Digital Oscilloscope recommendations

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#1
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Hello All,

I was wondering if you could recommend your favourite DSO, or at least tell me which ones to avoid ?

I have been given a "decent" budget to buy some test equipment to set up a research group. This is for an oil company and my direct boss even told me "Make 'em bleed" ! So tempting as that is I am still looking to get the best deal.

I need :

1): 4 Channel 100MHzBW >1G/s sampling Impressive Colour display data capture to PC via USB and a means of running an FFT on the results would be nice. Set up with the test jig - used to measure/analyse all signals.

2): 2 Channel >40MHz small portable, data capture USB interface. Taken to remote sensors around the test jig (which is HUGE) on the spot measurement of sensor signals.

3): 1 or 2 Channel Hand held >10Mhz - for on site checking of signals - just if present / looking OK

All the best

Dren

<º))))><

I am only one lab accident away from becoming a super villain.

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OK I have whittled the vast range of choices down to:

1)
GW Instek GDS-3154 £1250
LeCroy WaveAce 2014 £1280
Tektronix MSO2014B £2050

2)
GW Instek GDS-1102-U £300
LeCroy WaveAce 112 £450
Tektronix TDS1102B £720

3)
Owon HDS1021M £300
Fluke SCC120E £370
GW Instek GDS122 £440

I was also thinking of getting a spectrum Analyser:
Hameg HMS1000 £2300

Personally I have never been a fan of Agilent(HP)'scopes, but I am willing to use one, if one is highly recommended by everyone else.

All the best

Dren

So what do you think ? I am keen to hear if I should go for a different model.... For only another £x00 you could get ...

<º))))><

I am only one lab accident away from becoming a super villain.

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There have been many threads on this subject, here in GE-subforum.
Try Search. If it fails, use google search and add "site:avrfreaks.net" to the searchterm. Leave the double quotes out.

Rigol is a good candidate too.

A GIF is worth a thousend words   They are called Rosa, Sylvia, Tessa and Tina, You can find them https://www.linuxmint.com/

Dragon broken ? http://aplomb.nl/TechStuff/Dragon/Dragon.html for how-to-fix tips

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I have a Rigol DS1104Z that seems to meet all your requirements for 1).

Leon Heller G1HSM

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After I retired some things are clear others not. My advice would be buy the best you can and not save any in the budget, then next budget there may be and more to spend not less. I think your boss will even let you exceed the budget.

It all starts with a mental vision.

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Tektronix branded scopes are not what they used to be quality wise since they were acquired by Danaher (no amount of profit is enough) Corporation.

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I think most of the prior Threads have been for O'scopes in the hobbyist / low end price range.

You are in a different category.

Two thoughts, but no specific recommendations:

For field work you clearly ought to look at models with a battery option, (#2 and #3 on your list).

Buy EXTRA, quality, scope probes. Especially for the field units. They will get damaged. Easier to purchase as part of the original package, than to go back and explain why you need more $ for more probes...

Be careful about underrating the BW of your scope, (#3 on your list). An O'scope with a marginal bandwidth, or too low a bandwidth, won't display the true signal. Gee, maybe I should look at it with the other (better) scope..., where is the other scope right now, why didn't I just use that scope to begin with...

Additionally, if you are looking for transients and noise, at the sensor (input) to the entire signal chain, you need a decent bandwidth scope to do that.

This last comment is perhaps a fine point. From a user perspective it might be easier if the scopes all came from the same manufacturer. Then the controls, settings, usage, (i.e. the User Interface), will be consistent no matter which scope one grabs to look at a signal. If an individual primarily uses scope A, and now has to use scope B, then they will be wasting time, and frustrated, with the "different" interface.

Look carefully at your cases for the scopes. You might want to include a Pelican Case for the scopes in your original purchase.

Last comment, none of my scopes are high end. But when I'm using one I generally always grab the best scope I've got.

I envy your current problem, "I need to purchase 3 O'scopes"!!

JC

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For hobby use, and some professional needs, my cheapie DSO2090 is fine. I prefer a USB 'scope so the display is big and on the same screen as my code and other tools.

The DS02090 is about $120.

I can't rationalize spending $500 or $1000 for a scope in my situation. I do have an old Tek 465 analog scope but it never gets used. Mainly because working with microprocessors and so on the waveforms are not recurrent.

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Thank you getting back to me, I hadn't even looked at Rigol 'scopes, though I will now.

It's a good point about battery power, #3 needs to be battery powered but that might also be useful for #2. We are looking at 1-10MHz sensor signals. #1 will also need to be used to de-bug the CPU/electronics, but I am pretty sure that 100MHz BW will do fine.

