Top 10 Best Digital Oscilloscope Reviews – Check Right Choice 2021
In today's modern world where everything seems to be moving fast, even engineers require the best tools to take measurements accurately and solve puzzles quickly. This is where the best digital oscilloscopes come in. These must have equipment are used to display electricity waveforms on their screen.
Unlike the analog oscilloscopes which display waveforms in their original form, digital oscilloscopes are more reliable because they convert and store the waveforms into digital formats.
The O-scopes can be used in a wide range of fields. For example, they can be used by medical researchers to measure brain waves. Hobbyists who like to play around with electronics and solve a couple of problems also use the O-scope.
Getting the right digital oscilloscope that meets your needs in today's market can be a daunting task. That is why we recommend the following oscilloscopes which we believe are the best today to help you make the right choice.
10 Best Digital Oscilloscope 2021 - Comparison
Top 10 Best Digital Oscilloscope 2021 - Reviews
Are you looking for an oscilloscope that performs tasks perfectly but at a reasonable price? The Rigol DS1054Z is definitely the right choice for you. This machine can be used for both educational and home uses. Over the past few years Rigol has upgraded the DS1054Z with trigger cursors and math functions. Some of the other outstanding features of the Rigol DS1054Z are as follows:
4 Channels Display
What makes the 4 Channels Display to be one of the most important features of this machine is that it's very reliable when checking signal relationships and logic. This display also helps you focus on a specific time area of the recorded waveform so that you can put into comparison the specific area with other various channel data.
The DS1054 is equipped with an ultra-vision 7-inch display that displays data on all the channels on one screen. The display has high resolutions of 800×480 pixels. Its graded intensity display is one of the best in the market right now. You can convey a lot of information with the DS1054Z because its analog-like display has 64 shaded levels which will show you which level waves are seen.
50 MHz Bandwidth
The DS1054Z has a bandwidth that can be upgraded to 100MHz. With higher frequencies, you can use computer software to aid you in getting data through USB instead of overloading the scope. The memory depths of the DS1054Z are from 12Mpts to 24Mpts.
Horizontal and Vertical measurement functions
The DS1054Z is also equipped with a lot more triggers and mathematical operators. All mathematical functions of this machine are arranged well on the side of the screen. Moreover, this digital oscilloscope reviews help to pick the perfect one soon.
This is a top tier oscilloscope that uses the latest Spo technology to produce great signals and performance. It comes with a colored temperature display and has the ability to record unusual occurrences. Other amazing features of the SDS1202X-E 200 include.
The oscilloscopes ability to measure a signal is determined by its bandwidth. The SDS1202X-E bandwidth value is 200MHz is suitable for all low and mid-frequency signals. It also allows it to work sometimes on high-speed complex signals. This machine has a sampling rate of up to 1 GSa/s.
This machine's memory depth of a single channel is 1 Giga Sample per second and for the dual channel is 500 Mega Samples per second. You can capture input signals at a faster rate with the SDS1202X-E because it captures 500ms of time at a rate of 1GSa/s.
History waveforms mode and segmented acquisition
The SDS1202X-E is equipped with a history function that can playback the most recent triggered events. Its memory collection is segmented into 80,000 segments which store triggered waveforms and put a timestamp on them.
Color temperature display
This machine is equipped with a temperature color display and 256 intensity grading. This feature allows trace occurrence to be represented with various colors under different temperatures. It differs from the intensity-graded trace function which in that only one color is used which changes in intensity. When you get the re color it represents the most frequent while the blue color represents the less occurring events.
Serial bus decoding function
This feature allows the SDS1201X-E to use the events list to display decoding. Bus protocol information is displayed in table form within no time. Moreover, this digital oscilloscopes reviews help to choose the best one.
This is among the best-selling oscilloscopes in the market. This machine is popular mainly because of it has general–purpose functions and also because is very low-cost equipment. Yes, this device is made of a couple of trigger modes such as slope video, edge, and alternate trigger mode. Some of the other amazing features of the SDS1052DL include the following.
The SDS1052 is built with a recorder function and a digital filter that are used for storing data. It is equipped with USB and RS-232 ports that are used to download data and for interfacing. You can seek help online with this machine. It has one key storing capacity and is also equipped with 12 languages that you can choose from.
