Author Topic: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?  (Read 22584 times)

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Offline Hammer

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Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« on: February 07, 2015, 08:42:12 am »
I'm aware of the general opinion of them, and of their origins. I know someone who purchased a Lecroy Wave Ace 2024 (he says he paid $2000, but I have my doubts). He never used it, it's still new in the box. He has been trying to sell it for months and is down to asking $600, I told him maybe $400 and he said he would take it.

I'm currently an EE major and this would be my first scope. It would be nice to have one at home but I have access to well-equipped labs 24/7 so it's not critical. He also has a Lecroy function generator and a logic analyzer. These aren't included in the price and I don't have the model yet, but I would imagine they match this unit.

unit can be seen here: http://teledynelecroy.com/oscilloscope/oscilloscopemodel.aspx?modelid=6886

So would you buy this for $400?
 

Offline Psi

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2015, 08:50:56 am »
I dont know anything about that particular brand/model but just looking at the specs it seems very good for $400   (200mhz and 4 channel)

I'm a bit confused about the memory depth, some places it says 1M/2M long memory and other places it says 24k memory.
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Offline Hammer

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2015, 09:01:48 am »
Apparently Lecroy is whoring out their name for their entry models. There was talk about it on this forum a few months back, which can be read here:  https://www.eevblog.com/forum/testgear/chinese-junk-a-provocative-challenge-give-your-best-shot!/msg510598/#msg510598

To quote Wuerstchenhund:
"It's a well known secret that the LeCroy WaveAce Series are Siglent scopes. The original WaveAce 100 Series were Siglent SDS1000CM scopes, and the current the WaveAce 1000 and 2000 Series are Siglent SDS1000CML and SDS1000CFL scopes. All made by Siglent for LeCroy, as confirmed by various sources (incl. LeCroy themselves). In fact, even the firmware is made by Siglent, LeCroy merely provides the name. You can even flash the LeCroy firmware on the equivalent Siglent device.

LeCroy does the same with the WaveStation waveform generators which are rebadged Siglent SDG1000 and SDG5000 devices."
 

Offline rf-loop

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2015, 09:29:59 am »
I dont know anything about that particular brand/model but just looking at the specs it seems very good for $400   (200mhz and 4 channel)

I'm a bit confused about the memory depth, some places it says 1M/2M long memory and other places it says 24k memory.

There is only one place where memory is specified and place is equipment model datasheet.
Can it be more clear:
Quote
Acquisition System
Single-Shot Sample Rate/Ch    2 GS/s on 1 Ch
1 GS/s on 2 Ch
Equivalent Sample Rate    50 GS/s
Memory    24 kpts/Ch on 2 Ch
12 kpts/ch on 4 Ch

It is Siglent higher grade models in SDS1000 series. These are SDS1000CFL models where acquisition (front end - ADC's ) is made very different (and far better) comparing SDS1000DL/CML/CNL models.

Also this 4 channel model have two acquisition groups.
CH1+CH2  and CH3+CH4

Both groups have 2GSa/s for one channel and 1GSa/s for two channel.
Selecting one CH from other group an done from other it have 2 channel with simultaneous 2GSa/s and both have 24k memory.

Memory is not high but it need also know that deep memory is of course nice and very important in some cases but also many times we do not need deep memory at all. Many times even under 50 data points is enough or even less.  It depends just what we are doing.

Do not compare SDS1000CFL models with SDS1000 series other models and even more wrong you go if you look these several totally obsolete/junk "reviews" with some very old HW and FW versions or just reviews what are made by entry level noob  who do not have any experience and knowledge when he take his first oscilloscope out from box and start ranting. These old junk are circulated agen and agen  after months and years and named as some kind of truth. Value of truth do not rise how many times junk is repeated.  There have been also more or less severe FW bugs of course and later these bugs are fixed more or less. 

I have looked many video rewievs where some total noob  is playing with knobs and buttons like lively kid without any knowledge what he is really doing but just wondering what "amazing" things there happend on the screen and then ranting this and that depending his feelings and mood. 
Sometimes it looks that only and alone one motive is get video and flush (upload) it to internet as toilet drain.
Real good value reviews are very extremely rare - there is but they are rare. Some older well experienced peoples have done these but mostly they handle older equipments and they have done lot of work for made good video for teaching or review.  There need be documented signals, all scope settings, FW versions, HW versions and equipment handled as well educated experienced peoples do in normal workshop/lab.  They do not play equipments as sugar-drunk over spirited kid with some thousend feature toybox.


