The Newsletter

An A.T.E. Solutions, Inc. Internet Publication
Volume 10 Number 14 August 1, 2006


Introducing
The Testability Director Version 3.2
 

 


 


AutoTestCon 2006
Sep 18-21, 2006 Anaheim, CA


International Test Conference
October 24-26, 2006


Reach the thousands of test professionals we mail to. Sponsor The BestTest Newsletter and we will place your logo here.

Visit BestTest - A Test Community Web Site
Test Vendor Directory
Products/Services Directory
Test Dictionary
Test Events
Test Publications
JobExchange

Literature
Test related books
Test/Testability Software

How We Can Help
Test Requirements Analysis
Test Related Courses
ATE and Test Market Help
Design for Testability
Built-In Self Test

 
Links Worth a Click
Test sites of interest:




AutoTestCon
Cable Test Systems, Inc.
Chroma USA
Evaluation Engineering
International Test Conference
IPC - APEX Conference Organizers
Powell-Mucha Consulting, Inc.
Test & Measurement World

Want to trade links? We'll list yours here and you list ours at your site.
 
Test Vendors
We now have 2205 test vendors listed in the Test Vendor Directory. Check for accuracy.
 
The following companies have recently placed advertising with us:
Vendors:
A.H. Systems, Inc.
A.T.E. Solutions, Inc.
Capital Equipment Corp.
CEIBIS Cody Electronics
ESPEC North America
FTS Systems, Inc.
Geotest
Ground Zero ElectroStatics
Intellitech Corporation
Invisar, Inc.
JTAG Technologies, Inc.
Madell Technology Corporation
Measurement Computing
Pickering Interfaces, Ltd.
ProbeStar, Inc.
QStar BE
Tabor Electronics
Tecpel Co., Ltd.
Teradyne Assembly Test Division
Tiepie Engineering
VI Technology, Inc.
Wavecrest Corp.
WesTest Engineering Corp.
Yokogawa Corp. of America
Z World
Products/Services:
A.T.E. Solutions, Inc.
   Consulting Services
   Consulting, Training and Books
   The Testability Director
   The Testability Director 3.2
Auriga Measurement Systems, LLC
   Microwave/Millimeter Wave Test Systems
Capital Equipment Corporation
   webDAQ/100
FEINFOCUS
   COUGAR-VXP
Flynn Systems Corp.
   onTAP® Boundary Scan Software
Geotest Inc.
   ATEasy
GOEPEL electronic GmbH
   OptiCon BasicLine
   SCANPLUS Board Grabber
ICS Electronics
   488-USB
Intellitech Corp.
   Eclipse
   PT100 Parallel Tester
   PT100 Rack
   Scan-Ring-Linker & multi-PCB linker
   SystemBIST
   SystemBIST
JTAG Technologies, Inc.
   JT 3710/PXI
   JT 37x7 DataBlaster boundary-scan controllers
Meret Optical Communications
   ADS 53x DDS Synthesizer
Norvada, LLC
Professional Testing DBA Pro Test
   Environmental Testing
Quad Tech
   Guardian 1030S Multi-Purpose AC/DC/IR/SC Hipot Tes
Quantum Change, Inc.
   The TILE EMC Software
Reinhardt System und Messelectronic
   ATS-KMFT 670
Ricreations, Inc
   UniversalScan
Saelig
   CleverScope CS328
   USB Explorer 200
Signametrics
   SMX2040 series
Static Solutions
   CT-8900 Combination Data Logger Tester
Symtx, Inc.
SyntheSys Research, Inc.
   BERTScope™ 12500A
Tabor Electronics
   Model 5200 Arbitrary Waveform Generator
Tesla
   Test Equipment
TestEdge, Inc.
Testing
TestInHouse
   RFP-0010-021
Testpro AS
   TP2101 Testsystem
The Test Connection Inc.
   In-Ciruit Test & Flying Probe Test
UltraTest International
   MultiTrace
Universal Synaptics
   IFD-3000
VMETRO, Inc.
   Vanguard Express
WesTest Engineering
   WT2000
WesTest Engineering Corp.
   WesTest 2000
YESTech Inc.
   YTV series of AOI
Yokogawa Corp. of America
   DL9000
   DL9000
ZTest
 

How to Select a Logic Analyzer for Under $1,000

 By:

Alan Lowne, Saelig Co. Inc.
Product/Service Focus

This issue's focus is Logic Analyzer
You can view and add to our existing list of Test Products/Services, Test Literature, Test Definitions, Test Vendors, containing "Logic Analyzer"

