USB-DA12-8: 8-Channel, 12-Bit Analog Waveform Output USB Module


  • High-speed USB 2.0 device
  • Up to 125K conversions per DAC per second
  • Streaming waveform data at over 400,000 DAC outputs per second total
  • 128K Sample buffer on-board, or Infinitely long streaming waveforms!
  • Buffered waveforms at up to 1 million DAC conversions per second total
  • ILDA compatible
  • Small, portable 8-channel, 12-bit, digital to analog outputs
  • Double-buffered allowing simultaneous update of all DACs
  • Analog output ranges of 0-2.5V, 0-5V, 0-10V, ±2.5V, ±5V, ±10V
  • Single-ended and differential outputs on separate connectors
  • PC/104 module size and mounting compatibility
  • Rugged small-sized (4″ x 4″ x 1.25″) steel enclosure
  • Type B USB connector features industrial strength and high-retention design
  • Designed, made, supported, and manufactured in the USA

Factory Options

  • Resistors in series with differential connector for impedance matching
  • DIN rail mounting provision
  • Economy ‘E’ version available without screw terminal board
  • OEM (board only) version with PC/104 mounting holes and PCB footprint for added flexibility in embedded applications
  • RoHS Available. Please contact us for ordering information
  • Support for Wind River VxWorks (call for ordering information)
Last updated on November 3, 2023, 9:23 am


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USB 8-Channel Analog Output Module

The USB-DA12-8A is an ideal solution for adding portable, easy-to-install analog outputs to any computer with a USB port. The USB-DA12-8A is a USB 2.0 device, offering the highest speed available with the USB bus. It is fully compatible with both USB 1.1 and USB 2.0 ports. The board is plug-and-play allowing quick connection whenever you need additional I/O on a USB port.

The USB-DA12-8A features 8 digital-to-analog converters (DACs) with both differential and single-ended outputs on separate connectors. The board features a variety of unipolar and bipolar ranges for each DAC giving the user a variety of options. The DACs can be updated individually or simultaneously. To ensure that there will not be excessive outputs to external circuits when the board is plugged in, automatic circuits limit analog outputs to zero volts. Power is supplied to the board via an external power supply which powers on board DC/DC converters which provide ±12V to the operational amplifiers on the board. The I/O wiring connections for USB-DA12-8A are via an industry standard, IDC type 26-pin, 16-pin, and 10-pin connectors.

The USB-DA12-8A is designed to be used in rugged industrial environments but is small enough to fit nicely onto any desk or testing station. The board is PC/104 sized (3.550 by 3.775 inches) and ships inside a steel powder-coated enclosure with an anti-skid bottom.


The OEM (board only) version is perfect for a variety of embedded applications. What makes the OEM option unique is that its PCB size and mounting holes match the PC/104 form factor (without the bus connections). This allows our rugged digital board to be added to any PCI-104 or PC/104 stack by connecting it to a simple USB port usually included on-board with embedded CPU form factors such as EBX, EPIC, and PC/104. This is especially important since many newer CPU chipsets do not support ISA and have plenty of USB ports. The USB-DA12-8E OEM board can also be installed using standoffs inside other enclosures or systems.

High Retention USB Connector


The ever-growing presence of USB in the industrial/military marketplace has driven the need for USB connections to be reliable, dependable, and unfailing. Gone are the days of loose USB connections. A type B USB connector is used on all ACCES USB/104 products which features a high retention design that complies with the class 1, Div II minimum withdrawal requirement of over 3 pounds of force (15 Newtons). This connector has an orange color-coded insulator to quickly differentiate it from standard USB connectors. Using these USB connectors increases reliability in your system and ensures a tight connection. For embedded OEM type applications, an additional miniature USB input header is provided in parallel with the type B connector.


  • Portable
  • Laptop
  • Education
  • Laboratory
  • Industrial Automation
  • Embedded OEM

Optional Accessories

The USB-DA12-8A is available with optional cable assemblies and screw termination boards.


