Clear Waves / RF Spectrum Analyzer
Precise, wideband RF spectrum scanning, visualization and channel coordination…
Introducing the latest development in RF spectrum monitoring — Clear Waves is the next generation of PC-based, RF spectrum analyzer for the wireless pro audio and video industries that offers automatic charting of open white space, frequency coordination and channel assignment.
In a hostile RF environment why leave your wireless planning to chance ?
Take the guess work out of configuring your wireless audio gear — Clear Waves enables you to choose the optimal channel assignments — free of RF interference and intermodulation distortion (IMD). Clear Waves offers detailed RF spectrum scans using easy to view, graphical displays, along with interference-free channel assignments. Real-time RF spectrum analysis combined with our intermodulation distortion (IMD) module delivers optimal channel assignments for even the most demanding RF environments.
The Clearwaves software runs on any model RF Explorer — regardless whether the device was purchased from us or elsewhere. The same is true for the Signal Hound spectrum analyzer. You can purchase the Clearwaves software alone or discounted when packaged with an RF Explorer model WSUB1G device or Signal Hound USB-SA44B analyzer.
Employing RF Explorer and Signal Hound broadband RF spectrum analyzers as our hardware platform — we’ve developed Clear Waves as the next generation of PC-based, RF spectrum analyzer specifically designed for the wireless professional audio and video industries. Clear Waves is built upon the success of our award-winning White Space Finder RF spectrum analyzer which was the industry’s first, PC-based, RF spectrum analyzer to offer automatic charting of open white space (open RF frequencies) and intermodulation analysis for use with wireless microphones, in-ear monitors, remote control, security, access control, etc.
Clear Waves Was Designed With These Goals In Mind:• Automatic charting of open white spaces (RF frequencies) in a real-time RF environment.
• Combines RF spectrum analysis and intermodulation analysis in a single tool.
• Graphical UI that is easy to use; lays-out the relevant data in a clear, concise way.
• Fast data acquisition, display, and channel assignments.
• Sets up the RF spectrum analyzer with proper default settings for span, RBW, scaling, and sensitivity with minimal user input. This allows users with little to no experience with spectrum analyzers to get right to work.
• User-definable threshold for open white space.
• Sensitive and accurate measurements.
Spectrum Trace View
Clear Waves continuously scans and samples the signal strength (dBm) of frequencies in the range the user has specified. In the ‘Spectrum Trace’ view the signal strength data (in dBm) is displayed as a function of frequency.
The ‘Waterfall History’ view is also known as a “heatmap” graph. It provides a color-based visualization of the RF level and activity over time. As signal levels for specific frequencies or frequency ranges increase and decrease, the waterfall map varies its colors. This feature provides a quick glance back into the sweep history to identify aberrations or fluctuation in frequency levels.
The ‘Topographic Map’ chart shows accumulated RF energy as a function of frequency. The power of the signal strength in dBm is shown across the frequency span. A signal strength with a relatively low occurrence is ‘blueish’ in color, whereas increasingly brighter colors are used for signal strengths that occur more frequently. Signal strengths that occur most often are ‘redish’ in color. Over time, this spectral view will approximate the steady-state RF energy signature of a given environment.
The ‘Delta Trace’ view can be used to view small (or large) changes in the RF spectrum over time. Here’s how it works… When scanning begins the first trace is saved as a ‘snapshot’. For all subsequent scans, the snapshot trace is subtracted from the current trace and the difference, i.e. ‘delta’, is displayed. Plotting the data in this way makes it easy to detect RF changes that occurred since the initial ‘snapshot’.
Monitored Frequencies Mode
‘Monitored Frequencies’ mode allows you to monitor specific frequencies. For example, in the setting of a live performance where it is important to monitor the channels that have been assigned to wireless audio devices, this feature can be used to ensure those channels are not being impacted by other sources of RF transmissions. Alternatively, if there are wireless devices that transmit at specific frequencies and you wish to monitor their transmissions, then this mode can be used to verify they are currently operating.
Intermodulation Analysis & Frequency Coordination
This feature is used for locating open frequency space in crowded RF environments or used to assist in properly spacing transmitters for frequency coordination. Using parameters that were set in the Control Panel a user specifies a signal strength to be used as the ‘White Space Threshold’, the minimum open space required for each transmitter (bandwidth), and the minimum spacing between adjacent transmitters (band-guard). The open spaces are then graphically displayed. It’s designed perfect for locating open frequency space in crowded RF environments, or to help insure proper spacing for frequency coordination. The Intermodulation Distortion (IMD) module can also be applied to obtain optimal channel assignments for your wireless audio gear.
Utilizing the existing hardware designs offered by the RF Explorer and Signal Hound spectrum analyzers we have engineered software that is geared toward sound reinforcement users. The software and documentation included with Clear Waves allow even a novice user to get up to speed in no time and start making informed decisions about frequency coordination. Though many of its features are well suited for wireless professional audio production and AV integration, Clear Waves is a sensitive and accurate, broadband RF spectrum analyzer that is an excellent tool for general commercial and industrial RF work.
Compared to earlier versions of the product — IW1800 and IW3500 — Clear Waves is a much improved product, yet it sells for less. The main improvement is in the hardware that is used. Both the RF Explorer and Signal Hound RF spectrum analyzers used with Clear Waves are much superior to the WinRADio scanner used with the earlier product. Here are a few of Clear Waves’ advantages:
• RF spectrum and intermodulation analysis in a single tool.
• Supports a broader frequency range.
• The RF Explorer and Signal Hound devices are true spectrum analyzers and scan more than 100x faster than a WinRADio scanner. This means more data points can be collected per trace, which also translates to greater accuracy.
• The RF Explorer and Signal Hound spectrum analyzers connect to a PC (laptop or desktop) via USB cable — which is used not only for communication with software running on the PC, but also for power. The WinRADio scanner required either an external power pack or an AC adapter plugged into a wall outlet.
Clear Waves is a very unique tool. There is no other product on the market that combines both real-time RF spectrum and intermodulation analysis with automatic charting of open white space and optimal channel assignments. Affordably priced (with prices beginning at $295 USD), Clear Waves is a “game changer” — imagine no more guess work when it comes to configuring your wireless gear.