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ABSTRACT: We have analyzed the temporal characteristics of amplified spontaneous emission (ASE) in femtosecond terawatt Ti:sapphire lasers by using a simple method based on fast photodiodes. Instead of measuring ASE directly with fast photodiodes, we created a narrow gap in the spectrum of seed pulses and, after amplification, detected the pure ASE signal through the gap by using a fast photodiode covered with a bandpass filter with high transmission at the gap. Because the detected ASE signal was completely separated from amplified main pulses, preceding and even trailing ASEs could be characterized quantitatively in a single-shot measurement. We believe that our method is a good alternative or a complement to conventional methods for ASE measurements.