Topics

Oscilloscope for Beginners

Guy N7BIR <sgbridge@...>
 

While on the Circuit Specialists web site I came across this:
Hantek  20 MHz USB Oscilloscope for PC. 
Is this something that could be used for radio troubleshooting? Have never used a scope before and would appreciate your comments. 
73,
Guy N7BIR 

AC9NM - Jerry Ponko
 

Guy,

IMHO, you'd be better off with the HantekDSO5202P dual channel 200MHz scope they have for $275. I think shipping is free. I bought one a year ago for $300 and it's great. There are a bunch of good reviews of the DSO5202P on youtube. An oscilloscope is one piece of equipment you don''t want to skimp on frequency response wise for rf use.

Jerry AC9NM
 

On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 3:45 PM, Guy N7BIR <sgbridge@...> wrote:
While on the Circuit Specialists web site I came across this:
Hantek  20 MHz USB Oscilloscope for PC. 
Is this something that could be used for radio troubleshooting? Have never used a scope before and would appreciate your comments. 
73,
Guy N7BIR 


Michael Hagen
 

I had one of those.  Got rid of it on eBay.  Did not have very good triggering, with little options.

I comes as is, no support or upgrades for its firmware.  Did not even have AC coupling?  Cheap Digital scopes have problems with aliasing (under sampling) because they do not have fast enough processing.

I have and have had lots of scopes.  Try to get a real scope.  If you can afford it get a modern day Rigol or Siglent.

I got a 4 channel Rigol on eBay barely used for $250.   I jump started it to 100 Mhz.   It is a little small for my eyes, and does way more than you would expect.  I would stick with those 2 manufactures.  Or you could by a TEK or HP used.  You may be working on them?  I have an old HP 1702 or something like that, non digital.  I loved it until the triggering died.  I think it was better than some of my old Teks?

Try to get 100 Mhz 2 channels.  Real Tek and HP probes too, are a bonus, you can use cheap ones for $10 each, most used Tek probes go for big bucks.  There is more bang for the buck in my Rigol DS1054 than I can imagine.  I don't even plug in the others.

PC Scope to me are a pain.   And I would not fall for any of the small dvm hand held scopes, they just are too limited.


By the way, Circuit Specialists had a special late last summer for a few days.  15% off entire order.

I jumped on it and saved a lot on my new Siglent Spectrum Analyser.

Good Luck

73's Mike



On 1/23/2018 1:45 PM, Guy N7BIR wrote:
While on the Circuit Specialists web site I came across this:
Hantek  20 MHz USB Oscilloscope for PC. 
Is this something that could be used for radio troubleshooting? Have never used a scope before and would appreciate your comments. 
73,
Guy N7BIR 

-- 
Mike Hagen, WA6ISP
10917 Bryant Street
Yucaipa, Ca. 92399
(909) 918-0058
PayPal ID  "MotDog@..."
Mike@...

Peter Luttenbacher
 

Anyone have an opinion on the Siglent SDS1202X-E?  I’ve been leaning towards that one after shopping for a few weeks.

 

 

$379 and Amazon Prime will have it to me in a couple days.  For the price the feature set looks good.

 

Thanks for the Insights.

 

-Peter

 

From: BITX20@groups.io [mailto:BITX20@groups.io] On Behalf Of Michael Hagen
Sent: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 4:28 PM
To: BITX20@groups.io
Subject: Re: [BITX20] Oscilloscope for Beginners

 

I had one of those.  Got rid of it on eBay.  Did not have very good triggering, with little options.

I comes as is, no support or upgrades for its firmware.  Did not even have AC coupling?  Cheap Digital scopes have problems with aliasing (under sampling) because they do not have fast enough processing.

I have and have had lots of scopes.  Try to get a real scope.  If you can afford it get a modern day Rigol or Siglent.

I got a 4 channel Rigol on eBay barely used for $250.   I jump started it to 100 Mhz.   It is a little small for my eyes, and does way more than you would expect.  I would stick with those 2 manufactures.  Or you could by a TEK or HP used.  You may be working on them?  I have an old HP 1702 or something like that, non digital.  I loved it until the triggering died.  I think it was better than some of my old Teks?

Try to get 100 Mhz 2 channels.  Real Tek and HP probes too, are a bonus, you can use cheap ones for $10 each, most used Tek probes go for big bucks.  There is more bang for the buck in my Rigol DS1054 than I can imagine.  I don't even plug in the others.

PC Scope to me are a pain.   And I would not fall for any of the small dvm hand held scopes, they just are too limited.

 

By the way, Circuit Specialists had a special late last summer for a few days.  15% off entire order.

