Author Topic: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A  (Read 2268 times)

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Offline wch

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do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« on: February 23, 2017, 04:42:08 AM »
I ordered the 1054Z, which arrived yesterday and is still in the box. In between order and arrival, I found and bought a Tek 475A for a hundred bucks at a local ham fair. Now I have a working 250MHz two channel analog scope sitting on my bench - only needing to be cleaned and maybe calibrated - and a four channel, soon-to-be 100MHz digital scope sitting in a box.

Here's my question to the 1104Z owners... what do you do with your 1104Z scope that you couldn't do otherwise? and how often do you do it? I was raised on 475 class scopes and my imagination is rather limited, I guess, by what I already know how to do with them. The 1104Z, I am not so sure. Spending almost four hundred dollars on a new scope when I now have a perfectly good, if much less fancy, one sitting on the bench seems, well, questionable. So I am looking for use cases.

For reference, I use my gear for building, repairing and testing amateur radio gear. My current projects include a BitX40 transceiver and a home brew antenna impedance matching unit.

Thanks!
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Online JPortici

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #1 on: February 23, 2017, 04:50:02 AM »
keep both. you never have too many scopes
besides, getting rid of a DSO to keep a CRO is borderline foolish. you loose all the "storage" aspect like single shot and being able to stop acquisition, also you loose decoding, measurements etc. (even if flawed having them is better than nothing)
then use the tek for looking for example at fast signals
« Last Edit: February 23, 2017, 05:04:49 AM by JPortici »
 

Offline jpanhalt

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2017, 04:57:53 AM »
In addition, does you Tek have FFT?   How about the assortment of triggers and semi-automatic measurements?

I not only would keep both, I have kept an analog, my original TDS210, and now my Rigol.  I use all each for different needs.

John
 

Offline Fungus

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #3 on: February 23, 2017, 05:47:22 AM »
For reference, I use my gear for building, repairing and testing amateur radio gear. My current projects include a BitX40 transceiver and a home brew antenna impedance matching unit.

If you think the Tek can do that job then use it.

Me? I like:
a) A 'scope that fits on a table and doesn't heat up the room
b) Storage of waveforms - freeze the signal, zoom/pan
c) On-screen measurements, eg. signal frequency, width of pulses
 

Offline wch

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2017, 05:56:56 AM »
 :scared: Yikes! go easy on me...  my test equipment expertise is grounded in bench work I did nearly forty years ago. I am newly returned to the bench and things have changed a little. I've never imagined using a scope with features like this one. That's why I asked for use cases.
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Offline jpanhalt

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2017, 06:08:23 AM »
Although the FFT is a bit simple, I used my Rigol with both FFT and regular scan for developing some LF (500 kHz) filters.

John
 

Offline Fungus

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2017, 06:36:43 AM »
That's why I asked for use cases.

Unles syou tell us otherwise, most of the frequencies for "amateur radio" fall below 50MHz so the Rigol is OK for that.

I think you should keep both.

For general use I think the CRO won't see much use once you get used to having on-screen display of frequencies, look at the strength of harmonics, etc. OTOH you can power up the CRO when you need the extra bandwidth.

Apart from the bandwidth the only thing the CRO really has going for it is the pretty green screen and nice analog look/feel. Be sure to watch this video before deciding that makes it "better":



 
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Offline rstofer

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2017, 06:54:07 AM »
:scared: Yikes! go easy on me...  my test equipment expertise is grounded in bench work I did nearly forty years ago. I am newly returned to the bench and things have changed a little. I've never imagined using a scope with features like this one. That's why I asked for use cases.

My main interest in the DS1054Z was decoding SPI transactions which requires all 4 channels if I want to see both sides, the chip select and the clock.  Decoding RS232 streams is another use.

Single-shot mode is also useful.  I take one snapshot and I can spend a long time looking at it.  There is simply no was my Tek 485 can do this!

I like the on screen measurements of EVERYTHING!  My Tek 485 can't do any measurements at all.  But it does have bandwidth!

I was just experimenting with XY mode and the Valentine's Day project:
http://www.eevblog.com/forum/chat/a-valentine's-day-activity-for-your-scope-and-function-generator/
Yes, I'm a little late but I had to go out and buy the signal generator (Siglent SDG2082) and it just came in last night.  Sweet!

I also use XY mode with my analog computer when working on equations of motion or predator-prey simulations.  I need to get up to speed again before my grandson starts Differential Equations.  That, and the fact that I didn't really grasp the subject when I took it in EE and grad school.  I just memorized my way through without ever gaining a 'feel' for the equations and their solutions.

I haven't gotten useful results with the FFT function and I'm pretty certain it is my fault.  I would study up on this except that I don't use FFT.  If I need it, I get better results with my Analog Discovery.

I had been using my Tek 485 for the past 12 years when I decided to buy the DS1054Z,  I wanted to learn about DSOs and I wanted 4 channels and decoding.  My 485 sits under my bench, ready to go when things speed up!  No way I would get rid of either!
« Last Edit: February 23, 2017, 07:05:08 AM by rstofer »
 
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Offline Fungus

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #8 on: February 23, 2017, 07:30:25 AM »
I haven't gotten useful results with the FFT function and I'm pretty certain it is my fault.

Do you have firmware 04.03.01+ with the new FFT function?

If so, be sure to select memory FFT mode.

