Frequently Asked Questions


What does a Keyboard Encoder do?

Our Keyboard Encoders convert input from devices such as keypads or switches into PC keyboard signals. The Encoder looks exactly like a keyboard to your PC. Pressing a button on a keypad connected to the keyboard encoder or activating a switch you have connected to the encoder will produce a keystroke on the PC just as if it were coming from a keyboard. Your PC will also boot without your keyboard attached, since the encoder supplies all the required communication to the PC.

Why use a Keyboard Encoder?

Many PC applications rely on input from the keyboard to perform certain actions or execute commands. The keyboard encoder allows the user to send these commands from his own device, such as a pushbutton switch, instead of pressing a key on the keyboard. In addition, many PC programs do not require the use of a full keyboard. Use of a Keyboard Encoder allows restriction of the keys available to operators by using another input device. You may interface your own keypad or switches to emulate any of the standard keys from your PC keyboard. The encoders can be used with a keypad that is more suitable to environmental conditions than a standard PC keyboard.

Can I still use my own keyboard?

Our Keyboard Encoder products feature a port to connect your standard PC keyboard. You may use your own keyboard, although it is not required for the Encoder operation. The Keyboard Encoder will supply all necessary communication to your PC on power up.

What types of computers do the Encoders work with?

Use our Keyboard Encoders with PC AT, XT, PS2, Pentium, and compatible computers. We offer versions with either 5 pin DIN or 6 pin miniDIN connectors. We also have USB products as well, which interface to your USB port.

Do I need to supply power to the Encoder?

Keyboard Encoders used with a PC do not require an additional power supply. Our Encoders use the power from your PC keyboard Port.

Do you have RS-232 interfaces?

The Hagstrom Electronics KE24 Keyboard Encoder supports RS-232 communication. This product is programmable and the RS-232 port may be used in a number of ways. Data received on this port may be translated into PC keyboard signals; Keystrokes from a PC keyboard may be directed out to this port instead of the PC; Keypads or Switches scanned on the I/O header may have their responses sent to the RS-232 port. Our KE72 unit also features an RS-232 port which will receive ASCII characters and convert them into keystrokes.

What is the product Warranty?

Our Keyboard Encoders are backed by a ONE year warranty against defects in material or workmanship.

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