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Recommendations for Oscilloscope.

Discussion in 'Electronic Basics' started by Daniel Pitts, Aug 10, 2012.

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  1. Jon Kirwan

    Jon Kirwan Guest

    Rigol dropped the price on their DS1102E to under $400, ...
    more than 1/2 year ago, I think.

  2. notbob

    notbob Guest

    Yeah. $399.
  3. Jon Kirwan

    Jon Kirwan Guest

    Of course, I knew. When it dropped, I immediately bought one
    from a business that had dropped it even lower still, to
    $349. I'm cheap but I actually needed it for a project
    evaluating these low cost units. Good timing!

  4. notbob

    notbob Guest

    Are you going to reveal this magical place?

    I found half doz prices online and none were below $395USD.

  5. Jamie

    Jamie Guest

  6. notbob

    notbob Guest

    The real trick is finding a 1052 50MHz model. I've seen 'em fer
    $329USD at (north america). Then, you jes do the software
    upgrade to 100MHz! If I'm not mistaken, it's the exact same hardware,
    right down to the same chip numbers. There's an entry on D Jone's
    EEVblog website that talks about it. I may have misinterpreted what
    he was saying. Ima geezer. ;)

  7. Jon Kirwan

    Jon Kirwan Guest

    I believe you.

    I'll check my invoice (dated in December, so I have go look
    for it) from Saelig to be certain of the price. Do that
    tomorrow, I think.

    There was a short sale I picked up on at the end of November
    or very early December, announced a few days after Rigol
    dropped the list price. Prices soon changed, though.

  8. Jon Kirwan

    Jon Kirwan Guest

    It's not quite so easy anymore. I think they have made it
    "tougher" to do.

    I'd like to figure out a cheap way to add the MSO functions
    to the DSO!

  9. Jamie

    Jamie Guest

    True however, 2 of the guys I work with did that and I decided to get a
    100Mhz labeled one. I can tell you that both do look the same as far as
    the software functions however, after several comparison test, it
    appears the converted ones seem to have problems with wave forms not
    exactly matching the 100 Mhz when pushing the scope to the upper limits..

    This leads me to believe that some 100 MHz intended boards didn't
    quite pass QC at the high end or, there are some software OEM parameters
    that need to be tweaked per unit to account for differences which didn't get

  10. newshound

    newshound Guest

    Unanswerable without knowing more about what you are making. Audio?
    Computers? Radio? GHz comms?

    FWIW Ive started dabbling with simple stuff again (used to have access
    to serious research kit) and thought about getting one of the little
    digitals recently, but in the end got an old Phillips 30 MHz storage
    scope from eBay for not much over £100. Partly because although it has
    lots of knobs, I understand what they do; I suspect that doing
    everything via menus would be a PITA.
  11. But is that all that different from the old Tek scopes with endless knobs?
    We've had questions here over the years, people can't get their scopes to
    work, and the answers are usually things like make sure the knobs are set
    right. I remember losing traces decades ago, a switch thrown the wrong
    way and easy to miss since there were so many combinations.
    My calculator was acting up last night, into some mode that I accidentally
    put it. Couldn't remember how to get it back, the manual not handy. Then
    I remembered the reset button, and wham, all was right.

  12. Fred Abse

    Fred Abse Guest


    Tek analog scopes were made for *engineers*, who used to know at least
    something about how they worked.
  13. Guest

    The Tektronix digital oscilloscope was pretty cool, OTOH. It was basically a
    7704A with a digitizer inserted between the display half and the plugin bays.
    It took any combination of 7000 series plugins. An external computer was
    required, though. ;-)
    I'm sure at least a couple of the Tektronix DPOs were in there, too. I put
    them there. ;-)
    I like the 475s and would probably buy one for myself, If I knew it would work
    (don't trust the ones on eBay). OTOH, I doubt I'd ever find a reason to
    replace my Agilent MSO-X-3104 at work, with one.
  14. Guest

    No, it's a matter of going through all the knobs to see which one is set
    wrong. The manual won't help one bit.
    Don't be an ass. You still need to go through all of the settings to see
    which one is messed up. With no trace, it's not obvious which one it is.
  15. Fred Abse

    Fred Abse Guest

    Brightness fully CCW.
    Time/div 1ms.
    Timebase main.
    Trace #1.
    Volts/div fully CCW
    Input grounded.
    Trigger p-p auto, or auto.
    Beam locate in.
    Advance brightness for visible trace.
    Center trace and release beam locate.

    It becomes second nature. You can look at the front panel of an analog
    'scope and it's obvious how to drive it. An unfamiliar digital means a
    session with the manual to find out which menu does what. I've never spent
    more than 60 seconds getting a central, focused trace on a working analog

    I had a Tek 4-trace, 1GHz B/W, color, TDS something-or-other, that I never
    fully got the hang of. My digital 'scopes are now all HP.

    I still use a 7904A, by preference, except if I *need* math.
  16. Winston

    Winston Guest

    On Sun, 19 Aug 2012 12:38:16 -0700, Fred Abse wrote:

    I grew up with analog scopes and found the TDS learning curve to be
    almost flat. Before long the instrument was just like a natural
    appendage. I never could get the hang of the Agilent scopes.
    'Seems like the least little operation required lots of time looking
    at the manual. Feh. :)

  17. Guest

    For cameras, my results have been excellent, too, but I worry about >40YO
    electronics where parts availability is zero.
  18. Guest

    I didn't have any trouble figuring out the TDS-3034(?) and 3014(?) we had at
    the PPoE. It was a very logical layout.
    I would have stuck with Tektronix at my CPoE but the "lead" engineer was sorta
    stuck on Agilent and had their reps in for demos. The boss said we could
    order scopes (one for each of the new guys), so we did. I requested a
    MSO-X-3054 (didn't want to be greedy) but when it came it was a 3104 - don't
    know where the switch was made but I didn't complain. Again, I've had no
    trouble finding my way around it. Like the Tektronix scopes, it also is a
    very natural layout. After driving it a while, I much prefer the digital
    aspects over the Tek. The bus analyzers have hardware assists so are
    real-time, rather than sampling off the digitizer. The only negative about
    the Agilent is that most others around have Teks, so probes are a problem. But
    that's fixed with $$. ;-)
  19. Winston

    Winston Guest

    I'll take your word for it in both cases Phil.

    The Agilent I tried to use was one made in '94 or so (18 years?!).

    I've seen some scuttlebutt about some of the very latest Teks and I'm
    saddened because the TDS I used in '95-'98 was an excellent tool.

  20. Guest

    You do know that the SA on that box uses (hardware accelerated) FFT from the
    sampled input. It's certainly useful to correlate time and frequency domains
    but it isn't a great stand-alone spectrum analyzer.
    I thought they did.
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