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Offline Howardlong

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Agilent HP 54831D advice
« on: October 05, 2014, 11:33:12 am »
Folks

My first post, so please be gentle, but I've been in electronics for 40 years.

I have just purchased an HP 54831D (with appropriate pods & probes) 4+16 channel 600MHz 4Gs/s MSO as an upgrade to, and to complement the current TDS 2024B and Logicport LA1034 that I've had for some years. I spent some time looking at the new MSOs on the market these days and eventually discounted them in favour of an old school boat anchor.

It's currently being calibrated prior to shipping, so it won't be with me for a week or so, but I have a few questions.

The serial number is a relatively recent one ( > MY42002000) with an XP release on it.

So here are my questions (and before anyone suggests it, yes, I have used Google!)...

1) Can the scope application run on a monitor connected to the external vga port, which apparently supports up to 1280x1024, or will it only run on the integrated 640x480 LCD?

2) I have some concerns over the hard disk dying on me, I assume I can take an image with appropriate software and use that in case the HD dies on me?

3) I am assuming that, being XP, these things take a while to boot, so am I right in assuming I can plug in a SATA PCI board and boot on an SSD, or plug an SSD into an IDE/SATA adapter?

4) The motherboard USB ports look like they're USB 1.1, but I can't find specific reference to that. I'm assuming it'll handle a PCI USB 2.0 card in the spare slot?

5) Is it still possible to purchase license upgrades? I don't know yet what software licenses this unit has, but I'd like at least the Low-Speed Serial Data Analysis if possible (I2C/SPI decode). Any idea of price, i.e., should I prepare my first born for immediate dispatch?


Thank you very much for any pointers.
 

Offline eurofox

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2014, 11:58:14 am »
Folks

My first post, so please be gentle, but I've been in electronics for 40 years.

I have just purchased an HP 54831D (with appropriate pods & probes) 4+16 channel 600MHz 4Gs/s MSO as an upgrade to, and to complement the current TDS 2024B and Logicport LA1034 that I've had for some years. I spent some time looking at the new MSOs on the market these days and eventually discounted them in favour of an old school boat anchor.

It's currently being calibrated prior to shipping, so it won't be with me for a week or so, but I have a few questions.

The serial number is a relatively recent one ( > MY42002000) with an XP release on it.

So here are my questions (and before anyone suggests it, yes, I have used Google!)...

1) Can the scope application run on a monitor connected to the external vga port, which apparently supports up to 1280x1024, or will it only run on the integrated 640x480 LCD?

2) I have some concerns over the hard disk dying on me, I assume I can take an image with appropriate software and use that in case the HD dies on me?

3) I am assuming that, being XP, these things take a while to boot, so am I right in assuming I can plug in a SATA PCI board and boot on an SSD, or plug an SSD into an IDE/SATA adapter?

4) The motherboard USB ports look like they're USB 1.1, but I can't find specific reference to that. I'm assuming it'll handle a PCI USB 2.0 card in the spare slot?

5) Is it still possible to purchase license upgrades? I don't know yet what software licenses this unit has, but I'd like at least the Low-Speed Serial Data Analysis if possible (I2C/SPI decode). Any idea of price, i.e., should I prepare my first born for immediate dispatch?


Thank you very much for any pointers.


1/ I suppose it will support high definition monitors but you should get the basic 640x480
2 and 3/ Yes, it should be possible to make an image or copy the directory with useful information to setup a new disk
4/ Actual V2 USB usuly support the older version but will work on speed from the old version
5/ If you can use google then type in the type of the scope and you will arrive on the Keysight website from your scope and on the tab options will will find the serial decoding and you can ask for a price online. You can download as well the manual.
« Last Edit: October 05, 2014, 12:27:32 pm by eurofox »
eurofox
 

Offline Lukas

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2014, 12:25:38 pm »
1) Can the scope application run on a monitor connected to the external vga port, which apparently supports up to 1280x1024, or will it only run on the integrated 640x480 LCD?
Since the waveform graphics are drawn by dedicated hardware, the size of the 'Scope App' window is fixed in terms of pixels. If the resolution of the external monitor is greater you'll very likely be stuck with a 640×480 window in the upper left corner.
 

Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2014, 01:33:17 pm »
1) Can the scope application run on a monitor connected to the external vga port, which apparently supports up to 1280x1024, or will it only run on the integrated 640x480 LCD?

Yes, it can run on the external display, but because of the hardware limitation of Agilent's implementation the actual oscilloscope application will remain as a 640x480 window.

Quote
2) I have some concerns over the hard disk dying on me, I assume I can take an image with appropriate software and use that in case the HD dies on me?

Yes. It's essentially a Windows XP PC and the software can be backed up as any other PC.

Quote
3) I am assuming that, being XP, these things take a while to boot, so am I right in assuming I can plug in a SATA PCI board and boot on an SSD, or plug an SSD into an IDE/SATA adapter?

Yes, in theory, but I'd not recommend that. These old boards have only a single shared PCI133 bus. The scope ASIC board wants to be bus master all the time, so if you plug in some SATA controller you will very likely end up with some conflict which could affect the scope functionality.

This aside, using an SSD for Windows XP isn't a good idea as it lacks the necessary trim support. It doesn't really give you any benefit on such a slow system anyways. BTTT.

Considering that PATA (EIDE) drives are obsolete, what you can do is use one of the cheap PATA/SATA adapters to connect a modern SATA drive. But that's as far as I would go.

Quote
4) The motherboard USB ports look like they're USB 1.1, but I can't find specific reference to that. I'm assuming it'll handle a PCI USB 2.0 card in the spare slot?

As before, you can plug in a USB 2.0 card but you might negatively affect the scope functionality. These scopes are not meant to be upgraded in such a way.

Quote
5) Is it still possible to purchase license upgrades? I don't know yet what software licenses this unit has, but I'd like at least the Low-Speed Serial Data Analysis if possible (I2C/SPI decode). Any idea of price, i.e., should I prepare my first born for immediate dispatch?

I think Agilent still sells you the option keys for the 54800 Series, but in terms of price you're probably not far off from sacrificing your first born.  You may end up paying more for it than for the scope itself.
 

Offline blacknoise

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #4 on: October 05, 2014, 02:06:35 pm »
As i own the same instrument in my collection, please let me try to answer your questions:

1) The Chips & Technologies 65550 controler used on the VGA board limitates the resolution to 680x480. And i do not know any firmware for the 54831D which allows to use an other graphics board than the one equipped with the C&T-65550. Of course you may use the internal graphic of the motherboard (via Intel's 82815) to add a second / external display - but the scope's firmware can not use that for the scopes GUI and waveform display. But for debugging the scope's firmware a second monitor is highly usefull... ;-)

2) 3) Booting from an SSD is somewhat faster. But do not expect to much - with a high speed SSD (compared to the original HD) the mainboard's IO system, CPU and memory are the dominant "performance brakes". Actually i use a Transcend "TS32GPSD330" PATA-SSD as direct replacement for the original HD in the 54831D. In some similar instruments i use KingSpec "KSD-PA25.6-032MS" PATA-SSDs. To backup and restore and to transfer the original image from the HD to the SSD, i use Acronis TrueImage.

4) I use the USB ports only to put in a receiver for a wireless keyboard / mouse combination - so even USB 1.1 is fast enought for me. Any other access to the scope i perform via ethernet.

5) Well, i got the scope on a weekend. Instead of waiting till monday to ask Agilent for help, i modified about 40 bytes in the firmware to unlock the implemented but hidden features... ;-)

If you like to try my modified firmware, please send me a short PM.

Kind regards
 

Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #5 on: October 05, 2014, 02:22:43 pm »
1) The Chips & Technologies 65550 controler used on the VGA board limitates the resolution to 680x480. And i do not know any firmware for the 54831D which allows to use an other graphics board than the one equipped with the C&T-65550. Of course you may use the internal graphic of the motherboard (via Intel's 82815) to add a second / external display - but the scope's firmware can not use that for the scopes GUI and waveform display. But for debugging the scope's firmware a second monitor is highly usefull... ;-)

I have seen the scope application running on an external screen in a window during an Agilent. I can't remember what model of the 54800 Series that was, though, nor to what gfx controller the monitor was connected, as this was probably more than 10 yrs ago. I do remember that it was one of the later models which ran XP, though.

Overall it's really a pretty limited architecture.