Data Sheets



Drivers and Downloads

Full list of available Downloads: Software Packages, Drivers, Manuals, and other documents

Information about our Free Software packages:

ACCES is proud to provide a full suite of software support with every Data Acquisition product. We are committed to supporting the most popular operating systems and platforms for our customers. Currently we are actively supporting XP -> 10, both 32 & 64 bit, including “Server 2008,” “Embedded,” and “Compact” flavors for all plug-and-play products including PCI, PCI Express, USB, and more. Many products continue to ship with support for additional operating systems such as DOS, Windows 95, 98, Me, NT4, and 2000.


Among the software we deliver with our products are sample programs in a wide variety of programming languages. These samples are used to demonstrate the software interfaces to our products — and many can be used as-is in your production environments, or to test functionality of the devices out-of-the-box. We’re currently actively supporting sample programs in Microsoft Visual C#, Visual Basic, Delphi, and Visual C/C++, with many devices including samples in Borland C/C++ 3.1 for DOS. Additionally we provide National Instruments LabVIEW compatible DLLs and many demonstration VIs for our devices.


Drivers for various operating systems are also provided, including active support for Windows XP -> 10 — all in both 32-bit and 64-bit flavors, and including consumer, server, and embedded varieties — as well as the 2.6 and newer Linux kernels and recent OSX / macOS versions. Many products continue to ship with driver support for Windows 95, 98, Me, NT4, and Windows 2000, but support for these operating systems is considered deprecated.

Setup Programs and Utilites

Our Data Acquisition devices also include a graphical setup utility that walks you through the process of configuring any option jumpers or switches on the device, as well as explaining a little about the various connectors present.

Many devices also include utility programs – little tools to make your use of the device easier, such as EWriter, a program that allows you to read and write data in the user-accessible EEPROM locations on all our USB data acquisitition products; or WinRISC, a “Really Incredibly Simple Communications” terminal program that lets you get started instantly with serial devices.

“Register Level” Documentation

Besides all this software in all these languages and operating systems ACCES has a policy of open and transparent development: none of our lowest-level “register” interfaces are hidden from you — we document every register in every bus card, every command in every serial board, and every usb control transfer in every USB Data Acquisition board. These lowest-level interfaces allow you to develop for our products in ANY operating system or language, regardless of our actively supporting it or having a driver for it. We have customers actively developing in ADA, Android, Python, Java, MATLAB, Solaris, and more, just by referring to our complete low-level interface documentation! And we provide the full source code to all of our drivers, regardless of operating system, to give you an even bigger head start in your own development tasks.

No Fees or Royalties

All of this software is provided at no additional charge, and is licensed under any of a variety of flexible — and royalty free — options. Check out our software license explanation if you’d like more information.

USB and Performance

Our USB Data Acquisition products use our “AIOUSB” driver package in Windows and Linux. This driver package includes 32-bit and 64-bit support, and consists of low-level driver components and a high-level API library. This custom interface driver enables our USB devices to achieve 4000 transactions per second, compared to the competitions’ “HID” drivers that cap out around 50 transactions per second. You can read all about the API in the USB Software Reference Manual linked below, and included in every applicable Software Package. (The Linux version of the AIOUSB API is almost identical to the Windows API, and is documented in the aiousb.html file included in the Linux software package.) Like all of our software, full source code is always provided.

Custom Software

ACCES also offers Custom Software Services for our products. Our prices are unbelievably low, often as inexpensive as free! If you need something tweaked to support your needs, or an entire enterprise application developed from scratch, it is definitely worth your time to inquire with us, first.

Further information about available ACCES Software:

Redistributing Windows Drivers
A list of ACCES drivers and the files that compose them under different versions of Windows, so you can easily redistribute ACCES cards and drivers.


ACCES has successfully partnered with Wind River to bring our entire line of USB DAQ boards to VxWorks 7!

Our newly available driver and easy-to-use API-library, including full source and sample code, supports ReNumeration for loading firmware across the USB cable as well as our GenericVendorWrite and GenericVendorRead functions, compatible with our Windows AIOUSB.dll API. Additional AIOUSB API functions are being ported, ask for details!