LeCroy price is terrible. (Amazon USD 2804.-)

But this model is not cheap even from original manufacturer Siglent.
SDS1204CFL  list price is (in Europe) still EUR 760.00 (VAT 0).

It have its pros and cons but it depends user individual needs.

« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 10:08:08 am by rf-loop »
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Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2015, 10:04:44 am »
The WaveAce 1000 Series are standard re-badged Siglent SDS1000CNL. The WaveAce 2000 however is a customized (by Siglent) version of the Siglent SDS1000CFL:
http://www.siglent.com/ENs/pdxx.aspx?id=58&T=2&tid=1

Unlike the SDS1000CML/CNL (aka WaveAce 1000) the CFL was pretty expensive for a scope with such low sample memory and not very popular because of that. For the WaveAce 2000 LeCroy ordered a customized version with larger sample memory (1M). However, from what I was told the firmware for the LeCroy and the Siglent are not interchangeable because of that. In addition, the firmware for the CFL (which is also the base for the WaveAce 2000 firmware) hasn't seen many of the bug fixes that went into the Siglent CML/CNL and therefore also into the WaveAce 1000, which would make this an even buggier scope than the WaveAce 1000/Siglent CML/CNL.

I normally would recommend to stay the hell away from these scopes, but on the other side at $400 it *could* be a decent deal for a 4Ch 200MHz scope, provided you know what you're getting into and that you can live with these scopes' problems. On the other side, the Rigol DS1054z costs the same new, and although it offers lower bandwidth and sample rate I'd say that Rigol's firmware (although still buggy) is a bit more mature than the one for these Siglent scopes.

Personally I wouldn't buy it, and would rather save a bit longer so that I could get a good second hand scope (i.e. a LeCroy WaveRunner2) which is much closer to a proper tool and which will serve for many years to come. I also believe that I'd rather buy decent kit in the first place than wasting time with what essentially is closer to a toy, just to replace it later after anyways.

I guess it depends on what you want. If EE is just a hobby then a scope like the WaveAce 2024 is probably good enough at $400. If it's to become a profession then I'd say investing a bit more money for a proper (2nd hand) scope is the better option long-term.

But that's just me being weird.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 10:16:48 am by Wuerstchenhund »
 

Online tautech

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2015, 10:33:07 am »
I'm aware of the general opinion of them, and of their origins.
Apparently Lecroy is whoring out their name for their entry models. There was talk about it on this forum a few months back.....
Welcome to the forum.

Well it seems you've been keeping a bit of an eye on us.  :-//
But how much notice have you really been taking?

Again to quote Wuerstchenhund:
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/testgear/new-lecroy-1ghz-midrange-scope-(wavesurfer-10)/msg519480/#msg519480

And like you need more proof:
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/testgear/siglent's-new-products-sds3000-series-oscilloscopes/msg451211/#msg451211

I'd ask, are these entry level?

If you'd taken the time to study Siglent's site, you just might have also read their claim to fame:
the leading Chinese manufacturer of Oscilloscopes by Volume
There are many re-branded Siglent's, heaven only knows how many, I wouldn't have a clue.

I'll ignore your Whoring comment for now, and add Siglent and LeCroy have an on-going long standing relationship....this is nothing new.

rf-loop's post is very accurate, the 1000CFL series are lacking substantial memory, but the have enough to be adequately useful. A few years ago this was the norm in DSO's.

But, if you wanted to buy the same DSO as a Siglent, you'd pay a lot more than $400.
There are FEW DSO's in this class with 2GS/s sampling.
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Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2015, 12:03:57 pm »
Well it seems you've been keeping a bit of an eye on us.  :-//
But how much notice have you really been taking?

Again to quote Wuerstchenhund:
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/testgear/new-lecroy-1ghz-midrange-scope-(wavesurfer-10)/msg519480/#msg519480

The WaveSurfer 10 is *not* a Siglent made scope.

