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Laptop based voltage monitoring

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by JonR, Oct 3, 2008.

  1. JonR

    Thread Starter New Member

    Oct 3, 2008
    Let's start out that I'm VERY new to this. I really have no idea as to what I'm doing, I just have an idea.

    I'd like to build a simple circuit that would allow me to monitor the voltage & current of external devices, in which a Laptop computer could display/chart the data realtime via USB? Ethernet?

    The capabilities would, ideally cover everything from low voltage of under 5VDC/800ma to voltages and currents up to 220VAC/60amps. However, for my immediate needs, I'm looking for 12VDC up to 4amps.

    I suppose I could tap into a multimeter, but I have no idea where, nor do I have any idea how to monitor it using a PC.

    Thanks in advance!
  2. beenthere

    Retired Moderator

    Apr 20, 2004
  3. Papabravo


    Feb 24, 2006
    I have seen actual multimeters with RS-232 serial ports on them. Connecting one to a PC is a complete no brainer. You can gather readings with a terminal emulator like HyperTerm, TeraTerm, or similar programs.
  4. Wendy


    Mar 24, 2008
    I have a Radio Shack with an RS232 port, never used it, but it's there. They still sell them unless I'm mistaken.