Author Topic: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread  (Read 1620285 times)

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Offline Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29275 on: April 14, 2019, 12:17:25 pm »
Hahaha. I was pretty near the front of the queue. Think it was just a crap one :(

Next one on 28th.
That's not so good news then, just wondering whether a computer fair might be a better bet for our TE addiction. I seem to remember going to  one years ago at Ponders End that was overflowing with TE. At least I'll be getting my new fix soon.
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Online med6753

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29276 on: April 14, 2019, 12:21:35 pm »
Interesting. Lost power here for a few seconds then came back on. Just long enough to screw up a few clocks.  ::)

Waiting for the scanner to come on saying someone clobbered a pole but so far......crickets.  :-// 
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Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29277 on: April 14, 2019, 12:26:33 pm »
Hahaha. I was pretty near the front of the queue. Think it was just a crap one :(

Next one on 28th.
That's not so good news then, just wondering whether a computer fair might be a better bet for our TE addiction. I seem to remember going to  one years ago at Ponders End that was overflowing with TE. At least I'll be getting my new fix soon.


Yeah I went to that one as well. Was pretty good. I had no money then. Typical! :)

Now I've had some lunch, quick Kempton review:

1. Loads of junk vendors, some good some not so good. Lots of tubes etc. Bags of junk components were ridiculously priced to be honest.
2. Lots of £1 for a bag of 25x 2n3904 vendors (surplectronics etc). Generally worse deal than CPC. Nothing I really needed so skipped. Was going to buy some toroids but they are cheaper on RS and GQRP (50p each at show vs 50p for 5 delivered).
3. Only test gear I saw was a duff Marconi counter for £7 (passed on that), some overpriced gould, no brand and philips scopes, some Farnell power supplies and the inevitable hooky avo or two. There was a Gould counter with Panaplex displays but by the time I'd been elbowed in the head 20 times I didn't feel like hanging around any more.
4. Yaesu, Telonic, Moonraker were present. Had a play with a Rigol MSO5000 for a bit. Much faster than a DS1054Z. Display is not that good. Contrast is awful. Touch screen works but feels wrong touching a scope screen :--
5. RSGB out in force with a selection of crap books.
6. Someone really needs to go and see their doctor about their ass which smelled pretty bad.
7. Some 2m activity in the car park, mostly people trying to find each other.
8. Jesus people it's 2019 - stop smoking! The guys on crutches and wheelchairs are your future! Clouds of rancid ick galore.

Edit: saw a bag of GR connectors for £5 which was reasonable but skipped those. I figured someone with a tek 191 might have found them more useful.

Interesting. Lost power here for a few seconds then came back on. Just long enough to screw up a few clocks.  ::)

Waiting for the scanner to come on saying someone clobbered a pole but so far......crickets.  :-// 

Happens here once a week at average. Totally annoying.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2019, 12:33:09 pm by bd139 »
 

Online med6753

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29278 on: April 14, 2019, 12:32:13 pm »


Interesting. Lost power here for a few seconds then came back on. Just long enough to screw up a few clocks.  ::)

Waiting for the scanner to come on saying someone clobbered a pole but so far......crickets.  :-// 

Happens here once a week at average. Totally annoying.

Really? It's a rare event here. Maybe once every few months on average.
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Online mnementh

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29279 on: April 14, 2019, 02:39:06 pm »

She is one butt-ugly space mule... but the fact that she is... is beautiful.

I won't get to be a "Rocket Man"; but I may live to see the day when "... it's just my job, 5 days a week..."

mnem
We did that.  :-+

Does it have or likely to have a job to do yet?


It sort of reminds me of how big of an asshole Trump is.  ::)
I prefer the one on the lower portion of the attachment, one of the others is interesting and sucks shit in and the other ....  :palm:

Yes it does... we've needed something... a FLEET of something... that does the job it was designed for literally more than the 20 years it took to get the damned thing off the ground. But our "leaders" have kindof been too busy selling out to the Corporatocracy for such lofty goals.