Quote
And like you need more proof:
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/testgear/siglent's-new-products-sds3000-series-oscilloscopes/msg451211/#msg451211

I'd ask, are these entry level?

You're comparing apples vs oranges here. The SDS3000 (aka WaveSurfer 3000) is not the same as the Siglent rebadges sold by LeCroy. In fact, LeCroy had a major part in the design of that scope (and teached Siglent a few things along the line), and the software is also provided by LeCroy (which is a godsend, really, considering how crap Siglent is with software). Siglent's largest part is acting as a manufacturer for that scope.

This however is pretty much irrelevant regarding the WaveAce 2024 in question which aside from the logo is 100% Siglent and 0% LeCroy.

Quote
If you'd taken the time to study Siglent's site, you just might have also read their claim to fame:
the leading Chinese manufacturer of Oscilloscopes by Volume
There are many re-branded Siglent's, heaven only knows how many, I wouldn't have a clue.

I'll ignore your Whoring comment for now, and add Siglent and LeCroy have an on-going long standing relationship....this is nothing new.

Well, for most part this "long standing relationship" (which only started around 2009 btw) merely consisted in Siglent selling their scopes in black cases to LeCroy who in return signed checks for Siglent. This was only because LeCroy wanted some presence in the entry level market (especially after Agilent came out with their Rigol rebadges) but couldn't be arsed to invest in their own solution (which is understandable, really) while their previous entry level scope (WaveJet 300A, an Iwatsu rebadge) was too expensive.

The WaveAce hasn't exactly had a stellar track record and has really pissed off a number of customers with its bugs of which many Siglent was simply incapable of fixing.

When it came to the WaveSurfer 3000 LeCroy knew that Siglent was a decent hardware manufacturer but that they're pretty poor in terms of design, and for their new entry level WaveSurfer they certainly didn't want to risk pissing off customers again with some half-baked Siglent design, which is why they kept their finger on the hardware and didn't let Siglent even touch the software. The WaveSurfer Series is very important to LeCroy, unlike the entry level WaveAce.

Quote
rf-loop's post is very accurate, the 1000CFL series are lacking substantial memory, but the have enough to be adequately useful. A few years ago this was the norm in DSO's.

I'm not sure what "a few years" are for you but 24kpts was considered very poor 15 years ago already, and for more than 5 years even somewhat decent entry level scopes have 1M or more.

Quote
But, if you wanted to buy the same DSO as a Siglent, you'd pay a lot more than $400.

That is true, and aside from the laughably small memory the reason why no-one bought these scopes except LeCroy and some other re-badger, and the fact that even LeCroy only bought them after Siglent upgraded the sample memory shows what a poor offer the CFL was.

Quote
There are FEW DSO's in this class with 2GS/s sampling.

Maybe, but thanks to the small sample memory the 2GSa/s isn't very useful.

What's even worse for the CFL is that even Siglent's own SDS2000 is now in roughly the same price range as the CFL, while offering 2GSa/s and 28M(?) sample memory.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 12:56:45 pm by Wuerstchenhund »
 

Offline rf-loop

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2015, 01:04:12 pm »
This is not SDS1000CFL
This is not for topic.

But 24k memory.

We do not always need lot of memory.

Here is 4 channel and every channel use 0.07k memory. (70 sample points)

How this go better if it now use 100k or 1M or 100M.

This image other way is nothing but just playing like kid. Only turned all channels on and pseudorandom in and turned measurements and cursors on. Of course this is still image. In live it looks better due to human eye clever filtering.

But always do not need even tektronix some model 2.5k memory, not Siglent CFL 24 or 12k memory.
Memory depth in image just 70 points.  It depends what we do how much memory is needes. It is not at all universal only truth that always need looooot of memory. Just opposite, many times need as small memory as possible. Some times even 15 points is enough (and because points time position travels fast around of signal and update rate is enough it draw still nice picture.