7-Inch Color TFT-LCD Display
This machine is equipped with a 7-inch color TFT-LCD display. The resolution of the screen is 480234. It is put this low so as to ensure that numbers and letters are easy to read while waveforms are jagged from time to time. The display is bright to ensure that you take accurate measurements.
50 MHz to 100MHz Bandwidth
The Siglent SDS1102DL has a bandwidth that ranges from 50 MHz to 100MHz. This means that it has a 500MSa/S real time sample rate and an equivalent sample rate of 50GSa/s. Its 32kpts record wavelength is recommended to obtain detailed waveforms.
Waveform and playback function
This device has history functions that can playback events that have been triggered recently. It can also capture unusual and low-probability events
Are you looking for a digital oscilloscope that is easy to carry around? The SainSmart DSO Note II DS202 is a mini digital oscilloscope that is portable and can fit easily in an electronics kit. The DS0202 device is sleek, compact and quite powerful for its size.
The manufacturer of this scope designed it for people who like to carry it around. It is conveniently small to fit inside an electronic kit and also in someone's pocket. Though it is 11mm thick, the 5.6oz digital oscilloscope can perform a wide range of engineering experiments. It has great power in that it can cram a ton of features and display perfect measurements on its small display.
The SainSmart DS202 is equipped with a 320240 color display that displays measured AC current such as square, saw tooth and triangle waveforms. This device is also fitted with a 2-channel functionality that makes it very efficient when you are doing experiments and engineering projects.
Ease of use
The DS202 can be operated by anyone. It has similar simple features to the smartphones like using swipes and taps
8 mb Storage Capacity
The DS202 contains an 8mb flash storage that makes it easy to save and transfer images. It is covered by an aluminum alloy finish that makes it durable.
The RigolDS1102E is a high-performance digital oscilloscope that is also one of the most selling products. It is mostly used to do research and development in engineering fields. This device is a rigid oscilloscope that processes high scale digital signals. Other distinct features of this device include:
This Rigol DSO model is equipped with a 1 million point deep memory and a memory depth of 100MHz. It has FFT's that solve very complex mathematical operations. For more storage, the DS11O2E is equipped with a support u disk and local files storage.
This device has easy to access buttons at the front panel of the scope. The waveforms displayed can quickly be measured and changed using an AUTO button that is provided. The device has a high real sampling rate of 1GS/s and an equivalent sampling rate of 25GS/s which makes it possible to enhance the features of the waveform displayed.
It also has a pop-up menu that is simple to use. It is equipped with a built-in help menu and a multiple language user interface that enables you to put input even in Chinese.
2 analog channels
The DS1102E is equipped with two dual channels and 1 external trigger channel. The color screen is a bit grainy. It produces 20 types of wave parameters that can automatically take measurements. This device is fitted with 10 voltage and 10-time parameters
This device is fitted with alternate triggering capabilities and adjustable trigger sensitivity. The various trigger modes include edge, pulse, width, slope, video et cetera. It is inbuilt with 22 types of auto measurement of wave patterns and track values.
The channel data of the automatic measurement of voltage include arithmetic mean, peak-to-peak voltage, peak voltage, true RMS voltage, overshoot, and pre-shoot. With this device, you can use frequency, rise time, fall time, positive width, and duty cycle and period to measure time.
You can transfer data to a desktop PC using the USB interface that comes with the Rigol1102E. This scope can also be connected to PictBridge printer that prints waveform images.
Are you looking for a professional scope that you can get at a low price? The Hantek DS05072P is an O-scope that can be used by both hobbyists and engineering students.
It is one of the most popular oscilloscopes in the market. You can carry this device to remote areas without losing features.
What is good about this machine is that it has a lot to offer at its price range. It comes with a handle that lets you carry it. Other amazing features of this device are:
70 MHz to 200MHz Bandwidth
The most important feature that this device has to offer is most probably its bandwidth. It can support a bandwidth of from 70 MHz to 200MHz meaning that you can measure signals with this scope at a higher rate. All bandwidths of the Hantek DS05072P work effectively without any problems. The accuracy of the bandwidths is not affected. With this device, you get your sample rate in real time.
