Author Topic: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope  (Read 2445 times)

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Offline Ariamella

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Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« on: June 12, 2021, 03:52:18 pm »
I own a Rigol DS1054Z but I'm moving abroad in a couple months so I'm looking to shrink the amount of stuff I have around. I do not use the full capabilities of the Rigol: I only need 2 channels max and primarily use it to analyze audio, so I thought I'd downgrade to something cheaper and smaller, as I can't justify lugging around something like that. I am aware that it's a severe downgrade, and am willing to sacrifice this.

So far, I'm looking at the Owon VDS1022I, HDS272S and the FNIRSI-1013D. As the title suggests, what would be the least crap option (or if there are any better ones to consider)? There's an overwhelming number of threads and information to sift through and I'm unfortunately getting confused by all the options. I live in Hong Kong, so importing something from Taobao is both easy and quick for me.

It would be nice if it had integrated AWG functionality too. (Edit: decided I want to keep my DMM after all).

Thank you in advance for the help!
« Last Edit: June 12, 2021, 05:25:57 pm by Ariamella »
 

Online mikeselectricstuff

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2021, 04:54:24 pm »
I found the Owon VDS3104 pretty decent - not sure how similar the 1022 is.

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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2021, 05:34:27 pm »
From what I've seen about the VDS1022I, it's basically the cheapest scope which still works properly. Wondering whether the other two would be fine, though from what I've seen the FNIRSI has a terrible UI stock and could use some mods.
 

Offline Gyro

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2021, 07:54:50 pm »
From what I've seen about the VDS1022I, it's basically the cheapest scope which still works properly...

That actually sums it up perfectly. It's the cheapest one to have a proper front-end and hardware triggering, with no hesitation or glitches on the screen, even on old, low spec, PCs. The hardware is also well known and documented on the forum...

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/testgear/owon-vds1022i-quick-teardown-(versus-the-hantek-6022be)/

The stock Owon S/W is reasonably bug free and the UI clean (even if they've never heard of release notes!), however florentbr's S/W is very solid, makes the UI more friendly, adds Linux compatibility, and now implements things like triggering on very slow timebases.

https://github.com/florentbr/OWON-VDS1022


P.S. I'm also monitoring the very active FNIRSI thread. It seems to show promise for improvement in the longer term. but seems to have a way to go (I don't know about the all important front-end though).
« Last Edit: June 12, 2021, 08:04:42 pm by Gyro »
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Offline Anthocyanina

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2021, 08:02:09 pm »
I was recently given a vds1022i and it's been really useable. I had to present a lab project, and having it was great as i could present from home sharing my screen showing the oscilloscope. I've compared it to my ds1104z and within the 20MHz bandwidth, it shows pretty much the same as the rigol, it just has a slower update rate, and it doesn't have intensity graded display so doesn't look as nice, but still super useable. I would recommend the vds1022i. It's also perfect to add googly eyes to if you like that kind of thing  :P
 
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Offline Gyro

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2021, 08:06:51 pm »
It's also perfect to add googly eyes to if you like that kind of thing  :P

 :-DD
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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2021, 08:45:06 pm »
Shit, now I want it especially because it's cheap. However, the VDS1022I is ~$100 whereas the VDS1022 is $70, and I'm not sure if the isolation is worth ~$30 extra.

I love how you turned Owon into OwOn by the way, nearly did a spit take ;D
 

Offline Gyro

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2021, 08:59:32 pm »
...and I'm not sure if the isolation is worth ~$30 extra.

My take would be 'yes it is'. I don't know how much other USB based stuff you'll be using but it only takes a few moments of carelessness to dump a load of current into a USB port ground and fry it, or the PC. If you're looking at audio too, it would be useful to be able to break the ground loop [Edit: you might be ok if using a laptop on battery though].

It is possible to mod the VDS1022 to a VDS1022I (Isolated DC-DC and USB isolator) but I doubt whether the hassle and parts cost would significantly offset the $30 difference.
« Last Edit: June 12, 2021, 09:02:06 pm by Gyro »
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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2021, 04:13:49 am »
that would be these two parts, yes? Are the two footprints just unpopulated on the non-i version? Something like that is no problem for me >:D
 

Offline Anthocyanina

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2021, 05:05:22 am »
I love how you turned Owon into OwOn by the way, nearly did a spit take ;D

 :P

that would be these two parts, yes? Are the two footprints just unpopulated on the non-i version? Something like that is no problem for me >:D

Those are the parts! I've read Gyro's thread on the 1022i and i think it was a couple of people who converted their non i into the i version, and the cost of those parts seems to be pretty much the same as the added cost for the i version. The usb isolator alone is like 12$ on mouser.com and the dc to dc isolated supply about 15$ i think?