Quote
3) Booting from an SSD is somewhat faster. But do not expect to much - with a high speed SSD (compared to the original HD) the mainboard's IO system, CPU and memory are the dominant "performance brakes". Actually i use a Transcend "TS32GPSD330" PATA-SSD as direct replacement for the original HD in the 54831D. In some similar instruments i use KingSpec "KSD-PA25.6-032MS" PATA-SSDs. To backup and restore and to transfer the original image from the HD to the SSD, i use Acronis TrueImage.

Considering how slow the disks on those scopes were any modern SATA drive should be noticably faster. The Transcend TS32GSP is a good SSD, although I would be very careful with KingSpec as their SSDs are mostly crap (they tend to fail pretty quickly).
 

Offline blacknoise

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2014, 03:06:42 pm »
Ok, to be as precise, as i can remember: For an older 54825 (Win9x based) i didn't find other graphic boards than the C&T-65550 and also no firmware supporting other VGA boards. As i recognized the same C&T card in my 54831D, i did not investigate any further...

BTW.: The main board's VGA supports resolutions up to 1280x1024.

Well, the KingSpec SSDs are nearly indecent cheap ;-). But as i am used to keep the last "three, four, five" disk images from all my instruments on my network storage, i dare to try that out...

And as an amateur, i use the instruments at maximum a few hours a month.

Kind regards
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #7 on: October 05, 2014, 08:59:40 pm »
What an unexpectedly excellent response, many thanks to all who've kindly contributed.

I have sent blacknoise a PM, thank you for your kind offer.

Well I have even more answers than I gave questions, one was about updating the XP service packs, and that's been answered by those screen shots!

I already suspected that the video card was a bit special, it appears from the service notes to span two slots, so I'm not sure if they do some video overlaying in hardware. The does have its own external VGA connector, as well as the motherboard's, but it was the card's connector I was looking at using for an external monitor. The biggest problem is finding reasonably small 1280 x 1024 monitors these days in 4:3. I've gone for a 10" 1024 x 600 native resolution unit  for now, although I do understand that the app itself is a fixed 640x480 resolution despite this.

Thank you for the tip on the Transcend SSD, I have one of those on order now too, and I'll see how I get on. I didn't even realise there were PATA SSDs, I assumed they are all SATA. I've been using SSDs now for the past three or four years, and now none of the machines here have spindles anymore except for backup and recovery purposes. I can't bear using a machine with conventional hard drives nowadays. My understanding is that OSes such as XP not supporting TRIM can use a scheduled housekeeping task run on occasion. My main concern was boot time, although I agree it's not necessarily all about the disk.

My intention for USB 2.0 was to allow an image to be made to an external drive, but I understand the bus contention that could well occur if the PCI slot was also used for a SATA card, so I'll stick with the mobo PATA as recommended.

Once again thanks to all for the excellent quality of information, it is appreciated.
 

Offline free_electron

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #8 on: October 05, 2014, 09:20:17 pm »
the graphics board needs to be that particular C&T 65550
all the infinium machines of the 548xx series use that board. it is made by agilent themselves and NOT a standard board.
the board is special in the sense that it has the lcd flex connector as well as a special feature connector. this is NOT the same as the feature connetor found some older VGA cards. THe Agilent feature connector brings out timing information related to video memory scan.

The second board connected to it is the digitizer acquisition board. They overlay the scope trace video in hardware directly into video ram.

I have a virgin harddisk for a 54832D, meaning an original drive from Agilent that has never been booted. At powerup the drive installs win XP and deploys the latest scope firmware. I clone that drive to 'refresh' the installations in these machines ( if the motherboard supports XP)

i have all firmware builds for these machines as well as the scopeware builds. if anyone needs em. ( they are huge ISO files though . )
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Offline edavid

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2014, 01:04:54 am »
My understanding is that OSes such as XP not supporting TRIM can use a scheduled housekeeping task run on occasion.

This is not exactly true, there doesn't seem to be any utility you can run to perform TRIM-like garbage collection (unless you do a full erase).  Many SSDs have garbage collection in firmware, but the effectiveness of this varies.  In an application like a scope it's probably a non-issue, the drive can run for years without becoming too fragmented.
 

