[volt-nuts] What makes a HP3458A so expensive
john.phillips0 at gmail.com
Fri Jan 17 11:35:12 EST 2014
I do know the reference boards are burnt in and stability data analyzed to
select the ones that will make it into meters. They are also stored hot. If
the board is turned off its stability degrades. Agilent had a bad batch of
high stability boards when manufacturing was moved off shore because as
soon as they met speck they were harvested to make room for more boards.
The some of the harvested boards drifted out of spec. The fix was to leave
them powered up in a meter for 3 mo. to get back to spec. You should never
turn a 3458A off. The longer it is on the more stable it gets.
On Fri, Jan 17, 2014 at 7:52 AM, Bill Gold <wpgold3637 at att.net> wrote:
> It isn't just the materials in the 3458A meter and what they cost. It
> is the massive development time and effort, just trying to verify the
> linearity of the ADC and stability of the reference and so on. Then there
> is the ongoing time that must be spent on insuring that the critical
> components are with in specs, with incoming inspections. My guess is that
> HP had to check a bunch of LTZ1000As just to get some that would working
> correctly. I am sure that HP built many reference boards that failed long
> term testing and needed to be trashed. Read all of the articles on this
> I worked for a small company that made ATE for Discrete Semiconductors.
> I was constantly working on incoming inspections to insure that critical
> components were up to our standards to guarantee that the final product
> would perform as advertised. When you are generating 1600 volts DC and
> switching that kind of voltage between leads on the semiconductor, the
> breakdown voltage of the relays and reed switches become critical. The
> switching time of relays also is critical. When you are trying to measure
> pa in an ATE environment things get difficult if you are not careful with
> the components.
> Our rule of thumb was to multiply the cost of the systems by 3 times
> over the actual materials and assembly costs. This was done just to insure
> we could make a profit (sometimes) and cover engineering costs on both
> existing products and new projects.
> So I don't think that what HP/AGILENT/KEYSIGHT is charging for the
> is out of line.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Attila Kinali" <attila at kinali.ch>
> To: <volt-nuts at febo.com>
> Sent: Thursday, January 16, 2014 10:34 AM
> Subject: [volt-nuts] What makes a HP3458A so expensive
> > Hi,
> > I recently got my hands on a HP3458A (unfortunately, the NVRAM batteries
> > are dead, but that's another story) and started digging around a bit.
> > These beasts are sold for 3kUSD and up on ebay, while e.g. a Fluke 8845
> > which seems comparable (beside being 6 1/2 digits) that sells for 1500CHF
> > So, what makes the HP3458A so expensive?
> > Attila Kinali
> > --
> > I pity people who can't find laughter or at least some bit of amusement
> > the little doings of the day. I believe I could find something ridiculous
> > even in the saddest moment, if necessary. It has nothing to do with being
> > superficial. It's a matter of joy in life.
> > -- Sophie Scholl
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