Forgot to mention, the footprints are not entirely unpopulated, they just bridge the connections to the usb data and power with resistors (was it 0 ohm resistor bridges?)
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 05:09:01 am by Anthocyanina »
 
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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #10 on: June 13, 2021, 05:38:02 am »
I'm pretty much sold on the 1022 at this point. Would the HDS2x2S be worth getting over this? I do like how it has an AWS integrated and it doesn't seem to be that bad either other.
 

Online Fungus

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2021, 07:36:06 am »
I own a Rigol DS1054Z but I'm moving abroad in a couple months so I'm looking to shrink the amount of stuff I have around. I do not use the full capabilities of the Rigol: I only need 2 channels max and primarily use it to analyze audio, so I thought I'd downgrade to something cheaper and smaller, as I can't justify lugging around something like that. I am aware that it's a severe downgrade, and am willing to sacrifice this.

So far, I'm looking at the Owon VDS1022I, HDS272S and the FNIRSI-1013D. As the title suggests, what would be the least crap option (or if there are any better ones to consider)? There's an overwhelming number of threads and information to sift through and I'm unfortunately getting confused by all the options. I live in Hong Kong, so importing something from Taobao is both easy and quick for me.

It would be nice if it had integrated AWG functionality too. (Edit: decided I want to keep my DMM after all).

Thank you in advance for the help!

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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2021, 08:08:48 am »
Unfortunately at $399, it's almost 4 times as much as my budget.
 

Offline 2N3055

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2021, 08:32:56 am »
I own a Rigol DS1054Z but I'm moving abroad in a couple months so I'm looking to shrink the amount of stuff I have around. I do not use the full capabilities of the Rigol: I only need 2 channels max and primarily use it to analyze audio, so I thought I'd downgrade to something cheaper and smaller, as I can't justify lugging around something like that. I am aware that it's a severe downgrade, and am willing to sacrifice this.

So far, I'm looking at the Owon VDS1022I, HDS272S and the FNIRSI-1013D. As the title suggests, what would be the least crap option (or if there are any better ones to consider)? There's an overwhelming number of threads and information to sift through and I'm unfortunately getting confused by all the options. I live in Hong Kong, so importing something from Taobao is both easy and quick for me.

It would be nice if it had integrated AWG functionality too. (Edit: decided I want to keep my DMM after all).

Thank you in advance for the help!

Analog Discovery fits in the palm of your hand.

It is 3 times more expensive and also not a proper scope (i.e. it doesn't have real front end like  VDS1022I does).
I would also chose Owon VDS1022I from the choices presented.

 
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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2021, 09:21:22 am »
Bet, time to sell my Rigol and then get the OwOn ;D
 

Offline Anthocyanina

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2021, 04:20:08 pm »
Oh! one more thing i would like to mention that i absolutely love about the owon is that it has alt trigger mode! I can't believe no other modern oscilloscopes seem to have that! of course, seeing how one signal is time related to another one is super useful, but being able to also see two signals that are not time related, on the same screen, and be able to compare them i think is really quite nice  :)
 
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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2021, 07:48:27 pm »
I'm completely sold. Thank you guys for all the help! It also helps that the OwOn is so cheap :D
 
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Offline MarkF

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2021, 10:28:12 pm »
Just out of curiosity, how does the Picoscope 2000 series compare with the Owon?

I found a teardown...
https://youtu.be/UGNmnU65lzU?t=256
« Last Edit: June 13, 2021, 10:29:59 pm by MarkF »
 

Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #18 on: June 14, 2021, 09:17:36 am »
I did have a look at the 2204B but there wasn't much info I could find
 

Offline Gyro

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #19 on: June 14, 2021, 11:48:42 am »
Pico scopes and s/w are excellent. Anything above the 2204A 10MHz version will completely blow your budget though. 10MHz would still be fine for audio and general logic of course (even the 10MHz one is still 100Msps like the Owon).

I don't know how well prices translate for US / HK agents (probably not well) so it probably doesn't fall into the lowest cost "Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope". It depends how much extra you are prepared to fork out.

https://www.picotech.com/oscilloscope/2000/picoscope-2000-overview

Unfortunately there is a cost associated with British design, manufacture and support versus Chinese.


