Author Topic: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators  (Read 7931 times)

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Offline tautech

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #50 on: July 02, 2020, 09:29:22 am »

Here you go.
Both instruments cold and without external frequency reference. SSG running on previous FW.
10 dB attenuator fitted to SVA3032X input. Siglent 6 GHz rated N-N cable.



Thank You :)

Not sure what happened with the Frequency accuracy on the low end to high end with respect to the output level ??

98.1333 MHz is most likely outside its spec?? when dialling-up 100MHz even if the device is 'running cold' - would have expected better Frequency accuracy  :-\

Having said that - we are assuming the SVA is doing its job and reporting the correct Marker frequencies  :P

Reason for the wide Frequencies test was to see precisely that - if the device is linear with respect to output level within its specified frequency range.
Now you're addressing 2 parameters, frequency and amplitude accuracy.

Let's examine each result in this case.
For me to report frequency accuracy I had 3 options:
1. Exactly as measured with cold instruments and unreferenced. Both mentioned.
2. Cheat. Link both instruments via their 10 MHz BNC's and then they would agree even if the frequency results weren't accurate to a real world measurement.
3. Connect both to an external 10 MHz ref.......I don't possess one !  :P

So you got an honest screenshot and with qualified conditions........something too often missing on this forum.
I did use a Peak marker although I agree the frequency measurement is hardly ideal however I thought your primary interest was amplitude level flatness.

Amplitude accuracy.
Back a few posts you asked about: Level setting vs Level of performance
The screenshot results and associated comments explain this, along with the Datasheet spec and User manual.
To obtain flatter response a power level control sensor is required and SSG models support a few types. RTFM.  ;)

So if we need a guaranteed flatness of output we have 2 options, use the SSG at frequencies where flatness is specified to 'Level accuracy ≤0.7 dB (typ.)' or connect a power level sensor, for which level accuracy will then depend on the sensors spec.



Tautech

First of all thank you once again for your prompt response  :)

Yes you are an honest broker – so your comments about the measurements you did are welcomed with respect  :-+

Although my main concerns are Amplitude accuracy – I can accept a calibration offset (something which can be corrected like the power coupler Siglent has as an option) but having a big drift in amplitude vs. frequency is far more difficult to control as making a perfectly linear RF signal generator is not an easy task.


Most of the RF signal generators seem to have amplitude responses < 20dBm

– so to get accurate figures at this level would not be easy as is already indicated in the specifications data.

The fact that it goes to 20dBm is a bonus

– but reproducible accuracy throughout the frequency band is not something one would expect – as you have confirmed.


I did have a close look at the review Defpom posted on the SSG3021X you loaned to him.

It was good to have a quick look inside the unit – to see the build quality.

I am not sure if the unit you made the tests on just now – was the same unit?
Yes.
Quote
I ask, because I am also not sure if the unit in the review video was an early production device – if so perhaps there might be some reasons (HW or FW) for the ‘cold’ frequency offset - if indeed this was the SSG and NOT the SVA which was measuring  :-\
 
What made me think the above – was the multitude of scratch marks on the internal chassis that the mainboard was mounted inside the SSG.

When Defpom ‘opened the sealed unit’ – I could not believe the multitude of scratches inside.

Yeah – I know it makes no difference to the operation of the device – but I guess it’s some reflection on Siglent’s quality control.

That’s why I suspect that the review unit must have been from a pre full production run??
Maybe, it's a low SN# from not long after release.
Quote
Anyway, with all factors aside, the SSG is certainly a nice bit of kit

– it sure is a handy device and VERY functional.


I like that it has an EXTERNAL modulation input (the competition, Rigol device has same)…


This is VERY HANDY for those involved with FM Radio RF amplifier design.

You can easily introduce a Stereo Encoder to generate external stereo signal with the 19KHz pilot as well as an RDS encoder into the external modulation input

– this will give you a FULL FM broadcast signal for testing FM receivers with modulation  :)
I revisited the SSG 100 MHz frequency inaccuracy today wanting to investigate if it's a real problem or not and the findings may surprise you in that the issue has SFA to do with the SSG but instead SVA frequency inaccuracies at a full 3.2 GHz sweep.  :o A 10 MHz reference might fix this IDK.

