We are excited to release our new tech brief "10 Signal Generator Features You’re Probably Paying Too Much For" that helps RF engineers make portable vs. benchtop Signal Generator decisions.
A robust test bench is an essential element to any team conducting daily RF device and assembly prototyping, characterization, and calibration. And among the most common instruments you’ll find on benches everywhere, from component and subsystem manufacturers to antenna system integrators and cellular network providers, is a signal generator. But when budgets are tight, engineers and test techs are often urged to “buy only what they really need.” The dilemma presented is then a decision over the number of pieces of new equipment they need vs. the feature set of their finished test stand. The complexities of this decision are further compounded in companies developing radar and wireless network systems that involve multiple and complex signal paths that require distinct signal sources. These test stands require a greater number of signal generators, and also necessitate a modular capability that can readily adapt to evolving standards and changing frequency bands to meet the latest applications.
An evolving method of cost control for all companies encountering these challenges is buying wireless test devices that are more application specific, portable, and self-programmable vs. feature-rich, preprogrammed, and costly benchtop equipment.
This tech brief will help you gain an understanding of the features and flexibility to look for in a self-programmable signal generator so you can align your desired outcomes with the total budget you have for your bench.