[time-nuts] How to measure Allan Deviation?

John Ackermann N8UR jra at febo.com
Sun Oct 22 21:21:10 EDT 2006

I really like the 5334s (either A or B; the A is actually a more
featureful instrument than the B) and I have five or six of them; I
didn't pay more than $100 for any of them.  And, most of them have
10811As, so I figure worst case I can throw the counter out and still
get my money's worth from the oscillator!


Didier Juges said the following on 10/22/2006 09:02 PM:
> It just so happen that I also have an HP 5334B, which I bought when I 
> had given up on getting an HP5370 for a *reasonable* cost, considering 
> my application. It draws 20 VA instead of 200, but this one does not 
> have the 10811 time base. This will also be a lot easier on the UPS, as 
> we do loose power here somewhat regularly (but not for long, unless a 
> hurricane is involved) during the stormy season.
> Thanks for another great suggestion.
> Didier
> John Ackermann N8UR wrote:
>> Dr Bruce Griffiths said the following on 10/22/2006 07:19 PM:
>>> An inexpensive modern time interval counter with a power dissipation of 
>>> less than 10 watts and a resolution comparable to the 5370 would be 
>>> useful for such comparisons especially if the experiment lasts several 
>>> months.
>> I don't usually use the 5370 for long-term measurements, as it does make
>> a very noticeable amount of heat.  Since the long term averages don't
>> really need super resolution, I find that an HP 5334 counter, which has
>> 2ns resolution and dissipates far less heat, works well.
>> My current experiment is using a 5334 along with a GPIB-controlled coax
>> switch (forget the HP number right now) to do 100 second averages of six
>> combinations (CS1-GPS, CS2-GPS, RB1-GPS, CS2-CS1, RB1-CS1, and RB1-CS2)
>> so I end up with a tau of 600 seconds and ~200ps resolution with the 100
>> sample average.
>> John
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