EDIT: The price gets a bit better if you source your own probes (they're optional).
« Last Edit: June 14, 2021, 12:19:11 pm by Gyro »
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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #20 on: June 14, 2021, 02:42:11 pm »
Well I will be moving to the UK in a couple months so I could get it from there.

My concern is now probably how well the OwOn can do FFTs, as I do like to see how much distortion an amp puts out at a glance. I know it won't be great but I would like something adequate at least.
 

Offline Gyro

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #21 on: June 14, 2021, 03:26:52 pm »
Ha, you get about!

The Owon is ok, apart from the FFT only being displayed on a quarter of the screen - the display splits into three, normal traces at the bottom and then X-Y and FFT side by side above, it has a measurement cursors though. The Pico S/W certainly does a better job, with decent full screen capabilities and analysis, I don't know if you can display the trace and FFT at the same time though [Edit: Yes it can]. As you note, neither will be perfect with only 8 bit ADCs (no change from the Rigol there though!). The Pico software can do some form of oversampling to squeeze another couple of bits, but I can't remember if that is only on their 12 and 16 bit offerings. Analysis is definitely one of Pico's S/W strengths.

You should certainly download the Pico S/W and try it in demo mode (iirc). The UIs are very different in feel - the Owon controls are as you've seen in the thread (you can download the Owon S/W too to try the IU but it won't give you  trace). The Pico is very different in feel - much more windows app with toolbar and pull-downs, it also displays absolute values for the axes rather than V/div, uS/Div. I have an old model 16 bit Pico and the Owon and I tend to find a bit of a mental jolt when switching between the two UIs, don't let that detract though.


P.S. The Owon VDS1022I is virtually unique in having galvanic isolation (by virtue of only needing standard speed USB 2). I can't think of any USB competitors, regardless of price having the same, due to the relative absence and cost of USB High-speed isolators. You are presumably used to the Rigol chassis being hard grounded anyway (just not through a PC USB port).
« Last Edit: June 14, 2021, 04:42:50 pm by Gyro »
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Online rsjsouza

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #22 on: June 14, 2021, 03:36:02 pm »
Gyro pretty much summed up all the benefits of the Owon - I am a happy owner of a VDS1022I and the isolation is well worth the added cost, mostly for peace of mind.

In addition to all the other aspects (Alt triggering being a really nice one), another one that was pretty compelling was the fact that florentbr's software has become open - in other words, give it a few years and the community can still support the oscilloscope when OSes and other surrounding variables change.

I don't think you will regret it. Good luck!
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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #23 on: June 14, 2021, 05:03:35 pm »
Quote
Ha, you get about!
I am a globetrotter, that's for sure! This will be my 2nd time in the UK but this time I hope to stay for real ;D

Quote
The Owon is ok...
Time to try it out for myself, though I wonder how the open-source software compares. Is it possible to try that out too?

Even considering UK pricing, the Picoscope will be (edit: more than!) twice as much as the OwOn...and honestly, reading a little more, I don't think it's a significant enough upgrade to be able to justify paying that as a student.

Also, I'm sacrificing surprisingly little compared to the Rigol, at least for my needs. I expected to get something that was kind of janky but it looks like it's actually very useable. I was frankly quite surprised that the 1022 is still a relevant product considering its age and it being such a cheapo; the fact it still is is very much a green flag, or perhaps a sign that this industry hasn't progressed that much? Not sure, hmm...

Quote
florentbr's software has become open
Probably a contributor to that was this, though. Definitely a plus for sure!

Quote
galvanic isolation...used to the Rigol chassis being hard grounded anyway
Yeah I am, luckily haven't suffered any accidents in the time I've used the 1054, but it would be a nice safety cushion if I decide to try any sleep-deprived shenanigans.

At the end of the day as long as it's adequate and doesn't make me bash my face against the wall, I'll most likely be fine. Can't be worse than Fritzing constantly crashing on me :palm: and it definitely helps to have realistic expectations for the price.

Speaking of, there's gonna be a taobao sale in two days, so I'll snag the 1022i for cheap then. Thanks for the help, will update once I get it!
 
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Offline Ariamella

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Re: Least crap USB/tablet/handheld oscilloscope
« Reply #24 on: June 24, 2021, 03:30:55 pm »
Got my 1022 in! Bought it for just under $50 too, incredible deal. Decided to spring for the version without isolation in the end. Obligatory pics of the innards:


« Last Edit: June 24, 2021, 03:56:21 pm by Ariamella »
 


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