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Microwave/Counter/Analyzer & Integrated Power Meter

MCA3000 Series

Features & Benefits

Key Performance Specifications
  • 27 GHz and 40 GHz Models
  • Microwave Analyzer Channel with CW or Burst
  • Two 300 MHz General-purpose Channels
  • –35 dBm to +10 dBm Power Range
  • 100 ps Single-shot Time Resolution
  • 12 Digit/s Frequency Resolution, 14 Digit Display
  • 25 ms (Auto) or Zero (Manual) Acquisition Time
  • 3 mV Voltage Resolution
  • Optional 1.5×10–8 Ultra High-stability Oven Time Base
Measurement Throughput
  • 250k Sample/s Data Transfer Rate to Internal Memory(Up to 750k samples stored)
  • 5k Sample/s Data Transfer Rate over USB/GPIB Bus(Block mode)
Available Functions and Features
  • Automated Measurements: Frequency, Period, Ratio, Time Interval, Time Interval Error, Pulse Width, Rise/Fall Time, Phase Angle, Duty Cycle, Maximum Voltage, Minimum Voltage, Peak-to-Peak Voltage
  • Integrated Power Meter
  • Multi-parameter Display
  • Trend Plot Mode
  • Measurement Statistics Mode
  • Histogram Mode
  • Allan Deviation
  • Zero Dead-time Frequency/Period Measurements
Connectivity
  • USB Device and GPIB Ports on Rear Panel for Quick PC Connectivity
  • GPIB Interface Supports Full SCPI-compatible Programmability and offers an Emulation Mode for Plug-and-Play Replacement in Existing ATE Systems
  • External Arming Input
  • 10 MHz Reference Oscillator Output
  • Includes National Instrument’s LabVIEW SignalExpress™ TE Limited Edition Software for Connecting Your Bench
  • Optional TimeView™ Software Available for Modulation Domain Analysis
3-year Warranty

Feature-rich Tools for Precision Measurements

The MCA3000 Microwave Counter Series outperforms every microwave counter on the market today in terms of resolution, speed, and acquisition time. Including an integrated power meter, the MCA Series packs many different functions into one feature-rich instrument.

With industry-leading frequency and time resolution, the MCA Series comes standard with internal memory and a fast data transfer rate of 250k Samples/s to memory. In addition, the multi-parameter display shows auxiliary measurements alongside your main measurement to provide you with the results you need at a glance. With the industry’s most comprehensive analysis modes, including measurement statistics, histograms, and trend plots, you have the tools you need to quickly and accurately analyze your signal.

Besides being an outstanding microwave counter, the MCA3000 Series also serves as a general-purpose timer/counter with two additional 300 MHz inputs.

Industry-leading Performance for Demanding Designs

Fast high-resolution frequency or power measurements with a very short acquisition time of 25 ms (Auto) or zero (Manual) is essential for validating today’s complex designs. For calibration and metrology applications, the MCA Series offers very high accuracy through a stable internal OCXO time base, low systematic time interval A-B error, and high resolution.

Fast Throughput Reduces Test Time

The MCA Microwave Counter Series offers industry-best throughput, saving you up to 90% on your testing time compared to other microwave timer/counters on the market. Up to 250,000 measurement results per second can be stored in the internal memory. Alternatively, you can transfer up to 5,000 measurement results per second in Block mode through the GPIB or USB interface.

Power Measurements

With an integrated power meter, the MCA Series provides measurement of frequency and power with a single connection at any supported frequency level. For the first time, variations in signal power can be seen, collected, and analyzed in the same manner as frequency, both numerically and graphically. With 0.01 dBm at 100 ms measuring time resolution and a wide power range from –35 dBm to +10 dBm, you have the flexibility for a broad range of power measurement applications.

Analyze Your Device with the Industry’s Only Graphical Display

With the unique display of the MCA Series, you can measure multiple parameters of the same signal from one test connection. To reveal signal quality issues like drift, intermittent transients, and stability, you can view the data as a real-time trend plot or a histogram with the MCA Series graphical display mode, or you can use measurement statistics to track how signal parameters are changing over time. A single-button Analyze mode gives you fast insight into the behavior of your device right on the timer/counter’s display.

Multi-parameter Display

Multi-parameter Display.

With the multi-parameter display, you can read important auxiliary measurement values (such as Vmax, Vmin, Vp-p, and more) displayed with your main frequency, time, period, or phase measurements. With one glance, you can see the information you need to quickly assess your device’s performance.

