Oscilloscopes-Types and Advantages of Different Types of Oscilloscopes

Who has studied electronics engineering and not interacted with Oscilloscopes? Anyone in electronics engineering would be able of these digital devices.

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Oscilloscopes or oscillograph are very important tools in the electronics engineering and also used by testers. They enable waveforms to be seen on the display so that one can easily see any problems and do the testing of an electronic circuit. These waveforms are then used for analyzing different properties like frequency, amplitude, distortion, time interval etc.

These devices are often called as Cathode Ray Oscilloscope (CRO) too. This is because they used cathode ray tubes to display the waveforms on the device. Many call them as Digital Storage Oscilloscope(DSO). But now-a-days they are simply called oscilloscopes or even shorter name than that ‘scopes’. With time, names also get shorter:)

How to read Oscilloscope?

Based on the input Oscilloscope produces waveforms which are two dimensional. These waveforms are shown on some sort of display for the analysis.

Time is displayed on X-axis while amplitude is shown on Y-axis. By seeing the formation of waveform on the display, it is possible to test the problem that occurs in any electronic circuit.

Different Types of Oscilloscopes

There are broadly two categories of Oscilloscopes:

    1. Analog Oscilloscope
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    2. Digital Oscilloscope

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Both types of oscilloscopes have their own pros and cons and uses. Let us study about the advantages and disadvantages of Analog and Digital oscilloscopes.

Advantages of Analog Oscilloscope

  1. Analog oscilloscopes are cheaper than digital ones
  2. Provides accurate performances for laboratory exercises
  3. For measurement, Analog oscilloscopes do not need ADC, µP (Microprocessor) or acquisition memory

Disadvantages of Analog Oscilloscope

  1. Since this are analog so not so easy to use and need to have some hands-on training on this
  2. Does not provide extra features that come with digital oscilloscopes
  3. Not suitable for analyzing high frequency sharp-rise-time transients purposes in electronics circuits

Advantages of Digital Oscilloscope

  1. Real-time signal accuracy and high storage memory are the best features of digital oscilloscopes
  2. Suitable for analyzing high frequency transients as they have advanced DSP algorithms.

Disadvantages of Digital Oscilloscope

  1. Unlike Analog oscilloscopes, they require ADC, µP and acquisition memory
  2. These are costlier as compared to Analog oscilloscopes.

 

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