Choosing a shield box
When choosing a shield box, you’ll be looking for a reliable instrument which offers high and effective shielding performance. The individual choice of box depends mainly on the size of your device under test (DUT), the way in which this connects to your testing system and the reasons for testing. When making the decision on which shield box to invest in, have a think about the following to make sure you get the right instrument for your needs:
Manual or pneumatic?
Choosing between a manual or pneumatic shield box is largely dependent on your working environment. If you’re in an R&D or quality control lab then a manual box would be sufficient, as frequent opening and closing of the box isn’t necessary. But if the box is needed on the production line, a pneumatic box would be more appropriate due to the high level of throughput.
As this box will have to perform numerous repetitive opening and closing cycles daily, high durability is essential. Look for a box which is constructed from materials resistant to shock and corrosion.
Big? Small? Or somewhere inbetween?
Choose a shield box that will accommodate your DUTs. If you’re using an antenna coupler, you’ll need to factor in some extra space to minimise the effects of internal reflection waves. Some extra working space is also important for reducing measurement errors when using a fixture or connecting cable inside the box.
So you’ve got a durable shield box that’ll last you, but this won’t help if it’s not versatile enough to handle a range of current and future technologies. Choose a box with a wide frequency band supporting range so it supports not only the current standards you’re testing against, but emergent technologies too.
To ensure the best measurement configuration for your DUTs, you’ll also need to ask the following:
- Are you running over-the-air or conducted tests?
- For over the air tests What types of antenna coupler options are available and what coupling factors and signal losses must the measurements take into account?
- How you connect test equipment to the Box and what types of connector are needed? RF, DC, Digital I/O, Power, USB, Ethernet?
- How much isolation is needed? You can expect around 70-80dB across Frequency
- Are there a different combinations of I/O panel available and where are they physically located?
- Will DUT fixturing be needed and what options are available?
We hope this information will help you choose the best solution for your particular needs, but if you’re still not sure what to go for then give us a call and we’d be happy to advise you.
Our top 3 recommended shield boxes:
1. Tescom TC-5910D
Best for….. smartphones and small devices due to compact size
2. Tescom TC-5916A
Best for….Tablets and larger devices
3. Tescom TC-5970D
Best for…. Connectivity, size and ease of access
Or view our full range of new and used shield boxes from manufacturers including Cobham / Aeroflex, Rohde & Schwarz and Tescom.