Author Topic: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread  (Read 1817858 times)

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Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10975 on: May 21, 2018, 08:53:15 am »
Yeah I have to agree. While the DS1054Z is crowed around here as the bee's knees for bottom end DSOs there are too many compromises not to make it frustrating to use. It's noisy, laggy, the UI is crap, the controls are soggy and the probes are just shit. You can get the job done but it's like living in a snake pit.

If I'm honest I'm finding it hard to need a DSO. For digital stuff a Saleae does the job. Really slow stuff, a logging DMM does a beter job as it has some proper measurement resolution (U1241C does 40 readings per second at 10,000 count resolution).

And for that twilight zone in the middle, where the DSO usually wins, the trick is to make your one shot event repetitive! Usually employing the function generator, a BJT and a couple of resistors to accomplish that.
 

Offline BravoV

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10976 on: May 21, 2018, 09:19:21 am »
DS1054Z is more suitable as educational or learning tool, for advanced users or experienced ones, usually they had tasted scopes (analog or more advanced DSO) and probably also digital domain only tools like logic analyzers, hence it tastes so plain or even sometimes sour.  ;D

As an enthusiast, I'm lucky enough to own these, hence I can understand the gripe.

« Last Edit: May 21, 2018, 09:22:59 am by BravoV »
 

Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10977 on: May 21, 2018, 09:22:14 am »
This is true. I've been spoiled by the good stuff :)
 

Offline Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10978 on: May 21, 2018, 09:27:17 am »
One of the advantages of the DS1054Z has to the size of the screen?
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Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10979 on: May 21, 2018, 09:30:49 am »
It's not all that big really. Think Tescos Value Android tablet.

Some of the higher end scopes have a VGA port on the back so you can get a vey big screen :D
 

Offline BravoV

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10980 on: May 21, 2018, 09:33:40 am »
Yeah, looking at above comparisons, the DS1054Z screen still big, especially for analog scope aficionados fanatics.  :-DD

Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10981 on: May 21, 2018, 09:35:45 am »
Problem is half of it is wasted with menus and decorations. Here's a screenshot off my old one, fixing its replacement:

 

Offline BravoV

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10982 on: May 21, 2018, 09:37:18 am »
Problem is half of it is wasted with menus and decorations. Here's a screenshot off my old one, fixing its replacement:

But it has colors  and can be freezed as youngsters said & cheered  ... and yes, you ... grumpy old man.  :-DD

And also within the same box, it can display the "H" as in the "Hello world." spitting out from my Arduino I2C line.  >:D
« Last Edit: May 21, 2018, 09:41:35 am by BravoV »
 

Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10983 on: May 21, 2018, 09:42:09 am »
You can freeze an analogue scope. Turn the intensity up, stare at it for 10 seconds then shut your eyes  :-DD

As for Arduino, don’t get me started on that :)

Damn I am a grumpy old man :D
 

Offline Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10984 on: May 21, 2018, 09:56:48 am »
Personally I quite grumpy old men, especially when they are nearly always right and nice with it, hell I'm one of them myself. :-DD
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Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10985 on: May 21, 2018, 11:10:01 am »
Yeah I have to agree. While the DS1054Z is crowed around here as the bee's knees for bottom end DSOs there are too many compromises not to make it frustrating to use. It's noisy, laggy, the UI is crap, the controls are soggy and the probes are just shit. You can get the job done but it's like living in a snake pit.

If I'm honest I'm finding it hard to need a DSO. For digital stuff a Saleae does the job. Really slow stuff, a logging DMM does a beter job as it has some proper measurement resolution (U1241C does 40 readings per second at 10,000 count resolution).

And for that twilight zone in the middle, where the DSO usually wins, the trick is to make your one shot event repetitive! Usually employing the function generator, a BJT and a couple of resistors to accomplish that.

Just so. Add in "thoughtful design and implementation strategy to make it easier" - and many more tools can be the right tool for the job.

The only places where I've really needed a DSO are for PSU switch-on transients and the like. In one particularly pernicious case (a Tek 485) only one test could be done per 12 hours! Such cases usually only need a "slow" scope, e.g. my Digilent Analog Discovery, which includes an AWG, pattern generator, primitive logic analyser, spectrum analyser, network analyser.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
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Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10986 on: May 21, 2018, 11:14:34 am »
DS1054Z is more suitable as educational or learning tool, for advanced users or experienced ones, usually they had tasted scopes (analog or more advanced DSO) and probably also digital domain only tools like logic analyzers, hence it tastes so plain or even sometimes sour.  ;D

My experience for beginners is the opposite. Beginners find it easier to use analogue scopes because:
  • all the controls are on the front panel; none are invisibly hidden within a menuing system
  • there's instant feedback to control twiddling
  • they don't need to understand the subtleties of when to join or not to join the dots, and when to use/avoid sinx/x interpolation, etc etc
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's 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 tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10987 on: May 21, 2018, 11:16:23 am »
You can freeze an analogue scope. Turn the intensity up, stare at it for 10 seconds then shut your eyes  :-DD

You don't even need to do that! Use an analogue storage scope :) Oh, the "fun" we had as youngsters :(
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's 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
 

Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10988 on: May 21, 2018, 11:24:01 am »
Yeah I have to agree. While the DS1054Z is crowed around here as the bee's knees for bottom end DSOs there are too many compromises not to make it frustrating to use. It's noisy, laggy, the UI is crap, the controls are soggy and the probes are just shit. You can get the job done but it's like living in a snake pit.