 

Offline rstofer

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2017, 08:53:35 AM »
I haven't gotten useful results with the FFT function and I'm pretty certain it is my fault.

Do you have firmware 04.03.01+ with the new FFT function?

If so, be sure to select memory FFT mode.

My firmware is current with the Nov release of 00.04.04.SP1
I don't see all the grass at the bottom of the display that I expect.  I also don't see little spikes at the harmonics, all I get are triangles.  I do use the 'memory' mode, and it helps, but I still suspect I am doing something wrong.  If I ever need FFT, I'll probably RTFM.

At the moment it is easier to believe that it is my problem and, since I don't care about FFT, not spend any time thinking about it.  I get far better results on my Analog Discovery but that is probably my fault too!


 

Offline james_s

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2017, 12:41:21 PM »
I would probably keep both. I have a Tek 465B and a Bitscope DSO and spend some time using a Tek TDS3054 at work. There are some things the DSO can do that simply can't be done by an analog scope, but more often than not when I need to use a scope I reach for the 465B. There's something about an analog scope that just feels more "real", and if you're most familiar with that type of instrument then you'll feel right at home with the 475. If you want to decode SPI and RS232 that sort of thing can be done with a very low cost PC based logic analyzer, you don't really need a DSO for that.
 

Offline snoopy

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #11 on: February 23, 2017, 01:06:34 PM »
I too recently bought a DS1054Z and did the miraculous update. I also own a 100MHz 4ch Tek 2446 CRO which I seldom use these days as everything I can on the DSO with a lot more useful information. You will find you will need more than one scope and take advantage of each scopes strengths. For example try examining a low frequency waveform using a conventional CRT scope  |O So in answer to your question I would certainly keep the Rigol. Once you use it you won't look back ;)

cheers

 

Offline wch

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #12 on: February 23, 2017, 03:36:03 PM »
thanks all! between the replies here and spending some quality time with the documentation it is clear that there are things that i can only do with the rigol that i will do with the rigol. that's what i wanted to figure out. i appreciate the help. the rigol will stay. after making sure it works and has the latest firmware i will do the upgrade...   :-+
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Offline CatalinaWOW

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #13 on: February 23, 2017, 03:53:23 PM »
Good choice.  Another thing you will love is the portability.  The 475 is a small scope as capable analog CRT beasts go, but is in a whole different size class than the Rigol.  I've only have mine a little more than half a year and can't count the times I have just moved it because it was easier than moving the UUT, or getting longer leads or whatever.
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #14 on: February 23, 2017, 07:44:57 PM »
what do you do with your 1104Z scope that you couldn't do otherwise? and how often do you do it?

For reference, I use my gear for building, repairing and testing amateur radio gear. My current projects include a BitX40 transceiver and a home brew antenna impedance matching unit.

Try using each for the same task, and you will get a good idea of their relative advantages/disadvantages. That way you will avoid the rabid unqualified "X is the only thing you need" comments found in this forum. Simplistically:
  • use a 475 for signal integrity bandwidth is essential, but don't forget your probing techniques
  • use a 475 for XY or where you simply don't trust the signal processing in a DSO
  • use a DSO for single-shot or slow timebases, but make sure you understand what information is being "discarded" (classic example: looking at analogue TV signals)

Scopes aren't wonderful for RF work; compared with spectrum analysers they have poor linearity and dynamic range.

For antenna matching, consider using £15 SDR devices plus a noise source plus a directional coupler. See my .sig for examples in the SDR tag/category
« Last Edit: February 23, 2017, 07:46:36 PM by tggzzz »
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
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Offline Solder_Junkie

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #15 on: February 24, 2017, 01:08:28 AM »
what do you do with your 1104Z scope that you couldn't do otherwise? and how often do you do it?
My 1054Z has been invaluable for development work on a SSB and CW transmitter control board, it makes checking the timing really easy.

I too was brought up on analogue scopes, when my own 100 MHz 2 channel went bang, I bought a 1054Z and have no regrets. The triggering is really good and it's very easy to use.
 
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Offline wch

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #16 on: February 24, 2017, 02:43:26 AM »
thanks... will check out the SDR post.
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Offline wch

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #17 on: March 01, 2017, 06:11:48 AM »
okay all you rigol folks were right... the 1054Z is a pretty amazing piece of gear for four hundred bucks, and that's before upgrading it. my 475A remains on (well beside) the bench and i still use it but i imagine the rigol will be my turned on pretty much all the time. thanks for all the feedback.
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Offline tggzzz

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #18 on: March 01, 2017, 06:21:45 AM »
Have fun with your new toy. Have a look at other threads on this forum, since there appear to be some "surprises" in the Rigol scopes.

All instruments have limitations; engineers find the limitations, understand them, and work with or around them.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Gliding aphorism: "there is no substitute for span". Retort: "There is a substitute: skill+imagination. But you can buy span".
Having fun doing more, with less
 

Offline wch

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Re: do i keep it? 1054Z (1104Z) vs. tek 475A
« Reply #19 on: March 01, 2017, 08:41:45 AM »

Quote
All instruments have limitations; engineers find the limitations, understand them, and work with or around them.

ain't that the truth! as do all models, software, and components. push it hard enough and not even a piece of hookup wire is simply that...  what makes engineering interesting is the difference between what we put on paper and how it turns out in reality.

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