Forums

Best Oscilloscope for $3k

Started by ChesterW August 26, 2014
If you're looking at lower level Agilents, might as well go directly to 
Rigol -- they're the same things, Agilent just rebrands them.  Tek does 
the same thing but with a different Chinese brand (but who would want a 
Tek interface in this day and age, anyway?).  The ones around $1-2k are 
comparable, and you get more features per buck that way.

Tim

-- 
Seven Transistor Labs
Electrical Engineering Consultation
Website: http://seventransistorlabs.com

"ChesterW" <iamsnoozin@yahoo.com> wrote in message 
news:Fu2Lv.84945$O13.31767@fx17.iad...
> Dear Group, > > I can finally afford a new oscilloscope to supplement my trusty TEK > 465M. My budget is around $3k. I like the newer Agilent scopes, which I > have used when someone else was paying. I do mostly low frequency > high-precision instruments (analog signals less than about 1 MHz). > > The pretty lower-end Agilent scopes are in reach, but I'm tempted > to use one of these: > > http://tinyurl.com/k88x74r > > which is driven internally with an FPGA and one of these ADCs: > > http://www.mouser.com/catalog/specsheets/DataSheetASD5020HS_v2.0.pdf > > I make out the ENOB to be 11.6 bits at 125 MSPS with 14 bit samples > using 4 channels, and 13.2 bits with 16 bit samples at 62.5 MSPS using > one channel. It will also go out to 1 GSPS with 8 bit samples. Analog BW > is 200 MHz. > > I like the serial decoding for free and the ability to stream data to an > external application for creating custom processing. I'm thinking this > would be good for prototyping AFEs with signal processing via the PC. > > So my thinking is that using this rather obscure configurable ADC that > these guys improve performance over the big manufacturers ASICs for my > particular applications niche. > > What do you think? > > ChesterW >
On 8/26/2014 12:21 PM, ChesterW wrote:
> Dear Group, > > I can finally afford a new oscilloscope to supplement my trusty > TEK 465M. My budget is around $3k. I like the newer Agilent scopes, > which I have used when someone else was paying. I do mostly low > frequency high-precision instruments (analog signals less than about 1 > MHz). > > The pretty lower-end Agilent scopes are in reach, but I'm tempted > to use one of these: > > http://tinyurl.com/k88x74r > > which is driven internally with an FPGA and one of these ADCs: > > http://www.mouser.com/catalog/specsheets/DataSheetASD5020HS_v2.0.pdf > > I make out the ENOB to be 11.6 bits at 125 MSPS with 14 bit samples > using 4 channels, and 13.2 bits with 16 bit samples at 62.5 MSPS using > one channel. It will also go out to 1 GSPS with 8 bit samples. Analog BW > is 200 MHz. > > I like the serial decoding for free and the ability to stream data to an > external application for creating custom processing. I'm thinking this > would be good for prototyping AFEs with signal processing via the PC. > > So my thinking is that using this rather obscure configurable ADC that > these guys improve performance over the big manufacturers ASICs for my > particular applications niche. > > What do you think? > > ChesterW >
The only scope I ever spent anything like that amount on is my fave Tektronix TDS 694C--four channels, 3 GHz, 10 Gs/s on all four simultaneously, 128k sample memory per channel, $2700 on eBay. Patience is a virtue. ;) Cheers Phil Hobbs -- Dr Philip C D Hobbs Principal Consultant ElectroOptical Innovations LLC Optics, Electro-optics, Photonics, Analog Electronics 160 North State Road #203 Briarcliff Manor NY 10510 hobbs at electrooptical dot net http://electrooptical.net
On Tuesday, August 26, 2014 3:58:50 PM UTC-7, Tim Williams wrote:
> If you're looking at lower level Agilents, might as well go directly to=
=20
>=20 > Rigol -- they're the same things, Agilent just rebrands them. Tek does=
=20
>=20 > the same thing but with a different Chinese brand (but who would want a=
=20
>=20 > Tek interface in this day and age, anyway?). The ones around $1-2k are=
=20
