zayance

HP8903 pros and cons
« on: June 13, 2013, 05:54:58 AM »
I'm just curious about that, not that i need one desperately, just curiosity for any one using that thing.
I know you can do this with soundcard and computer and have some "ok" but limited figures, and there seem to be boxes that will provide that also (as seen on the Chamber) but what about those oldies, HP, Tektronix etc...
Sorry if that has been discussed already

Thanks

T.


PRR

Re: HP8903 pros and cons
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2013, 08:10:06 PM »

zayance

Re: HP8903 pros and cons
« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2013, 04:26:38 AM »
I ran across that website, but i tought the toughts would differ ( beside that software ) or whatever, but ok thanks.

PRR

Re: HP8903 pros and cons
« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2013, 12:36:54 AM »
(Bumping to keep this thread high.)

I'm guessing not too many people have used this unit.

The particular thing it would be GREAT for is mass-testing. Your workers have assembled a thousand preamps. Adapt the connectors. Write a program to poke the HPIB port. Plug-up unit #1, push "Start", it runs gain, clipping, response, distortion, etc tests and outputs back on HPIB. Your program checks for "reject" results and beeps, or displays "OK!!" and sends a report to the printer. A few seconds per unit, versus minutes or an hour with my dumb old sig-gen, meter, filters, and paper.

For one-off work, I'm sticking with the dumb old stuff. Matches my mind.

zayance

Re: HP8903 pros and cons
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2013, 05:48:31 AM »
Found a video showing the unit with P.millett software, still takes some time doing the tests for if mass testing.
GPIB cable to USB or to the dedicated PCI card adds a little to the 2nd hand cost of the unit but seems like a good price VS quality
unit compared to what's proposed theses days, the QA400 on the other hand seem to be working ok for a small box and for 1/4 of that HP so it's up to the testers choice, but seems like the HP has proven it's capabilities over the years so... anyway


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FcEgy7YZPPc
« Last Edit: June 15, 2013, 05:51:36 AM by zayance »

abbey road d enfer

Re: HP8903 pros and cons
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2013, 07:37:02 AM »
The particular thing it would be GREAT for is mass-testing. Your workers have assembled a thousand preamps. Adapt the connectors. Write a program to poke the HPIB port. Plug-up unit #1, push "Start", it runs gain, clipping, response, distortion, etc tests and outputs back on HPIB. Your program checks for "reject" results and beeps, or displays "OK!!" and sends a report to the printer. A few seconds per unit, versus minutes or an hour with my dumb old sig-gen, meter, filters, and paper.
That's the ideal situation. In real life, you have a guy spending months trying to understand this effing IEEE488 language, and then trying to understand why, although they're IEEE488 certified, some cards work and some don't (just because the chips are not the same). A problem not too different than FW interface cards.
All the factories I know who used 488 had a whole team devoted to debugging the test system.
When they moved to AP, they could get rid of the whole team, or just keep one guy.
IMO, this functionality of the 8903 is the least valuable in today's context.
Now, the pristine metrologic performance may be a good reason to acquire one.
Who's right or wrong is irrelevant. What matters is what's right or wrong.
Star ground is for electricians.

Re: HP8903 pros and cons
« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2013, 03:57:35 PM »
Got mine for 50 bucks, wouldn't sell it for 500.

I wish it did frequency sweeps (better), but that's really my only complaint about it.

Really, it's TOO good for what I'm (we're?) doing with it. I don't really NEED to know that a new preamp is down 0.007db at whatever Hz, but...
F-in' hook some Sh*t up and see if it catches on fire; try to have a good idea about what might and might not catch on fire in the first place. -emrr


 

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