Again, test conditions.
Cold instruments with no external references, Siglent 10 dB attenuator on SVA and 6 GHz rated N-N cable.
Now with a 500 MHz Span set that would be more reasonable for inspecting a SSG 100 MHz signal the frequency and amplitude are exactly as specifications prescribe.  :phew:

« Last Edit: July 02, 2020, 09:31:06 am by tautech »
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Offline noreply

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #51 on: July 02, 2020, 09:52:52 am »

I revisited the SSG 100 MHz frequency inaccuracy today wanting to investigate if it's a real problem or not and the findings may surprise you in that the issue has SFA to do with the SSG but instead SVA frequency inaccuracies at a full 3.2 GHz sweep.  :o A 10 MHz reference might fix this IDK.

Again, test conditions.
Cold instruments with no external references, Siglent 10 dB attenuator on SVA and 6 GHz rated N-N cable.
Now with a 500 MHz Span set that would be more reasonable for inspecting a SSG 100 MHz signal the frequency and amplitude are exactly as specifications prescribe.  :phew:



That's great  :)

I suspected that something is not right - my gut tells me the SSG - especially at 100Mhz cannot have such a big discrepancy.

I guess trying to normalize the marker(s) frequencies in the SVA over such a large span - might cause inaccuracies.

Remember ...

2MHz at 100MHz represents 2% error
2MHz at 3GHz represents 0.06% error

Not sure how the SVA calculates marker frequencies in such a large span - there must be some normalization taking place to help with the maths??

But yeah .. something to be mindful about - for accuracy in frequency readings - reduce the analysis span for sure  ;)
 

Offline noreply

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #52 on: July 08, 2020, 03:47:16 am »

Defpom lifted the lid on mine in the vid linked on the previous page but the IQ HW is not installed in the base models.

What is the actual IQ HW in the IQ models?

Is it - a logic board and connectors - or just connections to the external interface and appropriately enabled software to handle these signals?

Just curious if an 'enhanced' SSG3021x with the HW addition of the external connectors could be driven with SDG6032x to provide full IQ functionality :-\
 

Offline tautech

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #53 on: July 08, 2020, 03:51:51 am »

Defpom lifted the lid on mine in the vid linked on the previous page but the IQ HW is not installed in the base models.

What is the actual IQ HW in the IQ models?

Is it - a logic board and connectors - or just connections to the external interface and appropriately enabled software to handle these signals?

Just curious if an 'enhanced' SSG3021x with the HW addition of the external connectors could be driven with SDG6032x to provide full IQ functionality :-\
From the SSG3000X webpage:
External IQ modulation with SDG6000X as the baseband IQ signal

But, this requires the SDG6000X to have the IQ option enabled.
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Offline noreply

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #54 on: July 08, 2020, 04:05:13 am »

From the SSG3000X webpage:
External IQ modulation with SDG6000X as the baseband IQ signal

But, this requires the SDG6000X to have the IQ option enabled.

OK .. then this makes more sense now  :)

If we need external modulation - then the 'non IQ' variant of the SSA3000X could be enhanced to be an IQ model - by virtue that at this moment in time Siglent has not deployed any IQ HW to reside inside the SSA

- other than the external IQ connections and associated internal cables??



 

Offline tautech

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #55 on: July 08, 2020, 04:52:58 am »

From the SSG3000X webpage:
External IQ modulation with SDG6000X as the baseband IQ signal

But, this requires the SDG6000X to have the IQ option enabled.

OK .. then this makes more sense now  :)

If we need external modulation - then the 'non IQ' variant of the SSA SSG3000X could be enhanced to be an IQ model - by virtue that at this moment in time Siglent has not deployed any IQ HW to reside inside the SSA

- other than the external IQ connections and associated internal cables??
This is where you need look hard at actual instrument requirements and price the options carefully.

Basic SSG3000X and SGD6000X or SSG3000X-IQE model.

Basic and SDG6000X (with IQ option) allows for a much more versatile total package IMO.

Correction below from TurboTom
« Last Edit: July 08, 2020, 01:51:09 pm by tautech »
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Offline TurboTom

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #56 on: July 08, 2020, 10:25:51 am »
@tautech: I'm not sure if this is correct. If I understand the SSG user manual correctly, in order to generate an IQ modulated RF output, you anyway need to supply an external IQ baseband signal (i.e. using the SDG6000X with IQ option) and use the IQ-Enabled version of the SSG3000X.