Online nctnico

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2014, 04:20:20 pm »
I agree. I have replaced (noisy!) hard drives with compact flash drives in several pieces of equipment.
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #11 on: October 07, 2014, 12:20:47 pm »
My understanding is that OSes such as XP not supporting TRIM can use a scheduled housekeeping task run on occasion. My main concern was boot time, although I agree it's not necessarily all about the disk.

You can, if you find a trim utility which actually works (I never found one which did). Some industrial SSDs have proper garbage collection procedures which offset the lack of trim support in older OSes, but these SSDs tend to be quite expensive. Garbage collection in normal SSDs is usually pretty poor as they assume trim support by the OS.

In addition, many SSDs seem to have issues with slower UDMA modes (UDMA/33) and PIO modes on certain controllers, which then usually results in silent data corruption.

For old hardware like a 54800 Series scope I'd recommend to go with a PATA-SATA bridge adapter and a modern 2.5" laptop drive instead. These drives are dirt cheap, reasonable rugged, noticably faster than the original PATA drives that came with these scopes, and they avoid all the issues re. trim and UDMA/PIO modes and won't get slower over time.

However, if for some reason you really want go ahead with XP on a SSD then make at least sure that certain things like background defragmentation are disabled, as this shortens the life of the drive.
 

Offline edavid

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #12 on: October 07, 2014, 04:31:33 pm »
For old hardware like a 54800 Series scope I'd recommend to go with a PATA-SATA bridge adapter and a modern 2.5" laptop drive instead. These drives are dirt cheap, reasonable rugged, noticably faster than the original PATA drives that came with these scopes, and they avoid all the issues re. trim and UDMA/PIO modes and won't get slower over time.
Do you know of a PATA-SATA bridge that works reliably?

Quote
However, if for some reason you really want go ahead with XP on a SSD then make at least sure that certain things like background defragmentation are disabled, as this shortens the life of the drive.
XP doesn't have background defragmentation  :-//  You can turn off the page file if you don't need it.
 

Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #13 on: October 07, 2014, 05:51:38 pm »
Do you know of a PATA-SATA bridge that works reliably?

Good ones are usually those with SiL or Marvel chipset. They can be found on ebay for a few bucks. I've used lots of them for upgrading older T&M and embedded kit with modern SATA drives, no issues so far.

Quote
XP doesn't have background defragmentation  :-// 

Ahem...

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms932871%28v=winembedded.5%29.aspx

http://ckirbach.wordpress.com/2012/11/13/how-to-optimise-windows-xp-for-ssd-solid-state-disk-operation/

It's not a full background defrag as in Vista and later, though.

Quote
You can turn off the page file if you don't need it.

Turning off the page file isn't a good idea unless you use something like a CF or SD card which has a very limited amount of write cycles (and even there it's just a crutch). If the system is paging a lot then this is a sure sign of too little RAM, in which case using a SSD as system drive is somewhat non-sensical.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2014, 07:48:08 pm by Wuerstchenhund »
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #14 on: October 09, 2014, 11:16:17 pm »
Just to tail this one off, I received my 54831D scope this morning, very nice it is too. I can't seem to get the secondary display to do anything more than reflect 1:1 the LCD, but my secondary display has a USB touch screen on it which works surprisingly well with the scope software. The video card only has 1MB RAM, so that's your 640x480x24bpp completely taken up.

It's taken all day to do backups and update the OS and firmware/software to the latest versions. Most of this was XP updates, probably a couple of hundred of those in total, with the .NET updates taking forever. What a crock!

The SSD is installed, as is a USB 2.0 card. Now I just need to learn how to drive it.

Thank you everyone for your help.
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2014, 12:02:40 am »
I have some further updates now I've been using this scope for a couple of days.

Compared to my old Tektronix 2Gsps/200MHz/4ch TDS 2024B 5.7" screen (which has a resolution of 320x240), the 4Gsps/600MHz/4+16ch 54831D 640x480 in 8" is clearly going to be an improvement. I have also added an external monitor which can also act as a touch screen duplicating the main display. It can also be hooked up to extend the desktop to the motherboard display at up to 1280x1024. Because the external 10" monitor is 16:9, and the native VGA ports only support 4:3 resolutions, I've used a DisplayLink USB adapter which supports 1280x720 and sits above the main screen. Surprisingly the DisplayLink adapter takes very little CPU, usually about 1% unles there's a big screen update.

