Avcom Spectrum Analyzers

Discussion in 'General Technical Questions and Answers' started by N2HUN, Feb 15, 2020 at 12:20 PM.

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  1. N2HUN

    N2HUN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Anyone using an Avcom SA? These are older units with no where near the capabilities of today's modern units but might serve as an inexpensive SA for bench testing older radios and for looking at propagation.

  2. KA5IPF

    KA5IPF Ham Member QRZ Page

    You would be better off with a $20 SDR
    N2HUN likes this.
  3. KA0GKT

    KA0GKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    The Avcom SAs that I am aware of were mainly used in the SATCOM industry to assist in aligning C and Ku band satellite terminals. they had, IIRC inputs for direct connection to a Satellite receive Low Noise Amplifier and a block converter input. Some could put a tuning voltage on a 70 MHz IFL as well.

    While their resolution was sufficient see satellite transponders, it wasn't good enough to see Spurs from an amateur transmitter.
    N2HUN likes this.
  4. WE4E

    WE4E Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    They're fine. Avcom started off making portable specans for use in satellite communications, specifically looking directly at LNA outputs on C Band dishes and things like that. They're primary market is still TV, microwave, satellite, etc. The older CRT based units are ok, they'll show you things about your signal, and are adequate for some things. It all depends on which model you're considering. The newer ones are very competent.

    Not hardly. Those are over the air TV receivers and will overload if you look at them funny.

    Edit: @KA0GKT reading my mind.
    N2HUN likes this.
  5. KA5IPF

    KA5IPF Ham Member QRZ Page

    Did you ever hear of attenuators????
  6. WE4E

    WE4E Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    All the attenuators in the world won't keep a $20 DVB dongle from displaying all manner of birdies and beat products and other random stuff. They're adequate for SWL and for use as inexpensive panadapters, taken in context. I would not trust one to take any remotely serious measurements, especially of harmonics and other spurious signals.

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