The use of a linear or two-dimensional (2-D) quadrupole ion trap as a high performance mass spectrometer is demonstrated. Mass analysis is performed by ejecting ions out a slot in one of the rods using the mass selective instability mode of operation. Resonance ejection and excitation are utilized to enhance mass analysis and to allow isolation and activation of ions for MS(n) capability. Improved trapping efficiency and increased ion capacity are observed relative to a three-dimensional (3-D) ion trap with similar mass range. Mass resolution comparable to 3-D traps is readily achieved, including high resolution at slower scan rates, although adequate mechanical tolerance of the trap structure is a requirement. Additional advantages of 2-D over 3-D ion traps are also discussed and demonstrated.