Author Topic: Mint Agilent 54642D with all accessories, new probes. Worth 1700$?  (Read 345 times)

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Offline Haatveit

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As the title says. I've been on the hunt for a new and more practical scope for a while, and I am willing to spend quite a bit. Mixed signal is very very high on the list of requirements - but higher than 100MHz bandwidth (especially on these older scopes with lower sample rate) is also a big plus, since sometimes I do run into bandwidth trouble on my current 54600B, the single shot sample rate is atrocious on this thing. These slightly newer Agilent 546xxD scopes look fantastic for their age, and even though it doesn't offer any serial decode, I'm actually pretty happy without it - a lot of what I do is discrete logic stuff anyway, so there's nothing to practically decode. I2C and SPI decoding would be cute, but not actually necessary... I would love the Megazoom, and the very "analogue" operation of these scopes.

So yeah, I guess I'm wondering if I am just stupid for considering this as an option, if this is a sky high price for what it is. I can find cheaper, but it's always missing either probes (I could use a good set of probes anyway), logic pods, or is somehow damaged or an unknown factor... The one I'm looking at now is a complete kit, guaranteed to work, no doubts, it's just the full kit.

I know I can get a brand new scope for this kind of money, but it won't be anywhere near the 500MHz bandwidth, absolutely not if you also tack on the MSO capability...

The other option is to put one chunk of the money towards a good dedicated scope, and another chunk at a dedicated logic analyzer, something like one of the nicer USB ones. But then you lose out on the mobility of the scope (it matters a little bit to me, I have to move things around because I am very short on space), lose out on the correlation between signals and also I would really like to not be reliant on a computer to just see logic signals, even if I don't need to decode.

I was thinking of something like a Tek TDS754/784 for the dedicated scope (2 more channels is great!), it's still pretty hefty price-wise, but you are getting quite a lot of pure oscilloscope at that point. There are a few upgraded TDS754's on eBay with the full 1GHz "TDS784"bandwidth unlock... Pretty serious gear.

Thoughts?
« Last Edit: June 19, 2018, 09:38:37 am by Haatveit »
 

Offline darkstar49

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Re: Mint Agilent 54642D with all accessories, new probes. Worth 1700$?
« Reply #1 on: June 23, 2018, 05:29:53 am »
to me, one of the best value/money MSO is the Agilent 6K...
you can recurrently have an MSO6054a for about 2.5K, and it's a pretty decent machine... options can be enabled as described on this forum with little overhead...
Pricier than a 54642D, but come on... they're competing in different galaxies...

Tek MSO's are nice (>= 3K, forget the 2K !!), too, but they're typically more expensive, and in 90% of the cases the digital probe is missing, and these are quite expensive, even on Ebay...
Both MSO and MDO 3K can be BW upgraded (hacks available), so a 3014 model is an option (for non commercial use...  ;-)
Be careful that for serials < C02xxxx (for the MSO3K), there can be issues... (but not always), so favour more recent serials.
 


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