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If you’re having difficulties getting the USB connection to the NDC-4 working, or if it has been working and now isn’t, here’s a few useful tests you can perform before contacting our support team. 

Performing these tests prior to raising a support request will drastically reduce the time it takes to diagnose any issue you may be facing.

The USB lead must not be connected to a PC or laptop while the NDC-4 is powered via a battery connected to the “BATT” terminals.  Doing so will create a ground loop and damage the NDC-4’s USB chip.  The USB connection is more than capable of supplying the NDC-4 with enough power to operate.

Testing the NDC-4 serial interface will help to identify if the USB chip has been damaged.

You can test the serial interface to the NDC-4 by removing the USB lead and connecting a serial cable to “OPTO IN 0” and “ISO OUT 0”.  These terminals send and receive the same data as the USB connection (“OPTO IN 0” is disabled when the USB is plugged in).  To do this you will need to re-connect your battery to the NDC-4’s “BATT” terminals as it will no longer be getting power from the USB connection.  If your PC/laptop does not have a serial port, you will also need a USB to serial converter.

To connect your NDC-4 to a PC (to test the serial interface) please follow the instructions in this article.

Once you have a connection to a PC, follow the instructions in this article for viewing NMEA 0183 data.  If that works, and you are able to see NMEA 0183 data, you know that the serial connection is good and the USB chip has been damaged.   The article linked above specifically talks about the NGW-1.  However, the steps in the video for viewing NMEA 0183 data are the same.

Unfortunately, ground loop damage is not covered under the terms of the guarantee.

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