• What Time Synchronization Means for Your Multi-Channel RF Measurements

    In a rock band, the drummer keeps the beat steady and the other musicians follow the rhythm. The drummer keeps the entire band in synch. The same concept is true when you integrate multiple instruments into a test sys...
    EricHsu
    last modified by EricHsu
  • The Four Ws of Harmonic Distortion

    In the previous edition of The Four Ws, I reviewed the fundamentals of adjacent channel power (ACP). This time I’m discussing the WHAT, WHY, WHEN and WHERE of harmonic distortion measurements. Measuring harmonic...
    nickben
    last modified by nickben
  • Sadly, Aging is Happening to Me, to You and to Your Signal Analyzer

      Fortunately, we can make things better—for your signal analyzer   Note from Ben Zarlingo: This guest post comes to us from Bill Scharf, a Keysight engineer with long experience in microwave sig...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • The Real Power of Engineering: Creating the Future vs. Predicting it

      Adapting to future circumstances instead of expecting to anticipate them  There’s nothing inherently wrong with trying to predict the future, whether that of technology or any other area. It’s ...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • More Cost-Effective RF Power Measurements

      In praise of the humble power sensor It’s always nice to get a reality check from a fellow RF engineer, and Keysight’s Eric Breakenridge recently delivered one in the form of an explanation of the c...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Making Sense of Battery Power and RF Power

      Understand, anticipate, and respect your power limitations Are IoT and other smart/connected devices the biggest wireless opportunity right now, or the biggest source of hype? I suppose they can be both at the ...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • The Four Ws of Adjacent Channel Power

      Are you a good spectral citizen?   Note from Ben Zarlingo: This is the third in our series of guest posts by Nick Ben, a Keysight engineer. In this post he provides an overview of adjacent channel power, a...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • RF Interference Will Hobble Us Before the Spectrum Apocalypse Arrives

      Spectrum crowding is bad, but I think interference is worse He’s guilty of some degree of hyperbole, but Lou Frenzel highlights a fundamental issue in his recent column Spectrum Apocalypse: The Coming Dea...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Dawn of the Vector Signal Analyzer

      A new RF tool leveraged two evolving technologies These days, vector signal analyzers (VSAs) are in broad use, especially in wireless, aerospace, and defense applications. They’re essential for designing ...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Unintended Oscillations and Interference Problems

      Avoiding extra functionality in your circuits A common saying among electrical engineers is that if you want an oscillator, try building an amplifier. This is all too often accurate, and unwanted oscillations i...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • One Solution to Complexity: Focus on the Most Common Measurement Errors

      A pre-filter to manage an excess of information In the first two decades of the modern spectrum analyzer—say from the 1960s to the 1980s—it was arguably possible for an RF engineer to know almost ev...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Better Millimeter-wave Measurements with New Preselection Technology

      When gems turn to coal, engineers get creative Despite their flaws, I have described YIG preselector filters as the gems in microwave signal analyzers. These preselectors solve a problem created when mixers are...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Measurement Techniques and Strategies for the Interference of Things

      Bring your best engineering game, and use all the measurement tools available The term Internet of Things (IoT) has been around a few years, and sometimes it feels over-hyped. When some folks start musing breat...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Improving ACPR Measurements with the Tukey Window

      Making other windows seem a little wasteful A proverb that’s perhaps 2,000 years old describes the mills of the gods as “grinding slowly but exceedingly fine.” I’d like to flatter myself...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Millimeter Measurements: Beware of Changes in Connector Scale

      Taking extra care in the lands of the large and the small Recently, I found myself peering at a dial indicator while checking the blade runout on my shiny new 12-inch miter saw. I’m putting up new trim in...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • It’s RF interference again…

      The case of the troublesome garage door opener   Note from Ben: This is the first in a series of guest posts from Jennifer Stark of Keysight. As discussed here earlier, our increasingly crowded RF environ...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Measuring ACPR: Adding Voltage or Adding Power?

      Coherence can make a big difference Sometimes The Fates of Measurement smile upon you, and sometimes they conspire against you. In many cases, however, it’s hard to tell which—if either—is hap...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Spotting Difficult Noise Figure Measurements

      A quick, intuitive look at what will make them challenging Noise is fundamental in much of what RF engineers do, and it drives cost/performance tradeoffs in major ways. If you’ve read this blog much, you&...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • The Four Ws of Noise Figure

      If you're going to optimize it you have to quantify it   Note from Ben Zarlingo: This is the second in our series of guest posts by Nick Ben, a Keysight engineer. Here he turns his attention to the f...
    benz
    last modified by benz
  • Phase Noise and Distortion Measurements

    Originally posted May 3, 2016   Understanding how it limits dynamic range and what to do about it   A talented RF engineer and friend of mine is known for saying “Life is a microcosm of phase noise.&...
    benz
    last modified by benz