[time-nuts] HP 5335A and HP-IB (GP-IB)

John Miles jmiles at pop.net
Wed Aug 4 04:52:59 UTC 2010

> I received the Prologix GPIB-USB controller today as well as my
> HP 5335A.  I
> haven't unpacked the counter yet but I'll try out the Prologix
> tomorrow at
> work with the 5335A we have there.  Any suggestions on getting it
> to control
> it as well as simply log output?  Honestly, I haven't installed
> any of the
> software yet so I don't know what I'm in getting myself into.  I've tried
> searching the archives but haven't had any luck.  Does anyone
> have a 5335A
> and the Prologix interface that can give me a head start?

Quick and dirty instructions for basic frequency measurements with my TI app
(lacking any other documentation):

- Install the adapter and its drivers
- Install http://www.ke5fx.com/gpib/setup.exe (5 MB, requires Win2K or
- Set your counter to talk-only mode and set up a measurement that will
generate frequency or TI readings at something less than the counter's full
rate.  I recommend starting with frequency readings at one per second to
keep things simple while debugging the connection.
- Run the Prologix configurator in my package and select the virtual COM
port for your adapter.

At this point you should see the counter readings scrolling by in the TTY

- Hit 'Update CONNECT.INI' and exit the Prologix configurator
- Run the time-interval analysis app
- Select "Acquire->Acquire from GPIB counter in talk-only mode"

You should see the same readings in the 'Incoming Data' window that you saw

- Assuming you're looking at frequency readings, select 'Frequency (Hz)' and
enter any necessary values in the 'Numeric Field #' and multiplier fields to
scale your counter's readings to Hz units.

- Hit 'Start Measurement'.  It should begin plotting frequency, phase, and
ADEV, etc. readings.

Initially, you should hit the 'f' key (Measurement->Frequency difference)
and make sure the values being plotted make sense.  In 'f' mode, the
1-second row in the frequency chart should match the counter's display
exactly, apart from any floating-point rounding error in the LSDs.  Once you
get to this point, you are up and running.

I've never used a 5335A with the program, but the talk-only acquisition
option should work with almost any model counter.  If you try it and have
problems getting these steps to work, let me know (offline so as not to
clutter up the list) and we'll figure it out!

-- john, KE5FX

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