If I'm honest I'm finding it hard to need a DSO. For digital stuff a Saleae does the job. Really slow stuff, a logging DMM does a beter job as it has some proper measurement resolution (U1241C does 40 readings per second at 10,000 count resolution).

And for that twilight zone in the middle, where the DSO usually wins, the trick is to make your one shot event repetitive! Usually employing the function generator, a BJT and a couple of resistors to accomplish that.

Just so. Add in "thoughtful design and implementation strategy to make it easier" - and many more tools can be the right tool for the job.

The only places where I've really needed a DSO are for PSU switch-on transients and the like. In one particularly pernicious case (a Tek 485) only one test could be done per 12 hours! Such cases usually only need a "slow" scope, e.g. my Digilent Analog Discovery, which includes an AWG, pattern generator, primitive logic analyser, spectrum analyser, network analyser.

Yes rare events are really the best use case for the DSO. That's one reason I liked the HP 546xx scopes. They felt like an analogue scope to use as they were tuned for repetitive events. They had a 2MHz single shot bandwidth which was enough to catch and trigger on transients and one-off events. Plus tetris when you're bored.

I have considered an Analog Discovery myself actually. It's a USB swiss army knife. I'm slightly worried about how fragile it looks from an electrical perspective though.

DS1054Z is more suitable as educational or learning tool, for advanced users or experienced ones, usually they had tasted scopes (analog or more advanced DSO) and probably also digital domain only tools like logic analyzers, hence it tastes so plain or even sometimes sour.  ;D

My experience for beginners is the opposite. Beginners find it easier to use analogue scopes because:
  • all the controls are on the front panel; none are invisibly hidden within a menuing system
  • there's instant feedback to control twiddling
  • they don't need to understand the subtleties of when to join or not to join the dots, and when to use/avoid sinx/x interpolation, etc etc

Actually I agree there. I recently had the opportunity to sit in front of a mid-range Rigol unit with an 3rd year EE student and he didn't know how to drive it. Actually the whole experience was quite worrying but that's another thread.

You can freeze an analogue scope. Turn the intensity up, stare at it for 10 seconds then shut your eyes  :-DD

You don't even need to do that! Use an analogue storage scope :) Oh, the "fun" we had as youngsters :(

I've not used one in ernest apart from playing with an old Tek 7000 storage mainframe many years ago at university. I was told to leave it alone so I didn't bugger the storage tube up. Jim Williams used a lot of them in his literature however. Telequipment DM63's come up one ebay regularly for virtually nothing so I might grab one to play with. I know how they work and how to use them; just never had the opportunity to do so.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2018, 11:25:56 am by bd139 »
 

Offline Berni

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10989 on: May 21, 2018, 11:25:47 am »
Or this being the TEA group you can go on your auction site of choice and look for any of those old analog combo scopes with memory. Extra points if it uses a charge coupled device as its its storage rather than digital bits.
 

Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10990 on: May 21, 2018, 11:26:24 am »
That's true. Ex PM3315 owner here. That had CCD storage.
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10991 on: May 21, 2018, 11:28:17 am »
One of the best satirical sites around at the moment is News Thump. Most of the articles are overtly political and so are (rightly) off-limits in this forum.

However, there is one that is just too close to the knuckle for the denizens of this thread: http://newsthump.com/2018/05/21/man-decides-to-keep-box-of-cables-hes-has-since-2002-for-another-year/
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's 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 tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10992 on: May 21, 2018, 11:30:01 am »
Or this being the TEA group you can go on your auction site of choice and look for any of those old analog combo scopes with memory. Extra points if it uses a charge coupled device as its its storage rather than digital bits.

Those are the kind of thing that gave digitising scopes a bad name :) "Long buffers and peak detect? What are they?"
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's 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
 

Online beanflying

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10993 on: May 21, 2018, 11:30:38 am »
Personally I quite grumpy old men, especially when they are nearly always right and nice with it, hell I'm one of them myself. :-DD

I have a notable birthday coming up time to work on my grumpy  :-DD

TEA related at last. DIY 1K, 10K, and 100k 0.1% Vishay Decade box to go with my commercial lower resistance boxes.
Coffee, Food, R/C and electronics nerd in no particular order :)
 

Offline tggzzz

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10994 on: May 21, 2018, 11:33:21 am »
You can freeze an analogue scope. Turn the intensity up, stare at it for 10 seconds then shut your eyes  :-DD

You don't even need to do that! Use an analogue storage scope :) Oh, the "fun" we had as youngsters :(

I've not used one in ernest apart from playing with an old Tek 7000 storage mainframe many years ago at university. I was told to leave it alone so I didn't bugger the storage tube up. Jim Williams used a lot of them in his literature however. Telequipment DM63's come up one ebay regularly for virtually nothing so I might grab one to play with. I know how they work and how to use them; just never had the opportunity to do so.