 
What's New in Test
Announcements
  7/27/2006 KLA-Tencor Posts Higher Q4 Revs
  7/26/2006 New MAQlink brochure
  7/24/2006 LogicVision and GDA Technologies Partner
  7/20/2006 Teradyne announces Q2 results and authorization of stock repurchase program
  7/19/2006 Motorola Selects ASSET For Boundary Scan/JTAG
  7/17/2006 TestMart News Release
Interviews and Forums
  7/25/2006 The future is spelled "x-ray"
  7/18/2006 ITC to address expanding test role
Magazine Articles
  7/21/2006 NAND test costs soar out of control
Product Releases
  7/28/2006 Boundary Scan Platform SCANFLEX supports PC Bus Standard PCI Express
  7/24/2006 Magma Unveils New Products, New Customers
  7/20/2006 Speedy JTAG controller priced below $10,000
  7/19/2006 Boundary-scan tool eases FPGA, CPLD programming
  7/19/2006 Wireless Sensor System Measures Force Data On Moving Objects
  7/18/2006 Mentor DFT Tools Fully Support TSMC's Reference Flow 7.0
  7/18/2006 Mixed-signal module for OpenStar system
  7/17/2006 Tektronix Announces Mobile Test Platform For 3G And 3.5G Broadband Wireless Network Elements
Report
  7/19/2006 Aehr, Teradyne see surge in booming ATE business
Software
  7/28/2006 GÖPEL electronic’s JTAG/Boundary Scan Software SYSTEM CASCON now supports Altera’s USB Blaster
Web postings
  7/21/2006 Selecting a spectrum analyzer for wireless
  7/18/2006 Logic Analyzer Selection Chart
  7/16/2006 Considerations for Selecting Test Systems Using Flying Probe Access
  7/16/2006 LXI Live Web Demo
 
How to Select a Logic Analyze for Under $1000


Alan Lowne, Saelig Co. Inc.

What is a Logic Analyzer?

A Logic Analyzer is basically a multi-channel version of a digital oscilloscope which only displays  two logic levels - 0 and 1. Also logic analyzers usually implement much more complex triggering capabilities than oscilloscopes.  An oscilloscope can display digital signals like a logic analyzer, but is better used for analog measurements such as rise-times, fall-times, and peak amplitudes. You use an oscilloscope when you need to see small voltage changes and when you need very accurate time interval measurements.  Logic analyzers are ideal for when you need to see what effect signals have on your digital logic, when you need complex triggering to find specific events, and when you need to show lots of channels.  Until recently, logic analyzers were extremely expensive and out of reach for individual purchasers.  That has changed dramatically with matchbox-sized USB-connected adapters with small logic grabbers. 

Whoa, Trigger!

A logic analyzer continuously samples multiple input signals and stores the values in a recycling FIFO buffer. When a preset trigger condition occurs (rising/ falling edge or defined logic input pattern) writing ceases to the buffer and the contents are displayed statically. Edge triggering is can be set by the logical OR of one or more signal edges. For instance, trigger when the write strobe falls or the read strobe rises.  

Pattern triggering is set by the logical AND of various signals. For instance, trigger when chip select is High, the write strobe is Low, AND the other signals are in some selected state.  

This is the next stage beyond pattern triggering. The same events are defines as in the previous answer - ORs of various edges, ANDs of various levels. But these events are used to drive a state machine within the logic analyzer. The state machine moves between states and eventually arrives at the trigger state.

An example of complex triggering may clarify this:

  • start in state 0
  • move from state 0 to state 1 when you see a certain pattern
  • move from state 1 to state 2 when the pattern goes away
  • go back from state 2 to state 1 when an edge occurs
  • trigger when you enter state 1 for the 500th time.

Notice that complex triggering introduces one more feature - a counter. This example illustrates all the essentials of a complex triggering capability - a few states, a few pattern or edge recognition, and at least one counter.

How many channels do I need?

For some applications, you can never have too many channels, and logic analyzers are available with several hundred channels. Typically these expensive systems are used to debug complex microprocessor buses and it is a time consuming process to connect the myriad probes involved.

Simpler tiny units like ANT-8 and ANT-16 are[LU2]  ideal when you want to see exactly what is happening on a few signals -  hooked up to a few signals to give a trigger source, and to a few signals which are being debugged. For instance, when debugging a first-in/first-out (FIFO) memory with an 8-channel unit, you could look at full and empty indicators, read and write strobes, and a few other signals for reference. Additional signals in a 16-channel unit make it possible to look at, say, an 8-bit data bus. 

