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Handheld Spectrum Analyzer Melds Nine Instruments into One

Oct. 27, 2022
Anritsu’s field instrument covers 9 kHz to 4 GHz for applications such as interference hunting and 5G/LTE network verification.

The Overview

In its Field Master MS2080A handheld spectrum analyzer, Anritsu offers a multifunctional product that combines nine instruments into one. The unit spans a frequency range of 9 kHz to 4 GHz, bringing time and cost efficiency to demanding field environments.

Who Needs It & Why?

Although the MS2080A is a broadly applicable instrument, Anritsu has a few core applications in mind. One is interference hunting. With so many users of RF spectrum, it’s critical for field engineers to track sources of interference. For example, consider theme parks, which have safety sensors installed on rides. These sensors feature radio links to control centers, and interference with those links could put riders in jeopardy. The MS2080A can help pin down those interferers.

Another key application, which is akin to interference hunting, is audio direction finding through the instrument’s AM/FM audio demodulation capabilities. This function can be used to identify stations or perform interference mapping or triangulation.

A third core application is the ability to do 5G/LTE measurements. With the MS2080A, field engineers can perform transmitter signal-quality measurements and coverage mapping as well as base-station maintenance.

Under the Hood

The MS2080A combines fast sweep speed of 45 GHz/s, advanced user features such as AM/FM audio demodulation, and best-in-class RF performance, including ±1-dB amplitude accuracy. In addition, it supports a cable and antenna analyzer, power meter, and 5G/LTE analysis, comprising a general-purpose instrument that addresses measurement requirements for legacy and emerging wireless networks.

An optional real-time spectrum analyzer (RTSA) that provides real-time spectrum analysis with 2-µs probability of intercept (POI) is available. The RTSA has up to 40 MHz of analysis bandwidth and DANL of 150 dBm, making it well-suited for capturing intermittent and digitally modulated signals that can be hard to identify. Spectrograms allow for irregular and drifting signals to be captured, recorded, and displayed.

The MS2080A supports a full range of measurements for 5G frequency range 1 (FR1) radios to 4 GHz, including C-band, to support insulation and maintenance of 5G New Radio (NR) and LTE base stations. Gated sweep analysis for transmitter-quality measurements to accurately verify FR1 carriers with 100 MHz of bandwidth is provided. The MS2080A offers full-channel, power-based, and 5G/LTE modulation-quality measurement-based coverage mapping for accurate over-the-air (OTA) testing.

The highly durable analyzer performs well in severe environments. It's claimed as the only instrument in its class to provide 5 W of continuous RF input overload protection, preventing costly damage to the instrument’s front end when used close to high-power transmitters or in high-signal-level environments.

A large 10-in., 1280- × 800-resolution multi-touch display meets the demanding IK08 specification for direct knocks and drops. Common functions are always accessible from the MS2080A display, and side menus collapse to maximize graphical results.

A soft case provides IP52 environmental protection to safeguard the instrument during transport or rain. Weighing less than 4 kg, the MS2080A is small, compact, and easy to carry.

About the Author

David Maliniak | Executive Editor, Microwaves & RF

I am Executive Editor of Microwaves & RF, an all-digital publication that broadly covers all aspects of wireless communications. More particularly, we're keeping a close eye on technologies in the consumer-oriented 5G, 6G, IoT, M2M, and V2X markets, in which much of the wireless market's growth will occur in this decade and beyond. I work with a great team of editors to provide engineers, developers, and technical managers with interesting and useful articles and videos on a regular basis. Check out our free newsletters to see the latest content.

You can send press releases for new products for possible coverage on the website. I am also interested in receiving contributed articles for publishing on our website. Use our contributor's packet, in which you'll find an article template and lots more useful information on how to properly prepare content for us, and send to me along with a signed release form. 

About me:

In his long career in the B2B electronics-industry media, David Maliniak has held editorial roles as both generalist and specialist. As Components Editor and, later, as Editor in Chief of EE Product News, David gained breadth of experience in covering the industry at large. In serving as EDA/Test and Measurement Technology Editor at Electronic Design, he developed deep insight into those complex areas of technology. Most recently, David worked in technical marketing communications at Teledyne LeCroy, leaving to rejoin the EOEM B2B publishing world in January 2020. David earned a B.A. in journalism at New York University.

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