Pendulum CNT-90 Basic Frequency Counter/Analyzer

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  • 250k measurements/sec
  • Time interval measurement resolution to 100 ps
  • Frequency range: 400 MHz standard; 3, 8, 15 and 20 GHz optional
  • Multi-parameter display and graphical presentation of results
  • USB and GPIB as standard
  • Mains-free operation in the field, via built-in battery option

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Pendulum CNT-90 Basic Frequency Counter/Analyzer


Pendulum CNT-90 Basic Frequency Counter/Analyzer is excellent for measurement, analysis and calibration of frequency, time, or phase. In production test systems, R&D, the calibration lab, or in the field; the CNT-90 timer/counter/analyzer outperforms many existing counters on the market.

Fast Speed and High Resolution

The CNT-90 is a high-performance frequency counter with a fast measurement speed to 250,000 measurements/sec, with a memory depth of 750k to internal memory; high resolution of 100 ps single shot (time); and 12 digits/sec resolution (frequency). The CNT-90 offers ease of use, a multi-mode graphic/numeric display, and improved control over measurements, at a very competitive price.

GPIB/USB Increased Throughput and Efficiency

For PC connectivity, USB and GPIB (IEEE 488.2) interfaces are standard with the CNT-90. The GPIB interface is SCPI/1999 compliant and includes a switchable HP53131A emulation mode, for easy inclusion in test systems designed for older model counters, eliminating the need to re-program system commands developed for the 53131A, when replacing these older counters with the modern CNT-90.

With a fast bus transfer speed of 2k measurement results/sec. (GPIB or USB), the CNT-90 saves test system time by increasing throughput up to 90%.

Zero Dead-Time

Unlike standard gated frequency counters, the CNT-90’s continuous time-stamping of events enables capture of all individual periods, back-to-back without dead-time, measuring every complete event cycle without event interpolation errors. This process allows for a least-squares linear regression of multiple measurements, adding 3 or more digits to the measurement resolution.

Microwave Frequency Range and Time Base

The CNT-90 features a frequency range of 400 MHz standard with options to 3, 8, 14 and 20 GHz. Two OCXO options are available: one with very high stability (0.01 ppm/month), and one with an ultra-high stability (0.003 ppm/month).

Graphic Display and Multi-mode Presentation ​

The CNT-90 is a frequency counter with graphic presentation of results including histograms, trend lines, and modulation; that provide an understanding of random signal distribution and measurement changes vs. time, from slow drift, to fast jitter and modulation. Complete statistical analysis including mean, min., max. p-p, standard deviation, and Allan deviation are viewable in both graphic and numeric format.

With TimeView, Modulation Domain Analyzer software (optional), the CNT-90 statistical processing is more powerful and provides expanded analysis capabilities.

Battery Option

The CNT-90 and CNT-90XL have an optional battery pack with 90 Wh capacity, capable of mains-free operation for at least 4.5 hours. In stand-by the battery pack can keep an OCXO warm and running for over 24 hours. The battery operation of a frequency counter/analyzer is valuable in three different applications:
  • Mains-free operation in the field
  • Transportation of high-stability OCXO to maintain stability, which gives instant use at destination without any warm-up time
  • Battery backup acting as a built-in UPS (Uninterrupted Power Supply)