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Tektronix; Portland, OR

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Name: Tektronix; Portland, OR    (USA)  
Abbreviation: tektronix
Products: Model types Others Tube manufacturer

Tektronix, Inc.; Portland (Beaverton), Oregon, U.S.A.: Founded in 1946 by Howard Vollum and Melvin Murdock. Tektronix introduced the first triggered Oszilloskope to the market. It then bacame famous for Oscilloscopes and other test equipment and was soon the biggest manufacturer in Oregon.

Founded: 1946
Production: 1947 -
Tektronix wurde 1946 von Howard Vollum und Jack Murdock gegründet, um das erste getriggerte Oszilloskope zu entwickeln.
Start der Produktion im Jahre 1947 mit 12 Mitarbeitern; 1951 sind es 250 Beschäftigte. 1960 ist Tektronix die grösste Herstellerfirma Oregon's. Ca. 20.000 Beschäftigte in der 70er Jahren; Angemeldete Patente bis zum Jahre 2005: 675. Tektronix ist vor allem für seine elektronischen Test- und Ausrüstungsgegenstände wie Oszilloskope, Logikanalysatoren sowie Video und mobile Testprotokollausrüstungen bekannt.

Am 15. Oktober 2007 gab das Unternehmen bekannt, vom US Grosskonzern Danaher für 2,8 Milliarden Dollar übernommen worden zu sein.
Established in 1946 by Howard Vollum and Jack Murdock;
Production start 1947;
1960 largest manufacturer in Oregon;
20,000 employees in the 1970´s;
675 patents registered until 2005.

Abstract from Wikipedia:
The company traces its roots to the electronics revolution that immediately followed World War II. The company's founders C. Howard Vollum and Melvin J. "Jack" Murdock invented the world's first triggered oscilloscope in 1946, a significant technological breakthrough. Tektronix was then incorporated in 1946 with its headquarters at SE Foster Road and SE 59th Street in Portland, Oregon. In 1947 there were 12 employees, and 250 in 1951. By 1950 the company began building a manufacturing facility in Washington County, Oregon at Barnes Road and the Sunset Highway and expanded the facility by 1956 to 80,000 square feet (7,000 m²). The company then moved its headquarters to this site following an employee vote.

Also in 1956 a large piece of property in nearby Beaverton became available with the closing of the Bernard Airport, and the company's employee retirement trust purchased the land and leased it back to the company. Construction on this current campus began in 1957 and on May 1, 1959 Tektronix moved into its new Beaverton headquarters. Its IPO, when it publicly sold its first shares of stock, was on September 11, 1963. In 1974 the company acquired 256 acres (1.0 km²) in Wilsonville, Oregon where they built a facility for their imaging group. By 1976 the company employed nearly 10,000, and was the state's largest employer.

For many years, Tektronix was the major electronics manufacturer in Oregon, and in 1981 U.S. payroll peaked at over 24,000 employees. Tektronix also had operations in Europe, South America and Asia. European factories were located in St. Peter Port on the island of Guernsey (then in the European Free Trade Association), Hoddesdon (North London, UK) and Heerenveen, The Netherlands (then in the European Common Market).

For many years, Tektronix operated in Japan as Sony-Tektronix, a 50-50 joint venture of Sony Corporation and Tektronix, Inc; this was due to Japanese trade restrictions at the time. Since then, Tektronix has bought out Sony's share and is now the sole owner of the Japanese operation.

Some former Tektronix employees left to create other successful Silicon Forest spin-off companies, including Mentor Graphics, Planar Systems, Floating Point Systems, Merix Corporation and Anthro Corporation. Even some of the spin-offs have created spin-offs, such as InFocus.

Tektronix instruments have enjoyed a leading position in the test and measurement market for decades, basically beginning with the firm's first cathode ray oscilloscopes. Much like Hewlett-Packard, Tektronix had a company policy of designing equipment of the very highest quality. Their equipment was quite expensive, but usually unmatched in performance, quality, and stability. Most test equipment manufacturers built their oscilloscopes with off-the-shelf, generally available components. But Tektronix, in order to get an extra measure of performance, used many custom-designed or specially-selected components. They even had their own factory for making ultra-bright and sharp CRT tubes. Later on they built their own integrated circuit manufacturing facility in order to make ICs of their own design with many times the performance of generally available components.

A Tektronix model 475A portable analog oscilloscope, a very typical instrument of the late 1970s. Tektronix instruments contributed significantly to the development of computers and communications equipment and to the advancement of research and development in the high-technology electronics industry generally.

