Intan Technologies, LLC: low-noise amplifier microchips for electrophysiology, EKG, EMG, EEG, ECoG, and neural recording headstages and bio instrumentation

Opal Kelly XEM6010

Opal Kelly XEM6010 module used for the RhythmStim interface. This device, along with the RhythmStim Verilog/C++ code supplied by Intan Technologies, allows up to eight RHS2116 chips to be controlled and sampled in real time by a host computer.


RHS2000 RhythmStim interface datasheet (updated 28 March 2017)

Download complete RhythmStim v1.01 C++ API source code (including pre-compiled FPGA configuration file)

Download RhythmStim v1.01 FPGA Verilog HDL source code (only required if you wish to modify the FPGA configuration; requires Xilinx WebPack)

Opal Kelly XEM6010 module


RHS2116 chip datasheet

RHS2000 web page

RHS2000 USB/FPGA interface: RhythmStim


To facilitate the development of electrophysiology interface systems using the revolutionary RHS2000 series of stimulation/amplifier microchips, Intan Technologies provides the following open-source USB/FPGA interface for developers.  Designated RhythmStim, the interface consists of Verilog HDL code and a C++ API written for the commercially-available Opal Kelly XEM6010 USB/FPGA interface module.  Rhythm configures the Xilinx FPGA (field programmable gate array) on the Opal Kelly module to communicate with up to eight RHS2116 chips over SPI buses and to stream data from these chips to a host computer over a high-speed USB 2.0 interface.

The RhythmStim software interface is designed for multi-platform development under Windows, Mac, or Linux.  All API software is written in C++ to facilitate rapid development.  This datasheet provides documentation on the RhythmStim hardware and software protocols so that developers may quickly link the RHS2116 chips to a host computer of their choice.

RhythmStim supports real-time streaming of up to 128 amplifier channels from multiple RHS2116 chips, data from up to eight other ADCs and DACs, and signals from 16 digital inputs and outputs.  Independent stimulation protocols may be set for all 128 stimulator channels. All data is synchronized and time-stamped before transmission over a USB bus to the host computer.

The host computer may configure the Rhythm-based module to set the RHS2116 per-channel sampling rate to 20, 25, or 30 kS/s.  Custom command sequences may be uploaded to the FPGA for transmission over the SPI buses.  Selected amplifier channels may be directly routed to eight optional DACs for analog signal reconstruction or audio monitoring with minimal latency.

The RhythmStim interface is used at the core of the Intan Stimulation/Recording Controller, which streams up to 128 stimulation/amplifier channels from RHS2116 chips using open-source multi-platform GUI software written in C++/Qt.

RhythmStim Interface Features

  • Open-source Verilog hardware description language (HDL) code configures a Xilinx field-programmable gate array (FPGA) to communicate with multiple RHS2116 digital stimulator/amplifier chips
  • Verilog code is written for a commercially-available Opal Kelly XEM6010 module with integrated high-speed USB 2.0 interface
  • Up to 128 simultaneous amplifier channels supported at sample rates up to 30 kS/s per channel
  • Open-source host computer application programming interface (API) in C++ for multi-platform support
  • Module can interface with eight 16-bit digital-to-analog converters (DACs) and route selected amplifier channels to selected DACs for analog signal reconstruction or audio monitoring with minimal latency (< 200 microseconds)
  • Low-latency digital comparators with optional high-pass filters for real-time neural spike detection
  • Optional control of eight 16-bit analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) for auxiliary analog inputs synchronized to all amplifier channels
  • Auxiliary digital I/O: 16 digital input lines and 16 digital output lines supported
  • Biphasic and triphasic current pulses generated with timing resolution as fine as 33.3 µs.
  • Independent or coordinated stimulation sequences on all channels triggered by digital inputs or software commands.
  • Analog output ports can generate custom voltage pulses or reconstruct waveforms from selected amplifier channels in real time.
  • Digital output ports can generate custom TTL pulses or act as low latency threshold-based spike detectors.

RhythmStim Interface Applications

  • Windows, Mac, or Linux-based electrophysiology signal acquisition systems
  • Rapid prototyping of Intan Technologies RHS2000-based products
  • Starting point for the development of custom interfaces to RHS2116 chips
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