IFAT: The IF problem-solver
An IF-to-IF Converter
Feeling limited by your IF? Syntonic’s IFAT has been created to solve the limitations caused by fixed, static IF’s. Whether it’s a signal recorder, digitizer, signal analyzer or wave form generator – the IFAT can transform your IF from what you have to what you need.
Create new IFs, as high as 8 GHz. Transform bandwidths, to give your digitizer just what you require, up to 1 GHz. Syntonic Microwave IFAT is the ideal bridge enabling flexibility from project to project, mission to mission. Your digitizer can then be used to its full capability.
- Changes BW
- IFs up to 8 GHz
- Available in Rack Mount or Benchtop
Features and Options
Universal Up/Down Converter | Any IF up to 8 GHz
The IFAT-8000 Up/Downconverter is a fully universal instrument with upconversion and downconversion to and from 8 GHz, plus selectable bandwidths ranging from 100 kHz to 1000 MHz. Manual gain control provides 20 dB of adjustment range, in 1 dB steps.
The IFAT-8000 has a keypad-driven front panel user interface plus Ethernet for remote access, controlled by SCPI-based commands or via Web GUI. Terminal control is also available over the RS-232 port.
How Does it Work?
Set-up is as easy as this:
Tune the IFAT’s Input to any frequency up to 8 GHz, to match your upstream equipment.
Tune the IFAT’s output to any frequency up to 8 GHz, to match your downstream equipment.
Select the bandwidth you need. Choose any value from 100 kHz all the way up to 1 GHz.
A “bridge” that can keep up with these continuous changes and disruptions is necessary, adjusting the interface between your components as needs change over time or from project to project. The IFAT-2000 and IFAT-8000 fill that need.
Actually accomplishing the task of providing a fully Agile IF proves to be a very challenging task. Ordinary frequency conversion schemes and simplistic bandwidth transformations create a host of artifacts that severely degrade the RF signals being processed.
To counter these limitations, Syntonic has developed a proprietary engine, which sits at the heart of the IFAT, for in-line frequency translation and bandwidth conversion without any of the degradations normally expected by such converters. As a result, with users can:
- Tune to any upstream frequency, up to 8 GHz
- Tune to any downstream frequency, up to 8 GHz
- Select from a wide range of Bandwidths
- Enjoy low phase noise and low spurious for clean
throughput and high signal fidelity
Being an IF solution, we know that the residual phase noise of the IFAT must be low enough to essentially cause no overall system degradation. Today the IFAT is available with two phase noise profiles, providing absolute control over phase noise and reference stability.
As shown in the graph below, our Standard profile is quite excellent and with Option -LN there is as much as 20 dB of improvement.
With a dynamic, user-selectable bandwidth covering up to 1 GHz, and the 8 GHz wide input range, the IFAT-8000/8400 becomes an ideal companion to be paired with block converters.
Syntonic Microwave’s BDC and BUC Series block converters have been designed with this pairing in mind. These block converters are uniquely specified to provide 2, 4 and even 6 GHz of space segment which can be block convertered into the 8 GHz tuning range of the IFAT-8000/8400. This pairing provides many advantages, including:
- Extend Downconverters and Upconverters to a custom
frequency band, up to 40 GHz
- Add pre-selection to specific band of interest
- Physical placement of the millimeter/microwave front end
closer to source antenna, using Syntonic’s all weather enclosure
The IFAT can be configured for a variety of installations. The standard 19″ Rack Mount is available as is a benchtop chassis which is roughly 2U High and 1/2 Rack space wide. Both chassis can be delivered with or without a front panel.
In the instance where no front panel is wanted, complete command and control of the IFAT is accomplished via one of the communication ports, Ethernet or RS-232
GUI and SCPI-based
All IFAT Series Converters have a complete SCPI-based command-set accessible over a choice of Ethernet or Serial Ports.
GUI solutions are Browser-based and usable on Windows, Mac and Linux platforms.
In addition to the Browser-based GUI, each IFAT is equipped with a serial port and can support terminal communications.
SCPI-based commands are send and received, providing another human-readable user interface.
Under the Hood of Our Frequency Sources
Our frequency sources provide the backbone of frequency converters in the Satellite communications industry, the radio astronomy field, the military radar and surveillance sectors, and more. Our oscillators and synthesizers found in the design include our ground-breaking DS-3000 Synthesizer.
|Frequencies < 160 MHz|
|IFAT-1000||1-160 MHz||1-160 MHz||9 BWs, 0.1 – 40 MHz|
|Frequencies < 2 GHz|
|IFAT-2000||50-2000 MHz||50-2000 MHz||5 BWs, 50-1000 MHz|
|IFAT-2200||10-2000 MHz||10-2000 MHz||8 BWs, 10-1000 MHz|
|IFAT-2400||1-2000 MHz||1-2000 MHz||13 BWs, 0.1 MHz – 1 GHz|
|Frequencies < 8 GHz|
|IFAT-8000||50 MHz to 8 GHz||50 MHz to 8 GHz||5 BWs: 50 MHz to 1 GHz|
|IFAT-8400||1 MHz to 8 GHz||1 MHz to 8 GHz||13 BWs: 0.1 MHz to 1 GHz|
|IFBT-16M||Baseband||70 MHz||2, 4, 8, 16, 36 MHz|
|Input Characteristics |
The IFAT-8000 has a tunable Input Frequency range up to 8000 MHz.