On November 21, 2007, Tektronix was acquired by Danaher Corporation for 2.85 billion USD. Prior to the acquisition, Tektronix traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TEK, the nickname by which Tektronix is known to its employees, customers, and neighbors. On October 15, 2007 Danaher Corporation tendered an offer to acquire Tektronix for $38.00 a share in cash, which equated to a valuation of approximately $2.8 billion. The deal closed five and a half weeks later, with 90 percent of TEK shares being sold in the tender offer. Also, as part of its acquisition by Danaher, the Communications Business division of Tektronix was spun off into a separate business entity under Danaher, Tektronix Communications.

This manufacturer was suggested by Arndt Markus Hettche.

Some models:
Country Year Name 1st Tube Notes
USA  63–68 Dual-Beam Oscilloscope 565 6DJ8  The tube line up is according to the part list Type 565. For the CRT are mentioned (Standa... 
USA  63–68 Type 3A72 Plug-In-Unit 3A72 6AU6  Plug-In for Tektronix-Oscilloscopes Type 565 or Type 561; order of tubes according to par... 
USA  55 Oscilloscope 310 6U8  some tubes are multiply used, CRT 3WP2. 
USA  60–71 Oscilloscope RM504 6BC7  CRT is T503P2; some tubes are multiply used. 
USA  59 Oscilloscope 310A 6DJ8  Tubes listed once per type. The Tektronix Type 310A Oscilloscope is a portable precision ... 
USA  59 Oscilloscope 545A 6AL5   
USA  55 Oscilloscope 545   12ns risetime, DC to 30MHz vertical bandwidth. 53K/54K vertical plug-in required for maxi... 
USA  59 Type E Plug-In-Unit 53/54E 5879  Low-Level AC Differential plug-in unit for 531 to 551 series scopes. 
USA  55–64 Plug-In-Unit Type D 53/54D 5879  High-Gain DC Differential plug-in unit for 531 to 551 series scopes. 
USA  59–64 Type H Plug-In-Unit 53/54H 12AT7  DC Coupled High-Gain Wide-Band plug-in unit for 531 to 551 series scopes. 
USA  61–64 Type N Plug-In-Unit 53/54N 6AN8  Sampling plug-in unit for 531 to 551 series scopes. 
USA  59–64 Type CA Plug-In-Unit C-A 6AK5  High-speed dual channel vertical amplifier. DC to 24 MHz bandpass when used on fast-riseti... 


Further details for this manufacturer by the members (rmfiorg):

Werbung im "Hilfsbuch für Kathodenstrahl-Oszillografie" (Heinz Richter, 4 Auflage, Jahrgang 1961)tbn_usa_tektronix_werbung_1961.jpg
Werbung in der Zeitschrift" Praktiker", 1977, Heft 20, Seite 46tbn_usa_tektronix_werbung_1977.jpg
Hinweis von Tektronixtbn_filter.jpg

Forum contributions about this manufacturer/brand
Tektronix; Portland, OR
Threads: 2 | Posts: 4
Hits: 1188     Replies: 1
  Free book "Tektronix oscilloscopes"
Alessandro De Poi

We received the following communication, that we gladly share.

Dear Friend,

I have recently updated my book Tektronix oscilloscopes regarding old 7000-Series instruments, that reached today 268 pages.

It is a non-commercial initiative. You can download it for free (with no registration, banner, advertisements etc…) from this web page:

k100 biz/parade htm (no direct link)

I will be great for any contribute spreading it around.


Gianni Becattini
Florence, Italy


Alessandro De Poi

We received the following communication, that we gladly share.


I released the edition 3 of my free book on Tektronix 7000-Series oscilloscopes, with more than 100 new pages and photos.

You can download it from the same address as above.
Gianni Becattini
Firenze, November 6, 2022

Hits: 19412     Replies: 1
Pius Steiner

Sony/Tektronix, a jointly-owned Japanese subsidiary located in Tokyo, Japan, was formed in November of 1964. The rapid growth of the Japanese electronics industry in the early 60's resulted in licensing discussions with several Japanese firms. The result of diese discussions led to the formation of a 50-50 joint venture with SONY. Both SONY and Tektronix have cross-licensing arrangements with Sony/Tektronix.
Sony/Tektronix has responsibility for marketing of Tektronix and SONY/TEKTRONIX products in Japan and Parts of Asia. The marketing of SONY/TEKTRONIX products in the U.S. and remainder of the world is handled by Tektronix, its marketing subsidiaries, and distributors.

Sony/Tektronix is currently manufacturing several types of Tektronix instruments. These instruments maintain the same high Tektronix quality that is built into Tektronix domestic instruments, but are built exclusively for the Japanese market.
Sony/Tektronix was created with an engineering capability to develop new instruments. This use of the two companies' engineering talent will allow products to be developed that Tektronix or SONY would not develop alone. The Type 323 is the first instrument to be developed by Sony/Tektronix.