As discussed previously in this thread, the scope app will only run on internal LCD and an external monitor duplicating the 640x480 LCD. It is locked to that graphics card and will not display on the motherboard's VGA port.

So what's the benefit of an external monitor? Well, you can put all the scope app's modeless dialog boxes that would otherwise clutter up your 640x480 main scope screen, and have anything else you choose up there, like the scope help documentation, or a web browser or MS Office for example which won't work very well in 640x480 anyway. Don't expect too much web browsing or videos to work well, Youtube manages about 2 fps on the main screen.

There are three SDRAM slots in there with only two populated up to 512MB. I tried a third today but it wasn't recognised, I think this is a chipset limitation, although it may be BIOS related. I have no intention of updating the BIOS, that sounds like a recipe for disaster.

I'm successfully using a USB keyboard and mouse plugged into one of the two motherboard USB 1.1 ports and the keyboard is recognised by the BIOS.

Using Acronis True Image to make disk images work both over the LAN and through the USB 2.0 card I added, although you have to override the default video probing in my version. To restore an image, I couldn't make it work over the LAN, I had to use a USB 2.0 port.

As a scope, it's a bit of a beast. Yesterday I was debugging some TI CC3100 WiFi firmware from an NXP ARM Cortex M4 device, and was probing the SPI bus running at 20MHz. Pretty soon I dropped into just using the logic analyser rather than the analog channels as it's easier to plug in the pod than mess with scope probes all the time. The scope is configured with the low speed serial data analyser and 64Mpts options, although the LA uses its own 32M samples per port memory. Now I may be wrong but the low speed serial option might be called low speed because it does take an awfully long time to update from either LA or analog channels. It's simple and quick to set up, but if you have a full buffer, real time updates are pretty much unusable. Using segmented acquisition judiciously helps here by reducing the amount of samples to interpret. There may be another way of setting it up of course, and I welcome any inout here. Having the serial data dialog box handy on the secondary monitor to disable and enable the decode helps a lot here. I noticed there's no RS232 decode, but maybe you can custom configure that.

Is the 54831D LA better than my Logicport? Well, the Logicport has 34 channels compared to the Agilent's 16, although I've only ever come close to using more than a dozen which was when I was debugging a parallel interface on an LCD display. The problem with the Logicport is that it runs out of memory very quickly, but it does do true real time serial decode and on a PC screen with a couple of 4k monitors you get to see an awful lot in one go. Where the 54831D wins is on its relatively massive 32M samples per channel on the LA whereas the Logicport only has a meagre 2048, although I should stress that it uses some fairly mean compression so it feels a lot more than 2048. However the biggest drawback of the Logicport is that it doesn't take much to find its buffer is just too small. Add to that the Agilent's segmented acquisition feature and it makes the Logicport seem a little quaint. However I have no intention of giving up the Logicport, it's served me very well for nearly ten years, and I expect it to continue to do so in certain situations.

Today I've been working on a high speed sample and hold (30Msps) using the scope's four analog channels and for that it's been awesome. My design suffers from some opamp instability that's taken me most of the afternoon to investigate, and this scope is just so much better for this than my old Tek. For reference, I measured the 3dB bandwidth with an RF signal generator on a 50 ohm channel and although it's quoted at 600MHz I was up to 820MHz before it hit the 3dB point. I was on a single channel, sampling at 4Gsps. It's the first time I've had a scope where you can see things sub nanosecond.

More generally although some folk aren't over keen on Windows on a scope, what's nice with a Windows based scope is being able to do mundane things like print a screenshot to your existing printers directly, or copy stuff to storage on your LAN without having to mess about with USB sticks.

On the downside, this scope has no fewer than six fans, so it's a noisy bugger. While it doesn't bother me too much, I am aware that some folks like their peace an quiet. Also, compared to the Tek, it's heavy and large. Both take a while to boot.

Now this second-hand ten year old 54831D cost just about the same as my brand new TDS2024B did maybe eight years or so ago. I realise the market's changed more recently with the likes of Rigol now being a serious contender at the TDS end of the market. However I would seriously recommend considering the second hand market before diving into a brand new scope.
 

Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #16 on: October 13, 2014, 09:53:02 am »
More generally although some folk aren't over keen on Windows on a scope, what's nice with a Windows based scope is being able to do mundane things like print a screenshot to your existing printers directly, or copy stuff to storage on your LAN without having to mess about with USB sticks.