I jumped on it and saved a lot on my new Siglent Spectrum Analyser.

Good Luck

73's Mike

 

 

On 1/23/2018 1:45 PM, Guy N7BIR wrote:

While on the Circuit Specialists web site I came across this:
Hantek  20 MHz USB Oscilloscope for PC. 
Is this something that could be used for radio troubleshooting? Have never used a scope before and would appreciate your comments. 
73,
Guy N7BIR 



-- 
Mike Hagen, WA6ISP
10917 Bryant Street
Yucaipa, Ca. 92399
(909) 918-0058
PayPal ID  "MotDog@..."
Mike@...

Roy Appleton
 

Get the HantekDSO5202P instead!

Roy
WA0YMH

On Jan 23, 2018 3:45 PM, "Guy N7BIR" <sgbridge@...> wrote:
While on the Circuit Specialists web site I came across this:
Hantek  20 MHz USB Oscilloscope for PC. 
Is this something that could be used for radio troubleshooting? Have never used a scope before and would appreciate your comments. 
73,
Guy N7BIR 

Thomas Sharka
 

If you don't have a lot of cash, you can go the used route. A decent dual trace 100Mhz scope can be found on eblah for 100 bucks or more. Stick to the name brands like Tektronix or HP. See if the seller is a bulk seller, your chances are better for finding a scope that was part of a surplus buy that might have been sitting on a shelf, literally unused and re-calibrated on a regular schedule.

Unless you really, really want that DSO and are willing to eat beans for a few months...
 


Sent from Yahoo Mail. Get the app


On Tuesday, January 23, 2018 5:27 PM, AC9NM <jponko@...> wrote:


Guy,

IMHO, you'd be better off with the HantekDSO5202P dual channel 200MHz scope they have for $275. I think shipping is free. I bought one a year ago for $300 and it's great. There are a bunch of good reviews of the DSO5202P on youtube. An oscilloscope is one piece of equipment you don''t want to skimp on frequency response wise for rf use.

Jerry AC9NM
 

On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 3:45 PM, Guy N7BIR <sgbridge@...> wrote:
While on the Circuit Specialists web site I came across this:
Hantek  20 MHz USB Oscilloscope for PC. 
Is this something that could be used for radio troubleshooting? Have never used a scope before and would appreciate your comments. 
73,
Guy N7BIR 



V Zecchinelli
 

It's only 20Mhz but would have some application.  I have been using one for years in robotics industry and has worked flawlessly for me.
Vince N1VIN


On 1/23/2018 4:45 PM, Guy N7BIR wrote:
While on the Circuit Specialists web site I came across this:
Hantek  20 MHz USB Oscilloscope for PC. 
Is this something that could be used for radio troubleshooting? Have never used a scope before and would appreciate your comments. 
73,
Guy N7BIR 

John Backo
 

For RF use, I should think the absolute minimum bandwidth would be
60 MHz, 100 or 200 MHz is much better.

The 20 MHz scope is used mainly in audio work -- it is not very useful for RF.

The suggestions above are good ones. I'm afraid you have to bite the bullet
a bit on this one...

john
AD5YE

KD8CGH
 

Peter
  I have a Siglent SDS 1202X-E that I got on big sale last year at Dayton/Xenia. I like it a lot. I've used the FFT function as a spectrum analyzer as often as looking a signal vs time traces. With an inexpensive white noise generator you can check the response of all those pesky filters you hand wind inductors for. It will take me a long time to explore everything it does.
     Bob  KD8CGH

Jerry Gaffke
 

If you have $400 to burn, by all means get a good scope.
Maybe John will loan you the money.  ;-)
But that 20mhz $60 USB scope would be a good start.
Good enough to work on a Bitx40,
though the 45mhz first IF of the uBitx would be beyond reach.

I've looked hard at what it would take to create a decent hobbyist scope on a budget,
the current crop of USB scopes would be hard to beat. 
GigaSample/sec ADC's aren't cheap, and you probably want an FPGA in there too.
Plus the front end analog stuff, and lots of software to support it all.

Perhaps a 1ghz sampling head per Houtman:  http://www.redrok.com/sampscope.htm
feeding the 12bit ADC's of an Arduino Zero clone.
Though a sampling scope is not a friendly tool for beginners.

I think the best bet for the hobbyist is perhaps a slow cheap USB scope (perhaps using Arduino Zero ADC's)
plus something along the lines of Farhan's specan:  http://hfsignals.blogspot.com/p/specan-reboot-of-w7zoi.html
A low end spectrum analyzer could be cheaper than a scope covering the same frequencies,
and for radio work would be more informative.