Source: Tektronix ServiceScope No 51 Aug 1968

Pius Steiner


Ten films produced by Tektronix, Inc. have been certified as education films by the U.S. Information Service. These films are available on free loan as an aid to companies engaged in educational or train­ing programs for their employees; or, if preferred, the films may be purchased. Interested persons should contact their local Tektronix Field Office, Field Engi­neer, Field Representative or Distributor.

Listed below are the film titles, along with a brief review of the film:

The Oscilloscope Draws a Graph

A 20-minute color film in sound. The film explains that the oscilloscope display is usually in the form of a graph, and de­scribes how to read or interpret the dis­play.

The Cathode-Ray Tube, Window to Electronics

A 35-minute color film in sound with animated sequences. This film explains in simple terms how a cathode ray tube works. It depicts the heart of the oscilloscope, the cathode ray tube, as it is used in radar, sonar and many other elec­tronic systems, including computers. The film also shows the step-by-step manufac­turing process of cathode ray tubes at Tek­tronix, from the forming of metal "gun" parts to the final testing of completed tubes.

The Square Wave

A 25-minute black and white sound film. Discusses the theory of square waves, employed in Com­puters and many other electronic devices; usually, in the form of coded information. Animated drawings show how sine waves contained in square waves are harmonically related. The film demonstrates the basic use of the square wave generator and oscil­loscope and resulting information obtained from distortions. lt discusses risetime and its importance in testing modern high speed electronic equipment. Suitable for audi­ences with at least a basic knowledge of electrical theory.

Transmission Lines

A 23-minute black and white sound film. Discusses the fundamentals of transmission lines. Ani­mated drawings illustrate how electrical energy is transmitted along a line. An oscilloscope shows how reflections can oc­cur in a line. Characteristic impedance, the importance of proper terminations, line losses, time delay, and velocity factor are also discussed.

Time and Quantity

A 27-minute black and white film in sound. Discusses the measurement of time and quantity from billions of years to billionths of a second. Shows the importance of the oscilloscope as the basic means of making accurate measurements of very small segments of time.

The Oscilloscope, What It Is - What It Does

A nine-minute color sound film. Presents a non-technical explanation of the oscilloscope and its uses. Stresses the im­portance of the instrument as a measuring tool in electronic and other fields. Oscilloscopesmeasure physical data in relation to small amounts of time. They are used in research engineering, and education, and in production testing and maintenance of electronic computer and communication systems.

Thevenin's Theorem

A 12-minute black and white sound film. Presents a simplified approach to solving an electronic circuit which would otherwise involve com­plex mathematics.

Solving the Unbalanced Bridge

A 17-minute black and white sound film. Normally a solution to an unbalanced bridge problem requires considerable mathematics involving three simultaneous equations. This lecture film shows and explains how simply this can be accomplished using Thevenin's Theory and Ohm's law.

Triode Plate Characteristics

A 16-minute black and white sound film. Dis­cusses plate characteristics of a typical tri­ode (6DJ8) showing how the three basic tube characteristics, amplification factor, plate resistance, and transconductance, may be determined from a set of plate curves. It also plots a load line and shows how to determine the gain of a simple amplifier from these curves. In addition a continu­ous display of the curves of a tube under actual operating conditions is shown on the Type 570 Characteristic Curve Tracer, a special-purpose Tektronix oscilloscope.


Ceramics and Electronics

A 22- minute color film with sound. Shows the importance of ceramic elements in the electronic industries and stresses the appli­cation of ceramic insulating strips and other ceramic parts in oscilloscopes. It also shows the complete manufacturing process, in­cluding mixing of clays, firing, and glaz­ing, at Tektronix.

Source: SERVICE SCOPE Feb 1966



We have experienced a tremendous re­sponse to our announcement in the February, 1966, issue of SERVICE SCOPE on the availability of Tektronix-produced films. The requests by our readers for the use of these films have exceeded our wildest expec­tations and sorely taxed our ability to promptly supply the films.

We are filling all requests on a first-come, first-served basis and earnestly solicit your patience and understanding if we fail to sup­ply the wanted film promptly. All requests from qualified sources will be honored; hut, there may be a delay of several weeks in supplying some of the more popular films.

A new Tektronix-produced film is now available to schools or to companies engaged in educational or training programs for their employees. This film like the previously announced ones may be obtained on a free loan basis, or may he purchased. Title of the new filmis


It is a lecture-type film that offers an explanation of the transresistance method of analyzing transistorized circuitry. (An article in the December, 1964, issue of SERVICE SCOPE, "Simplifying Transistor Linear ­Amplifier Analysis" discussed transresis­tance as an aid in troubleshooting or evalu­ating transistor circuits.) Audiences for this film should have a sound basic know­ledge of transistor theory and terminology.

People interested in showing these films should contact their local Tektronix Field Office, Field Engineer, Field Representative, or Distributor.

Source: SERVICE SCOPE Jun 1966

Tektronix; Portland, OR
End of forum contributions about this manufacturer/brand


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