Test and Measurement News

October 2014

New mixed-signal PicoScopes!

Introducing an entirely new range of PicoScope Mixed-Signal Oscilloscopes (MSOs)! Now you can debug complex, high-speed embedded systems containing ADCs and DACs, serial and parallel buses and control signals using a single, compact device. These scopes have deep memory buffers to allow long-duration, high-speed captures of up to 20 channels of data, with the option of decoding several serial protocols at once.

There's a choice of bandwidth, memory and channel count options so you can get exactly the specifications you want:

Model Channels Bandwidth Buffer memory Price
PicoScope 3204D MSO 2A+16D 60 MHz 128 MS

£649 $1071 €785

PicoScope 3205D MSO 2A+16D 100 MHz 256 MS

£849 $1401 €1027

PicoScope 3206D MSO 2A+16D 200 MHz 512 MS

£1049 $1731 €1269

PicoScope 3404D MSO 4A+16D 60 MHz 128 MS

£899 $1483 €1088

PicoScope 3405D MSO 4A+16D 100 MHz 256 MS

£1199 $1978 €1451

PicoScope 3406D MSO 4A+16D 200 MHz 512 MS

£1499 $2473 €1814


Great idea: Frequency response analyzer for PicoScope

PicoScope user Aaron Hexamer has posted details of his application for plotting frequency response using a PicoScope 5444A with built-in signal generator. This project makes use of the free SDK that is available with the scope, and also has experimental support for other PicoScopes that use the ps2000a, ps4000 and ps5000a APIs. It produces a neat Bode plot as shown here. Aaron's intended application is testing the stability of power supplies, but this analyzer would also be useful for testing audio and instrumentation amplifiers and control systems.

If you have developed an application that might be of use to other PicoScope owners, why not tell us about it on the Pico forum?

Read Frequency Response Analyzer with Bode Plots and try the app for yourself!

Video of the month

PicoScope 2204A Review

Electronics blogger Colin O'Flynn has published a very helpful review of the PicoScope 2204A ultra-compact oscilloscope. The review talks you through the specifications, the advanced features and high-resolution display provided by the PicoScope software, color persistence and FFT spectrum modes, serial decoding, and the free Software Development Kit (here shown working with Python).

Watch PicoScope 2204A Review by Colin O'Flynn.

Read further details in PicoScope 2204A Review on Colin's blog.

picotech on YouTube

Don't forget that we have a YouTube channel with a wide selection of videos on the PicoScope software, PicoScope oscilloscopes and PicoLog data loggers. Topics include:

PicoScope menu overviewsignal generator setupsampling scopes • programming with MathWorks MATLAB and National Instruments LabVIEWmixed-signal scopesserial decoding • and many more

Visit the picotech channel on YouTube for all our videos.

Where did you take your PicoScope?

We challenged you to tell us about unusual or challenging places where you had taken your PicoScope. Our favorite story so far is from Roly Runciman of Auckland, New Zealand. Roly took his PicoScope 2200A Series ultra-compact scope to help set up a radio transmitter on Mt Mirau, near Wewak in Papua New Guinea. He reports that "the Pico performed absolutely 100% even in the very hot temperatures in the Highlands of Papua New Guinea".

These pictures give you an idea of how remote the location was, and how an ultra-portable PicoScope is the ideal travel scope when plugged into a laptop:

Roly wins a £50 Amazon voucher (or New Zealand equivalent) for his entry.

We still have prizes to give away. Let us know if you have taken your PicoScope to an unusual location, and your story might feature in the next Pico newsletter.

Tech tips

Inverting colors in PicoScope

Q. Can I invert the screen colors so that PicoScope resembles an analog scope?

A. Yes, you can change the screen colors to anything you like. First, go to Tools > Preferences > Colors. Next, click the Misc section and select Background, and then change the color from Default to Black. You can also change the trace colors to more luminous ones by clicking Channels and setting each channel to a bright color such as Lime.

Graphing power in watts

Q. Can I multiply volts and current to get watts, then plot the average?

A. Yes, you can do this using the channel math feature. Go to Tools > Math Channels and click Create. In the equation editor, type "A*B". If your voltage input is on channel A and your current input is on channel B (scaled at 1 V/A), this will calculate the power in watts. To obtain average power, you need to filter the signal to remove short-term fluctuations. Return to the equation editor and change the equation to "LowPass(A*B,500)", where 500 is the cutoff frequency in hertz. Change this to suit your application. The math channel now shows the average power in watts. To calculate the energy in your waveform, you can change the equation to "integral(A*B)" to display results in joules.


Please visit Pico Exhibitions for the latest list of exhibitions and trade shows that Pico and its representatives will be attending.

We're hiring!

Thanks to our continuing success and growth Pico are always seeking talented people to join our company.

Please visit https://jobs.picotech.com/ to see our current vacancies. We look forward to hearing from you!

Software releases

Our latest software releases are available as free downloads. To check which release you are using, start the software and select Help > About.

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Contact details

UK Headquarters:
Pico Technology, James House, Colmworth Business Park, St. Neots,
Cambridgeshire, PE19 8YP, United Kingdom
Tel.: 01480 396395 (+44 1480 396395)
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Tel: +86 21 2226-5152

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