The display is 7 inches with color WVGA and a resolution of 800 by 480 pixels. This means that you can view features on this O-scope very easily. Furthermore, you can even use it in bright sunlight. The DS05072P is covered with a protective layer on its surface to protect it from scratches and damages.
The memory depth is up to 40.000 meaning that in a single acquisition it can record a longer duration of time. This helps to debug something long like a serial communication. With that memory, you can reduce the time you take to store samples.
Hobbyists who are looking for an oscilloscope to use for their test signal generating purpose should buy the Kuman DSO 138 DIY. The O-scope is designed to be compact. It is a fairly priced oscilloscope that is a lot of fun to use. The other various features include:
2.4-inch TFT LCD Display
The DSO 138 DIY is equipped with a 2.4-inch TFT LCD display that has a resolution of 320 by 240 and 262K colors. This device has an 8-bit resolution that is specifically designed for digital signals. It uses ARM Cortex-M3 processor and can also be used as ARM test development board.
This means that users can add different features or develop a new application on the hardware. Again, it has been re-programmed so you do not need to reprogram.
Ease to Zoom
You can get quick access to this device and all its functions. It also comes with a high resolution ‘Pan and Zoom ‘feature that enables you to zoom on finer details up to 10 times the usual.
Standard dual channel
There is a built-in dual-channel frequency table that allows accurate frequency meetings to be taken.
When choosing an oscilloscope, it is essential to consider products from top oscilloscope brands. Many digital oscilloscopes are made for medical use. However, if you need the best oscilloscope for hobbyist, the HANMATEK will suit your needs well. This oscilloscope has dual channels and it functions well when it comes to taking measurements.
This is the best budget oscilloscope with 6 built-in hardware frequencies so it can measure 2Hz-20MHz. The device has 30 types of automatic measurement functions for easy menu customization. This oscilloscope features a waveform interception design to connect easily with similar brand signal generators.
The ultra-portable device can support secondary development and LABVIEW communication. Its body is thin and it has 70 mm thickness and this space-saving design makes it ideal for desktop space. Additionally, it consumes less power than 18W.
The oscilloscope has an automatic range function where it supports multi-waveform, horizontal, vertical, and single waveform tracking. It also has probe attenuation multiples ranging from 1x, 10x, 100x, and 1000x. The true color LCD screen with high resolution displays voltage difference, the time difference.
Enjoy high performance with this device. It can measure up to 110MHz sine wave signal as well as square wave among others. In just one click, you can easily see all the measurements values simultaneously. You can check the 30 measurement values so you don’t require to add them manually.
Another great thing about the device is the ability to support multiple languages. Whether you need it in Chinese, Russian, Spanish, French, German, Japanese, or Italian, you will receive the instructions in 8 languages. This makes it convenient to use to meet the needs of different students or employees in various countries.
Owon HDS1021M is a handheld digital oscilloscope that is designed to help you view electrical signals. This digital oscilloscope has great storage and other amazing display.
It is equipped with a 3.5 inches TFT-LCD screen that has a resolution of 320 by 240 pixels. This enables it to view waveforms and measurements.
Easy transfer of data
It is fitted with a USB port for connecting it to the PC and compatible Microsoft Windows software that is used to transmit data and other operations.
20 MHz Bandwidth
This is a 20 MHz single channel oscilloscope that has a100MS/s real-time sample rate and a record length of 6000 points for getting waveforms.
With this O-scope, you can store up to four waveforms. It has 18 automatic measurements such as period, frequency and in-depth analysis of waveforms.
This device is the best value 4 channel oscilloscope you can choose. It is equipped with an 8-inch LCD with a sensitive touch screen. It also includes car diagnostics and integrated hardware-software to help in providing different diagnostic tests in the automotive industry.
It has amazing features that make it one of the best oscilloscope for beginners. It includes four measurement channels and excellent measurement parameters.
These include 100 MHz bandwidth, 28 Mpts memory buffer, and 1 GSa/s sampling rate.
You can use this device for various functions which include ignition tests, various sensor tests, pressure tests, networks, charging, and actuator tests. If you need proper presentation, simply connect the device to a computer using HDMI or a projector.