Please... it is much too early for contemplating such vileness, and it demeans the awesome nature of the discovery. Chump is NOT the disease; he is merely the single most visible eruption of the cancer that is eating our society from within.


mnem
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Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29280 on: April 14, 2019, 03:33:14 pm »
Tonight's TEA should I do this or not question

One of the boxes I got from the garage treasure house was filled with probes. I spent this afternoon sorting them out; tonight I will test them. Most of them are pedestrian but there are six FET probes of various bandwidths, along with another four or five other BNC powered probes. To use them on the scopes I have, I will need to buy a Tek power source. On one hand, a 4GHz probe on a 300MHz scope is serious overkill, and selling them, I would more than cover the cost of all the gear I have purchased in the last three or four months. On the other, how cool is it to have a couple of GHz test probes on the bench?

So... should I fork out the cash for a power supply and keep all the probes or liberate some cash that I might use for, umm, more practical test equipment?

Some scopes have a PSU connector for some FET probes, e.g a 485.

Let us know what you have; somebody might help your cashflow.

FET probes are usually lower capacitance than other probes, and that can be an advantage at any frequency.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
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Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29281 on: April 14, 2019, 03:59:20 pm »
Well that was crap. Spend less than £10 on couple of tuning caps and a vernier drive.

No test gear worth buying.

Did consider buying a couple of old home brew radios for parts but only just broke even on those if I did which wasn’t worth it. Plus it feels bad destroying someone’s hard work.

Yes, the stalls were sparser than before and there wasn't much of a crush; I was glas I didn;t bother to try to sell anything there. But... you should have looked closer :)

Firstly one stall was selling four of you for £1. I didn't bother because there are probably plenty lying unused in my local hackspace.

Secondly, I got something I was specifically looking for: a connector for my Tek 191 constant amplitude sine generator. It is one of the old-style (?GR?) hermaphroditic connectors.

Finally, a couple of weeks ago I was going to bid on an item when the auction was shown as being in Aylesbury. Then it "moved" to Scotland, and it wasn't worth a 700 mile trek. I bid on something similar a couple of weeks ago, but it went for £95. But at Kempton I saw the first item; the vendor had indeed gone to Scotland and filled up a van with many of the items from a college that was shutting down.

Anyway, I am now the proud possessor of a Griffin Timer Scaler containing some of the same technology used in the world's oldest operating computer, the WITCH in TNMoC. Yes, it does work, and looks as retro cute as I would hope :) 

Now I'm trying to remember how to get the bloody handle off (the old fashioned leather straps on the top of Farnell PSUs and Telequipment scopes) so I can work out what the "GM" connector contacts are, and what voltages are required. I want to be careful since some of the front panel controls are "EHT Off" and a rotary control "300V..500V".
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29282 on: April 14, 2019, 04:01:36 pm »
Well that was crap. Spend less than £10 on couple of tuning caps and a vernier drive.

No test gear worth buying.

Did consider buying a couple of old home brew radios for parts but only just broke even on those if I did which wasn’t worth it. Plus it feels bad destroying someone’s hard work.

Did you happen to see a vehicle with an obvious heavy load in the trunk (boot)?  That was tggzzz. He beat you out again.  :-DD

I did take up a trolley, but it wasn't needed :(
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29283 on: April 14, 2019, 04:05:10 pm »
Hahaha. I was pretty near the front of the queue. Think it was just a crap one :(

Next one on 28th.
That's not so good news then, just wondering whether a computer fair might be a better bet for our TE addiction. I seem to remember going to  one years ago at Ponders End that was overflowing with TE. At least I'll be getting my new fix soon.

The ones I've seen are just Del boys buying manufacturer's end-of-line stock and marking up the prices.

A combined computer/electronics/hamfest might be interesting, but the one at Eastbourne has ceased to exist.

