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robosilo
01-16-2013, 04:27 AM
My Fluke Scopemeter 190 has been an invaluable tool since i purchased it used about 5 years ago. I've used it on all of my digital electronics projects many of which involved my little Taig desktop CNC machine. But all good things must come to an end and although it still functions, my little scopemeter is just not as capable as i need it to be in this modern age. I've been looking at the Rigol 1052 as a replacement. It has 2 analog channels + 16 logic channels which is great for monitoring serial signals and anything with a clock signal. I used a very nice 4 channel Agilent at my last job but i have a bit of sticker shock for that brand. Can anyone vouch for the Rigol brand or suggest another brand/model?

thanks

batt-man
01-16-2013, 04:37 AM
The rigol 1052 is used a lot in the hobby electronics world (and quite a few companies as well). very good bit of kit for the money.

Check out the reviews section of www.eevblog.com and you'll see quite a lot written about this scope...

Cheers
Batt

PS - no relation to rigol other than a happy end-user from time-to-time...

J Tiers
01-16-2013, 08:37 AM
The tek THS720 and 730 are very nice.... portable, tons of internal measurements, DMM included, and a LOT more bandwidth that the "Scopemeter", which is only 10 or 20 mHz, IIRC.

Used on Ebay they are around 500 bucks.... too bad I don't "DO" ebay..... We have the scopes at work, and they are quite nice, especially the 730.

Isolated channels, too, you can look at the high side gate drive on a 230V unit and never worry......!

Gunney
01-16-2013, 10:13 AM
For the money, I've been happy with an Instek I bought a few years ago. It was quite inexpensive and probably not as "professional-grade" as Tek or Fluke, but it suits my needs.

JoeBean
01-16-2013, 11:08 AM
The DS1052E is a decent scope for the price, and may be moddable to 100mhz depending on the software version:
http://www.eevblog.com/forum/blog/changing-the-rigol-ds1052e-to-ds1102e-using-usb-the-dummy-guide/
Similarly, Hantek/Tekway DS05102/DST1102 is hackable to 200mhz:
http://www.eevblog.com/forum/chat/hantek-tekway-dso-hack-get-200mhz-bw-for-free/

george4657
01-16-2013, 11:26 AM
I have a Hitachi 60mhz scope that I love but I wanted a storage scope. I went for the Owen SDS7102V for $429 delivered. Its a 100Mhz scope with a 1Gig sample rate. I went for this because it has a 10 Meg sample storage and a 800 x 600 screen. The advantage over the analog scope is I can lock a large sample then look at the signal sampled at 1Ghz.
The newest firmware on this scope has fixed problems you will see in some reviews.

George

halac
01-16-2013, 01:05 PM
Having been in the test instrument calibration field for over 28 years I can only recommend Tektronix. They are reliable and maintain their accuracy over a long period of time.

I can also not recommend HP/Agilent, B+K, LeCroy, or Hitachi. Seems like everytime one of those came into the shop they needed adjustments and/or repair. Just my opinion though from my experiences over the years.

taydin
01-16-2013, 04:09 PM
I will second the Tektronix recommendation. Have a TDS3034B and it is a pleasure to use. But these aren't priced to hobbyist budgets. Some of the things that set a professional scope like Tektronix apart from the hobbyist type scopes are:

- Very high display refresh rate. You see and get a feel for the signal in real time, just like an analog scope.
- High bandwidth
- High quality, and task specific special probes.
- The variety of triggering modes.
- Calibration certificates.

wb2vsj
01-16-2013, 08:51 PM
I have a friend who purchased one of the Rigol Spectrum Analyzers last June. Very nice unit. So if their scopes are similar to that SA in quality, you won't be disappointed.

Whatever you do get, post back on how you like it.

Your 190 was a lot nicer (i.e. COLOR!) than the 105B I used to use :)

J Tiers
01-16-2013, 08:54 PM
Some of the things that set a professional scope like Tektronix apart from the hobbyist type scopes are:


- The variety of triggering modes.