This device features 8G storage so it is easy for you to store pictures, waveforms, or record videos among others. This ensures that you do not miss any single detail. Apart from the oscilloscope unit, the package also includes other items like a power adapter, flexible needle, power cable, alligator clips, two probes, and 4 BNC banana lines.
The bandwidth limitation of this device is full bandwidth and low pass. The I/O port can support USB device, DC power, Wi-Fi, USB host, GND, and HDMI. It has a stable Wi-Fi signal and you will love how the data transfer and waveform transfer make your work easier.
You can get the convenience of use by connecting to the app control. Simply connect your phone to the network to make it easier for you to see the waveform or control the device in real-time on your device. Additionally, it is easier for you to see the saved waveforms as well as the videos on your computer and the oscilloscope.
How To Choose Best Digital Oscilloscope 2021
The first step you take before you even buy an oscilloscope is to know where you will use it and for what reason. Oscilloscopes are used by anyone who designs, manufactures, or repairs electronic equipment. Digital oscilloscopes usually acquire and store waveforms. They can show single shot and high-speed repetitive signals across many channels to detect transient events and elusive glitches.
An oscilloscope will show the frequency of signals. This way, if a component malfunctions, it will show how the signal is distorted and how much noise is in the signal. It will also show whether the noise is changing with time. All these will help you determine whether there are issues with a given component.
The best oscilloscope should be very accurate and have features that can help you get more information from the device you are dealing with. Here are some of the factors you need to consider when choosing an oscilloscope:
This is the first feature that you check. It is the maximum frequency of a signal that can pass through the amplifiers which means that at no given time will the analog bandwidth be lower than the maximum frequency. Since DSO's are only composed of amplifiers, attenuators, ACDs, interconnects and relays they are not able to completely meet their goal which is achieving as a specific type of frequency response (Maximally Flat Envelope Delay).
This means that bandwidths cannot measure high-frequency signal on their own. Bandwidths allow up to 29% in error of the input displayed. To avoid high-frequency harmonics buy an O-scope that has a bandwidth that is five times higher than the frequency that wants to measure .however, you will have to dig deeper in your pockets because high bandwidth scopes are expensive.
Analogs engineers are more concerned with bandwidth, while digital engineers need to be more concerned about a signal’s rise time, like steps and pulses. Rise time is found by dividing k with bandwidth. The value of k can be anywhere from 0.35 to 0.45, depending on the bandwidth of an oscilloscope.
You need an oscilloscope with a rise time that’s less than a fifth of the signal’s fastest rise time. With a faster rise time, you’ll get more accurate details of transitions. You also need a faster time rate to measure time accurately.
Sampling rates and memory depths are very vital in digital scopes. When it comes to a digital oscilloscope, sampling rates are usually measured in mega samples per second (MS/s) or gigasamples per second (GS/s). You require at least 5 samples to correctly construct waveform.
The two major types of sampling rates that most scopes have are real-time and equivalent-time sampling. The ETS will however only work if you have a stable and repetitive signal. Be careful to check specifications given by the manufacturer that the sampling rate displayed fits all signals. The sampling rates may differ from one scope to the next depending on the number of channels that the scope has.
For effective use of an oscilloscope, you must have compatible probes. It is at the tip of the probe where measurements begin. The probe and the oscilloscope work as a unit, so when choosing a scope, ensure you consider the probes.
Whenever you are taking measurements, probes will form part of your circuit, bringing in inductive, capacitive, and resistive loading that affect measurements. For the best results, it’s advisable to use probes that are compatible with the oscilloscope you are using. There are different types of probes, including:
# Passive probes: These probes have 10x attenuation, meaning they present controlled capacitance and impedance to circuits. Passive probes are good for ground-referenced measurements. Most oscilloscopes have them.
# Differential probes (High-voltage): These are probes that allow ground-referenced scopes to take accurate, safe differential and floating measurements. Every lab needs a differential probe.
# Logic probes: These probes have accessories that enable them to get connected to tiny test points. They deliver signals to mixed-signal oscilloscopes.
# Current Probes: These probes will enable your oscilloscope to measure currents. It will also allow your scope to calculate then display power instantaneously.