With 3 input channels, you can measure the relationship between different signals. For example, you can measure the phase relationship between the input and output signals of your device. You can read other critical parameters simultaneously, such as the test frequency of the signal and the voltage ratio (in dB), in one glance with the multi-parameter display.

Measurement Trend Plots

Trend Plot Analysis.

Depending on your test case, your signal parameters may change from instant to instant. With the Trend Plot Analysis mode, you can graphically plot the trend of a measured value over time.

Measurement Statistics

Measurement Statistics.

With integrated statistics processing, you can calculate the average, standard, and Allan deviation of a measurement, as well as track the minimum and maximum measured values, all with the push of a button.

Histogram Plots

Histogram Plot.

To graphically see the average and standard deviation of a set of measurements, you can use the histogram function to see the distribution of measurement results.

Optional Modulation Domain Analysis

Tektronix TimeView™ Software.

With the optional Tektronix TimeView™ software (TVA3000), the MCA Series products become high-performance modulation domain analyzers. With high measurement speeds (up to 250k measurement/s) and memory depth at 750k, fast frequency changes can be captured in real time and then analyzed with TimeView. This comprehensive software tool allows for remote instrument control, and the analysis and display of measurement results in a choice of graphs. For example, results can be displayed as raw data, statistical histogram, waveform graph (as if you were using an oscilloscope), or as an FFT spectrum graph. TimeView further allows analysis of modulation parameters like modulation depth or frequency modulation index.

Designed to Make Your Work Easier

The MCA Microwave Counter Series are designed with the ease of use and familiar operation you have come to expect from Tektronix.

Intuitive Operation

Menu-oriented settings reduce the risk of mistakes. With dedicated and menu-driven front-panel buttons, you will have fast access to frequently used functions and parameters, reducing setup time. For example, a single-touch Analyze key toggles you between Statistics, Trend Plot, and Histogram modes.

Autoset Function

Similar to Tektronix oscilloscopes, the front-panel Autoset button will automatically set optimum trigger levels and hysteresis adapted to the actual signal applied.

Easy PC Connectivity

Connect to your PC with the rear-panel GPIB or USB device ports. The GPIB interface operates in SCPI/GPIB for plug-and-play replacement in existing ATE systems or easy integration into larger test systems. If desired, an emulation mode for existing timer/counters is available.

Connect Your Bench for Intelligent Debug

Easily capture, save, and analyze measurement results from your MCA Microwave Counter Series with the special Tektronix Edition of National Instruments LabVIEW SignalExpress™ software. Every MCA3027 and MCA3040 ships with a free copy of the Limited Edition version of SignalExpress for basic instrument control, data logging, and analysis. The optional Professional Edition offers over 200 built-in functions that provide additional signal processing, advanced analysis, sweeping, limit testing, and user-defined step capabilities.

SignalExpress supports the range of Tektronix bench instruments*1 enabling you to connect your entire test bench. You can then access the feature-rich tools packed into each instrument from one intuitive software interface. This allows you to automate complex measurements requiring multiple instruments, log data for an extended period of time, time-correlate data from multiple instruments, and easily capture and analyze your results, all from your PC. Only Tektronix offers a connected test bench of intelligent instruments to simplify and speed debug of your complex design.

Performance You Can Count On

In addition to industry-leading service and support, every MCA Series Microwave/Counter/Analyzer comes backed with a three-year standard warranty.

*1 For a complete listing of Tektronix instruments supported by NI LabVIEW Signal Express, visit www.tektronix.com/signalexpress.

Characteristics

Measuring Functions

All measurements are displayed with a large main parameter value and smaller auxiliary parameter values (with less resolution). Some measurements are only available as auxiliary parameters.

Frequency A, B, C

Characteristic

Description

Range

   Input A, B

DC to 300 MHz

   Input C

300 MHz to 27 GHz or 40 GHz

Resolution

12 digits in 1 s measuring time

Acquisition C

Auto or Manual

   Acquisition time

25 ms in Auto (typical)

Aux Parameters

   Input A, B

Vmax, Vmin, Vp-p

   Input C

Power C in dBm or W

Frequency Burst A, B, C

Characteristic

Description

Range

   Input A, B

0.001 Hz to 300 MHz

   Input C

300 MHz to 27 GHz or 40 GHz

Acquisition C

Manual

Minimum Burst Duration

Down to 40 ns

Minimum Pulses in Burst

   Input A, B

3 (6 above 160 MHz)

   Input C

3 × prescaler factor

PRF Range

0.5 Hz to 1 MHz

Start Delay

10 ns to 2 s, 10 ns resolution

Aux Parameters

PRF

Period A, B (Single or Average), C (Average)