That's the one that does it...... Want to trigger if one pulse in a continuous pulse train is shorter than the others? Or longer than "X" time? The Tek digital scopes, especially the 730 I mentioned, will do that sort of thing. There are 6 "screens" of trigger modes on the THS730, I don't recall what they all are even though I have used a lot of them from time to time.

Want to know the actual DC level? The RMS value of the waveform? You can get it.

Try that stuff on your "chinese special"...... Which will NOT have isolated inputs, so everything is ground referenced......

wb2vsj
01-16-2013, 10:09 PM
That's the one that does it...... Want to trigger if one pulse in a continuous pulse train is shorter than the others? Or longer than "X" time? The Tek digital scopes, especially the 730 I mentioned, will do that sort of thing. There are 6 "screens" of trigger modes on the THS730, I don't recall what they all are even though I have used a lot of them from time to time.

Want to know the actual DC level? The RMS value of the waveform? You can get it.

Try that stuff on your "chinese special"...... Which will NOT have isolated inputs, so everything is ground referenced......

JT, do you know of a good (i.e. inexpensive) place to get the replacement "Stick" battery those Teks use? Mine is shot and I'm tempted to build one up from tabbed Nicads.

Thanks

Walt

J Tiers
01-16-2013, 10:10 PM
JT, do you know of a good (i.e. inexpensive) place to get the replacement "Stick" battery those Teks use? Mine is shot and I'm tempted to build one up from tabbed Nicads.

Thanks

Walt

Howzabout "Batteries Plus"? We got one from there, and it seems to work..... as long as it isn't in the one that has the "shot" charger.

robosilo
01-16-2013, 11:08 PM
Thanks for all this information. I'm narrowing it down to the Rigol 1052D and the Owon SDS7102 or MSO7102. Although i wish i could afford a Tektronix or Agilent, it's just not in the budget. I'm also moving away from a handheld unit. The fluke scopemeter was purchased because it was a great deal that just happened to be portable. The Owon MSO has the logic analyzer but not great memory depth and the SDS series has great memory depth but no logic analyzer and the Rigol seems to be in the middle. It has 1Mpoint memory depth and a 16 channel logic analyzer. The prices are all fair so it will come down to features. I'm leaning towards the Rigol but I'll see how i feel in a few days after i have a good think about it. Also, I didn't see an Owon distributor in the U.S.

beanbag
01-17-2013, 02:22 AM
http://www.saelig.com/MFR00062/PSBE100008.htm

Owon distributor in New York.

I am leaning towards the Owon because it has such a nice display

MrSleepy
01-17-2013, 06:31 AM
There are 6 "screens" of trigger modes on the THS730, I don't recall what they all are even though I have used a lot of them from time to time.

Want to know the actual DC level? The RMS value of the waveform? You can get it.

Try that stuff on your "chinese special"...... Which will NOT have isolated inputs, so everything is ground referenced......

A quick read of any of the manuals for the "chinese specials" will show that they have the capabilities you mention... the few Rigol (http://www.rigol.com/download/Oversea/DS/User_guide/DS1000E(D)_UserGuide_EN.pdf) and Atten (http://www.attenelectronics.com/Products/Oscilloscopes/Digital_oscilloscope/2012/0728/123.html)s I found all have advanced triggering and measurement facilities.


I bought a (Taiwan) GW Instek 840 (http://www.gwinstek.com/en/product/productdetail.aspx?pid=3&mid=7&id=51) a couple of years ago (to replace an aging Tek TDS410a)... It has advanced triggering and measurement readout and its a 4 or 5 Yr old design.

Barrington
01-17-2013, 07:36 AM
JT, do you know of a good (i.e. inexpensive) place to get the replacement "Stick" battery those Teks use? Mine is shot and I'm tempted to build one up from tabbed Nicads.
Thanks
Walt

I modified my THS710A to take everyday AA / C rechargeables : http://ths710bat.blogspot.co.uk/ (http://ths710bat.blogspot.co.uk/)

While the automatic measurements, advanced triggering etc. are not uncommon these days, the ability to operate with the probe common at up to 600V rms relative to ground is a killer feature. (...Possibly literally :eek:)

Cheers

.