I was quite impressed at how cheap the 'scopes were (relatively)I was expecting >£7000 for a decent one, it's been along time since I was given someone else's money to spend - too long! The DVMs (Uni-T UT71B) have USB interfaces they and can be used for data logging - wonderful!

I will definitely remember buy a lot of good quality leads, probes and a tough cases, when I pick out a tool list.

I didn't know that Tektronix had been bought out, that's not usually good for the products. GW Intek seem to do a good range and it would be nice to have all three from the same company. They are cheap, so it would be reassuring if someone had used them and could let me know if they are OK to use or not.

<º))))><

I am only one lab accident away from becoming a super villain.

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Dren wrote:
OK I have whittled the vast range of choices down to: ...
Is Rohde-Schwarz the/one-of Europe's T&M creator(s)?
Dren wrote:
I was also thinking of getting a spectrum Analyser: ...
with a tracking generator as a part it.
A vector network analyzer would have additional capabilities.
Having tools for EMI/EMC analysis, design, and debug is good.
Latent defects may result in faults which may result in failures.
A common stimulus for this is the 2 watt transmitter almost all of us have called a cell phone.
Note what the following EMI/EMC guru chose:
Troubleshooting Radiated and Conducted Immunity Problems in the Development Lab by Douglas C. Smith (March-April 2014)

"Dare to be naïve." - Buckminster Fuller

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Quote:
We are looking at 1-10MHz sensor signals.

You know your needs better than I do.

But an old rule-of-thumb is that to adequately sample / capture / visualize / reproduce / etc. a complex, repetitive signal, you want a bandwidth of 10 times the fundamental frequency.

Obviously you can see a 10 MHz Sine wave with a 10 MHz scope. (Recall however, that you are already 3 dB down, so you can see the shape, but you are not accurately measuring its amplitude!)

But sensor signals and uC signals are often pulses, not sine waves.

To faithfully capture the leading edge you need to have a bandwidth that includes a number of harmonics, or you will see a sloppy trapezoid which isn't what the signal really is at all, it is just an artifact of your poor instrumentation.

My (hobbyist) DSO is a Rigol 60 MHz, 2 GS/Sec scope. There have been times I wished I had shelled out the extra bucks for a 100 MHz unit.

JC

Quote:
1 or 2 Channel Hand held >10Mhz - for on site checking of signals - just if present / looking OK

The point being, you can't see if they "look good" with a 10 MHz scope.

A 10 MHz scope is good for audio and physiologic signals, and slow baud rate RS-232. It is worthless for uC work these days.

Last Edited: Thu. Jul 31, 2014 - 06:15 PM
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DocJC wrote:
Buy EXTRA, quality, scope probes.
And a scope with a 50 ohm inputs, or switched 1Meg/50 ohm inputs, or get some 50ohm-to-1Meg ohm adaptors.
Some signals are low impedance yet relatively high bandwidth so a possible probe is the rough looking handmade 1K ohm resistor into 50 ohm coax; rugged and quick to fix after running over the cable with whatever or after the inadvertent or forgetful equipment or device move.
But, sensors are required in this usage (usually medium to high impedance signals and relatively low bandwidth); need to find a balance between the probe's tip capacitance and value (price and cost and function and fit and form).

"Dare to be naïve." - Buckminster Fuller

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DocJC wrote:
There have been times I wished I had shelled out the extra bucks for a 100 MHz unit.
Siglent SDS1102CML oscilloscope by Jack Ganssle (embedded.com; July 14, 2014)
A US retailer states this model will be back in-stock "soon" at 359USD.

"Dare to be naïve." - Buckminster Fuller

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I've been very happy with a Rigol DS1204B (4ch 200 MHz) scope I got a couple years ago. Newer ones are even better I've heard, at about the same price.

But consider: "No one ever got fired for specifying Tektronix!"

Greg

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dalpilot wrote:

But consider: "No one ever got fired for specifying Tektronix!"

Greg

They used to say that about IBM hardware too!

HP test equipment, Tek scopes, Hostess Twinkies.

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For anything mobile, in a harsh environment, that hasn't got too high a resoltion/sampling requirement, i am a big fan of the Fluke Scopemeter range, like say:

They are NOT cheap for the spec, but in my experience are practically bomb proof. if you are doing regular checks on electronic systems "out in the field" a simple, basic and robust device is your main concern imo!

Having an all singing all dancing super scope is great in the lab, where it is being used by people trained to use it, but in my experience, a simple "plug and play" device is very useful to give to other "non engineers" and enable them to get good data from the system they are checking......