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Signal Generator

What is a signal generator?

Tektronix signal generators cover a wide range of applications from replicating sensor signals to creating high-speed serial data or RF signals with digital modulation applied. Each versatile signal generator can create a virtually unlimited number of signals—analog or digital, ideal or distorted, standard or custom. From the world's only direct synthesis of high-speed serial data waveforms for simplified receiver testing to the world's most versatile arbitrary function generator for common stimulus signals to flexible RF signal generators for analog and digital applications, Tektronix has a signal generator to meet any debugging challenge.

Types of Signal Generators

Compare Specifications for RF Signal Generators, Function Generators and Arbitrary Waveform Generators

Model Channels Vertical resolution Bandwidth Frequency Sample rate Record length List Price
TSG4102A RF signal generator TSG4102A
RF signal generator
1 - 400 MHz 2 GHz - - US $10,200
Configure & Quote
TSG4104A
RF signal generator
1 - 400 MHz 4 GHz - - US $13,200
Configure & Quote
TSG4106A
RF signal generator
1 - 400 MHz 6 GHz - - US $19,500
Configure & Quote
AFG31000 arbitrary function generator AFG31000 series arbitrary function generator 1-2 14 bits 25 MHz to 250 MHz 25 MHz to 250 MHz 250 MS/s - 2 GS/s 16 MSa/ch US $2,400
Configure & Quote
AFG1022
arbitrary function generator
2 14 bits 25 MHz 1 uHz to 25 MHz 125 MS/s 8k points US $1,010
Configure & Quote
AFG1062
arbitrary function generator
2 14 bits 60 MHz 1 uHz to 60 MHz 300 MS/s 1M points US $1,360
Configure & Quote
AFG2000 arbitrary function generator 1 14 bits 20 MHz 20 MHz 250 MS/s 128k points US $2,040
Configure & Quote
AWG70000 arbitrary waveform generator 3390 arbitrary waveform generator 1 14 bits 50 MHz 1 µHz to 50 MHz 125 MS/s 256k points US $2,420
Configure & Quote
AWG5202
arbitrary waveform generator
2 16 bits 2 GHz (at -3 dB x) Direct DC Out: 1.5Vp-p Diff
Direct AC Out: -17 to -5 dBm single-ended, BW 10MHz to 2GHz (standard)
Amp AC Out: -85 to +10 dBm single-ended, BW 10MHz to 2GHz (option)
1.5 KS/s – 10 GS/s (4 GHz) -
Configure & Quote
AWG5204
arbitrary waveform generator
4 16 bits 2 GHz (at -3 dB x) Direct DC Out: 1.5Vp-p Diff
Direct AC Out: -17 to -5 dBm single-ended, BW 10MHz to 2GHz (standard)
Amp AC Out: -85 to +10 dBm single-ended, BW 10MHz to 2GHz (option)
- -
Configure & Quote
AWG5208
arbitrary waveform generator
8 16 bits 2 GHz (at -3 dB x) Direct DC Out: 1.5Vp-p Diff
Direct AC Out: -17 to -5 dBm single-ended, BW 10MHz to 2GHz (standard)
Amp AC Out: -85 to +10 dBm single-ended, BW 10MHz to 2GHz (option)
- -
Configure & Quote
AWG70002B
arbitrary waveform generator
2 8, 9, or 10 bits Up to 13.5 GHz 10 GHz 25 GS/s 2 GS, 16 GS (Optional)
Configure & Quote
AWG70001B
arbitrary waveform generator
1 8, 9, or 10 bits Up to 15 GHz 20 GHz 50 GS/s 2 GS, 32 GS (Optional)
Configure & Quote

Signal generator FAQs

What is a signal generator used for?

A signal generator is an analog or digital device that engineers use to create electronic signals and send them to a device under test (DUT) when testing circuit designs. There are a number of different types of signal generators, including RF signal generators, function generators, arbitrary waveform generators, and vector signal generators.

How does a signal generator work?

A signal generator creates voltage waveforms at a desired frequency and applies them to a device under test (DUT). Using the instrument’s front panel, the operator can easily set and adjust the most important parameters of a waveform, such as how fast it’s played, the amplitude and offset, or add basic distortion or modulation.

What’s the difference between signal generators and function generators?

A signal generator is any device that creates electronic signals. A vector signal generator specializes in creating RF signals with analog and digital modulation schemes in formats such as QAM, QPSK, FSK, BPSK, and OFDM. Vector signal generators are commonly used for receiver sensitivity testing.

A function generator generally has a preset list of waveforms or patterns that it can play. The operator can change the parameters of a waveform, such as how fast it’s played, the amplitude and offset, or add basic distortion or modulation.

What are the types of signal generators?

There are many types of signal generators. View the chart below to see the differences between each.

Signal Generator Generic category name for analog and digital electronic signal sources.
Function Generator Signal generators are typically used when common waveforms like sine, wave, triangular, etc. are needed.
Arbitrary Function Generator Function generators are capable of arbitrary compiled waveforms.
Arbitrary Waveform Generator Arbitrary waveform generators are mostly used when custom compiled waveforms (rather than preset common waveforms) are needed.
RF Signal Generator RF signal generators are used for wireless applications and typically provide normal analog modulation such as AM, FM, and PM as well.
(RF) Vector Signal Generator RF vector signal generators support both analog and vector modulation on RF carriers for digital communication applications.