### Network

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#### Anthony Fremont

Jan 1, 1970
0
Anybody got one? Do they suck? Will it last thru 10 years of off-and-on
hobby usage? Any horrible "features" that didn't make it to the marketing
brochures?

Since all my stuff is ancient and I'm tired of being publicaly embarassed
(;-) I've decided to seriously consider some upgrades. My old Hitachi
V650-F has been great, but it's sadly in need of a calibration and the
controls/switches are a bit flakey at times. After talking with some local
cal shops, I've decided that my $250 could be better spent somewhere else. I called Tucker about a used HP they had on their site, but alas they were all sold out. After yacking with Jerry for a couple of minutes he tossed out the idea of a TDS-1002b. I've looked at the specs and man I feel like I've been living under a rock. It looks like these things almost make thinking a thing of the past. I've never even used a DSO before, so I'm a bit shy about trying something new but they certainly look handy. Any advice? J #### Joerg Jan 1, 1970 0 Anthony said: Anybody got one? Do they suck? Will it last thru 10 years of off-and-on hobby usage? Any horrible "features" that didn't make it to the marketing brochures? Since all my stuff is ancient and I'm tired of being publicaly embarassed (;-) I've decided to seriously consider some upgrades. My old Hitachi V650-F has been great, but it's sadly in need of a calibration and the controls/switches are a bit flakey at times. After talking with some local cal shops, I've decided that my$250 could be better spent somewhere else.

I called Tucker about a used HP they had on their site, but alas they were
all sold out. After yacking with Jerry for a couple of minutes he tossed
out the idea of a TDS-1002b. I've looked at the specs and man I feel like
I've been living under a rock. It looks like these things almost make
thinking a thing of the past. I've never even used a DSO before, so I'm a
bit shy about trying something new but they certainly look handy. Any
I currently have the "pleasure" to work with similar (but older) scopes
at a client. TDS220, one of the big TDSes, etc. Long story short I am
not too enthused. The 220 even spits out noise that bothers us so has to
be turned off at times. The bandwidth gets reduced at the lower input
ranges. I've asked them to acquire a used 2465 and that's what I am now
using most of the time. Worked great 20 years ago, still works great ;-)

J

#### John Larkin

Jan 1, 1970
0
Anybody got one? Do they suck? Will it last thru 10 years of off-and-on
hobby usage? Any horrible "features" that didn't make it to the marketing
brochures?

Since all my stuff is ancient and I'm tired of being publicaly embarassed
(;-) I've decided to seriously consider some upgrades. My old Hitachi
V650-F has been great, but it's sadly in need of a calibration and the
controls/switches are a bit flakey at times. After talking with some local
cal shops, I've decided that my $250 could be better spent somewhere else. I called Tucker about a used HP they had on their site, but alas they were all sold out. After yacking with Jerry for a couple of minutes he tossed out the idea of a TDS-1002b. I've looked at the specs and man I feel like I've been living under a rock. It looks like these things almost make thinking a thing of the past. I've never even used a DSO before, so I'm a bit shy about trying something new but they certainly look handy. Any advice? Go for color. It's absolutely worth it. TDS2002 or 2012 are very nice. My personal scope is a TDS2012 and it does 95% of what I need done. It's the size of a shoe box, and you can lift it with one finger. Once you play with a color digital scope for a while, an old analog scope will feel primitive. The variable persistance, single-shot capture, cursors, signal averaging, math, FFT spectrum analysis, and frequency measurement are great. The screen photographs great with a digital camera, too. Agilent has a (chinese-rebranded) color scope for$999, I think, and
it looks OK. Anybody got comments?

John

J

#### Joerg

Jan 1, 1970
0
John said:
Go for color. It's absolutely worth it. TDS2002 or 2012 are very nice.
My personal scope is a TDS2012 and it does 95% of what I need done.
It's the size of a shoe box, and you can lift it with one finger.

Once you play with a color digital scope for a while, an old analog
scope will feel primitive. The variable persistance, single-shot
capture, cursors, signal averaging, math, FFT spectrum analysis, and
frequency measurement are great. The screen photographs great with a
digital camera, too.

