Author Topic: WTB: Agilent E4406A  (Read 1059 times)

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Offline Bicurico

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WTB: Agilent E4406A
« on: June 12, 2018, 12:53:06 am »
Hi,

I am considering the purchase of an Agilent E4406A, mainly to use it with the Keysight PC software and to try to adapt my "VMA Simple Spectrum Analyser" software (not sure if that will work, though).

I read many times that these devices can be bought cheaply, however, following them on eBay for a while I have not found any interesting offer.

Is anyone interested in selling me such a device, preferrably within the EU? If so, what would/could be a reasonable price?

(Tell me, even if you don't have such a device on sale)

I was thinking about somehwere in the range of 250-350 Euro in working condition (don't care for the options like GSM, WCDMA, etc.). I don't see more value in these devices, as they pretty much suck for spectrum analisys due to very limited span (10MHz or is it just 1MHz?). Easily in competition with SDR#...

Also, any further comments/infos are welcome.

Thanks,
Vitor
 

Offline KJDS

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2018, 05:08:48 am »
Five years ago I could buy them by the tonne.

Now the trade sources have all dried up so there are very few of them coming to the market.

Offline capt bullshot

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2018, 05:31:09 am »
This guy in Germany has some stock:
https://messgeraete-markt.de/

Look for "Analyzer", but the prices are way off your idea. Anyway, sometimes one can make a deal with him, especially because these are hard to sell because of their limited span.

Edit:
Here's some more stock, at the same price range:
https://www.rosenkranz-elektronik.de/

Contact them, explain what you want to do and ask for a special price, often these dealers can make better offers than their listed prices.
« Last Edit: June 12, 2018, 05:36:24 am by capt bullshot »
Safety devices hinder evolution
 

Offline Bicurico

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2018, 06:16:06 am »
Thanks. Are you sure that they won't consider my price range offensive?
On the other hand I cannot image why someone would buy such a device at the asking price...
 

Offline PA0PBZ

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2018, 06:21:04 am »
Send KJDS ( http://www.eevblog.com/forum/profile/?u=53234 ) a pm, maybe he has some left.
Keyboard error: Press F1 to continue.
 

Offline bozidarms

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2018, 06:30:30 am »
Hi Bicurico,

please be  careful - this  "guy in Germany" :
https://messgeraete-markt.de/ aka Knopf-Hifi is extremely expensive.
The stuff hat hi sells is more or less exploited crap.
For instance: hi has several 4406, all of them are 12 bit but he ask 900 or even more Euro, ridiculous!

Absolute not to recommend!

Regards
« Last Edit: June 12, 2018, 07:42:20 am by bozidarms »
 

Offline Bicurico

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2018, 07:27:11 am »
Hi,

Thank you all for your comments.

I will call it off at this point and keep looking at eBay.

The asking prices I have found are simply to high for my budget and not realistic in my opinion. I am not confortable sending someone an offer at 200-250 Euro when the asking price is 1000 Euro.

Regards,
Vitor
 

Offline KJDS

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2018, 07:30:13 am »
Send KJDS ( http://www.eevblog.com/forum/profile/?u=53234 ) a pm, maybe he has some left.

All mine went a while back, Now I can no longer buy a tonne of equipment every couple of weeks, it's just not worth doing.

Offline Bicurico

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2018, 07:36:34 am »
Thanks for the reply - I just didn't feel confortable PM'ing you, due to my aparently too low a budget.

May I ask for how much you sold them?

Also, I can imagine that buying off clearance test equipment to resell it, is not an easy business to make profit. As a buyer everything looks expensive, but when you want to sell, it seems that there is nobody wanting to buy...

Regards,
Vitor
 

Offline capt bullshot

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2018, 03:07:25 pm »
please be  careful - this  "guy in Germany" :
https://messgeraete-markt.de/ aka Knopf-Hifi is extremely expensive.
The stuff hat hi sells is more or less exploited crap.
For instance: hi has several 4406, all of them are 12 bit but he ask 900 or even more Euro, ridiculous!