I actually prefer a Windows scope over an embedded one, mainly because it allows me to run other programs (i.e. Mathlab and other analysis tools) on the scope. Then there's the mentioned ease of data transfer, i.e. via USB drives (no size limition, exFAT and NTFS support, not limited to USB flash drives), the better print support, the much better multi-monitor support (at least on the LeCroy Windows scopes as they don't have the scope app limitation of the Agilent 54800 Series) etc.

The boot time is certainly a disadvantage but for a desktop scope that shouldn't matter that much (at least it doesn't for me). It's probably a different story for a portable scope, though.

Quote
On the downside, this scope has no fewer than six fans, so it's a noisy bugger.

That's true but scopes with very fast ADCs are rarely silent as their hybrids generally output a lot of power as heat.

Quote
Now this second-hand ten year old 54831D cost just about the same as my brand new TDS2024B did maybe eight years or so ago. I realise the market's changed more recently with the likes of Rigol now being a serious contender at the TDS end of the market. However I would seriously recommend considering the second hand market before diving into a brand new scope.

I second that! There are many good deals out there if you're looking for an advanced scope and have some patience.
 

Offline ARF

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #17 on: November 20, 2015, 02:33:51 pm »
In addition, many SSDs seem to have issues with slower UDMA modes (UDMA/33) and PIO modes on certain controllers, which then usually results in silent data corruption.

UDMA-33 mode limits if LS-120 drive connected to first channel. It work only UDMA-33!
If you connect it to internal CD, and internal CD already connected to second IDE channel. CD and LS-220 will good work with UDMA-33 speed (it easy make on stock cables)
First channel connect your SSD or HDD, and it will be work on UDMA-100 mode.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2015, 02:35:51 pm by ARF »
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #18 on: November 20, 2015, 04:17:14 pm »
In addition, many SSDs seem to have issues with slower UDMA modes (UDMA/33) and PIO modes on certain controllers, which then usually results in silent data corruption.

UDMA-33 mode limits if LS-120 drive connected to first channel. It work only UDMA-33!
If you connect it to internal CD, and internal CD already connected to second IDE channel. CD and LS-220 will good work with UDMA-33 speed (it easy make on stock cables)
First channel connect your SSD or HDD, and it will be work on UDMA-100 mode.

For fear of necroposting allegations, I will add that it's been over a year now and the PATA SDD I installed has worked flawlessly. When running in equivalent time, this 600MHz scope has a bandwidth well over 1GHz, and about 850MHz in real time. Biggest downside is still boot time and when it decides to run an autoupdate, maybe I should disable that!
 

Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #19 on: November 20, 2015, 05:24:14 pm »
In addition, many SSDs seem to have issues with slower UDMA modes (UDMA/33) and PIO modes on certain controllers, which then usually results in silent data corruption.

UDMA-33 mode limits if LS-120 drive connected to first channel. It work only UDMA-33!
If you connect it to internal CD, and internal CD already connected to second IDE channel. CD and LS-220 will good work with UDMA-33 speed (it easy make on stock cables)
First channel connect your SSD or HDD, and it will be work on UDMA-100 mode.

The problem I mentioned has absolutely nothing to do with what channel is used so you're missing the point. It all comes down to the simple fact that all UDMA modes faster than UDMA/33 require an 80 conductor cable which has additional ground wires to reduce interference, and (while specified) no 80 conductor cable exists for the 2.5" 44pin EIDE interface, which means any device (hard disk, SSD, whatever) should not be operated at faster than UDMA/33 mode if it uses a 44pin interface and is connected via a cable (instead of plugging directly into the connector).

However, while most mainboards check for the presence of an 80 conductor cable before switching into faster modes than UDMA/33, they don't do that for 44pin connections because no 80 conductor cable exists.

This isn't much of a problem for the slow 2.5" PATA notebook drives like the ones used in those scopes as they rarely support more than UDMA/33, however in combination with a PATA SSD which usually supports up to UDMA/133 modes this can (and often does!) lead to silent data corruption.

This is why Transcend has put a fix in the firmware of their newer PATA SSDs (i.e. PSD330) to prevent this problem.

When running in equivalent time, this 600MHz scope has a bandwidth well over 1GHz, and about 850MHz in real time.

