The market demands narrow-band spectrum analysers

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Recent spectrum analyser models have wideband measurement functions to support the increasing demand for LTE and wireless LAN measurements, but there is a requirement today for devices with narrow bandwidth measurement capabilities

By Sneha Ambastha

A spectrum analyser is a device used to measure the magnitude of an input signal with respect to frequency. Although it measures electrical signals, there are optical spectrum analysers too that measure the optical light waves using the monochromator technique. Primarily catering to laboratories and factories, the spectrum analyser market is expected to reach US$ 1.75 billion by 2022 with a CAGR of about 8.48 per cent, according to Pune-based research firm, Markets and Markets.
As per the market’s requirements, the measurement of microwave wireless backhaul and VHF/UHF private mobile radio (PMR) requires a spectrum analyser that has a good narrowband measurement performance, but most such devices in the market that support LTE do not address this requirement as they have wideband measurement functions. Consequently, users who require narrowband performance have either continued using older models dating from 10 to 20 years ago, or have been forced to purchase very expensive high-end models. Those researching and developing wireless equipment and devices require a mid-range model with good narrow bandwidth measurement capabilities.


Listed below are a few recently launched spectrum analysers

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Model: NI PXIe-5840, Brand: National Instruments, Manufacturer: National Instruments
The NI PXIe-5840 is a second generation vector signal transceiver (VST2.0) that combines a 6.5GHz RF vector signal generator, a 6.5GHz vector signal analyser, a high-performance user-programmable FPGA, and high-speed serial and parallel digital interfaces into a single two-slot PXI Express module. According to sources at NI, the analyser empowers engineers with software-designed instrumentation, enabling them to stay abreast of the complex and rapidly changing wireless technology requirements with respect to RF test, measurement and prototyping solutions. Launched globally in August 2016, the transceiver is suitable for a wide range of applications including 802.11ac/ax device testing, mobile/IoT (Internet of Things) device testing, 5G design and testing, RFIC testing and more. 1GHz of instantaneous bandwidth is required for advanced digital pre-distortion (DPD) testing and wideband signals such as radar, LTE-Advanced Pro and 5G.

1Key features

  • Has an instantaneous bandwidth of 1GHz
  • Is capable of streaming both input and output RF streams at 1GHz simultaneously with the latest Gen 3 PXI chassis
  • Its user programmable FPGA ensures that the device is used for in-line signal processing and analysis on the entire 1GHz bandwidth of data
  • Capable of using the high speed analogue-to-digital converters (ADCs) and digital-to-analogue converters (DACs) without compromising on the performance

Key specifications

  • Frequency range: 9kHz to 6.5GHz
  • Capture bandwidth: 1GHz
  • Dimensions: PXI standard compliant two-slot
  • 3U module

USP: Second generation vector signal transceiver that redefines RF instrumentation with its several features
Contact: Ph: +918041190000, [email protected], www.ni.com
Indian branch: NI Systems India Pvt Ltd


Model: MS2840A, Brand: Anritsu, Manufacturer: Anritsu Corporation, Japan
Launched in March 2016, the MS2840A is a spectrum analyser that has a frequency range of 9kHz to 44.5GHz and a built-in oscillator with an improved single sideband (SSB) phase noise performance. It supports millimeter-wave band spectrum measurements using its high performance waveguide mixer. Its SSB phase noise performance enables a wide range of R&D and manufacturing applications, including microwave and millimeter-wave wireless equipment, 79GHz band automobile radar, various oscillators, etc. The convenient built-in signal analyser function supports instantaneous analysis of transmitter signals, while the various additional measurement software and options with noise figure (NF) measurement functions support detailed analysis of transmitter modulation signals.

2Key features

  • Supports a wide frequency band ranging from microwave wireless backhaul to VHF/UHF private mobile radio (PMR)
  • Comes with a millimeter-wave band transmitter and antenna measurement capability
  • Capable of performing multiple functions like the measurement of transmitter characteristics including VHF/UHF-band wireless transmitter spurious, adjacent channel leakage power; spectrum mask, frequency count, etc.
  • Operates on an embedded operating system (OS) like Microsoft Windows 7 (64-bit) running on a Core-i5 CPU with 8GB of RAM, and uses SSD storage for optimum performance

Key specifications

  • Frequency range: 9kHz to 3.6GHz / 6GHz / 26.5GHz / 44.5GHz; 44.5GHz max. (built-in preamp option)
  • Analysis bandwidth: 31.25MHz (standard)
    125MHz max. (optional)
  • Dimensions (W x H x D): 426mm×177mm× 390mm (excluding projections)