With our aioUSB.VxWorks libary USB DAQ can now be used with the utmost confidence for real-world/real-time/rugged applications. Using VxWorks 7 as the solid foundation, and positive-retention cables in either micro-fit or USB-B-with-screw, as well as rugged steel enclosures and DIN-Rail or PC/104-mounting options, USB is no longer “just for desktops”.

You can find more information about our VxWorks libraries and services on our Wind River Silver Partner page.

Analog Outputs

Number of Outputs: 8 channels
Type of Outputs: Single-ended or differential
Resolution: 12-bit resolution
Unipolar Ranges: 0-2.5V, 0-5V, 0-10V
Bipolar Ranges: ±2.5V, ±5V, ±10V
Output Current: 6mA per channel
Conversion Rate: buffered / non-streaming: 125K Samples per second x 8 channels.
Conversion Rate: streaming: 400K samples per second TOTAL (ex: 25k Samples per second for 8 channels)
Relative Accuracy: ±2 LSB typical
Differential Non-linearity: ±0.2 LSB typical
Settling Time: 8us typical, 10us max.


Operating Temperature Range: 0° to 70°C.
Storage Temperature Range: -40° to +85°C.
Humidity: 5% to 95% non-condensing
Board Dimension: 3.550 x 3.775 inches
Box Dimension: 4 x 4 x 1.25 inches


Power supplied via USB cable, or by an optional +5VDC regulated AC/DC power supply
+5VDC @ ~200mA, typical (no load)
±12VDC supplied from +5VDC through DC/DC Converters

The USB-DA12-8E and USB-DA12-8A are not recommended for new projects.

The USB-DA12-8E is being replaced by the USB-AO16-16A Family.  The USB-AO16-16A provides 16-bit resolution instead of 12-bit DACs, and double the channels, while remaining almost 100% software compatible, all in the same USB/104 form-factor.

Instead of using the USB-DA12-8A, we recommend the USB-AO-ARB1.  This new product provides MHz waveform generation using a 16-bit DAC.  Multi-channel waveform output in the multi-kilohertz output rate can be achieved with assistance from ACCES Tech Support using the USB-AO16-16A Family boards.

If you can go to a different bus for waveform generation, then we have the below FDS solutions:
PCI Express:          PCIe-ADIO16-16FDS
PCI Express Mini:  mPCIe-AIO16-16FDS or mPCIe-ADIO16-8FDS
M.2:                        M.2-AIO16-16FDS or M.2-ADIO16-8FDS

The “FDS” units have FOUR (not eight) Waveform-capable 16-bit DACs. Each DAC is individually software range-configurable including ±10V, and can output DMA-driven buffered streaming waveforms at 1M outputs/second (aggregate, 250kHz each DAC if all four DACs are enabled) (a single DAC could stream 1MSample/second!).

This is 16× the resolution/granularity, >2.5× the output rate, using a modern precision quiet DAC chip.

ModelDescriptionPrice (USD)

USB, 8 channel 12-bit D/A, with ARB


USB, 8 channel 12-bit D/A

-E Economy version excludes screw terminal (ADAP25)
-OEM Board only version excludes enclosure and screw terminal board (ADAP25)
-PR +5V DC External power and Regulated AC/DC adapter
-ST Screw Terminal pair instead of DC jack for high retention external power connectivity
MP104-DIN DIN rail mounting provision
ADAP25 Screw Terminal Adaptor with a Female DB25 connector,(included in the standard models), $35
ADAP25M Screw Terminal Adaptor with a Male DB25 connector, $50
(may be needed if you intend on using both the Single-Ended and the Differential Analog Outputs at the same time).
CAB25MF-18 Cable, Ribbon, Male to Female DB25 connectors, 18″, $29
CAB25MF-36 Cable, Ribbon, Male to Female DB25 connectors, 36″, $32
CAB25MF-8 Cable, Ribbon, Male to Female DB25 connectors, 8″, $29
STB-25 Screw Terminal Adaptor with a Male DB25 connector for cables, $44
STB-25F Screw Terminal Adaptor with a Female DB25 connector for cables, $44