Not sure I can follow you here. Aside from the fact that 4GSa/s should be absolutely sufficient for resolving 1GHz signals, the scope still has a 600MHz front end through which all input signals must pass, and which has a frequency response that is completely independent of the type of sampling used. I'd expect the 600MHz Infiniium to be useful to maybe 750MHz but not much beyond that.
 

Offline ARF

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #20 on: November 20, 2015, 07:16:29 pm »
Your comment was correct. UDMA-66+ can work correctly only with 80-pin IDE cable. But if LS-120drive is connected with 80-pin IDE cable IDE bus will work incorrectly or will slow speed to UDMA-33. It'll happen because old controller was used  and it can't work faster. Therefore that there is only one way to plug correctly System HDD with speed UDMA-66+. It can be done by switching LS-120drive to secondary IDE chanel with CD-drive. In this case only system HDD will be connected with first chanel IDE. Second chanel IDE will have connection MASTER DEVICE - CD-drive , SLAVE DEVICE will be LS120drive.

A picture of my connection of IDE-devices in my oscilloscope is below.
40-pin cable is conncted with LS-120 device and LS-120 device is connected with CD.

I wrote to blacknoise about custom firmware for Agilent HP 54831D. I hope he's on the forum from time to time and he'll reply to me.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2015, 08:15:08 pm by ARF »
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #21 on: November 20, 2015, 11:06:27 pm »

When running in equivalent time, this 600MHz scope has a bandwidth well over 1GHz, and about 850MHz in real time.

Not sure I can follow you here. Aside from the fact that 4GSa/s should be absolutely sufficient for resolving 1GHz signals, the scope still has a 600MHz front end through which all input signals must pass, and which has a frequency response that is completely independent of the type of sampling used. I'd expect the 600MHz Infiniium to be useful to maybe 750MHz but not much beyond that.

Take a look at this video from about 23:08, if you want more context look further back, but it's figured out from a measured 44ps step input based on a flat response. If you assume a Gaussian response then it's about 1.2GHz in equivalent time and 750MHz in real time. From the overshoot, I am assuming the scope is predominantly a flat response rather than Gaussian for anti aliasing. Either way I' d be interested in your view, or other experiments I could make: I didn't try the RF signal generator for example.

http://youtu.be/mS3sCJd_GPk
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #22 on: November 22, 2015, 09:42:41 pm »
To add, I compared the 54831D using an RF signal generator, terminated with the scope's 50 ohm. In real time, the 3dB point was 820MHz in real time, but an impressive 1330MHz in equivalent time, not even accounting for the cable's attenuation which I measured at 1.8dB at 1330MHz using an RF power meter (Marconi 6950 with a calibrated 6910 18GHz head). Being a 4GSa/s sampling rate, as you go much above this it very rapidly tails off. The scope's response is also impressively flat up to 1GHz, < +/-15mV for 500mV RMS in.
 

Offline ARF

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #23 on: November 30, 2015, 02:32:59 pm »
from this it follows that the 831D normally takes 1 GHz?

perhaps the difference between the 831D and 832D only in firmware
and if you make the program oscilloscope to think that 831 is 832, and it will operate as a 832.
What do you think of it?

Interesting link - http://www.keysight.com/owc_discussions/thread.jspa?threadID=35250&tstart=-2
 

Offline Howardlong

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Re: Agilent HP 54831D advice
« Reply #24 on: December 01, 2015, 01:27:48 pm »
from this it follows that the 831D normally takes 1 GHz?

perhaps the difference between the 831D and 832D only in firmware
and if you make the program oscilloscope to think that 831 is 832, and it will operate as a 832.
What do you think of it?

Interesting link - http://www.keysight.com/owc_discussions/thread.jspa?threadID=35250&tstart=-2

That's quite an interesting link. The original hard drive I still have, but I replaced it with an SSD soon after I received it, and I used Acronis True Image to copy the drive. It'd be interesting if there is something in the image that tells it it's a 54831D with 600MHz BW. I'd always assumed that there was something more hardware related.

In real use I'm pretty happy to switch to equivalent time as necessary, typically if I need to probe these kinds of things, the signal is repetitive anyway.

When I have some more time, I'll have a fish about further. Thanks for the link.
 


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