OP: do not think lecroy 2024 can do this. It can not. But 24k memory is still well enough for lot of different use. Of course small memory force scope to drop samplerate when use lower horizontal speed.  It depends... what you are doing if need more or less memory. If look 100MHz signal using example 5ns/div horizontal speed on the scope display in real time how much memory there is needed. If there is 20 horizontal division and 1GSa/s and 5ns/div there need exactly 100points memory for use it as analog scope screen watching detecting with eyes what are going on with signal. Independent of scope brand. It can be Tek, R&S, Keyshit-Agilent-HP, LeCroy, or what ever Rigol, Siglent, Tonghui, GW...


« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 01:39:06 pm by rf-loop »
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Online Dave

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2015, 01:41:06 pm »
Apparently Lecroy is whoring out their name for their entry models.
If it's any consolation to you, LeCroy's expensive models are pretty awful, too. I have yet to use a LeCry scope that does not make me want to chuck it out the window.
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Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2015, 02:06:41 pm »
If it's any consolation to you, LeCroy's expensive models are pretty awful, too. I have yet to use a LeCry scope that does not make me want to chuck it out the window.

Care to elaborate in what ways they're in your opinion "pretty awful"? I'm really curious as in my experience LeCroy's scopes are among the best you can find.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 02:10:37 pm by Wuerstchenhund »
 

Offline rf-loop

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #10 on: February 07, 2015, 02:22:30 pm »
For the WaveAce 2000 LeCroy ordered a customized version with larger sample memory (1M).

Really?

LeCroy Made by Siglent  and available also with Siglent name.
WaveAce 2002   12/24k
WaveAce 2012   12/24k
WaveAce 2022   12/24k
WaveAce 2032   12/24k
WaveAce 2004   12/24k+12/24k
WaveAce 2014   12/24k+12/24k
WaveAce 2024   12/24k+12/24k 
WaveAce 2034   12/24k+12/24k
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Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #11 on: February 07, 2015, 02:35:11 pm »
For the WaveAce 2000 LeCroy ordered a customized version with larger sample memory (1M).

Really?

No, actually they didn't, my bad. Just checked again and you're right, the WaveAce 2000 is just another re-badge job (it seems it was the WaveAce *200* where LeCroy ordered a customized variant, but it seems this wasn't about the memory either).

Sorry for the confusion. I never spent much time with WaveAce scopes, tough, so for those models I can't speak from first hand experience.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 02:39:44 pm by Wuerstchenhund »
 

Online Dave

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2015, 03:35:49 pm »
Care to elaborate in what ways they're in your opinion "pretty awful"? I'm really curious as in my experience LeCroy's scopes are among the best you can find.
Certainly.

User interfaces are their biggest problems.
Dicky knobs: I've used one of the WaveAces in the past and scrolling through serial data would be a nightmare. The horizontal scroll knob was tiny, it was incredibly slow and it had zero acceleration if you spun it fast. It took half a minute of knob spinning to get to the desired location.

Cursors: Don't remember which model it was, but I remember it not being able to turn on both horizontal and vertical cursors at the same time. If you are trying to compare two points on a trace, having both pairs of cursors is crucial. Nope, not this one.

Counter-intuitive settings: Instead of having nice and simple settings, for example three buttons to set up triggering, you have to go into overly complex menus and fiddle with the settings to get anything to show up on the screen.

Retarded memory: This was one of the WaveSurfer MXs models. I probed a signal coming from an FPGA only to have it display an almost flat trace. It took me a couple of minutes to figure out that the sample memory was too shallow to allow any kind of decent measurement. I then finally managed to figure out where to set a larger sample memory and just as I was thinking how stupid it was that the sample memory wasn't at its maximum setting by default, I realized why that was not the case. The scope became abysmally slow and only after a moment or two did the real waveform appear on the screen. Is this what one should expect from a $15k scope?

It's not that they don't work well when you eventually manage to set them up right, it just takes a whole lot of time and frustration to set up something incredibly simple. It just kills productivity and irritates you without a good reason. I have had the chance to play with many scopes over the years, but only LeCroys managed to piss me off every single time.
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Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2015, 05:01:47 pm »
Care to elaborate in what ways they're in your opinion "pretty awful"? I'm really curious as in my experience LeCroy's scopes are among the best you can find.
Certainly.

User interfaces are their biggest problems.

Dicky knobs: I've used one of the WaveAces in the past and scrolling through serial data would be a nightmare. The horizontal scroll knob was tiny, it was incredibly slow and it had zero acceleration if you spun it fast. It took half a minute of knob spinning to get to the desired location.

