Tek spins new ARB hardware, free ARB software

Oscilloscope and instrumentation house Tektronix (Beaverton, Oregon) is releasing some PC-based software that lets you more easily use the company's arbitrary waveform generators (AWGs) and arbitrary function generators (AFGs).

Dubbed ArbExpress, it can be downloaded from Tektronix's Web site free of charge. The new executables support existing signal sources from Tek, plus the company's new AWG710B and AWG615 arbitrary waveform generators.

Connectivity Hooks

ArbExpress software also combines TekVisa GPIB/LAN connectivity with a user interface that Tektronix claims will let any level of operator create realworld waveforms.

Using ArbExpress and TekVisa, you can directly import waveforms from an oscilloscope, create waveforms from standard waveform templates, and/or edit with specific anomalies. You can then send the waveforms to the signal sources to feed into your device-under-test.

File Access, Editing

The software also enables direct files access and instrument control of the ARB, along with the ability to create a signal using a built-in equation editor.

There are also built-in math functions, and you can perform direct instrument control and file transfer using the popular MatLab software package from The MathWorks .

The Hardware

As mentioned, along with the ArbExpress software intro come two new waveform generators. Tek's 4.2-Gsample/s Model AWG710B , priced at about $57,500, offers high-fidelity waveform generation that can be used for mixed-signal simulation. The box generates signals with 32.4-million point, or 64.8-million point record lengths.

The AWG710B also has sequencing capability and digital logic outputs. There's also an external clock input that supports jittered and non-jittered signals for high-speed data stream timing margin testing.

Tek's Model AWG615 delivers the same signal fidelity, but at only up to 2.7-Gsample/s speeds. This instrument therefore provides a more cost-effective approach.

Master/Slave Sync

Both of these instruments also tout a master/slave synchronization capability, for multi-channel operation. The syncing enables you to generate IQ (in-phase and qaudrature) communications signals.

For more info, contact Tektronix, Inc., 14200 SW Karl Braun Dr., PO Box 500, Beaverton, Oregon 97077. Phone: (800) 835-9433.

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