Recently, I've become very interested in RF measurement and testing. Adam, VA7OJ, has been a terrific mentor with his extensive knowledge and very well stocked testing bench.

Previously, I thought the best way to create a test bench was to build what I needed. However, lately the prices of fantastic 'not-so-young-anymore' commercial equipment is such that a lab can be assembled on a very limited budget.

So far I've accummulated the following commercial test equipment:

  • HP3562A Dynamic Signal Analyzer (a spectrum analyzer 0.064Hz to 100KHz)*
  • HP8640B RF signal generator
  • HP3586B Selective Level Meter*
  • HP437B Digital RF Power Meter*
  • HP435A Analog RF Power Meter
  •     HP8482A Power Sensor (works with either of the above power meters)
  • RACAL DANA 1996 Frequency counter*
  • RACAL DANA 1992 Frequency counter*
  • HP3488 Data Acquisition System (variety of analog and RF input modules)*
  • Tek 2236 Analog Oscilloscope
  • Kenwood DC Power Supplies (2)

Recent additions:

  • HP6632A Programmable Power Supply*
  • Marconi 2380/2382 Spectrum Analyzer*

* These are programmable using HPIB and a Prologix interface adapter.

Other testing equipment includes:

    • N2PK VNA, original LPT version
    • N2PK VNA, dual detector, USB version
    • Power Meter OZ2CPU
    • GPS Disciplined 10Mhz Oscillator
    • TADD-1 10Mhz Distribution Amplifier
    • IQ - DDS Oscillator
    • DDS PIC Oscillator
    • Capacitor ESR tester
    • M3 Semiconductor tester
    • AMQRP Antenna Analyzer
    • Kuranishi BR210 Antenna Analyzer
    • ...

A look at the close-in noise performance of my HP8640B using the HP3586B as a down-converter. For this test I used the MO of the RACAL 1992 (top) rather than the GPSDO. The HP3586B and the RACAL 1996 are both locked the MO and appear to show a difference of 5Hz (reading 14.1MHz) because they are triggering asynchronously. The laptop is capturing screen dumps from the HP3562A Signal Analyzer. I am trying to determine if this level of phase noise is typical for an HP8640B.