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PNI Prime

3-axis measurement Hard- and soft- iron correction Integrated Processor Low power consumption



A full-featured 3-axis digital compass designed for flexibility and adaptability — the perfect fit for sonobuoys, ADCPs, sidescan sonar, low-cost robotics, and other cost-sensitive applications.

The highest-performance 3-axis compass module in its price range, PNI's Prime provides pitch, roll and compass heading everywhere, including where GPS is compromised or unavailable — underwater or underground, beneath bridges or inside buildings. The low-power consumption, low-cost Prime provides all-digital compass heading outputs accurate to 1 degree, can be calibrated to account for magnetic distortions, and offers several user programmable parameters including output damping, reporting units, and sampling configuration.

Full featured digital compass

Combining PNI's low-power consumption magneto-inductive sensors with a 3-axis MEMS accelerometer, Prime is a low-cost compass that provides accurate heading and tilt readings, even at high and low latitudes. PNI's advanced hard and soft iron correction algorithms allow for compensation of magnetic distortions inherent in the user's system, resulting in reliable and consistent readings.

By leveraging PNI's patented magneto-inductive sensors with intelligent power-saving algorithms, Prime consumes less than half the power of magneto-resistive-based compasses. Unlike competetive products, Prime works well at high and low latitudes where the earth's magnetic field has a very high Z-axis component. Prime is the compass of choice for low-cost robots, sonobouys, acoustic Doppler current profilers (ADCPs), sidescan sonar, and seismic monitoring equipment.


Heading Accuracy @ 45°  tilt 1° rms
Repeatability 0.05° rms
Resolution 0.1°
Tilt Accuracy 1° rms
Tilt Range Roll: ±180° 
Pitch: ±90°
Tilt Repeatability 0.05° rms
Tilt Resolution 0.1°
Mechanical Characteristics
Dimensions (L × W × H) 3.3 × 3.1 × 1.3 cm
Mounting Options Screw mount / standoff, horizontal or vertical
Weight 5 grams
I/O Characteristics
Communication Interface Binary RS232
Maximum Sample Rate 10 samples/sec
Power Requirements
Supply Voltage 3.6 - 5 V (unregulated)
Typical Current Draw @ 10 Hz sample rate 16 mA
Current Draw, sleep mode 0.6 mA
Environmental Characteristics
Operating Temperature Range −40 to +85 °C
Storage Temperature Range −40 to +85 °C


File Description
Compass Point Prime Data Sheet Datasheet
Studio Prime Software
CompassPoint Prime User Manual User Manual

Ordering Info

Part Number Description
12826 PRIME
90036 Prime Interface Kit, includes pigtail cable 
90037 Prime Eval Kit, includes pigtail cable and 6' eval cable 


By Email

By Phone

Toll Free: 800.665.5600 (North America)
Direct: 604.814.5069
Fax: 888.831.5149

By Mail

Tri-M Technologies Inc.
208 – 31510 Gill Avenue
Mission, BC, Canada  V4S 0A1

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