My local hackspace has a DM63, the only dual-beam scope I've seen. It is quite nice, or would be if I bothered to replace the main DC filter cap to eliminate the 100Hz intensity modulation.

Analogue storage scopes always were a pain in the backside, and you only used them because there was no alternative.
There are lies, damned lies, statistics - and ADC/DAC specs.
Glider pilot's 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 Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10995 on: May 21, 2018, 11:52:16 am »

Glorious sunshine here. The only flying machine around here was eyeing up the things I dug up!

Only the one Robin? We have 2 of these lovely birds and they are very tame as well, despite having 2 cats to scare them off.  :-DD
Who let Murphy in?
 

Online bd139

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10996 on: May 21, 2018, 11:56:09 am »
Yes it’s london. It stabbed the other robin.

Something I ordered in September from RS just turned up. Was a capacitor. Can’t remember what it was for now though. 
 

Offline Berni

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10997 on: May 21, 2018, 11:59:44 am »
One of the best satirical sites around at the moment is News Thump. Most of the articles are overtly political and so are (rightly) off-limits in this forum.

However, there is one that is just too close to the knuckle for the denizens of this thread: http://newsthump.com/2018/05/21/man-decides-to-keep-box-of-cables-hes-has-since-2002-for-another-year/

He knows how its done, you never know when you might need a strange cable to connect something.

Who knows maybe there are two lug triax BNCs in there.I had trouble finding those even on ebay... and payed way too much money for them once i did.
 

Offline Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10998 on: May 21, 2018, 12:36:38 pm »
...and they weren't that far advanced when the 3478A's were made?

Yes they were. The remote calibration procedure is in the service manual.

The way most commercial cal labs process multimeters with a GPIB interface is just to hook them up to the calibrator with a set of leads, plug GPIB into a computer that drives both the calibrator and DMM, and press 'GO'. The computer identifies the DMM automatically over GPIB and then runs the whole process by 'magic'. You buy the software from your calibrator vendor. Fluke have MET/CAL, Wavetek/Datron used to have something similar and so on.
So which software should RS be using for the 3478 then, thats the question or could they be trying to wing it?

Generally things like MET/CAL have built in libraries of cal procedures for a selection of (generally more popular) instruments and a scripting language that you can use to add your own procedures for other instruments. You can see the list of built in procedures for MET/CAL at https://assets.fluke.com/metcalproc/html/procedure_list.html and, spoiler alert, the HP 3478A cal procedures are included for the Fluke 5520, 5700, and 5725 calibrators.
Just had a chat with the engineer who is doing the calibration on my meter and it seems that they were not aware of this MET/CAL software despite having and using a Fluke 5725 calibrator. Also seemed unaware of the fact that the meter was reading OK prior to the accident while replacing the Lithium battery to retain the Cal-Data, despite me filling that info in on the booking in form and was also unaware that I had emailed them 4 photos of the meter connected to my AD584-M reference module just before replacing the battery which shows it was working perfectly OK prior to then.

He is now going to look on the Fluke website about getting the required data to calibrate the 3478A. The thing that I find a bit to swallow though is the fact that they seem to be struggling to calibrate and or have the required means to calibrate what must have been one of the main stays in bench meters for a few years, surely someone in RS (its not a small operation covering some 48,320 sq metres of building space and much of that is on multiple floors), has come across a 3478A before??

If I had known before that RS would be struggling like this, I would have popped into Calmet Laboratorys personally and let them do it, even if they are more expensive, they were aware of the meter when bd139 spoke to them, unlike the person in RS I spoke to the first time who had to go ask someone else about it.  :palm:

I'll keep my fingers crossed that I actually get a working and calibrated meter back at the end of all this but at the moment RS have slipped of the pedestal that I have always thought they perched on.

Whats happens next if they can't do it and return it to me uncalibrated, I know that they have made many attempts to do it but in the end I paid for a proper calibration so I would hope that they refund me.


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« Last Edit: May 21, 2018, 10:35:26 pm by Specmaster »
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Offline Specmaster

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Re: Test Equipment Anonymous (TEA) group therapy thread
« Reply #10999 on: May 21, 2018, 12:39:38 pm »
Yes it’s london. It stabbed the other robin.

Something I ordered in September from RS just turned up. Was a capacitor. Can’t remember what it was for now though.
Yes it’s london. It stabbed the other robin.  :-DD :-DD :-DD Good one.
Who let Murphy in?
 


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