J Tiers
01-17-2013, 08:24 AM
if you limit yourself exclusively to scopes which include logic analyzers, dome lights, and ashtrays, you will absolutely EXCLUDE all the best oscilloscopes..... but of course it is your choice to do that.

There are available logic analyzers, and oscilloscopes, and most will be better if separated than if combined..... Logic analyzers in particular are available as all sorts of devices starting with inexpensive devices working with PCs, etc.... There is no particular reason to demand that it be crammed into the 'scope, unless you fly to your repair jobs and absolutely MUST carry only one single solitary piece of test equipment.

taydin
01-17-2013, 09:16 AM
When using any kind of measurement equipment, "trusting" the measured result is key. High quality probes can cost as much as the chinese scopes, but you will be able to trust what you see on the screen. This is more so when the frequency you are working with goes up. Use a cheap probe, and it will distort, attenuate or otherwise modify the signal being measured. If I already have enough bugs with the circuit I'm working on, the last thing I want to do is question whether the scope is telling me the truth or not.

wb2vsj
01-17-2013, 09:35 AM
I modified my THS710A to take everyday AA / C rechargeables : http://ths710bat.blogspot.co.uk/ (http://ths710bat.blogspot.co.uk/)

...

Cheers

.

Brilliant! - thank you.

Walt

Wirecutter
01-17-2013, 12:44 PM
When using any kind of measurement equipment, "trusting" the measured result is key. High quality probes can cost as much as the chinese scopes, but you will be able to trust what you see on the screen. This is more so when the frequency you are working with goes up. Use a cheap probe, and it will distort, attenuate or otherwise modify the signal being measured. If I already have enough bugs with the circuit I'm working on, the last thing I want to do is question whether the scope is telling me the truth or not.

+1 Totally agree.

It's been proven countless times that the act of measuring (or even observing) something always has an effect on the thing being observed or measured. From the subtle (scope lead on high impedance or high speed circuit) to the ridiculous (taping for reality TV), there is some effect. The trick is to minimize the influence to acceptable levels. For example, expensive specialized scope probes, indirect measurements, and turning off the TV. :D

As with so many other things, you get what you pay for. Having said that, know what I do when faced with making a challenging measurement? I borrow one of the nice Tek scopes from work. :D :D

-M

J Tiers
01-17-2013, 08:02 PM
When using any kind of measurement equipment, "trusting" the measured result is key. High quality probes can cost as much as the chinese scopes, but you will be able to trust what you see on the screen. This is more so when the frequency you are working with goes up. Use a cheap probe, and it will distort, attenuate or otherwise modify the signal being measured. If I already have enough bugs with the circuit I'm working on, the last thing I want to do is question whether the scope is telling me the truth or not.

Oh.... PLEASE DO NOT TRUST TEKTRONIX.........

Tek scopes lie like a rug everyday........ it is user choices that make 'scopes lie..... trigger method, acquisition method..... The THS and other Tek scopes will lie horribly if you choose the wrong acquisition method.............Fast pulses won't be visible and you will go on your way believing all is well.

Of course, many other brands of 'scopes have no mode in which they DO tell the truth..... it's all relative. I doubt every piece of equipment..... and make it prove it is not telling fibs....

robosilo
01-17-2013, 11:44 PM
I'm fully aware that a separate scope and logic analyzer would result in better products. I used to have a USBee Zx logic analyzer that i used off and on, but too often i need to sync an analog signal with a digital one. And the logic analyzer couldn't do that. It had an amazing 25Mpoint memory depth but not being able to view things live made work tedious. I've used nice scopes before but since this purchase will be for at home and limited to hobby use so i'm not too worried about calibration or extreme performance. As my mother always told me "beggars can't be choosers, but neither can cheapskates"