Bugblat X34 logic Analyzer

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Has anyone heard of these guys? Anyone have one? On paper it looks like a higher capacity LogicPort (6144 samples/ch vs 2048). While it's on sale it's nearly 1/2 the price of the logicport but with El Cheapo test clips. And no I don't work for them.

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Rick,

After reading your question I went looking for this product and found them, but saw no mention of the serial protocols capability. So I sent a question to them and received this reply...

Quote:
Hello Ross

Right now the serial protocols are SPI and I2C.

The next software upgrade will expand this list, but software upgrades are always late and sadly we are no exception.

Regards
Tim Eccles

Just to add to the information pile ...

Cheers,

Ross

Ross McKenzie, Melbourne Australia

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I have a LogicPort and after reading the Bugblat website I can compare a bit.

LogicPort does not come with test clips at all, just the cables that you can attach to pin headers.

X34 PC software looks crude, but I guess it does its job.

Main difference is that you can write your own code to interface with X34, while Logicport does not have this feature at all.

X34 does have a bigger sample buffer which I consider a plus.

What irritates me the most about LogicPort is that they say they can sample this and that fast, but the buffer is filled and transferred to PC screen, so I can't have continuous sampling, because the PC screen does not concatenate even 2 buffers. 1 buffer on screen at once is too little for me, as I'd like to see 200ms when things are happening at 1Mbit rate. I can't tell if this is the case with X34.

This is the reason I purchased Saleae Logic - totally different from Logicport. It can sample continuous stream and show me the results, so I can store lets say 1 second of data sampled at 8MHz, and 8 channels is more than sufficient for me to do this.

So, go ahead and buy the X34, then tell here all about it.

Edit:

The SPI and I2C are decoded in software in LogicPort, I bet that's how X34 works too. But because you can interface to the X34 yourself, you can write software that decodes anything for you.
With Logicport, I have to export the data and run my own decoder to analyze the exported data. And the exported data covers only one buffer, which is small.

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They do have a "specials" page where the probes are included at a discount price, but the page does not exist. Aside from this thread, I have not found any real references of substance on the web about the X34.

Rick

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A link would have been a nice service to the readers!
http://www.bugblat.com/products/...

Jepael wrote:
This is the reason I purchased Saleae Logic - totally different from Logicport. It can sample continuous stream and show me the results, so I can store lets say 1 second of data sampled at 8MHz, and 8 channels is more than sufficient for me to do this.

Yes spec says: "200M+ samples, absolute limit depends on system ram"
http://www.saleae.com

There's a cross-platform SDK for Saleae Logic.

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RickB wrote:
They do have a "specials" page where the probes are included at a discount price, but the page does not exist.

They have a "specials" page and a "specials" page. This one seems to work http://www.bugblat.com/products/...

RickB wrote:
Aside from this thread, I have not found any real references of substance on the web about the X34.
Some more information is here http://www.bugblat.com/products/... But in total it isn't really enlightening.

What I really didn't like are their claims about the software. They somehow created the impression the thing is very flexible to program and use with own software.

Well, I downloaded the interface zip from their site. I couldn't find any documentation of the actual USB protocol in the zip file. There was just a dll and header files with a long list of C and C++ function/member function definitions. But there was no sign of the dll source code, or at least some kind of documentation of the functions in the dll. And don't give me that "self documenting code" nonsense, the headers are not enough.

Further, I couldn't find any information about a protocol plug-in API for the GUI, nor any sign of a plug-in mechanism at all.

So, from what I see that one is not easily usable with another operating system than Windows. And on Windows I don't see a way to add protocol plug-ins to the GUI. And I don't see much usage for the dll without documentation (e.g. information about the sequence of commands).

For me the software is as much closed software as closed software goes, and the dll header files don't make any kind of SDK for me.

Stealing Proteus doesn't make you an engineer.

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I think that is pretty standard.

At least Total Phase gives the user windows/linux source code, which gives you function prototypes and it automatically loads windows dll or the linux equivalent for you.

No DLL source code. No GUI plug-in API. Just source code how to use DLL.

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I've been watching this product for a while now. I've also been a logicport user for a long time, and have made these observations regarding the bugblat:

"Crude" is an understatement for their software. It is lacking some of the most basic features such as the ability to group 8 signals as a bus and then read the bus values in hex etc. If you compare the software for the two products you'll find a world of difference.

Triggering is not intuitive at all. They advertise having "complex" triggering. It should be called "complicated" triggering. Despite the overly complicated setup dialog, they offer quite a bit less trigger capability than the logicport. Triggering is important for both of these products since their buffer size is finite.

According to their specs, the bugblat's compression is quite a bit less effective than the logicport. That means their larger buffer may not get you much in the end.

As far as test clips the logicport does it the same way as agilent/tektronix and other high-end companies. There's a reason they all do it this way (and no, it's not to sell test clips). Having leads you can connect directly to header pins is very handy compared to having to attach a bunch of test clips to individual pins. Frequently, there just isn't physically room to attach clips directly - especially the large el cheapo clips attached to the bugblat.

By the way, this is the Ant8 company resurrected (note the physical address of bugblat is the same as rocky logic). The software is essentially the same stuff they've offered since 2001, updated slightly for their new product. The unit has been "on special" practically since the day it was released - so don't worry about missing the "sale".

