cypress controller.  The HS+ i felt is more reliabe than the HS, but HS+ sometimes dont work on some old GPIB instrument.

Early last year i purchased two piece of HS from China (Ebay),got it for 110USD per piece shipping inclusive. I bought it knowing its counterfeit as an experiment, the obvious difference I noticed was the green LED of the china one was brighter compared with the original and internally the cypress IC marking was lasered out.

Anyway I placed it in ATE test system, till date its running good, and its been in use 24/7 controling VNA and Power meter and Signal Generator. As a intergrator and software developer for ATE systems, i am yet to see any performance issue on the fake one. So i would say its going strong for 2 years.
 
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