How fast should sampling be?

You might expect that the maximum sampling rate can never be too fast but in practicality 10 times your clock speed should be fine. Even some of the less expensive modules can sample at up to 500MHz, which gives a timing resolution down to 2ns. Of course, the sample buffer fills up quite quickly at that speed, so for slower signals the sampling speed can be stepped down in stages to a minimum of 100Hz, which gives a timing resolution of 10ms. Sampling beyond 500MHz needs sophisticated, expensive probes.

How about Isolation?

A degree of isolation can be achieved by running adapter modules from an isolated laptop computer, or by using an optical USB extender. But otherwise the PC ground is your ground! 

What’s available?

Watch out when comparing models - the data buffer size can vary from 32kB to 4MB.

ANT-8      8-ch 500MS/s $222.00    www.saelig.com

ANT-16   16-ch 500MS/s $333.00    www.saelig.com

BitScope 8-ch 40MS/s with 100MHz scope   $345.00  www.bitscope.com

LogicPort 34-ch 500MS/s $379.00  www.circuitspecialists.com

USBee 8-ch 24MS/s $445.00  www.USBee.com

Digiview  18-ch 100MS/s   $499.00 www.tech-tools.com

LA-2124 24-ch 100MS/s $800.00  www.link-instruments.com

Cleverscope 8ch 100MS/S  with 100MHz scope $999.00  www.saelig.com
 
 
Next Issue's Product/Service Focus
In our next issue of Product/Service Focus we will cover All/USB. You can add or upgrade a listing before the next issue comes out.

If you would like to include an exclusive article on how to best select All/USB, please contact LouisUngar@ieee.org.
 

  • If your friend forwarded this newsletter to you, please register as a member and receive The BestTest Newsletter -- absolutely free!
  • If you wish to update your news preferences or cancel the subscription, please unsubscribe.
  • If you have any questions, please email experts@BestTest.com
 
See an Index of Past and Upcoming Issues of The BestTest Newsletter
Unsubscribe

Email The BestTest Newsletter to a Friend whose email is
Online Bookstore

Get the widest selection of test related books and software at the BestTest Online Store.


Reach the thousands of test professionals we mail to.
Place Ad here.

 


Events/Announcements
This month:
10/24 - 10/26
   International Test Conference 2006
8/2 - 8/4
   Memory Technology, Design, and Testing (MTDT 2006)
8/14 - 8/18
   EMC Symposium
8/15 - 8/17
   Lean Manufacturing and Management Training Series
8/29 - 8/31
   ATE China 2006
9/6 - 9/7
   Antenna Systems 2006
9/7 - 9/15
   EOS/ESD Symposium
9/9 - 10/12
   23rd Aerospace Testing Seminar
9/12 - 9/14
   Lean Manufacturing and Management Training Series
9/18 - 9/21
   AutoTestCon 2006
9/25 - 9/28
   Assembly Technology Expo (ATExpo)
9/26 - 9/28
   Lean Manufacturing and Management Training Series
10/10 - 10/12
   Aerospace Testing Seminar
10/10 - 10/11
   VERIFY 2006 International Software Testing Conference
10/23 - 10/24
   IEEE Product Safety Engineering Society Symposium
10/24 - 10/26
   International Test Conference (ITC) 2006
10/25 - 10/27
   Automotive Testing Expo North America 2006
10/26 - 10/27
   IEEE International Workshop on Silicon Debug and Diagnosis (SDD06)
11/6 - 11/9
   Space Simulation Conference
11/7 - 11/9
   Lean Manufacturing and Management Training Series
11/8 - 11/10
   IEEE International High-Level Design, Validation and Test Workshop
11/9 - 11/10
   Remote Monitoring & Networking 2006
11/9 - 11/12
   Remote Monitoring & Networking 2006
11/14 - 11/16
   Aerospace Testing Expo 2006 North America
11/14 - 11/17
   electronica 2006
11/20 - 11/23
   Asian Test Symposium (ATS'06)
12/6 - 12/7
   IP/SOC 2006 (IP Based SoC Design) Conference
12/6 - 12/8
   International Printed Circuit & Electronics Assembly Fair
12/12 - 12/14
   Lean Manufacturing and Management Training Series
Definitions
We now have 2229 test terms in our Test Definition section.

Share your definitions with the test community.