Their software hasn't been updated for nearly a year. That seems a long time to wait for an RS232 interpreter. They also haven't said anything about a CAN interpreter.

As far as streaming large amounts of data to the PC - this product cannot do it anymore than the logicport could. Both products capture to a hardware buffer - not to PC memory. The USB interface is not nearly fast enough to capture data directly to PC memory at realistic sample rates. Notice the saleae product's max sample rate is 24MHz (assuming the planets are aligned correctly and nothing else is running on your PC). It seems they're missing a zero on that spec. This slow sample rate and having only 8 channels is quite limiting for modern logic circuits, though I think it might be handy for certain data-logging applications.

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Jepael wrote:
I think that is pretty standard.
Yea, I know. It i just that I got a different impression from their product description.

mmfiend wrote:
As far as test clips the logicport does it the same way as agilent/tektronix and other high-end companies. There's a reason they all do it this way (and no, it's not to sell test clips). Having leads you can connect directly to header pins is very handy compared to having to attach a bunch of test clips to individual pins. Frequently, there just isn't physically room to attach clips directly - especially the large el cheapo clips attached to the bugblat.
If you are in the market for budget test clips have a look at the test probe set for ZeroPlus logic analysers. 20 probes for $21.90, Ez-Hock style.

http://www.nkcelectronics.com/pr...

As for ZeroPlus logic analyzers, I couldn't bring myself to buy one. The triggering doesn't look great, and they sell their hardware and software piecemeal. Cheap hardware but hefty prices for some protocol plug-ins. And of course no Linux support.

Stealing Proteus doesn't make you an engineer.

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This is the sort of info I was looking for. The logicPort still remains my first choice when the time comes. Still wish the buffer was larger.

Rick

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Has anyone here had any experience with the LA5034 USB Logic Analyzer? It appears to be made in China and resold through a lot of resellers who brand it as their own. It looks similar to the Logicport 1034 except with slightly better specs and a lower price (about $300US).

It's hard to tell if their software is as capable or not.

Anyone care to guess if this is useless or useful?

http://www.circuitspecialists.co...

Here's the user manual:

http://www.circuitspecialists.co...

Jeff

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Stealing Proteus doesn't make you an engineer.

Last Edited: Fri. Oct 30, 2009 - 06:47 AM
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Jeff Greene wrote:
Has anyone here had any experience with the LA5034 USB Logic Analyzer? It appears to be made in China and resold through a lot of resellers who brand it as their own. It looks similar to the Logicport 1034 except with slightly better specs and a lower price (about $300US).

Slightly better specs? What do you see that I don't? I see only missing specs (which generally means the actual specs are horrendous, so they've been conveniently omitted). The software seems to be the same as the Chinese-made LA5034 listed all over eBay and also sold by Hantek, so very likely the same hardware. By the way, they're about $50 cheaper on eBay than from Circuit Specialists (complete with free shipping straight from China). I tried one of them from eBay - it was a piece of junk. The compression didn't function correctly at any sample rate, and when sampling at 500MHz the captured samples were actually displayed out of order! For example, 2ns samples 1,2,3,4 might be displayed in time order 1,3,2,4. That defeats the whole point of using a logic analyzer. The software was so buggy that it was tough to make any actual measurement. I could go on, but I think you get the point. Occasionally, the Chinese produce a decent knock-off of a good American-made product. This is not one of those times. This looks like a clear-cut case of getting what you pay for (or not).

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mmfiend wrote:
Jeff Greene wrote:
Has anyone here had any experience with the LA5034 USB Logic Analyzer? It appears to be made in China and resold through a lot of resellers who brand it as their own. It looks similar to the Logicport 1034 except with slightly better specs and a lower price (about $300US).

Slightly better specs? What do you see that I don't? I see only missing specs (which generally means the actual specs are horrendous, so they've been conveniently omitted). The software seems to be the same as the Chinese-made LA5034 listed all over eBay and also sold by Hantek, so very likely the same hardware. By the way, they're about $50 cheaper on eBay than from Circuit Specialists (complete with free shipping straight from China). I tried one of them from eBay - it was a piece of junk. The compression didn't function correctly at any sample rate, and when sampling at 500MHz the captured samples were actually displayed out of order! For example, 2ns samples 1,2,3,4 might be displayed in time order 1,3,2,4. That defeats the whole point of using a logic analyzer. The software was so buggy that it was tough to make any actual measurement. I could go on, but I think you get the point. Occasionally, the Chinese produce a decent knock-off of a good American-made product. This is not one of those times. This looks like a clear-cut case of getting what you pay for (or not).

O.k. I get your point. I'm glad you guys have some experience with this because I could not find any comments on this model on a google search, just a lot of people selling it, and I did see the ebay sales going on too but I didn't see the shipping was free. I assumed they were those typical auctions with lowball prices and $75 shipping.

I'd love to get one of the "good" USB logic analyzers, and the Logicport looks nice, but I have seen that one on the market for several years without any hardware upgrade and have not seen a competitor to it come out at a similar price. My fear is that technology marches on and the day after I buy a Logicport LA1034 that they will come out with an improved version or someone else will come out with something better. (Deeper buffers, faster sample rate, etc.)

I wish there was better info out there.

But thanks for the review.

Jeff