>=20 > comparable, and you get more features per buck that way. >=20 >=20 >=20 > Tim >=20 >=20 >=20 > --=20 >=20 > Seven Transistor Labs >=20 > Electrical Engineering Consultation >=20 > Website: http://seventransistorlabs.com >=20 >=20 >=20 > "ChesterW" <iamsnoozin@yahoo.com> wrote in message=20 >=20 > news:Fu2Lv.84945$O13.31767@fx17.iad... >=20 > > Dear Group, >=20 > > >=20 > > I can finally afford a new oscilloscope to supplement my trusty TE=
K=20
>=20 > > 465M. My budget is around $3k. I like the newer Agilent scopes, which I=
=20
>=20 > > have used when someone else was paying. I do mostly low frequency=20 >=20 > > high-precision instruments (analog signals less than about 1 MHz). >=20 > > >=20 > > The pretty lower-end Agilent scopes are in reach, but I'm tempted=
=20
>=20 > > to use one of these: >=20 > > >=20 > > http://tinyurl.com/k88x74r >=20 > > >=20 > > which is driven internally with an FPGA and one of these ADCs: >=20 > > >=20 > > http://www.mouser.com/catalog/specsheets/DataSheetASD5020HS_v2.0.pdf >=20 > > >=20 > > I make out the ENOB to be 11.6 bits at 125 MSPS with 14 bit samples=20 >=20 > > using 4 channels, and 13.2 bits with 16 bit samples at 62.5 MSPS using=
=20
>=20 > > one channel. It will also go out to 1 GSPS with 8 bit samples. Analog B=
W=20
>=20 > > is 200 MHz. >=20 > > >=20 > > I like the serial decoding for free and the ability to stream data to a=
n=20
>=20 > > external application for creating custom processing. I'm thinking this=
=20
>=20 > > would be good for prototyping AFEs with signal processing via the PC. >=20 > > >=20 > > So my thinking is that using this rather obscure configurable ADC that=
=20
>=20 > > these guys improve performance over the big manufacturers ASICs for my=
=20
>=20 > > particular applications niche. >=20 > > >=20 > > What do you think? >=20 > > >=20 > > ChesterW >=20 > >
At the $3K level he will be (or should be) looking at an Agilent DSO2000-X = or DSO3000-X series, or one of the lower-end DSO6000A series, not one of th= e rebadged Rigols. He should buy a gently used one on eBay if necessary to= meet the budget. It is worth it. Agilent has beaten everybody else's DSO= s to a bloody pulp over the last few years. Re: NeonJohn's comment, he's spot on. A USB oscilloscope is like a USB han= dgun. (And I say this as a designer of USB test gear. Headless instrument= ation can be great, but not for something as fundamental as an oscilloscope= or DMM.) Re: Phil's comment, I like my 694C immensely, but every time I turn it on I= have to wonder if this is the last day on the job for its trigger chip. A= lso, the probes can be stupidly expensive. I don't think the 694C (or any = 50-ohm only scope) is a good choice for a general purpose bench tool. It's= better as a pinch hitter for a newer, slower DSO. -- john, KE5FX
On 8/26/2014 7:26 PM, John Miles, KE5FX wrote:
> On Tuesday, August 26, 2014 3:58:50 PM UTC-7, Tim Williams wrote: >> If you're looking at lower level Agilents, might as well go directly to >> >> Rigol -- they're the same things, Agilent just rebrands them. Tek does >> >> the same thing but with a different Chinese brand (but who would want a >> >> Tek interface in this day and age, anyway?). The ones around $1-2k are >> >> comparable, and you get more features per buck that way. >> >> Tim > > At the $3K level he will be (or should be) looking at an Agilent DSO2000-X or DSO3000-X series, or one of the lower-end DSO6000A series, not one of the rebadged Rigols. He should buy a gently used one on eBay if necessary to meet the budget. It is worth it. Agilent has beaten everybody else's DSOs to a bloody pulp over the last few years.
I'm confused. Tim is saying Agilent and Rigol scopes are the same thing. Why do you say the OP should be looking at an Agilent scope?
> Re: NeonJohn's comment, he's spot on. A USB oscilloscope is like a USB handgun. (And I say this as a designer of USB test gear. Headless instrumentation can be great, but not for something as fundamental as an oscilloscope or DMM.)
I can't agree with this. I have held off buying a new scope for some time now while I continue to look for a good inexpensive mixed signal USB headless scope. There are a couple of Hantek units I am considering. -- Rick
On Tuesday, August 26, 2014 4:34:43 PM UTC-7, rickman wrote:
> I'm confused. Tim is saying Agilent and Rigol scopes are the same > thing. Why do you say the OP should be looking at an Agilent scope?