The IQE version apparently contains more additional hardware than just a pair of wires that run the in-phase and quadrature baseband signals to the existing motherboard of the SSG.

If someone is looking for generating IQ modulated RF signals with lab gear on a "budget (...)  ;)", he may be better off with the Rigol DSG800 series which is considerably less expensive in the "A" (IQ-Enabled) version than the competing Siglent generators. Other features not compared so YMMV.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2020, 10:32:07 am by TurboTom »
 

Offline 2N3055

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #57 on: July 08, 2020, 10:47:24 am »
@tautech: I'm not sure if this is correct. If I understand the SSG user manual correctly, in order to generate an IQ modulated RF output, you anyway need to supply an external IQ baseband signal (i.e. using the SDG6000X with IQ option) and use the IQ-Enabled version of the SSG3000X.

The IQE version apparently contains more additional hardware than just a pair of wires that run the in-phase and quadrature baseband signals to the existing motherboard of the SSG.

If someone is looking for generating IQ modulated RF signals with lab gear on a "budget (...)  ;)", he may be better off with the Rigol DSG800 series which is considerably less expensive in the "A" (IQ-Enabled) version than the competing Siglent generators. Other features not compared so YMMV.
Tom,

AFAIK you're correct. You need SDG6000X with IQ option and IQ-Enabled version of the SSG3000X.

Regards,

Sinisa
 

Offline noreply

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #58 on: July 08, 2020, 12:12:02 pm »
Here is a good 'hands-on' and the pros / cons of the SDG6000X - check out @ 1hour 2 minutes (1:02:00) into the video - and in particular @ 1:06:15 - where its shown that ANY RF signal generator with appropriate IQ modulator such as one used in video

https://www.craneae.com/Products/Microwave/ApplicationNotes/Modulators.pdf

 and an ARB IQ source could be used for IQ test regimes  ;)



 

Online tv84

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #59 on: July 08, 2020, 01:43:45 pm »
AFAIK you're correct. You need SDG6000X with IQ option and IQ-Enabled version of the SSG3000X.

That seems expensive...  :(

Rigol seems a much better option in $$$ terms.
 

Offline tautech

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #60 on: July 08, 2020, 01:53:56 pm »


AFAIK you're correct. You need SDG6000X with IQ option and IQ-Enabled version of the SSG3000X.

Regards,

Sinisa
Yes sorry guys.
P11 of the datasheet explains requirements.
http://siglentna.com/wp-content/uploads/dlm_uploads/2018/11/SSG3000X_Datasheet_DS0803X_E01B.pdf

AFAIK you're correct. You need SDG6000X with IQ option and IQ-Enabled version of the SSG3000X.

That seems expensive...  :(

Rigol seems a much better option in $$$ terms.
norepy wanted the 20dB output capability.
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Offline noreply

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #61 on: July 08, 2020, 02:17:26 pm »

AFAIK you're correct. You need SDG6000X with IQ option and IQ-Enabled version of the SSG3000X.

That seems expensive...  :(

Rigol seems a much better option in $$$ terms.
norepy wanted the 20dB output capability.

Yes, but there are other devices which all have 20dbm capability  ;)

I think tv was referring to the IQ options available via Siglent as being expensive  :-\

For the cost of a SSG3021X (IQ enabled) AND SDG6000X - you can buy an integrated IQ enabled RF Sig Gen + have some change for  :popcorn:
 

Offline tautech

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #62 on: July 08, 2020, 02:23:59 pm »

For the cost of a SSG3021X (IQ enabled) AND SDG6000X - you can buy an integrated IQ enabled RF Sig Gen + have some change for  :popcorn:
SDG6052X already can do 500 MHz IQ.

I don't have mine here to try some stuff to show you unfortunately as it's with a buddy trying out the IQ on a SSA3075X-R.  8)
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Online tv84

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #63 on: July 08, 2020, 02:39:09 pm »
Let's do some math to check if I'm doing something wrong.

In order to have RF with IQ modulation (2.1GHz):

SSG3021X IQ (5000€) + SDG6022X (1520€) = 6520€

Rigol (2.1GHz):
Rigol DSG821A (with IQ included) = 4000€

If this is correct I would say SSG3021X IQ is overpriced! Am I right?
 