|Input Tuning Range||50-8000 MHz||1-8000 MHz|
|Tuning Resolution||10 kHz (finer resolutions available)|
|Tuning Speed||2 ms, typ|
|Input 1 dB Compression Point||-15 dBm, typ|
|Input iP3||-5 dBm, typ|
|Input VSWR||2.5:1 (50 Ohm), max|
|LO Re-radiation||-70 dBm, typ|
|Max input level (no damage)||+20 dBm|
|Output Characteristics |
The IFAT-8000 has a tunable Output Frequency range up to 8000 MHz.
|Frequency Range||50-8000 MHz||1-8000 MHz|
|IF Output Tuning Resolution||10 kHz|
|Bandwidth Selections||50, 100, 200, 500, 1000 MHz||0.1, 0.2, 0.5, 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 |
50, 100, 200, 500, 1000 MHz
|Output Power @ P1 dB, at max gain||+10 dBm, min|
|Gain @ 25C||25 dB min, 30 dB typical|
|Gain Adjustment Range||20 dB min, in 1 dB steps|
|Second IF Output||n/a|
|Spurious (at rated output level)||<-60 dBc typ|
|Image Rejection||60 dB, min|
|Noise Figure, at max Gain setting||12 dB typ, 20 dB max|
|Harmonics, at +10 dBm Pout||-20 dBc, typ|
User-selectable bandwidths are another unique feature of the IFAT-8000, offering the variety of throughput range to support ever-changing requirements and set-up configurations. This table shows the bandwidth choices available as well as the correspondent minimum recommended IF Output center frequencies.
For Given Bandwidth Selection
Minimum Recommended Input Center Frequency
Minimum Recommended Output Center Frequency
|0.1 MHz (IFAT-8400 only)||1 MHz||1 MHz|
|0.2 MHz (IFAT-8400 only)||1 MHz||1 MHz|
|0.5 MHz (IFAT-8400 only)||1 MHz||1 MHz|
|1 MHz (IFAT-8400 only)||2 MHz||1 MHz|
|2 MHz (IFAT-8400 only)||4 MHz||4 MHz|
|5 MHz (IFAT-8400 only)||10 MHz||10 MHz|
|10 MHz (IFAT-8400 only)||20 MHz||20 MHz|
|20 MHz (IFAT-8400 only)||40 MHz||40 MHz|
|50 MHz||60 MHz||50 MHz|
|100 MHz||125 MHz||70 MHz|
|200 MHz||200 MHz||120 MHz|
|500 MHz||560 MHz||270 MHz|
|1000 MHz||750 MHz||520 MHz|
|LO Characteristics |
The LO system includes an internal reference that is used for all phase-locked and synthesized sources. The system is auto-sensing and will become phase locked to an external reference if one is detected.
Changes With Option -LN
|Reference Select||Auto-select. Locks to external if present|
|Aging, Internal Reference||< 2 ppm/year||< 1 ppm/yr|
|Internal Reference Stability||<+/- 0.5 ppm||<+/- 0.1 ppm|
|External Reference||10 MHz @ 0 dBm, +/- 6dB|
|Lock-in Range of External Reference||+/- 3 ppm||+/- 0.5 ppm|
|Reference Connectors||BNC, Female (input and output)|
|Reference Output||10 MHz @ 0 dBm min, locked to ref in use|
|Phase Noise, typ |
@ 100 Hz offset
|-76 dBc/Hz||-96 dBc/Hz|
|@ 1 kHz offset||-106 dBc/Hz||-114 dBc/Hz|
|@ 10 kHz offset||-121 dBc/Hz||-122 dBc/Hz|
|@ 100 kHz offset||-123 dBc/Hz|
|@ 1 MHz offset||-122 dBc/Hz|
|@ 10 MHz offset||-122 dBc/Hz|
|System Phase Noise||0.25 deg RMS, typ |
(100 Hz to 10 MHz)
|0.15 deg RMS, typ|
|Operating Temperature||0-50 deg C ambient|
|Humidity||Up to 95% non-condensing|
|Power Requirement||90-240VAC, 60-400 Hz; |
40 Watts typ std version, 50 Watts with -LN option
|Size, Inches||EIA 19″ 1RU Chassis: 24″ deep max |
Benchtop: 1/2 Rack, 2RU
|IP Parameters||Set IP Mode (DHCP or Static IP) |
Set IP Address, Gateway, Subnet Mask
Read MAC Address
|Remote Access||Ethernet & RS-232|
|Remote Control||SCPI-type commandset and Browser-based GUI|
|Option #||General Characteristics||Specifications|
|IFAT-8000||Base Unit||50-8000 MHz Input/Output |
BWs: 50, 100, 200, 500, 1000 MHz
|IFAT-8400||Base Unit||1-8000 MHz Input/Output |
BWs: 0.1, 0.2, 0.5, 1, 2, 5, 10, 20
50, 100, 200, 500, 1000 MHz
|-EXT||Uses 1/2 Rack Housing|
|-LN||Improves Phase Noise||Up to 20 dBc/Hz improvement and increased stability to 0.1ppm|
IFAT Product Options
Syntonic Microwave’s IF Converters are highly flexible and highly customizable. Set up your IF converter configuration by choosing from the options below.