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Sort Binner

Common Use Cases

Compress sort code output from spike sorting gizmos for fast viewing and further processing. Optionally output to RZ UDP interface for external processing. Use this gizmo to count the number of sort codes that occur on specific channels within a user-specified time window.

Data Stored
Sort Codes (optional) Compressed sort code counts as strobe event
Main Compressed sort code counts as multi-channel integer
StrobeOut Timing logic pulse when binning occurred

Gizmo Help Slides


Sort Binner is designed to work with sort code outputs from spike sorting gizmos. Typically used with the real-time sort code output of a spike sorting gizmo, such as PCA Spike Sorting, Box Spike Sorting or Tetrode Spike Sorting. It's a sort code processor that accepts compressed sort code data and then further compresses the data by counting sort code occurrences within user-defined intervals.

The Main output can be sent to a UDPSend interface or Signal Selector for closed loop control.

Sort Binner Configuration Options

Sort Binner Configuration Options


The strobe latches and resets the sort code counter on all channels. It can be a fixed timer (Internal Timer) or a logical trigger source from another gizmo or device (Gizmo Input).

If using the gizmo input, use the block diagram to choose the StrobeIn input after you have committed your selection.


Select the number of sort codes to look for on each channel of the incoming data and the number of bits per sort codes you want to use for each counter. Use fewer bits and a shorter strobe period to quickly transfer firing/not-firing information. Use more bits and a longer strobe period to convey a more accurate count of sort codes in between strobes.

Output Format

The table provides a visual reference of how the data is compressed into 32-bit words (integers) and is useful when unpacking the data, for example on the other end of the UDP interface. Words are shown in rows with bits in columns. Each cell contains Channel#.SortCode. Highlight radio buttons are available for fast visual simplification of the format.

In the example above, the gizmo will output a four-channel stream of 32-bit integers (Word 1..4). The first four bits of channel 2 on the Main output will contain an integer count of how many spikes fired on channel 5, that were assigned a sort code value of 1, since the last strobe. Because four bits are used to represent this counter, the maximum count value is fifteen (24 -1).