April 5-7, 2022|Santa Clara Convention Center| Santa Clara, CA

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Applications of High Bandwidth AWGs in Receiver Testing: Tricks of the Trade


Julien Henaut  (COO / R&D Manager, BitifEye Digital Test Solutions GmbH)


Anton M. Unakafov  (Scientist, BitifEye Digital Test Solutions GmbH)

Ransom Stephens  (Consulting Senior Scientist at BitifEye Digital Solutions and Sage at Ransom’s Notes, BitifEye Digital Test Solutions GmbH)

Nithin Parameshwaraiah  (Application Expert, BitifEye Digital Test Solutions GmbH)

Afshin Attarzadeh  (Senior Software Engineer, BitifEye Digital Test Solutions GmbH)

Valentina Unakafova  (Scientist, Software Architect and Project Manager, BitifEye Digital Test Solutions GmbH)

Location: Ballroom E

Date: Thursday, April 7

Time: 2:00 pm - 2:45 pm

Track: 12. Applying Test & Measurement Methodology, 07. Optimizing High-Speed Link Design

Format: Technical Session

Theme : High-speed Communications

Education Level: Introductory

Pass Type: 2-Day Pass, All Access Pass

Vault Recording: TBD

Audience Level: Introductory

Deep memory, high bandwidth Arbitrary Waveform Generators (AWGs) are ideal tools for creating the signals required for stressed receiver tolerance testing. These advanced AWGs can transmit waveforms with precise signal impairments, whether prescribed by standards for compliance testing, diagnostic analysis, or hypothetical signals for serdes performance margin measurements: Insertion Loss (IL), Return Loss (RL), Inter-Symbol Interference (ISI), and crosstalk calculated from system S-parameters; random and sinusoidal noise and jitter that can even include nonstationary events; and transmitter feedforward equalization (TxFFE). In principle, AWGs are magic. In practice, they're quirky, temperamental beasts governed by all the annoying traits of Digital-to-Analog Converters (DACs): limited resolution, imperfect interpolation, and finite sampling rate. On top of this we need to account for waveform length and memory granularity. In this presentation, we'll share our experiences using (and trying to use) AWGs in automated receiver tests for compliance to a variety of standards: HDMI2.1, MIPI C-PHY, D-PHY and A-PHY. In the process, we'll show how we manage sample bit ratio and fixed instrument granularity. We'll also discuss when a more traditional Bit Error Ratio Tester (BERT) pattern generator is a better tool for the job.


Understanding of modern AWGs, their applicability to receiver testing, associated challenges and tricks that can be used to solve the problems

Intended Audience

general familiarity with high speed I/O and signal integrity