Tektronix, Inc., a leading worldwide provider of test, measurement and monitoring instrumentation, introduced the TTR500 Series USB Vector Network Analyzer, adding to the growing Tektronix portfolio of disruptive USB-based RF test instruments. Like Tektronix' highly successful USB-based spectrum analyzers, the new TTR500 Series delivers an unmatched combination of low price and performance – 40 percent lower cost than alternatives capable of matching its 122 dB dynamic range and 6 GHz frequency range. It also includes advanced features including new VectorVu-PC analysis software and the only built-in bias tee for testing active devices in this category.
Among the markets with a critical need for an affordable VNA are Internet of Things (IoT) design and education. VNAs help IoT designers match Bluetooth, WLAN, RFID and other radios to antennas. In many cases, designers must rent or borrow VNAs, adding time and expense to projects. In education, the high cost of VNAs means students get little to no hands-on time with an important instrument. The TTR500 Series dramatically lowers the barrier to entry and features an easy-to-use user interface for common tasks. The TTR500's small, compact form factor eliminates the need to roll around a shared VNA.
"With its innovative architecture and disaggregated design, the TTR500 Series achieves the same level of performance as a benchtop VNA, but at 40 percent lower cost and one-seventh the size and weight of units with comparable performance," said Jim McGillivary, general manager of RF and Component Solutions at Tektronix. "This new architecture also reduces component count and complexity for more reliability compared to benchtop VNAs. The RSA306 disrupted the spectrum analyzer and I'm confident the TTR500 Series will have the same impact for the VNA."
The TTR500 Series offers a full 2-port, 2-path S-parameter VNA for such applications as measuring passive/active components, antennas and matching networks, RF modules, test cables, adapters and more. It features a solid set of specifications including 100 kHz to 6 GHz frequency range, 122 dB dynamic range, less than 0.008 dB trace noise, and -50 to +7 dBm output power, all in a compact package weighing less than 4 pounds.
An important feature of the TTR500 is the built-in bias tee that is accessible on both ports and allows for active devices, such as amplifiers, to be easily DC biased. No longer will users need to contend with an external bias tee or pay a premium for an instrument with an optional internal bias tee. The TTR500's built-in bias tee allows for 0 to ± 24 V, and 0 to 200 mA on both ports for active devices.
The TTR500 works with any Windows PC or laptop and the VectorVu-PC software delivers a traditional look and feel for controlling and calibrating the instrument. It offers full point and click usability with the ease of PC-based networking for saving and sharing files. For automated test systems in design or manufacturing, VectorVu-PC offers programmatic support for SCPI commands, including command compatibility with common legacy VNAs for easy integration into existing test systems. In addition, the software offers an offline mode for data analysis with an output file format compatible with common EDA simulation tools.
Rounding out the solution, the TTR500 Series is available with a robust set of accessories including a rugged carrying case, rack mount kits, rugged phase-stable cables, attenuators, adapters and calibration kits.