New signal generators have high sample rates


Current signal generators come with high sample rates for better modulation and signal quality.

By Sneha Ambastha

A signal generator, also known as a function generator, is an electronic device used to generate different electrical waveforms at different frequency ranges. Function generators are capable of generating many types of waveforms like triangular, cosine, sine, sawtooth, etc. They are used in labs and research centres to produce a wide range of AC signals. This article discusses function generators that are used as test and measurement devices. There is a variety of function generators coming up in this segment, incorporating new technologies like HDMI compliance testing, 3G/4G base station verification, etc.

Signal generators that have been launched recently in the market

Model: M8195A, Brand: Keysight, Manufacturer: Keysight Technologies
M8195A is a recently updated arbitrary waveform generator from Keysight. It has been integrated with a high-definition multimedia interface (HDMI) 2.0 receiver to support compliance testing. It also has an automated compliance and device characterisation test software (N5990A) that not only allows fast and reliable testing but also provides broad test coverage of HDMI 2.0. This automated test solution also includes HDMI extended display identification data (EDID), consumer electronics control (CEC) and high bandwidth digital content protection (HDCP) test options.

Key features

  • It is a device that’s ready for next generation HDMI technology. It has a sample rate of 65 GSa/s and an analogue bandwidth of 25GHz
  • It fully supports N5990A HDMI receiver compliance test automation software
  • Is easy to operate and requires minimal accessories
  • Performs all receiver tests without delay lines and without manual reconnections

USP: Supports all relevant HDMI 1.4 and 2.0 tests, including source and sink transition minimised differential signalling (TMDS) protocol 6G and scrambling tests
Contact: Ph: 0124-229-2010,,
Indian branch: Keysight Technologies India Private Limited

Model: AWG4000, Brand: Tektronix, Manufacturer: Tektronix Inc.
The three-in-one arbitrary waveform generator launched by Tektronix in its AWG4000 series offers an arbitrary user interface for generating function waveforms with minimum clicks. Tektronix claims that the generator can meet a wide variety of signal generation needs, ranging from radar and wireless communications to embedded systems design and research applications. This device is considered to be suitable for manufacturing and for advanced research in applications where synchronisation and communication between instruments is required.

Key features

  • It offers two analogue channels, 750MHz bandwidth, up to 2.5GS/s sampling rate, 14-bit vertical resolution, up to 64 Mpt/ch arbitrary memory and 32-bit digital channels
  • Capable of getting many of its specifications upgraded in the field, including memory and digital outputs
  • Capable of installing external signal generation tools such as RFXpress and MATLAB to help users create their desired signals
  • Up to six AWG4000s can be synchronised via a dedicated synchronisation interface to provide a precise timing between different units

USP: Meets a wide range of signal generation needs starting from simple arbitrary function generation (AFG) to complex sequenced waveforms
Contact: Ph: 080-30792726/41,,
Indian branch: Tektronix India Private Limited

Model: R&S SMW200A, Brand: Rohde & Schwarz, Manufacturer: Rohde & Schwarz GmbH & Co. KG
The recently launched SMW200A is a vector signal generator capable of generating complex and digitally modulated signals of high quality. This is why it can be used to generate the digitally modulated signals required for the development of new wideband communications systems, and for the verification of 3G and 4G base stations in the aerospace and defence sectors. The company claims that it has a modular scalable architecture that allows its users to optimise the signal generator as per their applications and to upgrade it too.

Key features

  • Has an R&S SMW-K114 5G waveform software option that makes it easy to configure OFDM signals with the required 75kHz subcarrier spacing and 100MHz bandwidth
  • Enabled with user settings that allow the creation of 5G signals with the basic characteristics as specified by the Verizon 5G technical forum
  • Allows the addition of a second RF path along with a maximum of two baseband and four fading simulator modules without any compromise on signal quality
  • It can create signal scenarios that previously required multiple instruments or could not be implemented at all

USP: Supports 5G signal generation and analysis based on Verizon 5G open trial specifications
Contact: Ph: 01142535400,,
Indian branch: Rohde & Schwarz India Pvt Ltd


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