User Tools

Site Tools



Reviews of various pieces of test equipment

Agilent 1670G logic analyzer

Reviewer: JM

Relevant experience: noob

I wanted to do basic edge triggering and had trouble navigating through the menus trying to figure out how to setup the trigger. It looks like it may be powerful if you are a more advanced user but difficult for a noob

I mostly used the mouse, it didn't work on at least one GUI

I didn't try the HPIB or floppy

Tektronix DPO 4104B Digital Phosphor Oscilloscope

Reviewer: JM

Relevant experience: basic

I haven't used it much but others in the lab complain it has a lot of sofwtware bugs

Tektronix TDS 784A Oscilloscope

Reviewer: JM

Relevant experience: basic

Found the interface harder to use than other scopes in the lab. Its large size also makes in less convenient to bring over for a quick measurement

Agilent MSO104A Oscilloscope

Reviewer: JM

Relevant experience: basic

I have been extremely satisfied with this scope. First, I've found the user interface very intuitive. Second, it oversamples during most captures such that you can zoom in after capture to get a lot more detail without having to recapture a smaller time slice.

Agilent 54622D MSO

Reviewer: JM

Relevant experience: basic

Both scope and LA interfaces have been easy enough to navigate and for my basic usage has been a good buy. Biggest issue is the relatively low bandwidth (mostly due to its age) and that it uses floppy instead of USB (once again, due to its age).

Logic analyzer much easier to use than the 1670G


HP/Agilent/... E36XXA power supplies

Reviewer: JM

Relevant experience: basic

I've been generally happy with these. The interface is easy to use but it only has one knob which means that some adjustments are a bit slower to make as you need to navigate through several screens to, for example, adjust voltage and current for two channels. Contrast for example with supplies that have a separate voltage and current knob.

I use the GPIB interface but could probably just as well use the serial interface since I'm not using them on a bus. I use simple pyserial (Python) code to talk to it. Its somewhat slow to respond to measurement requests so while it has some basic multimeter capabilities don't expect to get high rate measurements (maybe a few a second?).

The protective boot on the back often falls off. Maybe should glue them on.

SATA analyzer

SerialTek BusXpert micro

Reviewer: JM

Relevant experience: basic

Software: BusXpert version 4.0.946

I've only used it for a bit but have been pretty happy with it. Supports ethernet and PCI-e, they say PCI-e is much faster. It seems to buffer the data on the box and only pull it over as needed (nifty). For example, if you do a full export it will take a while because it actually needs to copy the data over.

Unit I had has 9 GB of packet storage.

Software seems reasonably polished

Teledyne/Lecroy CATC

Reviewer: JM

Relevant experience: basic

Software: LeCroy SASSuite 6.26, Build 257

TLDR: should work good enough for performance analysis but not suitable for diagnosing SATA host/device communication issues.

First time I've used a SATA protocol analyzer. The software crashes under bad SATA negotations. I cannot export raw packet logs: all export options summarize the data. This fails both use cases I wanted it for.

equipment.txt · Last modified: 2014/10/22 14:28 by mcmaster-guest