Differential measurements with Spectrum Analyzers and Probes

The constantly decreasing size of components and the available board space form a challenge to place adequate test connections for RF instruments. Recent improvements in the availability and use of high performance differential building blocks in RF circuits intensify the problems of connecting test equipment. Using oscilloscope probes is a possibility to perform measurements by connecting to printed circuit board lines and chip contacts where only a minimal area is required to make contact. This application note provides information on how to use oscilloscope probes in RF measurements using spectrum analyzers, and show the results of differential measurements with a spectrum analyzer.