This Information Applies To: Agilent 6100 and 6400 Series LC/MS Systems
Tuning a mass spectrometer involves optimizing the voltages applied to various optical elements in the ion path to achieve the required mass accuracy, resolution, and sensitivity that the user requires for their chosen application.
What are the differences between autotune, check tune, and manual tune and when is the best time to run them?
Tuning involves the use of a calibrant that consists of a set of perfluorinated compounds with known ion masses across a broad mass range (100-3000 m/z). Calibrant is infused into the MS during the tuning operation to optimize voltages for optimal transmission, expected m/z assignment, spectral peakwidth (m/z resolution), and detection using these known ion masses as a reference point.
For more details on calibrant/tuning mix, check out the following articles:
Where to perform tuning in different versions of software?
Select the software version that you are using from the list below for software-specific instructions.
MassHunter Workstation Data Acquisition Version 10 and older versions
See Figure 3 for the location of each step in the Method Editor screen.
Figure 3. Autotune/Checktune window in MassHunter Data Acquisition version 12
The numbers on figure 3 refer to steps listed in the Autotune section.
Advanced override settings (replaces old Manual Tune)
In MassHunter version 12, Manual Tune is replaced by Advanced override settings enabling some additional Tune parameters to be customized depending on the LC/TQ model being controlled.
OpenLab CDS Acquisition
OpenLab ChemStation Edition Online Session
When to Run Checktune vs Autotune
|Uses current tune file but does not change it||Generates new tune file|
|Does not update EMV||Updates EMV|
|Takes 3–6 minutes per polarity||Takes 25–30 minutes per polarity|
|To verify MS is OK before starting the worklist||At the initial installation of the MS
Anytime MS has been vented for cleaning or repaired
When checktune recommends it
|Recommended daily or weekly depending on instrument use or the lab’s SOP||Recommended monthly or quarterly depending on instrument use or the lab’s SOP|
Learn how to effectively operate your Agilent 6100 and 6400 Series LC/MS Systems:
LCMS-6400-1120sV2 - Tune and Calibrate Agilent 6400 Series Triple Quadrupole LC/MS with MassHunter Acquisition (Ver. 10.0)
LCMS-6100-1101e - Tuning Agilent Single Quadrupole LC/MSD Systems in OpenLab CDS
LCMS-6100-1102e - Tuning Agilent Single Quadrupole LC/MSD iQ System in OpenLab CDS eLearning courses available from Agilent education