Characteristic

Description

Mode

Single, Average

Range

   Input A, B

3.3 ns to 1000 s (single, average)

   Input C

3.3 ns down to 37 ps (27 GHz) or 25 ps (40 GHz)

Resolution

100 ps (single); 12 digit/s (average)

Acquisition C

Auto or Manual (within ±40 MHz)

   Acquisition time

25 ms in Auto (typical)

Aux Parameters

   Input A, B

Vmax, Vmin, Vp-p

   Input C

Power C in dBm or W

Ratio A/B, B/A, C/A, C/B

Characteristic

Description

Range

(10–9) to 1011

Input Frequency

   Input A, B

0.1 Hz to 300 MHz

   Input C

300 MHz to 27 GHz or 40 GHz

Aux Parameters

Freq 1, Freq 2

Time Interval A to B, B to A, A to A, B to B

Characteristic

Description

Range

Normal calculation: 0 ns to +106 s

Smart calculation: –106 s to +106 s

Resolution

100 ps single

Min Pulse Width

1.6 ns

Smart Calculation

Smart Time Interval to determine sign (A before B or A after B)

Positive and Negative Pulse Width A, B

Characteristic

Description

Range

2.3 ns to 106 s

Min Pulse Width

2.3 ns

Aux Parameters

Vmax, Vmin, Vp-p

Rise and Fall Time A, B

Characteristic

Description

Range

1.5 ns to 106 s

Trigger Levels

10% and 90% of signal amplitude

Min Pulse Width

1.6 ns

Aux Parameters

Slew rate, Vmax, Vmin

Positive and Negative Duty Factor A, B

Characteristic

Description

Range

0.000001 to 0.999999

Frequency Range

0.1 Hz to 300 MHz

Aux Parameters

Period, pulse width

Phase A Relative B, B Relative A

Characteristic

Description

Range

–180° to +360°

Resolution

Single cycle: 0.001° to 10 kHz, decreasing to 1° >10 MHz. Resolution can be improved by averaging (statistics)

Frequency Range

Up to 160 MHz

Aux Parameters

Freq (A), Va/Vb (in dB)

Vmax, Vmin, Vp-p A, B

Characteristic

Description

Range

–50 V to +50 V, –5 V to +5 V

Range is limited by the specification for max input voltage without damage (see input A, B)

Frequency Range

DC, 1 Hz to 300 MHz

Mode

Vmax, Vmin, Vp-p

Resolution

3 mV

Uncertainty (5 V range, typical)

   DC, 1 Hz to 1 kHz

1% + 15 mV

   1 kHz to 20 MHz

3% + 15 mV

   20 to 100 MHz

10% + 15 mV

   100 to 300 MHz

30% + 15 mV

Aux Parameters

Vmin, Vmax, Vp-p

Time Stamping A, B, C

Characteristic

Description

Raw time-stamp data together with pulse counts on inputs A, B, or C, accessible through GPIB or USB only.

Max Sample Speed

See GPIB specifications

Max Frequency

160 MHz

Time-stamp Resolution

100 ps

Power C

Characteristic

Description

Range

   Power

–35 dBm to +10 dBm

   Frequency

300 MHz to 27 GHz or 40 GHz

Display Units

dBm (default) or W

Resolution

0.01 dBm at 100 ms measuring time

Accuracy (Typical)

<1 dBm to 27 GHz

<2 dBm to 40 GHz

Acquisition

Auto or Manual (within ±40 MHz)

Acquisition Time

20 to 30 ms in Auto (typical)

Aux Parameters

Frequency C

Input and Output Specifications

Inputs A and B

Characteristic

Description

Frequency Range

DC Coupled: DC to 300 MHz

AC Coupled: 10 Hz to 300 MHz

Impedance

1 MΩ / 20 pF or 50 Ω (VSWR ≤ 2:1)

Trigger Slope

Positive or negative

Max Channel Timing Difference

500 ps

Sensitivity

15 mVRMS (DC-200 MHz)

25 mVRMS (200-300 MHz)

Attenuation

X1, X10

Dynamic Range (X1)

30 mVp-p to 10 Vp-p within ±5 V window

Trigger Level

Readout on display

   Resolution

3 mV

   Uncertainty (X1)

±(15 mV + 1% of trigger level)

   AUTO trigger level

Trigger level is automatically set to 50% point of input signal (10% and 90% for rise/fall time)