WaveAce? I though you wanted to tell me about probllems with the more expensive LeCroy scopes? The WaveAce isn't exactly a high end scope, and the hardware and software including the UI is 100% Siglent.

But yes, I vagely remember that the knobs were amongst the compaints with the WaveAce (especially the 100/200 models).

Quote
Cursors: Don't remember which model it was, but I remember it not being able to turn on both horizontal and vertical cursors at the same time. If you are trying to compare two points on a trace, having both pairs of cursors is crucial. Nope, not this one.

Yes, standard cursors means either horizontal or vertical, but if I remember right (never needed both cursors at the same time so I'd need to check) that is the same with Agilent/Keysight scopes.

I'm struggling however to see an application for this. What did you try to achieve?

Quote
Counter-intuitive settings: Instead of having nice and simple settings, for example three buttons to set up triggering, you have to go into overly complex menus and fiddle with the settings to get anything to show up on the screen.

Come on, setting up standard triggering on a LeCroy is child's play, really. LeCroy scopes also have (and had at least since the 9300 Series from the early 90's) hardware knobs/buttons for trigger level and operating mode, as well as a setup button which directly opens up the on-screen menu, and for standard settings it's just another press on the softkey (pre-X-Stream scopes) or the touchscreen (X-Stream scopes). It's not rocket science.

Of course it's getting more complicated for more advanced trigger (SMART Triggers) setups but that's in the nature of these things and equally involving on other scopes, if they even offer such triggers, that is.

As to getting to show something on the screen, there's the Auto Setup button which does exactly that - setting up the scope to get something on the screen which quickly gives you a starting point from where to go where you want.

Quote
Retarded memory: This was one of the WaveSurfer MXs models. I probed a signal coming from an FPGA only to have it display an almost flat trace. It took me a couple of minutes to figure out that the sample memory was too shallow to allow any kind of decent measurement. I then finally managed to figure out where to set a larger sample memory and just as I was thinking how stupid it was that the sample memory wasn't at its maximum setting by default, I realized why that was not the case. The scope became abysmally slow and only after a moment or two did the real waveform appear on the screen. Is this what one should expect from a $15k scope?

The WaveSurfer (M)Xs has automatic sample memory management which is enabled by default and which always uses enough memory to run the acquisition at the highest possible sample rate, so no, the low sample memory setting is certainly not the default for these scopes. It requires manual user action to change the memory settings, which suggests that either you or someone else fiddled with the memory management settings, and I guess you probably also didn't bother to set the scope back to defaults before starting your measurements (or someone has overwritten the default settings with their own). That is user error, not a scope problem.

And I can tell you that these things not only happen with LeCroy scopes. I stopped counting the number of times someone's measurements failed because the previous user has made some changes to the settings and the next user didn't reset it, and the labs I'm working in are predominantly Agilent/Keysight. It also happens because, while EE's generally know very well how to operate a standard scope, many EE's simply fail to recognize that operating a modern high end scope and its advanced capabilities requires that some time is spent learning how to operate the scope properly, but many EE's simply fail to do that. Your story above re. the memory settings illustrates that very well.

Again, why didn't you use Auto Setup? It would have corrected the issue immediately.

Quote
It's not that they don't work well when you eventually manage to set them up right, it just takes a whole lot of time and frustration to set up something incredibly simple. It just kills productivity and irritates you without a good reason. I have had the chance to play with many scopes over the years, but only LeCroys managed to piss me off every single time.

I'm sorry but so far I haven't heard anything that really justifies a statement like this:
If it's any consolation to you, LeCroy's expensive models are pretty awful, too.

What you've described looks very much about user error, i.e. you don't really know how to operate the scope properly. That's not meant as offense, and I've seen many EE's struggling with operating advanced high end scopes especially when they normally use simpler scopes only. But that applies to other scopes as well and is certainly not the fault of the scope.

As I said before, any advanced scope requires that the user gets acustomed with how it is operated before working with it. These are no standard scopes with a few buttons that all do more or less the same, they are pretty much advanced signal analyzers that expect the user knows what he does and how the thing operates.