Only the very lowest-end Agilent scopes were made by Rigol, and I'm not sure they even still sell those. The rest are designed in-house.
> I can't agree with this. I have held off buying a new scope > for some time now while I continue to look for a good inexpensive > mixed signal USB headless scope. There are a couple of Hantek > units I am considering.
Better than nothing, obviously. But when you're looking to spend multiple thousands of dollars, the mainstream brands have some appeal over whatever Harbor Freight is importing this week. At $3K you could probably pick up an MSO6014A or even a 6034A on eBay. Still a production model, and it's the last generation that runs VxWorks instead of Windows. Even better, if you buy one now it will say "Agilent" and not "Keysight." :-P -- john, KE5FX
On Tue, 26 Aug 2014 11:21:57 -0500, ChesterW <iamsnoozin@yahoo.com>
wrote:

>Dear Group, > > I can finally afford a new oscilloscope to supplement my trusty >TEK 465M. My budget is around $3k. I like the newer Agilent scopes, >which I have used when someone else was paying. I do mostly low >frequency high-precision instruments (analog signals less than about 1 >MHz). > > The pretty lower-end Agilent scopes are in reach, but I'm tempted >to use one of these: > >http://tinyurl.com/k88x74r > >which is driven internally with an FPGA and one of these ADCs: > >http://www.mouser.com/catalog/specsheets/DataSheetASD5020HS_v2.0.pdf > >I make out the ENOB to be 11.6 bits at 125 MSPS with 14 bit samples >using 4 channels, and 13.2 bits with 16 bit samples at 62.5 MSPS using >one channel. It will also go out to 1 GSPS with 8 bit samples. Analog BW >is 200 MHz. > >I like the serial decoding for free and the ability to stream data to an >external application for creating custom processing. I'm thinking this >would be good for prototyping AFEs with signal processing via the PC. > >So my thinking is that using this rather obscure configurable ADC that >these guys improve performance over the big manufacturers ASICs for my >particular applications niche. > >What do you think? > >ChesterW
I'd go with the Agilent scope. I don't think you'd be happy with the USB stuff. For a little over 3K you can get a 200mhz dsox2024 with all the software options turned on ( minus the I/O pod for the digital section). Cheers
"rickman" <gnuarm@gmail.com> wrote in message 
news:ltj5iq$8ai$1@dont-email.me...
>> >> At the $3K level he will be (or should be) looking at an Agilent >> DSO2000-X or DSO3000-X series, or one of the lower-end DSO6000A series, >> not one of the rebadged Rigols. He should buy a gently used one on >> eBay if necessary to meet the budget. It is worth it. Agilent has >> beaten everybody else's DSOs to a bloody pulp over the last few years. > > I'm confused. Tim is saying Agilent and Rigol scopes are the same > thing. Why do you say the OP should be looking at an Agilent scope? >
The price cutoff may be different than I remember, in which case you'll be looking at better name-brand value. Still not nearly proportionate to the sticker price, but if you're hard set on buying a certain set of features in one machine, maybe that's what you have to pay. For the features you'll likely need... do you really need more than a Rigol? It's not like they give up using the InfiniVision ASICs in the bottom barrel models... even the $400 one is quite attractive on a general basis. They've come a long way since their crusty early days. Even the menus are downright navigable, which is something Tektronix never once figured out in their digital line! Stay away from the true bottom-barrel no-names like HanTech or whatever, and you should be pretty happy. Tim -- Seven Transistor Labs Electrical Engineering Consultation Website: http://seventransistorlabs.com
On 8/26/2014 7:56 PM, John Miles, KE5FX wrote:
> On Tuesday, August 26, 2014 4:34:43 PM UTC-7, rickman wrote: >> I'm confused. Tim is saying Agilent and Rigol scopes are the same >> thing. Why do you say the OP should be looking at an Agilent scope? > > Only the very lowest-end Agilent scopes were made by Rigol, and I'm not sure they even still sell those. The rest are designed in-house. > >> I can't agree with this. I have held off buying a new scope >> for some time now while I continue to look for a good inexpensive >> mixed signal USB headless scope. There are a couple of Hantek >> units I am considering. > > Better than nothing, obviously. But when you're looking to spend multiple thousands of dollars, the mainstream brands have some appeal over whatever Harbor Freight is importing this week.
