Modules and antennas are the only RF components you need to add wireless features to your product. They save you the hassle and expense of engineering RF functionality from scratch. The modules are already tested, so you don’t need to spend time tuning discrete components or setting registers.
Transparent RF Modules
Transparent modules are a wireless wire. The data that is input to the module is used to directly modulate the carrier. There is no wireless protocol built into the module, no buffering or storage of the data. Usually there are no processors of any kind in these modules, just the physical radio. The advantage of these is that the designer has complete control of the over-the-air data. A wireless protocol can be created that is most efficient for the system; scaled for the amount of data sent by the product, the capabilities of the processor in the product, or both. A company can create a protocol that defines a new market. The products are open, so they can be very dynamic.
Wireless UART RF Modules
Wireless UART modules have a standard UART interface and have a built-in protocol. The designer can usually tweak some aspects of the protocol, but the basic structure is defined inside the module. The main advantage of these modules is that the protocol is done. Simply write the data to be transmitted to the serial port and the module handles the transmission and reception automatically. This significantly reduces the processor code development. However; the protocol is common to all users, so some potential for different systems to cross-talk exists. This can be dealt with by the application inside the data payload.
Remote Control RF Modules
Remote control RF modules are primarily designed for remote control applications. Taking a line high on one side causes a line to go high on a paired system which can then be used to activate external circuitry. Some of the modules have the remote control functionality built in while others are transparent modules that get paired with remote control encoders, decoders or transcoders.
The QS Series USB module allows the rapid addition of USB to virtually any device. Housed in a compact SMD package, the module provides a complete solution for converting data between USB and CMOS / TTL logic level serial sources.
RF Module Evaluation & Development Kits
RF module evaluation kits and master development systems help you develop hardware and software using Linx modules. Each kit comes with two evaluation or development boards for benchmarking and prototyping, each of which is populated with one or more modules. A prototyping area gives you a place to develop circuitry. To help you get started, each kit also includes antennas and extra modules. Compared to an evaluation board, a development board has a larger prototyping area and an interface for connecting to a PC.