Tek Spectrum Analyzers Use DPX to Spot Transients

Tracking down interference with conventional spectrum analyzers can be difficult if the interference is intermittent. This week Tektronix announced the H500 and SA2500 handheld spectrum analyzers with its DPX waveform image processor technology that should make it easier to locate transient signals and those that use time varying transmission techniques to evade detection.

The DPX technology in the H500 and SA2500 analyzers display live RF spectrum perform more than 2,500, or more than 10,000 measurements per second, respectively, using dedicated, real-time hardware to process incoming signals. DPX also provides an intensity-graded persistence display the holds anomalies until the eye can see them to show the history of occurrence for dynamic signals. The H500 provides 100 percent probability of detection for transients with event durations as short as 125 microseconds. The SA2500 provides 100 percent probability of detecting events as short as 500 microseconds.

The analyzers cover 10 kHz to 6.2 GHz, have a 20 MHz real-time bandwidth, and −163 dBm displayed average noise level (DANL), matching the performance of many benchtop analyzers. The new devices weight slightly more than 12 pounds.

“The H500 and SA2500 combine benchtop spectrum analyzer performance with ruggedized packaging resulting in a powerful and versatile tool ideal for almost any spectrum management assignment, but what makes these instruments truly revolutionary is our unique real-time DPX live RF spectrum display technology,” said Jim McGillivary, general manager of Tektronix’s source analyzer product line. “No other instrument or technology offers such a practical, fast and easy way to discover unknown, randomly occurring digital RF events.”

Prices for the handheld analyzers start at $24,000 for the SA2500 and $43,400 for the H500.

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.