Agilent has a (chinese-rebranded) color scope for $999, I think, and it looks OK. Anybody got comments? AFAIR Spehro had checked out Atten's stuff. A lot of times the innards are very similar among several brand names except that the Chinese originals often come with those bonbon colored buttons. I still prefer analog scopes. For noise and stuff nothing beats them. Then only downside are the regular requests to turn the lights off which doesn't exactly make me very popular at clients. But we find stuff where digital scopes don't stand a chance. The other downside is that you almost have to resort to EBay to obtain a really good scope because they don't make them no more. My favorite here in the lab: Ye olde 7000 series mainframe. It's like driving a tank. Love it. Documenting stuff is another matter. The digital camera results don't look too professional and the old Polaroid method might not be environmentally sensitive enough these days. Plus I always found that messy. D #### David L. Jones Jan 1, 1970 0 Go for color. It's absolutely worth it. TDS2002 or 2012 are very nice. My personal scope is a TDS2012 and it does 95% of what I need done. It's the size of a shoe box, and you can lift it with one finger. Once you play with a color digital scope for a while, an old analog scope will feel primitive. The variable persistance, single-shot capture, cursors, signal averaging, math, FFT spectrum analysis, and frequency measurement are great. The screen photographs great with a digital camera, too. Agilent has a (chinese-rebranded) color scope for$999, I think, and
it looks OK. Anybody got comments?

That is the Agilent 3000 series, and Rigol are the designer and
manufacturer, you can (usually) get the exact same scope a bit cheaper
from Rigol, and other makers rebadged.

I've got one of the Rigol's and it's pretty good for the price, it can
hold it's own in the entry level DSO market. I like the mask
triggering options and digital filtering. Sadly it cannot dump the
screen to USB memory stick, that must be done on the PC via the
software.
Response time is on par with the other entry level scopes.

Basicaly all the entry level DSO's are the same, Tek, Agilent, Rigol,
Goodwill et.al only a few features and a few $$seperate them, the choice is amazing. One thing with DSO's is the memory depth, that should be your #1 requirement, you will never regret going for the scope with the deepest memory. However, recently there have been a couple of entry level mixed signal DSO come onto the market like the Rigol 1000 series: http://www.rigolna.com/products_osc_DS1000_spec.aspx Also rebadged under "ApLab" and probably others. I have two mixed signal Agilents (6000 series, 54600 series) and I will never go back, mixed signal scopes are fantastic, especially if you are thinking about getting a logic analyser anyway. Certainly worth shelling out a few$$$more for. In 10 years time every DSO on the market will have mixed signal capability. Although one can also ague there are plenty of cheap and excellent PC based logic analysers on the market today, so its not needed in a scope. Dave D #### David L. Jones Jan 1, 1970 0 Anybody got one? Do they suck? Will it last thru 10 years of off-and-on hobby usage? Any horrible "features" that didn't make it to the marketing brochures? Since all my stuff is ancient and I'm tired of being publicaly embarassed (;-) I've decided to seriously consider some upgrades. My old Hitachi V650-F has been great, but it's sadly in need of a calibration and the controls/switches are a bit flakey at times. After talking with some local cal shops, I've decided that my$250 could be better spent somewhere else.

I called Tucker about a used HP they had on their site, but alas they were
all sold out. After yacking with Jerry for a couple of minutes he tossed
out the idea of a TDS-1002b. I've looked at the specs and man I feel like
I've been living under a rock. It looks like these things almost make
thinking a thing of the past. I've never even used a DSO before, so I'm a
bit shy about trying something new but they certainly look handy. Any

There is a big divide in "response time" between the low end DSO's and
the proper "analog replacement" high end DSO's, but if that's all you
can afford, you get used to it.
The features available on todays entry levels DSO's are fantastic, and
you won't go back.
Just the simple ability to be able to single shot capture a waveform
you will find invaluable, and wonder how you ever got along without
it.
BUT you will still need a nice analog scope in addition, so it's worth
upgrading there too, plenty on eBay at good prices.

My Tek TDS-210 has been going for almost a decade now, so they can
last that long.

Dave

L

#### Lionel

Jan 1, 1970
0
I still prefer analog scopes. For noise and stuff nothing beats them.
Then only downside are the regular requests to turn the lights off which
doesn't exactly make me very popular at clients. But we find stuff where
digital scopes don't stand a chance. The other downside is that you
almost have to resort to EBay to obtain a really good scope because they
don't make them no more.

I still love my trusty, 20+ year old Tek 2235 dual trace 100MHz CRO.
carbon comp resistors in the focus chain. Replacing them with modern
metal film parts brought it back to normal.

A

#### Anthony Fremont

Jan 1, 1970
0
John said:
Go for color. It's absolutely worth it. TDS2002 or 2012 are very nice.
My personal scope is a TDS2012 and it does 95% of what I need done.
It's the size of a shoe box, and you can lift it with one finger.

Oh man, here we go. ;-) The cheapest color one is $250 more (25%). I know I'd really like the color better, but I was hoping that the PC interface might provide that for free. I now see that Tek has a 10 year/lifetime warranty, so spending the extra cash now wouldn't seem so bad in the long run. After all it's only another$2/month when taken over time. ;-) I
fall into the "for a few dollars more" trap every time. It's not like I
have money to throw around, but I learned a long time ago that cheap tools
cost you allot more in the long run.
Once you play with a color digital scope for a while, an old analog
scope will feel primitive. The variable persistance, single-shot
capture, cursors, signal averaging, math, FFT spectrum analysis, and
frequency measurement are great. The screen photographs great with a
digital camera, too.

