RHD Recording System

Intan RHD recording system

The Intan RHD recording system is a modular, low-cost electrophysiology data acquisition system built around the Intan RHD family of microchips.

Note: The RHD recording system cannot use RHS stim/recording headstages or RHS interface cables. The RHD and RHS systems are not compatible.


You need three basic components to assemble a functional electrophysiology recording system:

  • RHD recording headstage. These are small circuit boards containing an Intan RHD amplifier chip that amplify, filter, and digitize signals from 16, 32, 64, or 128 electrodes. Unlike traditional headstages that provide limited analog amplification, Intan headstages perform all amplification on the headstage and produce a digital data stream conveying the signals from all electrodes.
  • RHD recording controller. This acts as a digital hub that links one or more headstages to a computer via a standard USB port. The RHD recording controller supports up to 1024 amplifier channels in a rack-mountable case with robust digital and analog I/O ports. Additional I/O ports may be added by using the optional I/O expander.
  • SPI interface cable. These cables link the headstages to the recording controller or USB interface board, sending power to the headstage and data back to the controller. They come in 1-ft (0.3 meter), 3-ft (0.9 meter), and 6-ft (1.8 meter) lengths, and in two thicknesses: standard and ultra thin. Multiple cables can be daisy-chained to create longer cables.


Intan provides free software to operate this system. The software allows users to select amplifier bandwidths and sampling rates, measure electrode impedances, view live signals from electrodes, and save data to disk. Recording sessions may be controlled manually or triggered automatically by external digital signals. We also provide free software to load saved data files into MATLAB, Python, or Julia, or to convert data files to NEX format.

We provide compiled, ready-to-run software for Windows PCs or Macs. You can download it and try it out before you buy Intan hardware; it will run in demo mode. We provide open-source C++/Qt source code that can be compiled for Linux.


Intan does not manufacture or sell electrodes, but many third-party companies sell electrodes that are compatible with our headstages. A list of compatible electrodes is provided with each RHD headstage.


Many of our customers use our system with commutators (i.e., slip rings or swivels). We do not sell commutators, but we do provide an application note describing how to adapt our SPI interface cables to any basic commutator. Also, Intan-ready motorized commutators with optical fiber ports are available from Alpha Omega (AlphaComm-I) and Doric (commutator with Intan adapter). Since our interface cables use purely digital signals, operation with commutators is typically robust and free of movement-induced noise.


Intan Technologies does not manufacture or sell any devices with wireless telemetry, but several third-party companies have developed wireless electrophysiology products and data loggers using Intan RHD amplifier chips, including:


Documents and Software