You won't get very far with try & error on these scopes.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 05:32:20 pm by Wuerstchenhund »
 

Offline Hammer

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2015, 05:47:20 pm »
Welcome to the forum.

Well it seems you've been keeping a bit of an eye on us.  :-//
But how much notice have you really been taking?

Thanks for all the replies. As this opportunity presented itself yesterday, I was doing research last night into this particular scope and was unable to find much. Eventually I found this forum and did a search for Wave Ace. I found discussions dating back several years, and I read them all. So yes, I have been spying on you for years... but only since yesterday (lol).

Quote from: Wuerstchenhund
I guess it depends on what you want. If EE is just a hobby then a scope like the WaveAce 2024 is probably good enough at $400. If it's to become a profession then I'd say investing a bit more money for a proper (2nd hand) scope is the better option long-term.

It' certainly to become a profession. I have very little doubt that this scope would meet my immediate needs. I am also aware that $400 is chump change when we are talking about buying a scope. As I have no income outside of grants / scholarships, it's more than I would like to part with at the moment. A high end scope is quite a few years away for me and the draw of immediate gratification is strong. I would love to have my own scope, but cost is a concern and likely will be for some time. (I start my Senior year in the fall and intend to stay for a masters)

Quote from: rf-loop
LeCroy price is terrible. (Amazon USD 2804.-)

But this model is not cheap even from original manufacturer Siglent.
SDS1204CFL  list price is (in Europe) still EUR 760.00 (VAT 0).

I wasn't able to find pricing on that specific model, so thank you. I suppose that ultimately I am trying to determine if this is a great deal or not. I would like a scope, but currently it would serve as a (significant) convenience rather than fulfilling a necessity. If this is a $1,000 scope I can grab for $400, I would take advantage of the opportunity. If this is a pretty good deal on a $500 scope, I would pass. At this point, I don't have enough knowledge to make that determination, so I'm hoping you guys can point me in the right direction.

Thanks again
 

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2015, 08:07:55 pm »
Hammer, despite it's shortcomings, you won't get a 4 Ch 200 MHz DSO with 2 GSa/s anywhere for that money.
In your position grab it, gain more experience and go on to better things.

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Offline Maxlor

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #16 on: February 07, 2015, 08:28:37 pm »
Hammer, despite it's shortcomings, you won't get a 4 Ch 200 MHz DSO with 2 GSa/s anywhere for that money.
In your position grab it, gain more experience and go on to better things.
True. But high bandwidth isn't the only thing that's relevant. For the things I do, I find that memory is more important to me by far than bandwidth. So with a $400 budget, I'd go for the 1054Z, nobrainer. But the rub is, it's the things I do. What you do will be different, and so will your requirements. Maybe figuring out your requirements (or, well, preferences) would be a good start, and aligning that with the pro/cons of your options. If you don't know yet because you're unsure what you'll be doing in the next years, just pick a hobby project that seems interesting to you, and use that as a basis, maybe?
 

Online tautech

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #17 on: February 07, 2015, 08:37:43 pm »
Hammer, despite it's shortcomings, you won't get a 4 Ch 200 MHz DSO with 2 GSa/s anywhere for that money.
In your position grab it, gain more experience and go on to better things.
True. But high bandwidth isn't the only thing that's relevant. For the things I do, I find that memory is more important to me by far than bandwidth. So with a $400 budget, I'd go for the 1054Z, nobrainer. But the rub is, it's the things I do. What you do will be different, and so will your requirements. Maybe figuring out your requirements (or, well, preferences) would be a good start, and aligning that with the pro/cons of your options. If you don't know yet because you're unsure what you'll be doing in the next years, just pick a hobby project that seems interesting to you, and use that as a basis, maybe?
True, BUT the 1054z is hamstrung by having only 1 GSa/s to share over 4 channels.
At best only 1/2 the sampling of the LeCroy.
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Offline joeqsmith

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #18 on: February 07, 2015, 08:52:17 pm »
Care to elaborate in what ways they're in your opinion "pretty awful"? I'm really curious as in my experience LeCroy's scopes are among the best you can find.
Certainly.

