StarTech.com

4 Port RS232 PCI Express Serial Card w/ Breakout Cable

Add 4 RS232 serial ports to any PC using a single PCI Express expansion slot

Product ID: PEX4S553B

  • Native single chip design
  • Includes a full profile and low profile/half-height bracket
  • On chip 256-byte depth FIFO in transmit/receive path of each port
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  • Single-Lane (x1) PCI-Express with throughput up to 2.5Gbps
  • Supports hardware and software flow control
  • Supports data transfer rates up to 250Kbps on each port
  • Compliant with PCI Express base specifications revision 1.0a
  • Automated out-of-band flow control using CTS/RTS and DSR/DTR
$211.99 NZD exc GST
$243.79 NZD inc GST

Overview

The PEX4S553B 4-Port PCI Express Serial Card (with breakout cable) lets you add 4 RS232 serial ports using a single PCIe expansion slot, with an included 1-to-4 cable enabling you to add 4 serial ports to a single low profile slot.

The serial card features a native single-chip design that provides optimum reliability and speed, reducing the CPU load by up to 48% over conventional bridge-chip serial cards - a cost-effective solution for connecting legacy serial devices to PCIe-enabled computers.

The multi-port serial adapter includes both full profile and low profile/half-height brackets for compatibility with standard and small form factor computers, and is compatible with a broad range of operating systems, including Windows®, Linux, and MAC OS.

This product is a replacement for our PEX4S552B card.

Backed by a StarTech.com lifetime warranty and free lifetime technical support.

The StarTech.com Advantage

  • Lower CPU load of native single-chip, single lane PCI Express design ensures optimal system performance (up to 48% less CPU load)
  • Includes both standard and low profile/half-height brackets, which makes this the perfect card for any application, including small form factor embedded applications
  • Breakout cable design means that only one expansion slot is needed, to add 4 additional serial ports to any system

Applications

Point-of-Sale (POS credit/debit card readers, receipt printers, bar code scanners, cash registers, scales)

Manufacturing (CNC machinery, process control equipment, bar code scanners, serial printers)

Connect specialized parallel and serial devices like printers, scanners, ISDN terminal adapters, CD-R/RWs, Zip® drives and memory card readers

Environmental Control (lighting, temperature, clocks)

Entertainment (video lottery terminals, slot machines, gaming systems)

Healthcare (patient monitoring equipment, nurses' stations, modems)

Security (UPS control, access key panels, video cameras, card readers, modems)

Hospitality/Restaurant (serial printers, bar code scanners, keyboard, mouse, receipt printer, credit/debit card reader)

Consumer (modems, PDAs, digital cameras, printers)

ISDN Networking

Technical Specifications

Warranty Information
Warranty Lifetime
Hardware
Bus Type PCI Express
Card Type Low Profile (SP bracket incl.)
Chipset ID ASIX - MCS9904CV-AA
Interface Serial
Port Style Dongle (Included)
Ports 4
Performance
Data Bits 5, 6, 7, 8
FIFO 256 Bytes
Max Baud Rate 230.4 Kbps
Parity Even, Odd, None, Space and Mark
Serial Protocol RS-232
Connector(s)
Connector Type(s) 1 - PCI Express x1 Male
External Ports 4 - DB-9 (9 pin, D-Sub) Male
Software
Microsoft WHQL Certified Yes
OS Compatibility Windows® DOS, 95, 98SE, 2000, CE 5.0/6.0, Embedded System 2009, POS Ready 2009, XP Embedded, XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, 10
Windows Server® 2003, 2008 R2, 2012, 2012 R2, 2016
Mac OS® 10.4 to 10.10
Linux 3.5.x to 4.11.x LTS Versions Only
Environmental
Humidity 5~85% RH
Operating Temperature 0°C to 70°C (32°F to 158°F)
Storage Temperature -40°C to 85°C (-40°F to 185°F)
Physical Characteristics
Product Height 2.7 in [68.5 mm]
Product Length 3.2 in [80.5 mm]
Product Weight 1.8 oz [50 g]
Product Width 0.5 in [12 mm]
Packaging Information
Shipping (Package) Weight 0.7 lb [0.3 kg]
What's in the Box
Included in Package 1 - 4 Port PCI-Express Serial Card
1 - Breakout cable
1 - Full profile bracket
1 - Driver CD
1 - Instruction Manual

