Download this article in .PDF format
This file type includes high resolution graphics and schematics when applicable.

Oscilloscopes are usually the first instrument of choice when scouring for agile or unknown analog or digital signals. Modern oscilloscopes offer impressive functionality, but operating these scopes can be a challenge. As a welcome contrast, the new R&S RTE digital oscilloscopes from Rohde & Schwarz provide generous measurement capabilities, minus the operating complexity. With each sporting a common-sense operating scheme, efficient internal circuit architecture, and flexible, high-resolution touchscreen, these oscilloscopes are easy to use, even with their many measurement functions. They deliver high resolution and accuracy in two- and four-channel versions with a choice of measurement bandwidths from 200 MHz to 1 GHz. 

The R&S RTE digital oscilloscopes (Fig. 1) are engineered to capture even low-level signals and display results over a wide dynamic range. The different models share a sampling rate of 5 GSamples/s and a fast acquisition rate of more than 1 million waveforms/s. The model lineup is as follows: R&S RTE1022 (two channels, 200-MHz bandwidth); R&S RTE1024 (four channels, 200-MHz bandwidth); R&S RTE1032 (two channels, 350-MHz bandwidth); R&S RTE1034 (four channels, 350-MHz bandwidth); R&S RTE1052 (two channels, 500-MHz bandwidth); R&S RTE1054 (four channels, 500-MHz bandwidth); R&SRTE1102 (two channels, 1-GHz bandwidth); and R&SRTE1104 (four channels, 1-GHz bandwidth).

Versatile Oscilloscopes Capture Signals To 1 GHz, Fig. 1

The 200-MHz models provide better than 1.75-ns risetime, while the 350-MHz instruments achieve risetime of better than 1 ns. The 500-MHz and 1-GHz models offer risetimes of better than 700 and 350 ps, respectively. For frequencies at or less than 500 MHz, the input VSWR is 1.25:1; for frequencies above 500 MHz, the input VSWR is 1.40:1. The oscilloscopes offer input sensitivities of 1 mV/div to 1 V/div input sensitivity at 50 Ω and 1 mV to 10 V/div at 1 MΩ. They capture signals with memory depths ranging from 10 MSamples per channel for four channels (20 MSamples for each of two channels and 40 MSamples for one measurement channel) to as much as 50 MSamples per channel for four channels (100 MSamples for each of two channels and 200 MSamples memory depth for a single measurement channel).

The oscilloscopes are highly accurate with low measurement jitter, with typical timebase accuracy of ±10 ps during a normal calibration interval and ±5 ps timebase accuracy following a calibration. The instruments are beneficiaries of a high-performance, single-core 8-b analog-to-digital converter (ADC) capable of achieving better than seven effective number of bits (ENOB). The single-core data converter is in stark contrast to the typical oscilloscope digitizing architecture in which multiple time-interleaved ADCs are connected to process captured signals, even though errors can arise due to behavioral differences among the different ADCs. The R&S RTE digital oscilloscopes feature a high input sensitivity of 1 mV/div with no compromise on bandwidth or ADC resolution. They waste little time, with less than 300 ns blind time between individual acquisitions.

These flexible, high-performance oscilloscopes employ a unique trigger approach to maintain high accuracy, even when capturing and displaying low-amplitude signals. With this trigger system, one common signal path is used for the acquisition or measurement signal and the trigger signal. By directly analyzing the digitized measurement signal independent of the sampling rate, the oscilloscope can determine if the trigger condition has been met for a signal, even at low amplitudes.

In fact, the oscilloscopes allow flexible adjustment of the digital lowpass filter in the signal acquisition circuitry. The same filter settings can be used for measurement and trigger signals, so that RF noise can be suppressed in support of measuring low-level signals. With built-in fast Fourier transform (FFT) measurement functionality, the spectrum of a waveform can be displayed for analysis in the frequency domain.

Download this article in .PDF format
This file type includes high resolution graphics and schematics when applicable.