Selecting an Oscilloscope

So you want to get an Oscilloscope….the main thing is to understand why.

Now I will say it, if you are wanting to spend your money on only one piece of kit, then the best piece of kit is a good quality MSO Oscilloscope (which has 16 channel logic analyzer + 2 Channels oscilloscope). The main issue is that this piece of kit is going to set you back at least $US500+ (entry level) moving into the $US1000’s.

Just in case you have landed on this page from a Google Search, we should note here that our primary focus is on an Oscilloscope to perform work on Raspberry Pi and Aduino units, but more particularly troubleshooting the many interfaces whilst working on projects. As a secondary requirement, I wanted the Oscilloscope to be used in the High Frequency (HF – 3mhz to 30mhz) part of my Ham Radio interests, checking oscillators and similar work.

You have probably looked at the multitude of Oscilloscope Solutions out there, with the wide varying ranges of options, sizes, capabilities, form factors, models, manufacturers and along with varying costs.

As I have previously mentioned, I had an old analog cathode Ray Oscilloscope, with a top bandwidth of 5Mhz. Considering the majority of my work was analog circuitry and even when I was working on PC’s, the majority of the time it was working with computers that had a top clock of 1Mhz

There are heaps of guides to Oscilloscopes online, which are worth reading. One such article worth reading is

Also a good guide

If you are interested I finally settled on the Rigol 1054z which I ordered from Core-Electronics in Australia.

The main features I chose this was

  • Bandwidth 50Mhz
  • 4 Channels
  • Included modules
    • Waveform Recording – REC-DS1000Z
    • Serial Trigger & Decode – SA-DS1000Z
    • Deep Memory – MEM-DS1000Z
    • Advanced Triggering – AT-DS1000Z

Sure there are some more featured and better equipped Oscilloscopes, but I am working within a budget, and this Oscilloscope will suit me for more than 90% of the work I am doing with the Raspberry Pi’s and Arduinos.

Author: dsadmin