Dunstable, Frome, Chippenham, and maybe the "national" one at Newark seem to be the only ones I'm interested in.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29284 on: April 14, 2019, 04:07:50 pm »
Edit: saw a bag of GR connectors for £5 which was reasonable but skipped those. I figured someone with a tek 191 might have found them more useful.

Bugger, missed that. But got a GR + diode detector + BNC, so I'm not complaining.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29285 on: April 14, 2019, 04:08:08 pm »
Taking that trolley to Aunby to pick up your snatches there?
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Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29286 on: April 14, 2019, 04:11:49 pm »
Taking that trolley to Aunby to pick up your snatches there?

Nah. They've got forklifts.

But it does mean there are only two justifications for me to go to Dunstable: to unload stuff and then visit TNMoC.

Benefit of flogging stuff at Dunstable is you don't have to lug booty through woods and across fields.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29287 on: April 14, 2019, 04:26:54 pm »
I shall likely load some of your unloadings :D
 

Offline Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29288 on: April 14, 2019, 04:45:17 pm »
Here's a quick tip for you, if you use in your cooking the 1 cal fry light sprays, when their empty, give em a good though washing, they then make good handy spray bottles for your IPA. I have purchased some of the small bottles from Amazon for that purpose but the IPA just seems to attack the pick up tubes and makes them split but the fry light ones seem to work really well and give a nice fine spray.
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Online med6753

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29289 on: April 14, 2019, 04:56:53 pm »
The 465B is fixed. The verdict? A very tired CRT. Although the pix doesn't do it justice that trace is now sharp and well defined like a good Tek should be. So my hunch was correct. :-+ Once in a while I score one. :-DD So what's wrong with the old CRT? Hard to tell. It doesn't appear to be an emission issue because it has plenty of intensity. Low emission would cause a dull trace. And the CRT isn't gassy because the getter is nice an shiny as it should be. If the CRT had gas in it the getter would start to turn dull gray. I suspect that something in the gun assembly as gone out of alignment. Perhaps it was subject to a heavy shock? But there's no dents in the cabinet or other physical damage. So it will remain a mystery. But it's definitely fubar and not suitable as a spare.

So the only thing that's left to do on this guy is check the compensation on the attenuator switch decks and it's a completed project. And no, this scope is no longer a “parts” unit.  :scared:

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Offline SilverSolder

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29290 on: April 14, 2019, 06:23:15 pm »
Nice!   Having seen the video someone posted earlier about how these CRTs were made, it is clear how high quality these instruments are.
 

Online med6753

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29291 on: April 14, 2019, 06:29:56 pm »
This is the first time I've seen a defective Tektronix CRT other than ones that were physically broken. They just seem to last forever if set up properly. But I do suspect this one was subject to some kind of shock that threw the gun assembly out of alignment.  :-//

The old CRT has been cleaned up and is now a display piece. I'm considering breaking the exhaust tip to make it "safe" but I put it where it can't get knocked over (easily).  :-DD
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Offline Carl_Smith

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29292 on: April 14, 2019, 06:34:34 pm »
I have no idea how hard it would be to drive one of those CRTs with your own circuitry, but maybe you could turn it into an artistic "CRT Clock."

Offline BU508A

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29293 on: April 14, 2019, 07:04:36 pm »
Hello TEA fellows,

I want to take the opportunity to show you an example
of a little side aspect of TEA: hopelessly over-engineered DIY test equipement.

For another little project of mine I was in need of a resistor decade.
There are a lot of them outsinde, most of them nice and dandy but
for some reason I had the idea I must build one of my own.  :palm:

The specifications aren't that hard:

5 Ranges from 0.1Ohm steps to 1000Ohm steps.
Tolerance: 1%
max power: 0.5W

I looked into my parts collection and found a lot of relays (omron G6K 5V)
and some nice 7-segmet red LED displays from HP.
With some BCD coded switches, some Li-Ion batteries and a nice case I thought,
this could be an easy one.
Well, yeah...  |O  ;D

This is an image of the finished box:



Box opened:



First, I ordered a whole bunch of MELF resistors.
Then I measured the contact resistance of every single relais and took
the best five ones with the lowest contact resistance.