Compatibility

View full OS compatibility
Windows® DOS, 95, 98SE, 2000, CE 5.0/6.0, Embedded System 2009, POS Ready 2009, XP Embedded, XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, 10
Windows Server® 2003, 2008 R2, 2012, 2012 R2, 2016
Mac OS® 10.4 to 10.10
Linux 3.5.x to 4.11.x LTS Versions Only

Certifications

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Accessories

Product Support

Drivers & Downloads

Driver(s):
Manual(s):
Data Sheet(s)

Frequently Asked Questions

Installation

Prior to installing this device, ensure that your operating system is up to date (for example, you have installed the most recent service pack).

To install the driver:

  1. Download the latest drivers from the StarTech.com website (http://www.startech.com/Support). You can find the part number and product ID on the product’s packaging.

Note: Windows will typically save the files to the Downloads folder that is associated with your user account (for example, C:\Users\your_name\Downloads).

  1. Once the download is complete, right-click the zip folder that you downloaded, select Extract All, and follow the on-screen instructions.
  2. Select the appropriate folder for your operating system.
  3. Right-click Setup.exe. 
  4. Click Run as Administrator.

Note: If the Run as Administrator option is not available, you might be attempting to run the installer from within the zipped file. Extract the files using the instructions in Step 2.

  1. Follow the on-screen prompts to install the device drivers and restart the computer when prompted.
  2. Your computer will automatically complete the driver installation and your device should be ready to use.

Prior to installing this device, ensure that your operating system is up to date (for example, you have installed the most recent service pack).

To install the driver:

  1. Download the latest drivers from the StarTech.com website (http://www.startech.com/Support). You can find the part number and product ID on the product’s packaging.

Note: Windows will typically save the files to the Downloads folder that is associated with your user account (for example, C:\Documents and Settings\your_name\My Documents\Downloads).

  1. Once the download is complete, right-click the zip folder that you downloaded, select Extract All, and follow the on-screen instructions.
  2. Select the appropriate folder for your operating system.
  3. Double-click Setup.exe.
  4. Follow the on-screen prompts to install the device drivers and restart the computer when prompted.
  5. Your computer will automatically complete the driver installation and your device should be ready to use.

Before you install the device, make sure that your operating system is current (for example, the most recent service pack is installed).

  1. Download the latest drivers from the StarTech.com website at http://www.startech.com/Support. The part number and product ID are on the product packaging.

Note: Windows usually saves the files to the Downloads folder that is associated with your user account (for example, C:\Users\your_name\Downloads).

  1. After the download is complete, right-click the zip folder that you downloaded, click Extract All, and complete the instructions.
  2. Press the Windows key + R, type devmgmt.msc, and press Enter to open the Device Manager.
  3. Right-click PCI Serial Port, which will have a “!” or “?” next to it to indicate a driver issue.
  4. Click Update Driver.
  5. Click Browse my computer for driver software.
  6. Select the Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer option.
  7. On the Select your device’s type from the list below screen, click Show All Devices, and click Next.

Note: The Select your device’s type from the list below screen does not appear on all systems. If you do not see this screen, skip this step.

  1. Select the Have Disk option.
  2. Browse to the Drivers folder and open the 32-bit or the 64-bit folder, depending on your system type.

Note: To view your system type, press Windows key + R, type control /name microsoft.system, and press Enter.

  1. Click the StnMF file or the NmXpMf file (only one of the file names is displayed). Click OK, and then click Next.
  2. The COM ports are listed in Device Manager under Ports (COM & LPT). Repeat steps 4 to 11 for each of the COM ports, selecting the StnPorts file or the NmPorts file in step 11.

Before you install the device, make sure that your operating system is current (for example, the most recent service pack is installed).

  1. Download the latest drivers from the StarTech.com website at http://www.startech.com/Support. The part number and product ID are on the product packaging.

Note: Windows usually saves the files to the Downloads folder that is associated with your user account (for example, C:\Documents and Settings\your_name\My Documents\Downloads).