Auto Hysteresis

   Time

Min hysteresis window (hysteresis compensation)

   Frequency

One-third of input signal amplitude

Analog LP Filter

Nominal 100 kHz, RC type

Digital LP Filter

1 Hz to 50 MHz cutoff frequency

Max Voltage without Damage

   1 MΩ

350 V (DC + AC peak) to 440 Hz, falling to 12 VRMS (X1) at 1 MHz

   50 Ω

12 VRMS

Connector

BNC

Input C – 27 GHz or 40 GHz (MCA3027, MCA3040)

Characteristic

Description

Frequency Range

0.3 to 27 GHz or 40 GHz

Operating Input Voltage Range

   0.3 to 18 GHz

–33 to +13 dBm

   18 to 20 GHz

–29 to +13 dBm

   20 to 27 GHz

–27 to +13 dBm

   27 to 40 GHz

–23 to +13 dBm

Impedance

50 Ω nominal, AC coupled

VSWR

   0.3 to 27 GHz

< 2.0:1 (typ.)

   27 to 40 GHz

< 2.5:1 (typ.)

FM Tolerance

   Manual acq.

50 MHzp-p; Frequency C >3.5 GHz

30 MHzp-p; Frequency C <3.5 GHz

   Auto acq.

20 MHzp-p; for any Frequency C and modulation frequency >0.1 MHz

AM Tolerance

Any modulation index (minimum signal must be within sensitivity range)

Automatic Amplitude Discrimination

10 dB separation between 2 signals within 30 MHz, 20 dB otherwise

Max Voltage without Damage

+27 dBm (27 and 40 GHz models)

Overload Indication

ON when Input C power > +10 dBm

Connector

2.92 mm spark plug female

Rear Panel Inputs and Outputs

Characteristic

Description

Reference Input

1, 5, or 10 MHz; 0.1 to 5 VRMS sine; impedance ≥1 kΩ

Reference Output

10 MHz; >1 VRMS sine into 50 Ω

Arming Input

Arming of all measuring functions

   Impedance

Approx. 1 kΩ

   Frequency range

DC to 80 MHz

Auxiliary Functions

Trigger Holdoff

Characteristic

Description

Time Delay Range

20 ns to 2 s, 10 ns resolution

External Start and Stop Arming

Characteristic

Description

Arming can be used to synchronize the frequency and power measurements with the start of a burst signal. Minimum burst length must exceed 100 µs.

Modes

Start and Stop Arming

Input Channels

A, B, or E (Ext. arming input)

Max Rep. Rate for Arming Signal

   Channel A, B

160 MHz

   Channel E

80 MHz

Start-time Delay Range

20 ns to 2 s, 10 ns resolution

Statistics

Characteristic

Description

Functions

Maximum, Minimum, Mean, ΔMax-Min, Standard Deviation, and Allan Deviation

Display

Numeric, histograms, or trend plots

Sample Size

2 to 2 × 109 samples

Limit Qualifier

Off, or capture values above, below, inside, or outside limits

Measurement Pacing

Pacing Time Range: 4 µs to 500 s

Mathematics

Characteristic

Description

Functions

(K*X+L)/M, (K/X+L)/M, or X/M-1. X is current reading and K, L, and M are constants; set using the keyboard or as frozen reference value (X0)

Other Functions

Characteristic

Description

Measuring Time

20 ns to 1000 s for frequency, burst, and period average. Single cycle for other measuring functions

Time-base Reference

Internal, external, or automatic

Display Hold

Freezes the result, until a new measurement is initiated through a restart

Limit Alarm

Graphical indication on front panel and/or SRQ through GPIB

Limit Values

Lower limit, upper limit

Settings

Off, or alarm if value is above, below, inside, or outside limits

On Alarm

Stop or Continue

Display

Numeric + Graphic

Stored Instrument Setups

20. Instrument setups can be saved/recalled from internal nonvolatile memory. 10 can be user protected

Display

Backlit LCD graphics screen for menu control, numerical readout, and status information

   Number of digits

14 digits in Numerical mode

   Resolution

320 × 97 pixels

GPIB Interface

Characteristic

Description

Compatibility

IEEE 488.2-1987, SCPI 199953131A Compatibility mode

Interface Functions

SH1, AH1, T6, L4, SR1, RL1, DC1, DT1, E2

Max Measurement Rate

   GPIB

5k readings/s (Block mode)

500 readings/s (individual GET triggered)

   To internal memory

250k readings/s

Internal Memory Size

750k readings

USB Interface

Characteristic

Description

USB Version

2.0 full speed (11 Mb/s)

