PXI and Compact PCI (cPCI) Chassis and Module Compatibility

Updated Dec 7, 2017

Issue Details

I have a PXI device and I would like to use it in a Compact PCI (cPCI) chassis .


Any cPCI device (module or controller) may be used in a PXI chassis and any PXI device (module or controller) may be used in a cPCI chassis. If a PXI module is used in a cPCI chassis then it will not be able to route triggers and clocks through the backplane. If a cPCI module is used in a PXI chassis it will not interfere with the ability of the other PXI modules to route trigger and clocks through the backplane, it will simply not be able to route those signals itself. In either case, if you wish to share clocks or triggers then the communication must occur through the front panel of the module.

Note: It is important to make sure that the voltage rating of the device (3.3V or 5V) is consistent with the chassis.

Additional Information

PXI is based on the Compact PCI standard. The serial communication that occurs between modules in a PXI system is the same as a cPCI system. This communication takes place through the J1 connector (the lower connector on back of a PXI or cPCI device).
PXI, however, adds the ability to share timing and triggering information between modules through the top XJ4 connector. Thus, PXI modules have two connectors while cPCI modules do not have the XJ4 connector and cPCI chassis have nothing to connect to it.

For 64-bit cPCI compatibility, please see:


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