That's a pretty good sell. I like the USB interfaces allot. Thanks
for your input, I appreciate it.
Agilent has a (chinese-rebranded) color scope for $999, I think, and it looks OK. Anybody got comments? Hmm, that sounds interesting if it's good. D #### David L. Jones Jan 1, 1970 0 Anybody got one? Do they suck? Will it last thru 10 years of off-and-on hobby usage? Any horrible "features" that didn't make it to the marketing brochures? Since all my stuff is ancient and I'm tired of being publicaly embarassed (;-) I've decided to seriously consider some upgrades. My old Hitachi V650-F has been great, but it's sadly in need of a calibration and the controls/switches are a bit flakey at times. After talking with some local cal shops, I've decided that my$250 could be better spent somewhere else.

I called Tucker about a used HP they had on their site, but alas they were
all sold out. After yacking with Jerry for a couple of minutes he tossed
out the idea of a TDS-1002b. I've looked at the specs and man I feel like
I've been living under a rock. It looks like these things almost make
thinking a thing of the past. I've never even used a DSO before, so I'm a
bit shy about trying something new but they certainly look handy. Any

Ok, I just had a look on eBay, and you won't believe what you can get
a new no-name asian DSO for these days:
http://cgi.ebay.com.au/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=130062006419
Seller looks a bit dodgy though.

Anyone know where else you can buy these?
They also go under the "Lilliput" name.

Probably complete garbage, but would be interesting to see what you
get for the price.

Dave

J

#### John Larkin

Jan 1, 1970
0
AFAIR Spehro had checked out Atten's stuff. A lot of times the innards
are very similar among several brand names except that the Chinese
originals often come with those bonbon colored buttons.

I still prefer analog scopes. For noise and stuff nothing beats them.
Then only downside are the regular requests to turn the lights off which
doesn't exactly make me very popular at clients. But we find stuff where
digital scopes don't stand a chance. The other downside is that you
almost have to resort to EBay to obtain a really good scope because they
don't make them no more.

My favorite here in the lab: Ye olde 7000 series mainframe. It's like
driving a tank. Love it. Documenting stuff is another matter. The
digital camera results don't look too professional and the old Polaroid
method might not be environmentally sensitive enough these days. Plus I
always found that messy.

Dinasaur! I find that digital scopes are a lot more likely to find
infrequent events, and *save* then for you. Then you set the cursors,
walk down the hall, get your digital camera, and snap the
I-told-you-so masterpiece.

I sometimes use a 7000-series for tricky stuff. The 7A22 plugin
(differential, switchable bandwidth down to 100 Hz, 10 uV/cm) is
magical for low-level stuff. And the 7104 (1 GHz, microchannel plate)
can be handy. But for most stuff, a color DSO is light-years ahead of
some old analog beast.

And I get confused when all the traces are green.

Last week, we saw a bunch of "wideband" noise on a power rail. So we
hit the FFT button, and, lo, we see a big frequency line every 200
KHz, all in the neighborhood of 100 MHz. Try that on an analog scope!

John

A

#### Anthony Fremont

Jan 1, 1970
0
Joerg wrote:

I currently have the "pleasure" to work with similar (but older)
scopes at a client. TDS220, one of the big TDSes, etc. Long story
short I am not too enthused. The 220 even spits out noise that
bothers us so has to be turned off at times. The bandwidth gets

Do you mean like down the probe cable, out the probe tip and into your
circuit, or do you mean accoustical noise?

A

#### Anthony Fremont

Jan 1, 1970
0
David said:
Ok, I just had a look on eBay, and you won't believe what you can get
a new no-name asian DSO for these days:
http://cgi.ebay.com.au/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=130062006419
Seller looks a bit dodgy though.

That just can't be right. Even the Chinese can't make them that cheap, can
they?
Anyone know where else you can buy these?
They also go under the "Lilliput" name.

Probably complete garbage, but would be interesting to see what you
get for the price.

Somebody bought it, I wonder if they'll admit it? ;-)

D

#### David L. Jones

Jan 1, 1970
0
That just can't be right. Even the Chinese can't make them that cheap, can
they?

Somebody bought it, I wonder if they'll admit it? ;-)

I recon it's Joerg!