Calibration

Characteristic

Description

Mode

Closed case, menu controlled

Calibration Frequencies

0.1, 1, 5, 10, 1.544, and 2.048 MHz

General Specifications

Environmental Data

Characteristic

Description

Class

MIL-PRF-28800F, Class 3

Operating Temp

0 °C to +50 °C

Storage Temp

–40 °C to +71 °C

Humidity

5-95% (10-30 °C)

5-75% (30-40 °C)

5-45% (40-50 °C)

Altitude

Operating: 2,000 m

Storage: 12,000 m

Safety

Directive 2006/95/EC, EN61010-1, UL61010-1, CAN/CSA C22.2 No. 61010-1

EMC

EU Directive 2004/108/EC, EN61326-1, EN61326-2-1, Class A

Power Requirements

Characteristic

Description

Basic Version

90 to 265 VRMS, 45 to 440 Hz, <40 W

Time-base Options

Characteristic

Standard, Medium Stability

High Stability (HS)

Ultra High Stability (US)

Time-base Type

OCXO

OCXO

OCXO

Uncertainty Due to –

   Aging

      Per 24h

<5×10–9*1

<5×10–10*1

<3×10–10*1

      Per month

<6×10–8

<1×10–8

<3×10–9

      Per year

<2×10–7

<5×10–8

<1.5×10–8

   Temperature variation (typ. values)

      0-50 °C

<5×10–8

<5×10–9

<2.5×10–9

      20-26 °C

<2×10–8

<1×10–9

<4×10–10

Short-term Stability: t = 1 s

<1×10–10

<1×10–11

<5×10–12

Root Allan Variance: t = 10 s

<1×10–10

<1×10–11

<5×10–12

Power-on Stability

<1×10–7

<1×10–8

<5×10–9

   Deviation versus final value after 24h ON time, after a warm-up time of:

30 min

10 min

10 min

Total Uncertainty, for Operating Temperature 20 °C to 26 °C, at 2σ (95%) Confidence Interval

   1 year after calibration

<2.4×10–7

<0.6×10–7

<1.8×10–8

   2 years after calibration

<4.6×10–7

<1.2×10–7

<3.5×10–8

*1 After 1 month of continuous operation.

Physical

Dimension

mm

in.

Height

90

3.6

Width

210

8.25

Depth

395

15.6

Weight

kg

lb.

Net

2.7

5.8

Shipping

3.5

7.5

Ordering Information

Models

Model

Description

MCA3027

Microwave/Counter 27 GHz / 100 ps

MCA3040

Microwave/Counter 40 GHz / 100 ps

MCA3000 Series Includes: Microwave/Counter, line cord, calibration certificate, Quick Start User Manual, CD-ROM with user manual (English, French, German, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Korean, Russian, Japanese), Programmer's Guide, Technical Specifications, Trial version of TimeView™ Software, and CD-ROM with National Instruments LabVIEW SignalExpress™ Tektronix Edition, Limited Edition Software.

 

Please specify power plug when ordering.

Instrument Options

Option

Description

HS

High-stability Oven Time Base

US

Ultra High-stability Oven Time Base

Power Plug Options

Option

Description

A0

North America

A1

Universal Euro

A2

United Kingdom

A3

Australia

A5

Switzerland

A6

Japan

A10

China

A11

India

Service Options

Option

Description

CA1

Provides a single calibration event or coverage for the designated calibration interval, whichever comes first

C3

Calibration Service 3 Years

C5

Calibration Service 5 Years

D1

Calibration Data Report

R5

Repair Service 5 Years

Recommended Accessories and Software

Accessory

Description

HCTEK4321

Hard Carrying Case

AC4000

Soft Carrying Case

174-4401-xx

USB Host to Device Cable, 3 ft.

012-0991-xx

GPIB Cable, Double Shielded

012-1256-xx

BNC Male to BNC Male, Cable Shielded, 9 ft., 50 Ω

012-0482-xx

BNC Male to BNC Male, Cable Shielded, 3 ft., 50 Ω

SIGEXPTE

National Instruments SignalExpress™ Tektronix Edition Interactive Measurement Software – Professional Version

TVA3000

TimeView™ Modulation Domain Analysis Software




CE Mark
ISO9001 Product(s) are manufactured in ISO registered facilities.

GPIB Logo Product(s) complies with IEEE Standard 488.1-1987, RS-232-C, and with Tektronix Standard Codes and Formats.

3CF-25557-0, 14-SEP-2010

(WebID: 17466)

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