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Compelling Reasons to Migrate from the Keysight 856xE/EC Spectrum Analyzers to the Keysight X-Series Signal Analyzers

Brochures

The Keysight X-Series is an evolutionary approach to signal analysis that spans instrumentation, measurements and software.

  • Building upon a tradition of excellence with leading-edge innovation
  • Backward compatibility enables easy migration
  • Industry-leading measurement speeds
  • Superior amplitude accuracy
  • Increased sensitivity and dynamic range
  • Improved selectivity and accuracy with all-digital IF
  • Enhanced usability with modern user interfaces
  • Broader offering of measurement applications

 

Simpler and more robust data sanitization for security

If you are facing the need to replace out-of-support or legacy instruments, you may be concerned with the form (physical dimension compatibility), fit (comparability of specifications and applications), and function (backward programming language compatibility) of available replacement instruments.

The intent of this document is to explain how each of these concerns can be addressed and resolved by migrating from the 856xE/EC spectrum analyzers to the Keysight Technologies, Inc. X-Series signal analyzers.

Since their introduction more than a decade ago, the Keysight 856xE/EC spectrum analyzers have been widely adopted for a variety of signal analysis ap­plications. Today, Keysight’s X-Series signal analyzers (PXA, MXA, and EXA) are setting standards in signal analysis with leading-edge technology innovations.

Depending upon your specific application, the X-Series signal analyzers offer migration paths to fit your needs. While the MXA signal analyzer has generally been the leading choice by 856xE/EC customers as a replacement analyzer for automated test systems, the future-ready, leading performance, PXA may be the analyzer of choice for those engaged in R&D activities and the EXA may most accurately suit the needs of those who require the ability to speed up signal analysis within a tightening budget.

Backward Compatibility For Easy Migration

Remote language compatibility

Remote language compatibility (RLC) becomes particularly critical when considering replacing an 856xE/EC analyzer in an automated test environment (ATE). A better RLC offering results in less effort spent on re-programming and a smaller reinvestment in the replacement of the instrument.

With increasing pressure to be first-to-market and reduce costs, legacy test equipment may face tougher measurement speed challenges than ever before. In a world of high-volume manufacturing, every millisecond counts. Replacing your 856xE/EC with the MXA, PXA, or EXA signal analyzers can help you make the productivity gains necessary to stay competitive. The MXA and PXA are equipped with a dual-core CPU as a standard feature (optional for EXA), making the MXA, PXA, and EXA stand out as the measurement speed benchmarks among in-class signal and spectrum analyzers.

Industry-Leading Measurement Speed

With increasing pressure to be first-to-market and reduce costs, legacy test equipment may face tougher measurement speed challenges than ever before. In a world of high-volume manufacturing, every millisecond counts. Replacing your 856xE/EC with the MXA, PXA, or EXA signal analyzers can help you make the productivity gains necessary to stay competitive. The MXA and PXA are equipped with a dual-core CPU as a standard feature (optional for EXA), making the MXA, PXA, and EXA stand out as the measurement speed benchmarks among in-class signal and spectrum analyzers. Some key characteristics of measurement speed for the MXA are listed as follows,

  • < 1.5 ms marker peak search
  • < 20 ms tune, measure, and transfer over GPIB
  • < 39 ms measurement/mode switch
  • < 14 ms W-CDMA ACLR fast mode measurement speed (σ = 0.2 dB)

 

Superior Performance

Improved measurement accuracy translates to enhanced productivity. In manufacturing settings, test equipment with better measurement accuracy means production lines and rework stations can have more stringent pass/fail criteria, reduce “false-positive” results, and yield more products which meet defined specifications. In R&D environments, higher accuracy test equipment provides greater design confidence and therefore maximized productivity.

 

Improved Selectivity and Accuracy with All-Digital IF

160 choices of RBW settings from 1 Hz to 8 MHz

The set of resolution bandwidth (RBW) filters determines the resolving power of the spectrum/signal analyzer for unequal signals that are close to each other in frequency domain (selectivity). The narrower the RBW setting, the higher the selectivity of a spectrum/signal analyzer. However, choosing a narrower RBW can significantly slow down the measurement speed in an analyzer’s swept tuned mode.

Modern User Interface Provides Enhanced Usability

Open Windows operating system and embedded online help

The Keysight X-Series signal analyzers are built in the open Windows operating system (OS) environment which enables quick and easy file management with Windows Explorer. Also, the Windows environment allows the user to run MATLAB and the industry-leading 89600 VSA software inside the X-Series analyzer. Additionally, you can troubleshoot and control the X-Series analyzers via Windows Remote Desktop software or with the embedded Web server (LXI-C compliant).

Broader Offering of Measurement Applications

The Keysight X-Series measurement applications allow users of the X-Series signal analyzers to maximize productivity by minimizing equipment setup time and operating errors.

While the 856xE/EC only offers a few measurement utilities, such as phase noise and spurious response, the X-Series signal analyzers support more than 25 measurement applications—and the number is growing. The measurement applications cover traditional measurements like phase noise and noise figure to 2G/3G/4G cellular standards and the latest wireless connectivity technologies such as WLAN and Bluetooth®. The scalability of the X-Series’ measurement applications protect so that you are ready to meet the test challenges of today and tomorrow.

Greater Security with Simpler and More Robust Data Sanitization

In many cases, particularly in the aerospace and defense industry, instrument security is a requirement. An instrument will not be allowed to leave a secured (or classified) area unless it can be proven that all devices capable of maintain­ing memory have been thoroughly erased or secured. 

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