Soldered the relais on a single sided experimental board and added some
ULN 2003L.

Top view:



and the bottom view (lots of fumbling was involved  :-/O ):



Then I drilled some holes for the switches in the cover plate and
made a cutout for the 7-segment display. Soldered all on experimental
boards as well.

Top view of the modules:



Backside of the display module:



This is the middle part, which contains the Li-Ion batteries (Ansmann, 3600mAh),
the two charger modules (TP 4056 with protection), the LDO (LM 1117, 5V) and the on/off switch.

Top view:



Bottom view:



Detail Li-Ion charger module:



Those TP 4056's are getting really hot, while they charge the Li-Ion batteries
with 1A (at the beginning, descends after a while).



The batteries on the other side stay cool:



It started with 2A and this is after 1.5h charging:



One battery full, the other still ongoing:



For the on/off switch I'm using a bistable relais (omron G6AK-274 5V)
and some reed sensors. Works really nice and no ugly switch visible.  :D



The are the output binding posts from Hirschmann, gold-plated:



But how does it perform?
I did some measurements with my DMM7510 and 34401A and I am very
pleased with the result:

This is the starting resistance without being nulled out:



nulled out and 100mOhm step:



600mOhm step:



At 1650Ohm:



At 9999.9Ohm:



In comparison with the 34401A:



And here a nice one at 30Ohm:



Here are the steps from all five ranges, measured with the DMM 7510, 10PLC:

100mOhm steps:



1Ohm steps:



10Ohm steps:



100Ohm steps:



1000Ohm steps:




Hope you enjoyed my little project.  :popcorn:

Cheers,

BU508A

Edit: wrong link to the picture of the 10Ohm steps corrected.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2019, 09:02:40 pm by BU508A »
“Chaos is found in greatest abundance wherever order is being sought. It always defeats order, because it is better organized.”            - Terry Pratchett -
 
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Offline Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29294 on: April 14, 2019, 07:40:04 pm »
The 465B is fixed. The verdict? A very tired CRT. Although the pix doesn't do it justice that trace is now sharp and well defined like a good Tek should be. So my hunch was correct. :-+ Once in a while I score one. :-DD So what's wrong with the old CRT? Hard to tell. It doesn't appear to be an emission issue because it has plenty of intensity. Low emission would cause a dull trace. And the CRT isn't gassy because the getter is nice an shiny as it should be. If the CRT had gas in it the getter would start to turn dull gray. I suspect that something in the gun assembly as gone out of alignment. Perhaps it was subject to a heavy shock? But there's no dents in the cabinet or other physical damage. So it will remain a mystery. But it's definitely fubar and not suitable as a spare.

So the only thing that's left to do on this guy is check the compensation on the attenuator switch decks and it's a completed project. And no, this scope is no longer a “parts” unit.  :scared:


Well done this is a really well sorted and good looking scope now  :clap:
Who let Murphy in?
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29295 on: April 14, 2019, 08:05:42 pm »
Finally, a couple of weeks ago I was going to bid on an item when the auction was shown as being in Aylesbury. Then it "moved" to Scotland, and it wasn't worth a 700 mile trek. I bid on something similar a couple of weeks ago, but it went for £95. But at Kempton I saw the first item; the vendor had indeed gone to Scotland and filled up a van with many of the items from a college that was shutting down.

Anyway, I am now the proud possessor of a Griffin Timer Scaler containing some of the same technology used in the world's oldest operating computer, the WITCH in TNMoC. Yes, it does work, and looks as retro cute as I would hope :) 

Since pictures are required, here's one at 1/250s:



And I still haven't got the blasted handle off!
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 
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Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29296 on: April 14, 2019, 08:32:17 pm »
Is that specifically for a Geiger muller tube? Assume it uses dekatrons to count particles? Is the mechanical counter the overflow bit?

