[time-nuts] New Timestamping / Time Interval Counter: the TICC

John Ackermann N8UR jra at febo.com
Thu Nov 24 09:43:54 EST 2016

Hi Anders --

Thanks, and thanks for the info on the 53230A.  I have not used one of 
those myself but the data sheet lists 20ps single-shot.

Also I should note that the TICC does not compete with counters like the 
53230A for high speed measurement, or frequency counting.  It does far 
fewer measurements per second than the high-end counters -- my design 
criteria was for use in PPS measuring system.

With the current software, the actual measurement processing time is 
about 1 millisecond; we may be able to optimize a hundred or two 
microseconds from that as the code currently has more 64 bit operations 
than are necessary, and there are other things that can surely be tweaked.

The killer is the serial output via USB.  It can take up to 10 ms to 
output 20 characters, and that's what really limits the measurement 
rate.  I'm pretty sure this can be improved (one idea is to buffer 
results to reduce USB packetization delays), but there's other 
functionality that I need to finish first.

BTW -- the software is open source and on github at 
https://github.com/TAPR/TICC , so I welcome anyone who wants to work on 
it.  Bug fixes are gladly accepted, and if you're looking for work to 
do, I could use a volunteer to work on a couple of areas, most 
critically finishing a UI that will allow the user to set operating 

On 11/24/2016 02:40 AM, Anders Wallin wrote:
> Nice work!
> On the website in the introduction you mention 22ps single-shot
> time-stamping on the 5370A/B.
> I think it's well established that the 53230A does about 11-12 ps for
> time-intervals, which corresponds to about 9 ps single-channel. see for
> example:
> http://www.anderswallin.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/53230A_PPS_skew.png
> Anders
> On Wed, Nov 23, 2016 at 11:13 PM, Peter Vince <petervince1952 at gmail.com>
> wrote:
>> Fantastic John - well done!  Yes, I'll definitely put an order in as soon
>> as possible.
>>       Regards,
>>           Peter  (G8ZZR, London)
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