User interfaces are their biggest problems.
Dicky knobs: I've used one of the WaveAces in the past and scrolling through serial data would be a nightmare. The horizontal scroll knob was tiny, it was incredibly slow and it had zero acceleration if you spun it fast. It took half a minute of knob spinning to get to the desired location.

Cursors: Don't remember which model it was, but I remember it not being able to turn on both horizontal and vertical cursors at the same time. If you are trying to compare two points on a trace, having both pairs of cursors is crucial. Nope, not this one.

Counter-intuitive settings: Instead of having nice and simple settings, for example three buttons to set up triggering, you have to go into overly complex menus and fiddle with the settings to get anything to show up on the screen.

It's not that they don't work well when you eventually manage to set them up right, it just takes a whole lot of time and frustration to set up something incredibly simple. It just kills productivity and irritates you without a good reason. I have had the chance to play with many scopes over the years, but only LeCroys managed to piss me off every single time.

I tried to use a newer low end LeCroy at work a few months back.   I agree with Dave.  That UI was one of the worst.  I was just trying to do a real simple quick measurement and ended up grabbing an old Tek.   If the UI interferes is so bad I can't get simple work done without finding the manual for it, this equipment is worthless to me.     


WaveAce? I though you wanted to tell me about probllems with the more expensive LeCroy scopes? The WaveAce isn't exactly a high end scope, and the hardware and software including the UI is 100% Siglent.

As I said before, any advanced scope requires that the user gets acustomed with how it is operated before working with it. These are no standard scopes with a few buttons that all do more or less the same, they are pretty much advanced signal analyzers that expect the user knows what he does and how the thing operates.

Agree with above as well.  I personally like both my 8500A and my antique 7200s UIs.  Both have a lot of features but they are easy to figure out and get setup (and need to be because their manuals are not always the best!).   

Personally, OP, I would  buy it if I were looking for a first DSO as long as it all checks out.       


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Offline nctnico

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #19 on: February 07, 2015, 09:09:42 pm »
If I step into an unknown car I have trouble finding out where the knobs for certain functions are. Does that mean the car is bad or useless?

IMHO bitching about an oscilloscope while not willing to read the manual says more about the person than the oscilloscope.
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline Wuerstchenhund

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #20 on: February 07, 2015, 09:11:33 pm »
I tried to use a newer low end LeCroy at work a few months back.   I agree with Dave. That UI was one of the worst.

But Dave was talking about the higher end models. There's no doubt that LeCroy's low end sucks.

Quote
I was just trying to do a real simple quick measurement and ended up grabbing an old Tek.   If the UI interferes is so bad I can't get simple work done without finding the manual for it, this equipment is worthless to me.

Remember what scope this was? The WaveAce is typical Siglent but since these scopes are primitive they are pretty easy to operate. The Iwatsu-regadge WaveJet however has a pretty old-fashioned UI which I personally found pretty unintuitive. It therefore wouldn't surprise me if it was a WaveJet.

Quote
Agree with above as well.  I personally like both my 8500A and my antique 7200s UIs.  Both have a lot of features but they are easy to figure out and get setup (and need to be because their manuals are not always the best!).
   

Well, modern LeCroy scopes (WaveSurfer and up) have exactly the same UI as your WM8500A, just with a different color scheme (charcoal instead of the blue-ish of older scopes), and as you say it's pretty easy to operate if you spend a bit of time to familiarize yourself with it.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2015, 09:13:23 pm by Wuerstchenhund »
 

Online Dave

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #21 on: February 07, 2015, 10:15:17 pm »
WaveAce? I though you wanted to tell me about probllems with the more expensive LeCroy scopes? The WaveAce isn't exactly a high end scope, and the hardware and software including the UI is 100% Siglent.
Nope, had those mixed up. It certainly wasn't a cheapie.
I've tried searching for the model, it believe it was WaveSurfer 424 (by the looks of the images I found online). It's not exactly a new model, though.

I'm struggling however to see an application for [dual cursors]. What did you try to achieve?
Change of voltage over defined period of time, for example.
Another example would be finding the time constant of an exponential signal. Find the 63% point with vertical cursors and then move the horizontal ones to intersect that and measure the time interval.