USP: This spectrum analyser has enhanced close-in phase noise performance for R&D and manufacturing of narrowband wireless equipment
Contact: Ph: +91 120 4211330-31-32, +91 9310 666 466, [email protected], www.anritsu.com
Indian branch: Anritsu India Pvt Ltd


Model: FSW 85, Brand: Rohde & Schwarz, Manufacturer: Rohde & Schwarz GmbH & Co. KG
The FSW 85 is a recently launched signal/spectrum analyser that covers a continuous frequency range of a signal using a single coaxial input connector from DC to 85GHz frequency. This one-box solution makes the measurement set-up easy without the requirement for any external harmonics. It supports various application areas like radars, mobile communications and broadcasting. It uses popular analysis tools like vector signal analysis (VSA), chirp and hopping analysis, and multi-carrier group delay for satellite applications and for LTE- FDD/TDD uplink/downlink, Docsis3.1.

Rhode & Schwarz_47232_04Key features

  • Has a built-in RF attenuator to adjust the signal level without the requirement for an additional component
  • Preselection of a frequency of up to 85GHz gives an image-free spectrum for easy measurement of the spectrum emission mask or of spurious emissions
  • Can address wideband applications with just a 2GHz analysis bandwidth extension

Key specifications
Frequency range:

  • R&S FSW8: 2Hz to 8GHz
  • R&S FSW13: 2Hz to 13.6GHz
  • R&S FSW26: 2Hz to 26.5GHz
  • R&S FSW43: 2Hz to 43.5GHz
  • R&S FSW50: 2Hz to 50GHZ
  • R&S FSW67: 2Hz to 67GHz
  • R&S FSW85: 2Hz to 85GHz

Capture bandwidth:

  • 10MHz (standard)
  • Can be upgraded to: 28MHz, 40MHz, 80MHz, 160MHz, 320MHz, 512MHz and 2GHz

Dimensions (W x H x D): 462mm×240mm×610mm
Weight: 26.6kg (net weight without options)

USP: Is a one-box solution for up to an 85GHz signal measurement set-up without any external harmonic mixer
Contact: Ph: 01142535400, [email protected], www.rohde-schwarz.com
Indian branch: Rohde & Schwarz India Pvt Ltd


Model: GSP-9330, Brand: GW INSTEK, Manufacturer: Good Will Instrument Co. Ltd
The recently launched GSP-9330 is a spectrum analyser from Good Will that enables high speed testing. Its sweep speed of 204μs allows users to analyse and handle modulation signals easily. It is capable of providing analogue AM/FM, demodulation, analysis functions, digital signal ASK/FSK, and 2FSK demodulation and analysis capabilities. It incorporates an EMC pre-test solution to facilitate EMC tests. Its applications include quick checks and analysis of spectral characteristics, EMI pre-compliance testing, monitoring of satellite uplink signals from satellite uplink trucks, etc. It is used in industries such as consumer electronics, service and maintenance, universities, military, automotive electronics and telecom.

GWI_GSP-9330Key features

  • Provides fast sweep speed of up to 204us
  • Can handle modulated signals with its fast sweep time and signal demodulation capabilities
  • It stabilises quickly after being powered up because of its frequency stability of 0.025 ppm
  • Allows users to set up automatic wake-up time to save manual setting up time
  • Its sequence function exempts users from writing programs
  • Its limit line function determines whether the tested signal passes the test

Key specifications

Frequency range: 9kHz ~ 3.25GHz
Filter bandwidth:

  • R&S FSW8: 2Hz to 8GHz
  • Resolution bandwidth filter:
    1. 1Hz ~ 1MHz in 1-3-10 sequence: 3dB bandwidth
    2. 200Hz, 9kHz, 120kHz, 1MHz: 6dB bandwidth
  • Video bandwidth filter:
    1. 1Hz ~ 1 MHz in 1-3-10 sequence: 3dB bandwidth

Amplitude (measurement) range:

  • 100kHz ~ 1MHz: displayed average noise level (DANL) to 18dBm
  • 1MHz ~ 10MHz: DANL to 21dBm
  • 10MHz ~ 3.25GHz: DANL to 30dBm

Dimensions (W x H x D): 350mm x 210mm x 100mm

USP: High speed testing with fast sweep time and signal demodulation functions
Contact: Ph: +91-9999167300, [email protected], www.gwinstek.com

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