Yes, he's a dealer and wants to make profit from his stuff and has to pay for a few people working at his place. Same for Rosenkranz. You'll never get low prices from this kind of dealer in their initial offerings. Don't worry about a low offer, I don't think this will upset them, but I won't expect none of them to sell the E4406 for 300 EUR, maybe you meet somewhere in the middle. They'll always try to get a high price and won't sell the item if your offer is too low, but you can try again, and often they make you counter offers - sometimes it's a bit like an oriental marketplace.
Safety devices hinder evolution
 

Offline KJDS

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2018, 03:23:53 pm »
I was selling them for about £500, but that was when supply was plentiful.

Offline bingo600

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #11 on: June 14, 2018, 05:32:43 am »
I got mine (14bit) for  EUR 574,00  w. shipping , in Sep-2014

/Bingo
 

Offline Leo Bodnar

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #12 on: August 25, 2018, 01:59:42 am »
E4406A is awesome for the price.  I predict the prices will only rise now that test sets were broken apart and sold off - just like price of 6632B PSUs did.
4406 is hugely versatile.  Even £500 is excellent price for what it can do for you.
Leo


I was thinking about somehwere in the range of 250-350 Euro in working condition (don't care for the options like GSM, WCDMA, etc.). I don't see more value in these devices, as they pretty much suck for spectrum analisys due to very limited span (10MHz or is it just 1MHz?). Easily in competition with SDR#...

Offline ivaylo

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #13 on: August 26, 2018, 10:43:11 am »
...
4406 is hugely versatile.
...
What is so special about it, if you don't mind me asking? Can it do something which a spectrum analyzer with similar frequency specs can't do? I remember playing briefly with one years ago but only not being impressed with its span like the OP noted (I was in my mind comparing it with a SA though).
 

Offline Kosmic

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #14 on: August 26, 2018, 10:51:51 am »
Check on eBay, bought one recently for less than 400US. Seller is based in Texas I think and he is shipping worldwide. Look like he got a lot of units.
 

Offline Kosmic

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #15 on: August 27, 2018, 08:38:13 am »
...
4406 is hugely versatile.
...
What is so special about it, if you don't mind me asking? Can it do something which a spectrum analyzer with similar frequency specs can't do? I remember playing briefly with one years ago but only not being impressed with its span like the OP noted (I was in my mind comparing it with a SA though).

My understanding is that the E4406a is more like a realtime spectrum analyser than a traditional sweeping spectrum analyser. Since it was designed as a transmitter analyser, the span is limited to 10Mhz (apparently you can get 100Mhz with the CDMA option). One could easily artificially increase the span to the whole spectrum (7 to 4000Mhz) by stitching data outside the instrument.

So for me the key features are:
- 7 to 4000Mhz Frequency range
- DC tolerant input (up to 26V)
- 10Mhz realtime bandwidth
- 0.6 dBm power measurement accuracy
- Really low internal noise (https://community.keysight.com/thread/1777)
- IQ demodulation
- Ethernet connector on the back

In the end you can't really compare the E4406a to a rtlsdr + SDR# and for the price (around 400$ US) it's really hard to beat.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2018, 08:40:25 am by Kosmic »
 

Online KE5FX

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #16 on: August 27, 2018, 09:07:26 am »
With the E4406A you get a lot of hardware from the PSA analyzers of the era, but there's a lot that's missing.  Many front-panel buttons were removed, and several of the ones they left in place don't do anything at all.   The knob works but it tunes at the same rate regardless of span width, so it's almost useless in narrow spans.

As a 'transmitter tester', the E4406A is great for narrowband analysis of a relatively clean signal, such as emitted from, well, a transmitter.  There is no front-end filtering, so there's no image rejection.  Agilent did not want people buying these things as a substitute for the high-end spectrum analyzers they are based on, and it shows.  It's probably best to think of the E4406A as a fancy power meter, rather than as a crappy spectrum analyzer.

One peculiar feature from the PSA that Agilent left intact was its 0.1 Hz resolution bandwidth.  That's extremely useful if you need it (and I do).  Arguably that should have been the first PSA feature that they removed, because nobody in the market for a transmitter tester would have had any use for it.
 

Offline ivaylo

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Re: WTB: Agilent E4406A
« Reply #17 on: August 27, 2018, 04:42:50 pm »
Thank you both!
 


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