Archive for November, 2012

What Happens if the Measured Voltage Exceeds 8V Limit?

// November 12th, 2012 // No Comments » // Smart Tweezers Questions and Answers

The Smart Tweezers design provides protection if the voltage exceeds 8V limit. The maximum allowable voltage is 24 V.

Can Smart Tweezers Measure Current?

// November 12th, 2012 // No Comments » // Smart Tweezers Questions and Answers

By measuring a voltage drop across a resistor Vr (resistor value R can be also measured using ST) the current through the resistor is easily calculated Ir=Vr/R.

The Batteries Discharge Very Quickly, What Was Done Wrong?

// November 12th, 2012 // No Comments » // Uncategorized

There are two typical mistakes leading to a quick discharge of batteries:

  1. the Toggle switch at the bottom left corner of the Smart Tweezers unit is returned to the default position after voltage measurement is done; and
  2. the Test Frequency is set to 10 KHZ. In the latter case, Smart Tweezers do not turn off automatically due to parasitic capacitance of the tweezers’ tips leading to a current flowing through it. Change the Test Frequency to ‘Auto’ after measuring something at high frequency

Can Smart Tweezers be Used on a PCB Circuit?

// November 12th, 2012 // No Comments » // Smart Tweezers Questions and Answers

Yes, if you know the circuit and understand how it works. It can also be used for voltage measurements in a working circuit to debug it. By measuring a voltage drop on a resistor (that can be also measured using ST) the current through the resistor is easily calculated.

How Accurate are Smart Tweezers?

// November 12th, 2012 // No Comments » // Smart Tweezers Questions and Answers

Typical accuracy is about 1% for resistance, 5% for capacitance and 10% for inductance measurements. This accuracy allows to select an SMD component from a strip because the variation on the strip is often higher than the measurement accuracy.

What is Smart Tweezers Mostly Used For?

// November 12th, 2012 // No Comments » // Smart Tweezers Questions and Answers

ST is an unrivaled tool for identification and measurement of surface mount device (SMT) components. Just imagine a bunch of devices with and without labels sitting on your desk. ST does this job in one touch, speeding the identification process hundreds of times.

What Models of Smart Tweezers are Available?

// November 12th, 2012 // No Comments » // Smart Tweezers Questions and Answers

There are five models of Smart Tweezers. The first model of Smart Tweezers ST-1 was released in 2004, Smart Tweezers ST-2 in 2007, Rechargeable model of ST-2, STIC in 2008 and model ST-2.3 with another LCD in 2010. The latest model, the ST-5 was released in November 2011.

More information on Older models of Smart Tweezers may be found at History of Smart Tweezers.

Smarter Smart Tweezers

// November 9th, 2012 // No Comments » // Uncategorized

The newest model of Smart Tweezers, the ST5, is the same reliable LCR meter with new improvements and upgrades.

Designed specifically for Surface Mount Technology, the newest version offers an estimated 6 times higher basic accuracy of 0.2% than that of older models, new measurement modes, as well as slight physical differences.

Smart Tweezers still measures for Inductance, Resistance and Capacitance with the high speed and accuracy like older models, but now measures real and imaginary impedances, resistance with series resistance measurements. Capacitance and the ESR or D of a capacitor, Inductance with measurements for DC resistance or Q. The ESR mode is able to measure the ESR of high-value capacitors at different frequencies. A new diode testing feature can show to polarity of the diode and detects shortened devices, as well as using a continuity beeper to warn for a break in the continuity.

The generator voltage is more adjustable with 0.2V, 0.50V and 1.0V settings allowing for higher accurate measurement results of in-circuit devices without having to turn on semiconductor junctions. By being able to adjust the voltage, measuring CK05 and CK06 ceramic capacitors provides a higher accuracy, the capacitors’ capacitance varies with different applied voltages.

A semi-automatic offset subtraction allows for the elimination of parasitics between the two tweezer tips, improving the measurement accuracy with low-value components. A “tolerance mode” features visible and audio while sorting components.

The older models of Smart Tweezers had a jog-wheel on the side of the device that made navigating somewhat cumbersome, the new ST5 features a joy-stick like button on the front of the device providing a more comfortable navigation experience. A new Li-Ion battery with USB charging solves the problems that older Smart Tweezers had with the batteries depleting too quickly. The USB charging also lets the device be recharged nearly anywhere with a USB port, or the included wall charger.

Smart Tweezers arrives to you in a hard-shelled travel case, providing protection for the device, and allows for safe storage in any bag, desk or otherwise. Included is an calibration certificate showing that the device has been calibrated to NIST standards. Optional tips for Smart Tweezers are available in a range of styles from between $40 to $60.

Smart Tweezers ST5, the Newest Model of Handheld LCR-meter

// November 6th, 2012 // No Comments » // Uncategorized

The newest model of the popular, fully automatic LCR-meter has been released, the Smart Tweezers ST5, from Siborg Systems Inc.

With the electronics industry being dominated by Surface Mount Technology, where the components are mounted directly to a Printed Circuit Boards, testing and troubleshooting these components becomes difficult the more densely packed the PCB becomes. The components may or may not be labelled due to the size of them, making testing and identifying cumbersome. Smart Tweezers are a simple solution to these problems with their high-precision tweezers tips fitted with an LCR-meter.

Able to automatically measure Inductance, Resistance and Capacitance with just a touch, Smart Tweezers can assess all types of passive and through-hole devices with high speed and accuracy. The newest model features an estimated 6 times higher basic accuracy of 0.2% over older models due to a new patented mechatronic design, an accuracy level only available on expensive bench-type testers that require effort in setting-up for measurements. An automatic component identification allows Smart Tweezers to automatically measure for Inductance, Resistance and Capacitance, and can automatically select the proper test range and frequency for the best results. An LCD fitted in the device shows the component type, measurement results and test conditions used.  It is also able to measure secondary parameters such as parasitic Resistance or the ESR value of a capacitor, doubling the Smart Tweezers device as an ESR-meter.

Smart Tweezers have been industry proven to be indispensable for component sorting, on-board impedance testing, and production line component evaluation. With automatic LCR measurements and  automatic range of measurement, the operated is able to focus on the task at hand. The  features on the newest Smart Tweezers ST5 include:

-Automatic LCR and Equivalent Series Resistance (ESR) measurements.
-Basic accuracy of 0.2%
-Component sorting with 1%,5%, 10%, and 20% tolerance
-Diode and Continuity Tests
-Adjustable test signals
-Semi-Automatic Test Signal
-Displays active and reactive impedance components
-Ideal for small components, as small as 0201 size (about 0.3 mm)
-2 Oz. weight with ergonomic, ambidextrous design
-Li-Ion battery and USB charging