It can come as a surprise that this is the most misunderstood feature of a digital oscilloscope. The samples recorded are stored in a buffer memory. The amount of time it takes to capture a signal is determined by the size of the buffer memory. The memory depth and sampling rate go hand in hand and their relationship is very important. A small buffer memory has a number of limitations for example when it captures a waveform and zoom in it lasts only about 5µs.
Channel density is a significant consideration when purchasing an oscilloscope. Channel density refers to the number of channels an instrument has or the ability of a device to accept more channels when synchronized with other devices. Many oscilloscopes have between 2 - 4 channels. Each of these channels gets simultaneously sampled to a specific rate.
Two channels can allow you to compare the input and output of a component. Four channels will allow you to compare more inputs/outputs (signals), and also gives you the flexibility of combining channels mathematically. Six or eight channels can allow you to carry out bus analysis of different components while at the same time viewing current or voltage signals in an electronic environment.
This implies the more channels you have, the better. It’s prudent to know how using multiple channels affect the sample rate so you can achieve an optimum sample rate. However, the number of channels needed depends on the use for which the scope is put to. But in most cases, you’ll realize that many applications require more than four channels.
The acquisition memory of an oscilloscope should be sufficient enough, so it performs well up to the optimum sample rate. Acquisition memory is the product of Sample Rate and Time-Span (Acquisition Memory = Sample Rate x Time-Span). Simply put, sufficient memory is necessary for an oscilloscope to capture signals for a longer duration.
An oscilloscope cannot sustain a higher sample rate if it has low memory. So when purchasing an oscilloscope, ensure you get one with deep memory. However, it would be best if you learned about how an oscilloscope manages deep memory.
Deep memory allows an oscilloscope to process more data, meaning deep memory can affect its responsiveness. So, when having an oscilloscope with deep memory, try to balance the amount of data you process.
Resolution and accuracy
Modern digital oscilloscopes have 8-bit resolution and are optimized for use with digital signals. They can sense a signal change of 0.4%. The voltage range of 8bit resolution is divided with 256 vertical steps. This makes it great to view analog signals better than digital signals. 8-bit oscilloscopes are not suitable for audio and noise applications.
If you want correct measurements you should use a Multimeter for normal scopes but for high-resolution oscilloscope, you don't need the meter. Precision oscilloscopes are oscilloscopes with high resolution and high DC accuracy.
At the correct point of the signal, scopes trigger function do a horizontal sweep. This helps in clearing signal characterizations. You can destabilize repetitive waveforms using trigger controls. It is vital that you check what trigger options are offered by the manufacturer though most scopes have the same basic trigger options
Digital oscilloscopes mostly fall into three categories; handheld, PC-based and traditional bench top.PC-based are popular because they are cost effective. Handheld oscilloscopes are favorites with engineers while a traditional one has the highest performance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How does a digital oscilloscope measure frequency?
A: To use your oscilloscope to measure AC frequency, you can count the number of divisions (the horizontal ones) from peak to peak (i.e., from one high point to the next) of the oscillating signal. Next, find the period of the signal by multiplying the number of these divisions by the division/time.
Once you have the period, you can find the frequency by dividing one (1) by this period. The formula connecting frequency and period is Frequency = 1/period.
Q: What is the main advantage of a digital storage oscilloscope over a voltmeter?
A: The main reason why many people prefer digital storage oscilloscopes over voltmeters is that they represent signals graphically. This allows for proper visual diagnosis of voltage variations.
A voltmeter will only register an unexpected voltage but does not provide any means of troubleshooting or diagnosing the cause of the voltage variation.
Q: Why use an oscilloscope instead of a multimeter?
A: Multimeters combine several measurement functions in one unit. A single multimeter can measure resistance, current, and voltage. Oscilloscopes also carry out several functions, and they do the measurements faster than multimeters.
This is because they are designed for troubleshooting systems with complex signals. Oscilloscopes have wider measurement bandwidths and faster measurement engines than multimeters.
Q: What is the working principle of oscilloscopes?
A: Oscilloscopes observe electrical signal’s changes over time. They present, in graphical form, how voltage changes over time, thus creating a waveform. The waveform can be used to analyze time interval, distortion, rise time, frequency, amplitude, etc.
The analysis of these parameters helps in providing information about the components on which the scope is used.
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