@BU508A: Interesting bit of kit. Thanks for writing up!
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29297 on: April 14, 2019, 08:44:30 pm »
Is that specifically for a Geiger muller tube? Assume it uses dekatrons to count particles? Is the mechanical counter the overflow bit?

Presumably, yes or time, yes (and surprisingly noisy).
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline 0culus

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29298 on: April 14, 2019, 09:57:30 pm »
Received a replacement ADF4351 signal gen board....and it doesn't work either.  |O Refuses to lock on the internal xtal, and can't connect an external ref at all because it's missing one of the miniscule 0 ohm jumpers that connects the ref in/out SMA to the rest of the board.  :palm:

You get what you pay for with signal generators, that's for sure.

Interesting.

I bought this little signal genarator and it's based on the ADF4351, too:
https://www.ebay.de/itm/New-35M-4-4G-simple-signal-generator/172210964785

It's having problems locking to the internal xtal, too.
Since it has a working 10MHz reference input (a must have for my gear) it locks reliably to, I haven't bothered much since.

Perhaps we can find out, what's the problem is?    :-/O
Well, I finally got it to lock after much fiddling. It works, better than the old one, but man the PLL chip gets blazing hot. Wouldn't be surprised if that isn't why the first one worked for a while then failed.

I did finally get it to lock after fiddling. These things are a bit touchy for sure. And the PLL itself runs damn hot.

Ooookaay.

My SigGen seems to lock to the internal xtal after some warm-up time but only after I tweak the output frequency from the default 34MHz to e.g 134MHz.   :-//

Seems more like the spec for the ADF4350 (137.5 MHz to 4400 MHz) instead of the 4351  :-// Either that or they havn't set the divide by ratio properly to get to the lower frequencies? https://www.analog.com/media/en/technical-documentation/data-sheets/ADF4351.pdf

Hmm. Seems I didn't describe it clear enough:
After power on my ADF4351 based siggen defaults to 34MHz and stays unlocked. When I tweak the output frequency to e.g 134MHz (44MHz won't help) after a while the siggen then jumps to "L" (locked) and after that it stays locked whatever frequency between 34MHz and 4.61GHz I set.

How are you controlling yours? I'm using an Arduino Uno with a Chinesium special LCD and button shield, with this guy's software.

The relevant code snippet for the divider logic:

Code: [Select]
void loop()
{
  RFout=RFint;
  RFout=RFout/100;
  if ((RFint != RFintold)|| (modif==1)) {
    //Serial.print(RFout,DEC);Serial.print("\r\n");
    if (RFout >= 2200) {
      OutputDivider = 1;
      bitWrite (registers[4], 22, 0);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 21, 0);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 20, 0);
    }
    if (RFout < 2200) {
      OutputDivider = 2;
      bitWrite (registers[4], 22, 0);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 21, 0);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 20, 1);
    }
    if (RFout < 1100) {
      OutputDivider = 4;
      bitWrite (registers[4], 22, 0);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 21, 1);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 20, 0);
    }
    if (RFout < 550)  {
      OutputDivider = 8;
      bitWrite (registers[4], 22, 0);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 21, 1);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 20, 1);
    }
    if (RFout < 275)  {
      OutputDivider = 16;
      bitWrite (registers[4], 22, 1);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 21, 0);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 20, 0);
    }
    if (RFout < 137.5) {
      OutputDivider = 32;
      bitWrite (registers[4], 22, 1);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 21, 0);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 20, 1);
    }
    if (RFout < 68.75) {
      OutputDivider = 64;
      bitWrite (registers[4], 22, 1);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 21, 1);
      bitWrite (registers[4], 20, 0);
    }
 

Offline Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #29299 on: April 14, 2019, 10:14:10 pm »
Is anyone having trouble logging into certain websites such as PayPal for instance? I'm using Google Chrome and tonight it wont allow me into PayPal telling me that my browser is out of date and that the latest version of Chrome and to TLS 1.2 not TLS 1.1?

Checked my browser is the latest version and yet it still uses TLS 1.1?
Who let Murphy in?
 


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