Jerry, KE7ER 


On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 03:24 pm, John Backo wrote:
For RF use, I should think the absolute minimum bandwidth would be
60 MHz, 100 or 200 MHz is much better.

bill
 

Almost all of the test gear I have I purchased at flea markets, classified ads or ebay and I have been really happy with the results. If you are willing to be patient, choose carefully and do a little research, you can find a good Tektronix 100MHz dual trace scope on ebay or at a hamfest for less than 200USD. I bought a Tek 475A 250MHZ two channel scope, with Tek scope probes, for $125 at a ham fest.  If you want new gear, and you have the budget, look at Rigol or Siglent digital scopes. They are field upgradable, lightweight, and a good feature/cost. I've used the Rigol scope a lot. You can start with a Hantek but if you do very much RF equipment building or troubleshooting, you are likely to find using a PC-based measurement tool to be a pain.

On the research part... go find the eevblog forum. There are lots and lots of posts on buying used gear, stuff to look for, stuff to avoid, and a lot of folks that spend a lot of time buying, restoring and using old test gear.  For me, this stuff is almost as much fun as building new gear.  Good luck!

John Backo
 

Hi, Jerry.

You don't have to spend $400 on a new or used scope.

There is a large following and restoration business on-line
for Tek scopes. I have always wanted to get a Tek 475A.
And, as noted, they are available for a reasonable price.

Once not long ago, the 475 was THE scope to have. It is
getting a bit long in the tooth, but it is still probably the best first choice,
provided one can find a good restoration. And they are out there.

Incidentally, I have a BK Precision 2160A which I picked up a lot
of years ago, fully restored and calibrated for about $150. It has
served me well.

john
AD5YE

Guy N7BIR <sgbridge@...>
 

Jerry, Mike,John, Vince thanks for all the helpful comments. I respect all your help and knowledge. 

73,
Guy N7BIR 

Jerry Gaffke
 

I used a Tek 465 at my first job, the 475's little brother.
And used Tek 2465's most of the 1980's.
I like an analog scope, the aliasing on these digital beasts can really throw you.
I know exactly what an analog scope is doing.

On the other hand, we bought a cheap used 475 off the web about 10 years ago at work
for use in manufacturing.  Dim CRT, and didn't trigger right, though sort of good enough.
But you are right, there are web resources out there to help restore those old scopes.
And they are plenty good.  I'd be concerned about getting parts on some of
the less common models.

The RIgol and Siglent scopes are a real bargain for what they offer if you want to buy new.
I have an old Rigol DS1052E on my desk in front of me.

Jerry, KE7ER



On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 05:26 pm, John Backo wrote:
There is a large following and restoration business on-line
for Tek scopes. I have always wanted to get a Tek 475A.
And, as noted, they are available for a reasonable price.

Jerry Gaffke
 

When it got beyond the Tek 2465, we'd roll over the cart with the Tek 7104,
a 1ghz bandwidth analog scope with the micro-channel plate CRT.
Could use it with a scope hood to see single shot events at 200ps/div.

A wonderful instrument if you could find room for it in your cube.
But not a scope I would want to scrounge parts for.

From http://w140.com/tekwiki/wiki/7104
"The 7104 makes extensive use of custom integrated circuits and hybrid circuits, inter alia, the 155-0174-00 Delay Line Compensator, 155-0173-00 Vertical Channel Switch, 155-0176-00 Vertical Output Amplifier, 155-0194-00/01/02/03 CRT Termination, 155-0175-00 Trigger Amplifier, 155-0178-00 Horizontal Output Amplifier, 155-0012-00 Z-Axis controller/amplifier, and 155-0067-02 SMPS controller. The high-speed amplifiers use Hypcon ceramic packages that use elastomer-based frames for coupling chip connections to the circuit board at constant impedance."

Jerry


On Tue, Jan 23, 2018 at 05:52 pm, Jerry Gaffke wrote:
But you are right, there are web resources out there to help restore those old scopes.
And they are plenty good.  I'd be concerned about getting parts on some of
the less common models.

Vince Vielhaber
 

I'd avoid anything with that low of a bandwidth. Shoot for a minimum of 100MHz bandwidth. Digital is nice, but if you're troubleshooting an analog circuit, such as the IF in a BitX, the signal is constant and will always be onscreen anyway.

Remember when buying used, most of those old Tek & HP scopes out there are more than 30 years old. Caps are beginning to dry out but if you can get one that has recently been re-capped, that's the way to go, but I'm a bit biased. 7 of my 8 scopes are Tek ranging from X-Y to 1GHz. The one non-Tek is a Motorola and the only reason I have it is because it's part of my service monitor.

Vince.

