Real time solutions meet wireless standards

"We have taken a new approach to the market that will really allow us to grow," said Jim McGillivary, president of component solutions and rf for Tektronix. He was speaking at the launch of two new product lines that have been largely driven by the amount of development of Wi-Fi products.

The two product families are the RSA5000B, a real time spectrum analyser, and the mixed domain oscilloscopes, the MDO4000B. "Wireless standards are changing to require more bandwidth and at the same time signal durations are getting shorter, making them more difficult than ever to detect," said McGillivary. "With these introductions, Tektronix is giving our customers the characterisation and troubleshooting tools with superior real-time features at the lowest price on the market. By pushing the digitiser 'up the front end' the signal is dealt with in the processor, rather than the normal technique of having a sweeping analyser. The consequence, according to McGilivary, is that: "processors are getting cheaper every year - we are driving cost down and swept analysers will struggle." The RSA5000B provides 165MHz real-time capture bandwidth that 'opens the door for high-performance 8.2.11ac signals' Real time features that are now available as standard include swept DPX, density trigger, time-qualified triggers and improved minimum signal duration, the latter now stands at 2.8usec for a 100% poi (probability of intercept). Equally the MDO4000B series features enhanced analyser performance and when used with the company's SignalVu-PC vector signal analysis capability, provides support for WLAN 802.11 a/b/g/n/p/ac testing. The company claims having a built-in spectrum analyser in an oscilloscope, introduced in the former MDO4000 series, is still unique. Fanny Mlinarsky is president and CTO of octoScope, a provider of wireless test solutions and services. She observed: "Incorporating WLAN into designs introduces a whole new level of complexity that can be challenging to debug on a system level without the right tools. The MDO4000B with SignalVu-PC delivers the right capabilities at the right price point to enable embedded and WLAN module designers to rapidly debug systems without a steep learning curve." Capability improvements in the new series over the original MDO4000 include: a spurious free dynamic range (SFDR) is now guaranteed to 60dB with 65dB typical; phase noise performance has improved by up to 20dB; maximum rf acquisition time has doubled to 158ms; and the lower frequency limit has dropped from 50kHz to 9kHz enabling EMI diagnostics over the frequency range specified by international regulations.