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"Ext RF Atten" range on PSA E4443A

Question asked by vitruvian on Dec 20, 2012
Latest reply on Jan 17, 2013 by tabbott
It says in "GSM and EDGE Guide, Agilent Technologies PSA Series" that:

Ext RF Atten- Allows you to access the following menu to enter the 
external attenuation values...
    MS- Allows you to set an externalattenuation value for MS tests
The range is −50.00 to +50.00 dB with 0.01 dB resolution.
    BTS- Allows you to set an external attenuation value for BTS 
tests. The range is −50.00 to +50.00 dB with 0.01 dB resolution.

However, I have been setting BTS external attenuation to 56.3dB (the offset of my setup) all along, without noticing any warning or error, and the absolute power levels actually doesnt seem to clip at 50dB offset. But I do wonder whether there's any unseen erros happening here. 

Also isnt' this merely an offset to the measurement results? Why limit it to a -50dB to +50dB range?  

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