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Tektronix digital scope eases the capture of high-speed signals

Posted: 07 May 2002 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:tds1000? tds2000? tds200? tds2cma? high speed oscilloscope?

With automated ease-of-use functions that make complicated measurements simpler to make, the TDS1000/2000 series digital sampling oscilloscopes (DSOs) from Tektronix Inc. automatically capture and scale high-speed signals and practically tell the user what can be done with them.

The DSOs, which replace and upgrade the company's low-cost TDS200 scopes, use an LCD screen to automatically display the frequency, amplitude, and pulse width of a captured waveform.

A context-sensitive one-button help function guides the user through operations that can characterize the signal (sine waves or square waves). The user, for example, can expand the time base to extract vital information, such as rise and fall times of square waves.

A built-in fast Fourier transform function can be executed to display harmonics and other frequency-dependent signals on a sine wave.

One button walks the user through each operation. An additional button selects the language in which the information is displayed, including English, French, and two Chinese dialects.

The TDS1000 family scopes are two-channel instruments with a digital sample rate of 1GSa/s and 100MHz bandwidth. The TDS2000 DSOs are two- and four-channel instruments with 2GSa/s digital sampling and a 200MHz bandwidth. All models come with independent external trigger capability, which lends itself to video troubleshooting or digital logic system debug.

The optional TDS2CMA communications module lets the DSOs communicate with other instruments via an RS-232, GPIB or parallel printer port. The module enables the scopes to be run remotely and exports display information for more analysis or archiving.

The WaveStar add-on software model lets a user capture scope screens and transport their images to an outboard personal computer, including directly into Microsoft Word or PowerPoint applications.

Intended for circuit debug and equipment service applications, the TDS1000/2000 series is about the size of a shoebox: <127-by-319.28-by-149.9mm, and almost 2kg. Prices range from $995 to $2,795. The TDS2CMA communications module costs $265, the WaveStar documentation package $319.

Stephan Ohr

EE Times

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