TNP #11 – Teardown & Analysis of a 75-110GHz (W-Band) Waveguide mm-Wave Balanced Mixer Module

In this episode Shahriar investigates the mysteries of a W-Band fundamental LO balanced mixer module based on GaAs Schottky Barrier Diodes. The mixer offers a very high IF bandwidth of 35GHz and LO driver requirements of 13dBm between 75-110GHz.
The teardown reveals the waveguide to coaxial transitions as well as the interface to the pair of Schottky diodes. High resolution microscope analysis provides a detailed view of the precise machined waveguide ports.​​​

TSP #201 – Rohde-Schwarz NGU401 500kS/s Source Measure Unit Review, Teardown & Experiments

In this episode Shahriar reviews the latest edition to the R&S SMU family, the NGU401.

This instrument offer four-quadrant operation, 60W total output power, 6.5 digit resolution as well as 500kS/s digitizers on both voltage and current readbacks. The instrument also offers a verity of output control and arbitrary waveform generation. This review is organized as follows:

00:00 – Introductions
00:50 – Front & back panels, interfaces, design
02:40 – Detailed teardown & architectural analysis
08:36 – Pooch!
08:45 – USB Power Bank experiment, NGU GUI design, primary capabilities
13:20 – Multi-quadrant operation, sink/source conditions
15:49 – High-speed sampling, auto-ranging and transient detection
18:29 – Deep-sleep battery drain detection of Fluke 233, graphical viewer, fast logging
22:35 – Characterizing a DC/DC converter, transient output current
27:19 – High output capacitance mode, oscillation detection
29:45 – Current/voltage priority modes
30:40 – Fast arbitrary waveform generation,
34:20 – Additional functions, OVP, OCP, OPP, Modulation Input, trigger IOs, slew control, fast transient
36:18 – Concluding remarks​​​

TNP #10 – Teardown & Experiments with a Mystery Vintage (1950) Hewlett-Packard Instrument

In this episode Shahriar takes a look at an unusual vintage HP instrument from the 1950s. The unit has a vacuum-tube-like core with a pair of banana plug interface.
After restoration, the instrument principle of operation, teardown and schematics are presented. Several experiments demonstrate the use-case as well as the correct operation of the unit.​​​

TNP #9 – Teardown & Analysis of an Electronic COVID-19 Home Test Kit (ellume)

In this episode Shahriar takes a look at a pair of COVID-19 electronic home kits. These Bluetooth enables devices are manufactured by ellume. Both of these tests had produced false-positive results. The optical readout mechanism of the devices are examined as well as the general design of the unit.

This video is not about which COVID-19 home test kit you should purchase. This is an exploration and analysis of this particular device for educational purposes only. For all medical advice regarding COVID-19, please contact your doctor.​​​

TSP #200 – Carvera (Makera) 4-Axis CNC Machine with Automatic Leveling, Tool Changer & Laser Review

In this episode Shahriar reviews an ambitious new CNC machine currently offered on Kickstarter. The machine is equipped with automatic tool changer, automatic probing & leveling, built-in dust collection, optional fourth axis and integrated laser engrave module. The review of the pre-production model focuses on the units capabilities along with high-precision PCB experiments. You can access the Kickstarted campaign here:

This review is organized as follows:

00:00 – Introductions and expectations
01:22 – Machine overview, constriction, tablet holder, work area
03:23 – Automatic tool changer design & operation
04:30 – Automatic probing and leveling system
06:11 – Movement mechanism, precision & accuracy, built-in laser, z-axis
09:37 – Optional fourth axis module
10:23 – Included accessories, bit changer tool, collet tool
10:56 – Built-in dust collector
11:33 – CNC interface software, G-code, features & work flow
15:03 – High precision measurement of the x-axis accuracy & repeatability
17:34 – 3.5GHz filter design from Gerber to G-Code, CNC operation
21:18 – Filter PCB and high precision examples after CNC, microscope view
23:23 – Filter measurements & comparison with simulation
24:27 – Homemade oil-bath for FR4 CNC dust protection
24:56 – Manufacture example of PCB with solder-mask
25:38 – Laser engraving example of photo-realistic sample
26:32 – Automatic level & laser engraving of soft materials
27:55 – Conclusions & future plans​​​