Product News: Computer Hardware & Peripherals

RS-232 Transceiver features power conserving design.

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Press Release Summary:

December 24, 2012 - Single-driver/single-receiver RS-232 transceiver, SP3221E, integrates AUTO ON-LINE® feature that automatically wakes up unit from shutdown state when RS-232 cable is connected and peripheral device is activated. When not connected or in use, unit automatically shuts down and draws less than 1 µA. Internal charge-pump power supply and driver architecture allow this 250 kbps transceiver to deliver compliant RS-232 performance from single +3.0 to +5.5 V supply.

Original Press Release

Exar Adds New Low Power, Single Driver RS-232 Transceiver Solution

Press release date: December 19, 2012

SP3221E Features AUTO ON-LINE® for Low Power Serial Applications

FREMONT, Calif. -- Exar Corporation (Nasdaq: EXAR), a leading supplier of high performance analog mixed-signal components and data management solutions, today announced the SP3221E low power, single driver/single receiver transceiver solution. The AUTO ON-LINE® feature allows the SP3221E to automatically "wake-up" from a shutdown state when an RS-232 cable is connected and a peripheral device is turned on. When not connected or not in use the SP3221E will automatically shut down drawing less than 1uA of supply current.

This low power RS-232 transceiver solution is intended for portable or battery powered applications such as data logging and acquisition devices, remote sensors, medical diagnostics, and other embedded systems. The SP3221E uses an internal high-efficiency, charge-pump power supply that requires only four external 0.1uA capacitors. The charge pump and Exar's driver architecture allow the SP3221E to deliver compliant RS-232 performance from a single power supply ranging from +3.0V to +5.5V.

"The SP3221E joins SP3223E, SP3238E, and SP3243E in our family of AUTO ON-LINE RS-232 solutions," commented Jack Roan, product marketing manager, Exar. "The AUTO ON-LINE feature shuts down the transceiver when it is not needed, making these devices ideal for debug, status, or programming ports which are accessed sporadically."

Product Details

The SP3221E is a 1-driver/1-receiver RS-232 transceiver with a 250kbps data rate. The device is compliant to EIA/TIA-232-F standards when powered from a +3.0V to +5.5V power supply, and adheres to EIA/TIA-562 down to a +2.7V power source.

Exar's complete family of AUTO ON-LINE products include:

--  SP3221E - 1-driver/1-receiver
--  SP3223E - 2-driver/2-receiver
--  SP3238E - 5-driver/3-receiver
--  SP3243E - 3-driver/5-receiver

All of these devices include enhanced ±15kV ESD protection for reliable system operation in harsh environments (±15kV IEC 61000-4-2 air gap discharge, ± 8kV IEC 61000-4-2 contact discharge).

Product Availability and Pricing

The SP3221E is available immediately in volume quantities and comes in a 16 pin TSSOP package. The 1,000-unit suggested retail price is $0.70 each.

Additional Information

Additional information on the SP3221E is available online.

Additional information on Exar's Serial Transceiver products is also available online.

About Exar

Exar Corporation designs, develops and markets high performance, analog mixed-signal integrated circuits and advanced sub-system solutions for data communication, networking, storage, consumer, and industrial applications.  Exar's product portfolio includes power management and connectivity components, communications products, and network security and storage optimization solutions.  Exar has locations worldwide providing real-time customer support. For more information about Exar, visit

CONTACT:, 510-668-7000

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