AEM unveils new class of hybrid network, cable qualification tester

Oct. 19, 2020
AEM says the introduction of its NSA certifier, billed as "the industry’s first hybrid Qualification+ tester," stands to change the testing landscape.

AEM has introduced its Network Service Assistant (NSA) with Certi-Lite, billed as "a new category of hybrid tester that bridges the gap in existing test equipment between network connectivity and standards-based cable testing."

Simultaneously, the company has announced the availability of its TestDataPro Cloud, which offers users the ability to upload results to the cloud through a network connection, giving managers the ability to track project progress in real-time.

As contended by an AEM product announcement:

With the NSA Certi-Lite, network owners no longer have to choose between wire testers for basic cable continuity, a network tester to qualify real-world multi-gig and network connectivity testing, or a cable certifier for those times when a deeper-dive test on cabling is required. The NSA provides these capabilities and more – fulfilling a level of testing that AEM calls Qualification+; more than qualification testing with capabilities of certification testing.

“With ever increasing reliance on constantly evolving network-connected devices and frequent moves/adds/changes in the network, IT departments need to ensure that the cabling infrastructure supports intended network applications,” observes Harshang Pandya, GM Test & Measurement.

He continues, “Historically, this has required the purchase of two or even three different sets of test equipment, which is hard to justify. That’s where the NSA with Certi-Lite comes in. The NSA offers a cost-effective way for network owners to test wired and wireless network connectivity, combined with standards compliant cable testing.”

(Pandya cautions that NSA’s Certi-Lite feature is not a replacement for performing dual-ended cable certification in order to qualify for a cable manufacturer’s warranty program. For these types of tests, a certification tester like AEM’s TestPro is required.)

Qualification+ testing: New testing parameters for new network demands

In designing the new tester, to meet the evolving needs of today’s IT shops, AEM says it took an entirely new approach to finding a solution that meets all their needs in a single tester, effectively bridging the gap between verification, qualification and certification, with the new category of Certification+.

The accompanying chart details what is covered in each category.

The tester's Certi-Lite feature provides full RF testing involving the measurement of complex cable parameters such as Return Loss, NEXT, DC Resistance, and TDR of faults. NSA performs single-ended cable testing and comes with a small passive termination plug called NSA Remote, which helps reduce the overall cost of the test equipment while providing an ANSI/TIA 1152-A compliant cable test.

AEM's Network Service Assistant is available now. Visit for purchasing information.

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