Engines, high voltages, ESD… There are many influences which may damage your Debugger or Workstation. The most simple method to ensure your debugger or workstation will not be damaged by those destructive influences is using a galvanic isolation. For this situation we tested two Isolators:

  • „USB-ISO“ from OLIMEX
  • „ULINKpro Isolation Adapter“ from Keil

Those Isolators ensure an isolation up to 1’000 Volt. But they’re not very similar, which makes your needs significant for choosing the right one for your purpose.


USB-ISO from Olimex

This low cost isolator is located between your workstation and your debugger. This means your debugger is not isolated from your target and can be harmed. On the other side you can use this isolator to power your debugger of choice (no specific debugger needed).


+ protects workstation
+ Can power debugger
+ eliminates groundloops
+ is compatible with any USB-Debugger
+ cheap
+ no loss in USB-bandwidth

doesn’t protect debugger

ULINKpro Isolation Adapter from Keil

This much more expensive isolator is located directly between your target and an ULINKpro (no other debugger can be used with). In this situation your ULINKpro is protected too and can’t be harmed. This isolator also needs power, either from your target or directly via USB connector. You have also the option to synchronize your debugger with an optional energy probe.


+ protects workstation and ULINKpro
+ eliminates groundloops
+ supports trace capabilities with ULINKpro

only supports ULINKpro
can’t power target

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