Products > Test Equipment

Should I buy an oscilloscope ?

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Yes, Tektronix have already been ridiculed over this scope. Note, however, that nobody was recommending the TBS1000 series over the DS1052E. Hydrawerk was recommending the DS1104B over the DS1052E, however, apparently based on the number of knobs.

Well, it is difficult to find a perfect cheap scope... Then consider some GW Instek... It has 2MB memory, but no zoom (delayed timebase) mode, that Rigol has. Maybe GDS-1102A-U.
But it is not possible to switch off the right on screen menu.  >:(

Guys, I am not an engineer, but a 15 year old hobbyist, aiming, to become one. And I am not that rich either. I have a budget of USD 350-400. So please give me one answer, because this is getting more and more confusing.....


So you want one answer? Well let's take a look at what information you provided us: We know that you're possibly interested in a scope, you have $350 to $400 and that you're a hobbyist looking to become an engineer. After reading all other posts in this thread, I was unable to find any more concrete information.

So we don't know what type of projects you're going to be working on and what kind of projects you are working on. Therefore we can't give you a sound recommendation for a scope since we don't really know what feature is THE most important for you. I do understand that you may not know this yourself at this moment, so you may have to settle with recommendation of lower quality.

For example my scope has "large" memory (10 Msamles per channel), but it has no tools to search the memory, meaning that I have to capture interesting event, then zoom out using timebase setting, move the center of the screen to potentially interesting location and then zoom back in to see what's happening. So far this has worked fine for me since the point of interest is usually obviously visible, but say if I had to hunt down a glitch in digital communication, I'd have to spend quite a lot of time rewinding the capture memory on the screen using a little knob that moves the data at low speed. This could  be a deal-breaker for many but it isn't for me.

Then there's the other factor as well: You asked people for opinion and people here can't agree on what exactly is the best solution. This is normal and is to be expected, especially if you're going to be an engineer in the future. In fact many people may feel very strongly about their opinion which would lead to even more argument and even less clear "general" opinion.

After all that, there's also the local stuff too. How are you going to get service for a new scope? Which companies will provide local repairs and which will not? For example shipping a scope to manufacturer can be a significant fraction of its price, if you have to pay for it. If you can choose between a scope with with local support and one supported from China, it may be better to spend a bit more money on one with local support.

In the end, there you may even discover that there isn't a perfect solution and that you'll have to live with one which is less than perfect.  Also keep in mind that any scope you buy now will be relatively old by the time you get to engineering school and while it will most likely be usable, it will be much less capable than scopes which will be available at that date.

I got mine analog dual channel 2Mhz, (if i remember correctly) scope from school, free. Its bit old and stuff, but works fine. But i'm looking to buy digital one because of memory and other advantages too.


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