Difference between BK Precision 1696 and 1696B


I am currently trying to buy a BK Precision 1696 power supply but they are now discontinued. I see there is now a 1696B, which I am okay with buying but I would like to know the differences between the two models. We currently use a program that interacts automatically with the 1696. Can I drop in the 1696B into the setup?


Hello @rguzman,

Welcome to our TechForum and thank you for posting. BK Precision lists the 1696B as a replacement to the 1696 on their website. I also found a comparison datasheet between the two models. I have linked it below. It looks like it should work as a replacement to the original model.




Hi rguzman,

Looking at that document mentioned by Brock, I would note that the most significant difference is that the “B” version replaces the RS-232 interface with a USB interface. As very few modern PCs natively support RS-232, this is probably an advantage, as one will no longer need to utilize a USB to RS-232 adapter. The new unit uses an internal virtual com port adapter IC, so it would still appear as a standard serial port to a PC.

The documentation states that its “Programming command set” supports both “Proprietary and Basic SCPI commands”. Though it does not state so explicitly, I believe this would imply that it is backward compatible with the software used with the non-“B” version.

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Thanks, Brock the pdf you linked to helps.