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General Information:

CANUSB is a very small dongle that plugs into any PC USB Port and gives an instant CAN connectivity. This means it can be treated by software as a standard COM Port (serial RS232 port) which eliminates the need for any extra drivers or by installing a direct driver DLL for faster communications and higher CAN bus loads. Sending and receiving can be done in standard ASCII format.


Length: 55mm, Width: 36mm, Height: 16mm. Blue Transparent Case, 1 meter shielded USB cable.


  • Can handle up to 1Mbit/s CAN bitrate
  • Industrial Temp range -40C to +85C (since serial No: W700, was before 0C to +70C)
  • USB 2.0 Full Speed, uses FTDI FT245RL (since serial No: W700, was before FT245BL)
  • Philips SJA1000 CAN Controller running at 16Mhz
  • Philips 82C251 CAN Tranceiver (Fully Compatible with ISO 11898-24V)
  • Compliant to CAN 2.0A (11bit ID's) and CAN 2.0B (29bit ID's)
  • Supports RTR frames
  • 32 CAN frames deep FIFO buffer for incomming frames in CANUSB firmware
  • Time Stamp option in mS for incomming frames
  • CANbus connection according to CiA DS102-1 standard
  • Power supplied via USB
  • Free Interface DLL and ActiveX controller or low level Ascii Commands via USB driver
  • Free Linux driver availible
  • Green LED for CAN activity
  • Red LED for CAN error activity
  • Firmware updatable via USB
  • CE Approved
  • RoHS & WEEE Compliant


The module plugs directly into a standard USB port and provides a standard DB9 male output to CAN systems according to CiA (CAN in Automation) DS102-1 recommendations. It is self powered from USB. It consumes max 100mA, but normally not more than 60mA (this depends on BUS load and eventual CAN cable errors etc.). Use your own RS232 LIB/drivers (in e.g. Visual Basic, Deplhi, C++ etc.) together with the free Virtual COM port driver or use the free Direct driver DLL (see Download page for drivers). Works on Windows and Linux platforms. Easy to migrate from CAN232 to CANUSB with some small software changes. Free Windows Threaded CANUSB API DLL or use the ActiveX controller, write applications in a snap.

CAN Pin assignement:

Pin assignement according to CiA recommendations DS102-1.
The CANUSB is powered from USB port, so no need to connect external
power on pin 9. Use only CAN_L (pin2), CAN_H (Pin7) and CAN_GND (pin3).

Sample Programs and Drivers:

Sample programs in C, C++, Visual Basic, Delphi, Linux etc. can be found on the download page.

We have developed our own DLL which in turn "talk" with the D2XX DLL from FTDI. This threaded DLL includes Open, Close, Read, Write & Status functions and will make it quick and easy for customers to make their own applications in a snap without understanding on how to parse commands and get into how the D2XX driver work. Tests with VB6 using this DLL shows that the CANUSB is fast and can receive 5000+ frames per second without loosing any frames. However due to the Windows USB driver 1mS time slot (gitter) you cannot send more than about 1000 messages per second, since the CANUSB needs to report back (this apply to sending & receiving, i.e. ping pong messages).

Looking inside the CANUSB, you find a dense 4-layer printed circuit boards with parts on both sides of the PCB. The CANUSB is firmware upgradable through the USB interface, so customers easily can update firware when we release a new improved software or new functions in the software. CANUSB is also CE ceritified and RoHS compliant, which many other similar products are not.


Copyright 1997-2012 LAWICEL AB All rights reserved.
Information in this document is subject to change without notice. Other products and companies
referred to herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies or mark holders.

Last updated on the 21st of January 2013