I don't know what price the Rigol goes for in the US, but here in Oz
it's AU$995 for the base model 60MHz Mono unit. That's about US$750.
I was about to say that was cheap, but I just checked the TDS1002 and
that can be had for US$750 too!: http://froogle.google.com/froogle?q=tds1002&btnG=Search+Froogle Dave J #### Joerg Jan 1, 1970 0 Anthony said: Joerg wrote: Do you mean like down the probe cable, out the probe tip and into your circuit, or do you mean accoustical noise? Nope, it look like EMI from a switcher or something like that in there. It was pretty loud and messing up some analog circuitry on a breadboard. The good old Tektronix 2465 did not do that at all. D #### David L. Jones Jan 1, 1970 0 Nope, it look like EMI from a switcher or something like that in there. It was pretty loud and messing up some analog circuitry on a breadboard. The good old Tektronix 2465 did not do that at all. It's the LCD screen, the TDS series scopes are famous for this. Put the probe near the screen and you'll see it. Dave J #### Joerg Jan 1, 1970 0 John said: Dinasaur! I find that digital scopes are a lot more likely to find infrequent events, and *save* then for you. Then you set the cursors, walk down the hall, get your digital camera, and snap the I-told-you-so masterpiece. True, for once-in-a-blue moon glitches they really work well. But that's a rare case here in the lab. I sometimes use a 7000-series for tricky stuff. The 7A22 plugin (differential, switchable bandwidth down to 100 Hz, 10 uV/cm) is magical for low-level stuff. And the 7104 (1 GHz, microchannel plate) can be handy. But for most stuff, a color DSO is light-years ahead of some old analog beast. And I get confused when all the traces are green. The 7000 series is usually more blueish than green ;-) Last week, we saw a bunch of "wideband" noise on a power rail. So we hit the FFT button, and, lo, we see a big frequency line every 200 KHz, all in the neighborhood of 100 MHz. Try that on an analog scope! T'is what spectrum analyzers are for. I often just use a communications receiver. It has a 300Hz crystal filter that drops to -60dB at 600Hz or so and has (so far) fished out just about any polluting carrier. The only issue with that is that I have now worn down the rotary encoder bearings and I am not looking forward to this repair. Maybe after a couple of really good top shelf margaritas but the weather ain't right for that yet. I always get a kick out of it when I find a bus contention for the digital guys that way. J #### Joerg Jan 1, 1970 0 David said: It's the LCD screen, the TDS series scopes are famous for this. Put the probe near the screen and you'll see it. Could be. I even had that on an expensive Agilent EMI (!) analyzer. Couldn't believe it. Anyhow, ye olde analog scope simply does not do that. There I have peace of mind that it won't mess with my prototypes. After all, lab equipment is supposed to maintain radio silence since you can shield a prototype while probing around. A #### Anthony Fremont Jan 1, 1970 0 David said: I recon it's Joerg! I don't know what price the Rigol goes for in the US, but here in Oz it's AU$995 for the base model 60MHz Mono unit. That's about US$750. I was about to say that was cheap, but I just checked the TDS1002 and that can be had for US$750 too!:

For a refurb with almost no warranty. :-( Looks like Agilent will give you
color for $1100, but Tek wants about$1270 for theirs. If you want data out
of the Agilent that will be more money too. It appears that the feature set
of the Tek is richer than the 3000 series Agilent, but the Agilent claims 4K
"points" vs. 2.5K on the Tek. Spiffy stuff for sure.

D

#### David L. Jones

Jan 1, 1970
0
For a refurb with almost no warranty. :-(
Bugger.

Looks like Agilent will give you
color for $1100, but Tek wants about$1270 for theirs. If you want data out
of the Agilent that will be more money too. It appears that the feature set
of the Tek is richer than the 3000 series Agilent, but the Agilent claims 4K
"points" vs. 2.5K on the Tek. Spiffy stuff for sure.

The Goodwill GDS series are sold in the US under the Instek brand:
http://www.instek.com/GDS-806S.htm
US$755 RRP US$659 on Froogle:

125K sample memory is excellent and blows the Tek away. 320x200
display is not excellent these days, same as my old TDS-210, however
the new Tek1002b is no better with it's 1/4 VGA screen.
USB is optional though, but RS232 and PC software is free.
You can get the 100MHz colour model Instek for a similar price to the
Tek1002b 60MHz mono.

For home use those I wouldn't spend the extra on colour, I'd spend it

Full Goodwill/Instek range is here:
http://www.goodwill.com.tw/product-e.asp?p1sn=4&p2sn=4

Dave

J

#### John Devereux

Jan 1, 1970
0
John Larkin said:
Dinasaur! I find that digital scopes are a lot more likely to find
infrequent events, and *save* then for you. Then you set the cursors,
walk down the hall, get your digital camera, and snap the
I-told-you-so masterpiece.

What's all this about a camera? You should be able to do a "screen
print" directly to a PNG graphics file.

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