Testing USB Interoperability with a USB Gold-Tree

While many are still comparing the advantages and disadvantages of USB 2.0 vs. USB 3.0, the reality is that there will continue to be a long period of in-between status — meaning that USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 devices will have to live in harmony.

Eric Huang, a product marketing manager and blogger for Synopsys, a leading electronic automation design company, lets us take a peek at what the USB Implementers Forum has designated as the USB gold-tree.

The gold-tree is the standard used for testing USB compliance and interoperability by the organization. It’s designed to be thorough, accounting for all the various types of USB devices and traffic on the market, and makes sure that devices that say they are USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 compatible actually make good on their claims.

Huang lists all of the various USB devices that make up the gold-tree in a blog post for Synopsys:

  • USB 3.0 Hub and USB 3.0 Flash Drive for Super Speed Bulk In and Out Transfers
  • Four USB 2.0 Hubs
  • Two USB 2.0 Web Cams for Hi-Speed USB 2.0 Isochronous Transfers and Interrupt Transfers
  • USB 2.0/1.1 USB Headset with Microphone for USB 2.0/1.1 Isochronous Transfers
  • Two USB 2.0 Flash Drives for Hi-Speed USB 2.0 Bulk In and Out Transfers
  • Keyboards and Mice for Low Speed USB 1.1 Interrupt Transfers
  • And not visible underneath is a USB 2.0 Printer for more Bulk Out Transfers and Interrupt Transfers.

Watch the video of the gold-tree setup and testing below:

Credit: Wikimedia Commons