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Signal Generator Absolute Level Accuracy

Question asked by frankst on Oct 13, 2014
Latest reply on Nov 17, 2014 by dhamilton
I'm new to this forum and rather new to signal generators. So please bear with me, if I ask something that has been answered several times before. There is so much information around that it's hard to find a fitting answer.

I'm a happy user of a E4421B siggen. Recently we had it calibrated at Agilent. When it came back I had a look at the calibration report. One point raised my interest: Specification of the absolute level accuracy is 0.5dB, but the report claims absolute level accuracy <0.1dB. That's quite a difference! But what does it mean? Can I now really assume my siggen to be better than 0.1dB? And what is actually that well calibrated? Is it the output power at the set frequency or is it the total output power including harmonics and non-harmonics? Is it "instantaneous" power, i.e. per cycle, or is it averaged over a certain time (which?)?

For example, what would be the error if I take the power set value and calculate the peak-to-peak voltage into perfect 50ohms assuming a perfect sine?

Many thanks and best regards