Offline TurboTom

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #64 on: July 08, 2020, 04:22:39 pm »
True -- I didn't even notice that the DSG800A series offers an internal baseband generator so it can be used as a stand-alone source of an IQ-modulated RF signal. If configured like that, it will output the baseband signal at the corresponding ports at the back of the instrument. Likewise to other Rigol generators, the connectivity is superb and considerably better than Siglent's offerings can provide.

As it appears, Rigol's DSG800 series is capable of +20dbm output level as well, even though not specified. If this is the case for all models of the line and over the full bandwidth, is yet to be evaluated.

Considering that the SSG3021X-IQE can probably be up-hacked into the SSG3032X-IQE model, may make Siglent's offer appear more attractive, but since this class of instruments will rather be purchased by "professionals", hacking options are less likely to affect the decision making. If Rigol's 2.1GHz version can be "improved" to the full-bore 3.6GHz model is something I'ld rather doubt.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2020, 05:29:19 pm by TurboTom »
 

Online tv84

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #65 on: July 08, 2020, 04:41:09 pm »
Considering that the SSG3021X-IQE can probably be up-hacked into the SSG3032X-IQE model,

Can't. Been there.   |O   Yes, it can!   (Been there with a non-IQ version.) 

If Rigol's 2.1GHz version can be "improved" to the full-bore 3.6GHz model is something I'ld rather doubt.

That would make it even more interesting. Let's see if any DSG volunteer comes up.  ;)
« Last Edit: July 08, 2020, 06:02:18 pm by tv84 »
 

Online tv84

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #66 on: July 09, 2020, 10:50:44 am »
A look inside SSG, compiled from service manual, showing just the Control Board and the extra IQ Module.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2020, 11:05:59 am by tv84 »
 

Offline noreply

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #67 on: July 09, 2020, 02:56:16 pm »
Nice find tv  :clap:

Now we need similar 'inside the box' pics for the Rigol DSG800A series ;)
« Last Edit: July 09, 2020, 02:58:25 pm by noreply »
 

Offline Sighound36

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #68 on: July 09, 2020, 03:18:43 pm »
Noreply far to many  ;) smiles, reminds me of a certain internet forum personality from the north of England  :-DD
Seeking quality measurement equipment at realistic cost with proper service backup. If you pay peanuts you employ monkeys.
 
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Offline noreply

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #69 on: July 09, 2020, 04:01:43 pm »
Noreply far to many  ;) smiles, reminds me of a certain internet forum personality from the north of England  :-DD

You can blame Dave for the lack of appropriate Emoji's for me to use

I just feel 'naked' without ending a sentence without an emoji , and the 'smile' was the least offending I guess

(see I took note of your comment - refrained from using emoji above)
 

Offline tautech

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #70 on: December 28, 2020, 07:11:39 am »
New firmware for SSG5000X models

Version: V1.1.1.2.4
https://int.siglent.com/upload_file/zip/firmware/Radio_Frequency_Signal_Source/SSG5000X_V1.1.1.2.4_EN.zip
37.5 MB


Release notes
Fix: The UI was not updated in time when the power meter was pulled out.
Fix: GPIB Address can not be changed.
Fix: The mouse is hidden under VNC.
Fix: Some wrong SCPI commands were executed.
Optimize function with OCXO module.
Optimize power meter function.

Following not publicly released however included in this latest FW update.
Version V1.1.1.2.2
2020/09/02
Fix: Some power meter related SCPI commands do not work
Fix: UI cannot be set without IQ board
Version V1.1.1.2.1
2020/08/17   
Optimize an overshoot signal generated when ALC is off.
Changing the offset range of multicarrier.
Optimizing the process of multicarrier generation.
Add a prompt box when using remote mode.
Use new license generation scheme
Version V1.1.1.1.9c
2020/06/18   
Fix: There is a probability that white screen will appear after power on.
Fix: AWGN State no reset.
The IQ board detection only needs detection once.

Version V1.1.1.1.9a
2020/5/14   The first released
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Offline Bicurico

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Re: Siglent SSG3000X and SSG5000X series RF Signal generators
« Reply #71 on: December 28, 2020, 11:05:49 am »
Any owner available for a test?


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