Spectrum Analyzers

Discussion in 'General Technical Questions and Answers' started by KW4H, Aug 14, 2021.

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  1. KW4H

    KW4H Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I've decided that I should really consider getting a spectrum analyzer. Funny it's taken decades to push me towards one, but there are just too many times that I need to visualize a signal against frequency, not just measure it on a scope or meter. My problem, however, is space. My shack and workbench are in the back of our garage and I have extremely limited space. Even now, to use the oscilloscope, I have to pull it off the shelf and make a temporary work area on the bench. Are there any compact/computer-connected spectrum analyzers on the market that are any good? I simply don't have the room for the industrial-sized stuff.

    Thanks - Steve, KW4H
     
  2. WA7ARK

    WA7ARK Ham Member QRZ Page

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  3. KW4H

    KW4H Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Fascinating! Does it have the stability and resolution to accurately examine, for example, the shape of an IF passband? Have you used one before and can recommend it? The price is certainly right -- almost unbelievably cheap.
     
  4. WA7ARK

    WA7ARK Ham Member QRZ Page

    Freq stability is that of a synthesiser with non-oven crystal. I use it as a hf RFI sniffer with a 30" loop with a preamp.

    It is based on the nanoVNA, which is also a must-have for the modern ham. The nanoVNA is like a SA with a Tracking Gen. Great for sweeping filters, antennas, whatever.

    I have one of each... Both bought from R&L... If you are thinking of getting one, get the Cal kit.
     
    KW4H likes this.
  5. KA5IPF

    KA5IPF Ham Member QRZ Page

    KW4H likes this.
  6. KW4H

    KW4H Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Thanks! I learn something new every day. After watching some videos and reading more online, I think the TinySA (which I never heard of) would be good enough for my needs. For the insanely low price it performs well, even up against some of the big-name, high-price SAs. Plus, it sure does meet my requirement for something small.
     
  7. KW4H

    KW4H Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Done!

    Will do.

    I'll be sure to look into that, thanks!

    What I'm mostly involved with is refurbishing boat anchor receivers, and for that I think these small devices will do just fine. My wife does knitting -- I resurrect old iron. :D
     
  8. K6CLS

    K6CLS Ham Member QRZ Page

    sorry I am late to this thread.

    glad you ordered the tinySA. please post about your experience with it. looks like a great unit.

    for HF and lower frequencies, I like Analog Discovery 2 from Digilent. it does spectrum analysis, oscilloscope, and many more functions. needs a PC for control and display, which could be OK depending on your bench
     
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  9. K8JD

    K8JD Ham Member QRZ Page

    I am amazed at the "spectrum scope" that is an integral part of my new Icom IC7300 ! The resolution can go down to much less than a kHz. and you can spread it over one MHz to look for signals anywhere in it's Rcvr range (100 kHz to 72 MHz). Like having a free spectrum analyzer in the same box as your radio !
    There are MORE things it can do that I have not gotten to yet.
    AND you do not have to hook it to another computer to use it, it IS a COmputer !
     
  10. KM3F

    KM3F Ham Member QRZ Page

    Be sure to consider the level trying to be viewed and Attenuation that may be needed.
    If looking at a power amplifier, two identical detector circuit and attenuation sampling will be needed if looking at purity of just the amp.
    I have both the Tiny SA and the Nano VNA.
    Work very well.
     
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