Come on, setting up standard triggering on a LeCroy is child's play, really. /.../ It's not rocket science.
I only became somewhat familiar with the menus once I took the time to fiddle with them a bit and explore the possibilities. On many other scopes it would just work, no fuss, straight to taking measurements. That's what intuitive user interfaces are all about.

The WaveSurfer (M)Xs has automatic sample memory management which is enabled by default and which always uses enough memory to run the acquisition at the highest possible sample rate, so no, the low sample memory setting is certainly not the default for these scopes. /.../ That is user error, not a scope problem.
Yep, wasn't my scope, I just borrowed it for a couple of measurements. Still doesn't explain why it slowed down when I set a large sample memory.

As I said before, any advanced scope requires that the user gets acustomed with how it is operated before working with it. These are no standard scopes with a few buttons that all do more or less the same, they are pretty much advanced signal analyzers that expect the user knows what he does and how the thing operates.
You won't get very far with try & error on these scopes.
Here's the thing: The first time I used an Agilent DSO7000 series scope (I realize it's not quite the same caliber of scope as an MXs, but it still is no joke), I felt right at home. The commands were exactly where I expected them to be and I had the desired image on the screen in no time. That is what I consider an intuitive user interface. Having to fiddle with the commands for 20 minutes to get something useful on the screen is not my idea of a decent instrument.

I'm sorry but so far I haven't heard anything that really justifies a statement like this:
If it's any consolation to you, LeCroy's expensive models are pretty awful, too.
I stand by my statement, I truly believe that they are atrocious.
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Offline digsys

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #22 on: February 07, 2015, 10:46:50 pm »
Another vote for LeCroys (not Wave Ace). I threw out all my HPs / Teks etc years ago and never looked back. Looking for my next one.
Easy to setup, excellent triggering etc etc . Maybe hints of sour grapes surfacing :-) . 2nd hand LeCroys are an absolute bargain !
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Offline joeqsmith

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #23 on: February 07, 2015, 10:49:44 pm »
If I step into an unknown car I have trouble finding out where the knobs for certain functions are. Does that mean the car is bad or useless?

IMHO bitching about an oscilloscope while not willing to read the manual says more about the person than the oscilloscope.

Imagine buying a new car, and before going for a test drive asking for the manual?   Who does this?   :palm:  Sure I may not know how to set the clock or clear the oil change timer but I expect to be able to drive it.     Of course, if you need the manual, we may not want you or your car on the roads!   

Back to DSOs....

I tried to use a newer low end LeCroy at work a few months back.   I agree with Dave. That UI was one of the worst.

But Dave was talking about the higher end models. There's no doubt that LeCroy's low end sucks.

Remember what scope this was? The WaveAce is typical Siglent but since these scopes are primitive they are pretty easy to operate. The Iwatsu-regadge WaveJet however has a pretty old-fashioned UI which I personally found pretty unintuitive. It therefore wouldn't surprise me if it was a WaveJet.

If their new WavePro, WaveMaster, LabMaster etc run like the X-Stream, that was a smart move on their part.   IMO, that's not a bad UI at all as complex as it is.   I'll be 100 years old before I can afford the WaveExpert for home use.  :-DD   

Looking at eBay, it may have been a WaveJet.  Next time I see it, I'll check it out.   

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Offline TunerSandwich

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Re: Should I buy a Lecroy Wave Ace?
« Reply #24 on: February 08, 2015, 08:01:09 am »
NO

I was given one of these as a demo and I thought it might be a nice small /portable "beater" scope. After two hours of fiddling with it I wanted to slash my wrists. The amount of time it took to do simple things was infuriating.

However my experience with my WS MXi has been noting but beyond expectation. It is simply the best scope I have used for my needs. Amazingly fast and accurate triggering setup. Awesome cursor set up (dedicated cursor control section) and analysis function far beyond the Agilent it replaced. My specific unit is also very accurate and easily meets manufacturer specs, even though its over 5 years old....

Avoid the wave ace like the plague and try and save a few more dollars for a "better" model...or grab a uses DS2000 from Rigol. That scope is far from perfect but light years better than the wave ace.

The wave ace is a terrible "beginners scope" because it will frustrate you to the point of not being able to learn anything. You will just want to give up on your project and get plastered to take your mind away from all the negative vibes the wave ace created. Its THAT bad
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