  1. After the download is complete, right-click the zip folder that you downloaded, click Extract All, and complete the instructions.
  2. Press the Windows key + R, type devmgmt.msc, and press Enter to open the Device Manager.
  3. Right-click PCI Serial Port, which will have “!” or “?” next to it to indicate a driver issue.
  4. Click Update Driver.
  5. On the Hardware Update Wizard screen, click Install from a list or specific location (Advanced), and then click Next.
  6. Select the Don’t search, I will choose the driver to install option, and then click Next.
  7. On the Hardware Type screen, click Show All Devices, and then click Next.

Note: The Hardware Type screen does not appear on all systems. If you do not see this screen, skip this step.

  1. On the Select the Device Driver you want to install for this hardware screen, select the Have Disk option.
  2. In the Install from Disk dialog box, click Browse.
  3. Browse to the Drivers folder and open the 32-bit or the 64-bit folder, depending on your system type.

Note: To view your system type, press Windows key + R, type control /name microsoft.system, and press Enter.

  1. Click the StnMF file or the NmXpMf file (only one of the file names is displayed). Click OK, and then click Next.
  2. The COM ports are listed in Device Manager under Ports (COM & LPT). Repeat steps 4 to 11 for each of the COM ports, selecting the StnPorts file or the NmPorts file in step 11.

How to

To confirm that Windows detects your expansion card, complete the following:

  1. Press the Windows key+R, type devmgmt.msc, and press Enter.
  2. In Device Manager, under the appropriate heading, confirm that your expansion card is listed and that there isn't an exclamation mark next to it.  For example, a USB controller card would be under Universal Serial Bus controllers.

Your expansion card is listed according to the name of the chipset. To determine the name of the chipset of your expansion card, navigate to www.StarTech.com and look on the Technical Specifications tab for your product.

To confirm that the Mac OS detects your expansion card, complete the following:

  1. Click the Apple icon.
  2. Click About This Mac.
  3. Click More Info or System Report.
  4. Under the appropriate heading, confirm that your expansion card is listed and that there isn't an error. For example, a network card would be under Ethernet Cards.

Your expansion card is listed according to the name of the chipset. To determine the name of the chipset of your expansion card, navigate to www.StarTech.com and look on the Technical Specifications tab for your product.

Troubleshooting

When you troubleshoot issues with a serial device, there are some quick tests that you can complete to rule out potential problems. You can test to make sure that the following components are working correctly and are not the source of the issue:

  • Serial cables

  • Serial ports

  • Serial devices

To test your setup components, try the following:

  • Use the serial cable, serial port, and serial device in another setup to see if the problem is with the components or the setup.

  • Use a different serial cable, serial port, and serial device in your setup to see if the problem persists. Ideally, you should test a component that you know works in another setup.

When you test your cables, it is recommended that you do the following:

  • Test each cable individually.

  • Use short cables when you are testing.

When you test the serial ports and serial device, it is recommended that you do the following:

Note: Some serial devices work only if the COM port number is between a certain range. For example, COM1 to COM4.

To check whether or not an RS-232 serial port is working, perform an RS-232 loopback test by doing the following:

  1. If your serial port is not female, convert it by taking a female/female cable or gender changer and plugging it into the serial port.
  2. Take a metal paperclip or wire and cross pins 2 and 3. If you look closely at the female end, the pins should be numbered.
  3. Open a telnet session on the COM port number of the device that you are testing. To find out the COM port number, refer to the following FAQ: https://www.startech.com/faq/com-port-listing-windows.

Note: To open a telnet session on the COM port, you need a telnet client like PuTTY or Hyper Terminal. Windows XP comes with Hyper Terminal.

  1. When the session is open, anything you type into it you should see. The loopback test fails when you cannot see what you are typing.

If the loopback test fails, make sure that the serial cable or gender changer that you are using works and that the adapter is in the correct port. 

You can check multiple ports at the same time by opening multiple sessions, putting the loopback adapter on one port, and trying to type into each session.  When you can see what you are typing, you know that the COM port is working and you can see which port number the physical serial port is. Close the window for the port that you just tested to speed up the testing of the remaining serial ports.

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