Why would anyone be "looking" to spend some thousands of dollars? I am looking for a set of features and specs and want the lowest price I can find for them. I've actually never understood why oscilloscopes are so expensive actually. I get that there is a lot of R&D that goes into them, but once you have a solid design I would think that could be used for a lot of scopes and that NRE could be amortized. -- Rick
On Wednesday, August 27, 2014 1:34:43 AM UTC+2, rickman wrote:
> On 8/26/2014 7:26 PM, John Miles, KE5FX wrote: >=20 > > On Tuesday, August 26, 2014 3:58:50 PM UTC-7, Tim Williams wrote: >=20 > >> If you're looking at lower level Agilents, might as well go directly t=
o
>=20 > >> >=20 > >> Rigol -- they're the same things, Agilent just rebrands them. Tek doe=
s
>=20 > >> >=20 > >> the same thing but with a different Chinese brand (but who would want =
a
>=20 > >> >=20 > >> Tek interface in this day and age, anyway?). The ones around $1-2k ar=
e
>=20 > >> >=20 > >> comparable, and you get more features per buck that way. >=20 > >> >=20 > >> Tim >=20 > > >=20 > > At the $3K level he will be (or should be) looking at an Agilent DSO200=
0-X or DSO3000-X series, or one of the lower-end DSO6000A series, not one o= f the rebadged Rigols. He should buy a gently used one on eBay if necessar= y to meet the budget. It is worth it. Agilent has beaten everybody else's= DSOs to a bloody pulp over the last few years.
>=20 >=20 >=20 > I'm confused. Tim is saying Agilent and Rigol scopes are the same=20 >=20 > thing. Why do you say the OP should be looking at an Agilent scope? >=20 >=20 >=20 >=20 >=20 > > Re: NeonJohn's comment, he's spot on. A USB oscilloscope is like a USB=
handgun. (And I say this as a designer of USB test gear. Headless instru= mentation can be great, but not for something as fundamental as an oscillos= cope or DMM.)
>=20 >=20 >=20 > I can't agree with this. I have held off buying a new scope for some=20 >=20 > time now while I continue to look for a good inexpensive mixed signal=20 >=20 > USB headless scope. There are a couple of Hantek units I am considering. >=20
I have a Picoscope for close to 10 years now, works flawlessly Cheers Klaus
On 8/27/2014 4:35 AM, Klaus Kragelund wrote:
> On Wednesday, August 27, 2014 1:34:43 AM UTC+2, rickman wrote: >> On 8/26/2014 7:26 PM, John Miles, KE5FX wrote: >> >>> On Tuesday, August 26, 2014 3:58:50 PM UTC-7, Tim Williams wrote: >> >>>> If you're looking at lower level Agilents, might as well go directly to >> >>>> >> >>>> Rigol -- they're the same things, Agilent just rebrands them. Tek does >> >>>> >> >>>> the same thing but with a different Chinese brand (but who would want a >> >>>> >> >>>> Tek interface in this day and age, anyway?). The ones around $1-2k are >> >>>> >> >>>> comparable, and you get more features per buck that way. >> >>>> >> >>>> Tim >> >>> >> >>> At the $3K level he will be (or should be) looking at an Agilent DSO2000-X or DSO3000-X series, or one of the lower-end DSO6000A series, not one of the rebadged Rigols. He should buy a gently used one on eBay if necessary to meet the budget. It is worth it. Agilent has beaten everybody else's DSOs to a bloody pulp over the last few years. >> >> >> >> I'm confused. Tim is saying Agilent and Rigol scopes are the same >> >> thing. Why do you say the OP should be looking at an Agilent scope? >> >> >> >> >> >>> Re: NeonJohn's comment, he's spot on. A USB oscilloscope is like a USB handgun. (And I say this as a designer of USB test gear. Headless instrumentation can be great, but not for something as fundamental as an oscilloscope or DMM.) >> >> >> >> I can't agree with this. I have held off buying a new scope for some >> >> time now while I continue to look for a good inexpensive mixed signal >> >> USB headless scope. There are a couple of Hantek units I am considering. >> > I have a Picoscope for close to 10 years now, works flawlessly
Yeah, I've heard a lot of good things about the Picoscopes, but they are very pricey. I also don't recall them making a mixed signal scope, am I wrong? -- Rick