On 01/23/2018 05:55 PM, V Zecchinelli wrote:
It's only 20Mhz but would have some application. I have been using one
for years in robotics industry and has worked flawlessly for me.
Vince N1VIN


On 1/23/2018 4:45 PM, Guy N7BIR wrote:
While on the Circuit Specialists web site I came across this:
Hantek 20 MHz USB Oscilloscope for PC.
Is this something that could be used for radio troubleshooting? Have
never used a scope before and would appreciate your comments.
73,
Guy N7BIR
_._,_._,_

Goran VE6GPO
 

Found this long time ago at http://www.audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=35392
Enjoy!!!
==================================================
Hot Rod Oscilloscope   
by Dennis L. Feucht
 
With apologies to the '60s hit tune, "Hot Rod Lincoln"
 
You've heard the story of the bandwidth race,
Where 'scopes and counters were setting the pace;
Well that story is true, I'm here to say;
I was using a 545A.
 
It's got a graticule, all lit up,
That front-panel claptrap makes it look tough.
It's got plug-ins, uses 'em all;
It's got good risetime, and also fall.
 
With a dual-trace display at reasonable cost,
And forty-eleven knobs, you can really get lost;
It's got a dual-delayed timebase, but I ain't scared,
The trace is sharp; the probes are fair.
 
Pulled out a new project late one night,
The test equipment was burning bright,
I started driving a wideband amp,
To see which stage I needed to damp.
 
When all of a sudden in the blink of an eye,
A series of waveforms passed me by,
And I said, "Wow, that's a marvel to me!"
Pretty soon a square-wave was all I could see.
 
Now the boss was ribbing me for being behind,
So I thought I'd make the probes unwind,
Took the volts per div knob, and man alive!
I turned it up to a setting of 5.
 
Powered the wideband amp again,
And drove it with a function gen,
Set the amplitude knob to three or four,
The levels were hitting the ceiling and floor.
 
Now the transient response made no sense,
The scope display looked like a picket fence.
I slowed it down and was glad to know,
That it wouldn't alias like a DSO.
 
I tweaked the circuit here and there,
Replaced a cap and transistor pair;
Got the speed I needed with room to go;
Manufacturing would be glad to know.
 
Smoke was coming from out of the load
When I set the trigger to hf mode;
The power bandwidth was looking right;
Nearly approaching the speed of light.
 
The task was finished, the specs first-rate,
The customers called, said the amp worked great;
I got a promotion, moved out of L.A.,
And I credit success to that '45A!
 
======================================

Ashhar Farhan
 

The rigol ds1052e is very good for general use. I can see upto 200 mhz on it. Works well, it has a nominal spectrum analyzer too.
- f

On 24 Jan 2018 10:29 pm, "Goran VE6GPO" <goran.poprzen@...> wrote:
Found this long time ago at http://www.audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=35392
Enjoy!!!
==================================================
Hot Rod Oscilloscope   
by Dennis L. Feucht
 
With apologies to the '60s hit tune, "Hot Rod Lincoln"
 
You've heard the story of the bandwidth race,
Where 'scopes and counters were setting the pace;
Well that story is true, I'm here to say;
I was using a 545A.
 
It's got a graticule, all lit up,
That front-panel claptrap makes it look tough.
It's got plug-ins, uses 'em all;
It's got good risetime, and also fall.
 
With a dual-trace display at reasonable cost,
And forty-eleven knobs, you can really get lost;
It's got a dual-delayed timebase, but I ain't scared,
The trace is sharp; the probes are fair.
 
Pulled out a new project late one night,
The test equipment was burning bright,
I started driving a wideband amp,
To see which stage I needed to damp.
 
When all of a sudden in the blink of an eye,
A series of waveforms passed me by,
And I said, "Wow, that's a marvel to me!"
Pretty soon a square-wave was all I could see.
 
Now the boss was ribbing me for being behind,
So I thought I'd make the probes unwind,
Took the volts per div knob, and man alive!
I turned it up to a setting of 5.
 
Powered the wideband amp again,
And drove it with a function gen,
Set the amplitude knob to three or four,
The levels were hitting the ceiling and floor.
 
Now the transient response made no sense,
The scope display looked like a picket fence.
I slowed it down and was glad to know,
That it wouldn't alias like a DSO.
 
I tweaked the circuit here and there,
Replaced a cap and transistor pair;
Got the speed I needed with room to go;
Manufacturing would be glad to know.
 
Smoke was coming from out of the load
When I set the trigger to hf mode;
The power bandwidth was looking right;
Nearly approaching the speed of light.
 
The task was finished, the specs first-rate,
The customers called, said the amp worked great;
I got a promotion, moved out of L.A.,
And I credit success to that '45A!
 
======================================