Test and Measurement News

July 2012

New 4–Channel PicoScopes!

Our most popular range of high–speed scopes, the PicoScope 3000 Series, has just been extended with six new 4–channel models. These USB–powered scopes have everything you need for everyday test and measurement: bandwidths up to 200 MHz, external trigger input, signal generator or AWG output, and an optional DC input to save your laptop battery.

  • 60 MHz to 200 MHz bandwidths
  • 1 GS/s maximum real–time sampling rate
  • 10 GS/s equivalent (ETS) sampling rate for repetitive signals
  • Spectrum analyzer
  • 4 M to 128 M sample buffer memory
  • Advanced digital triggering with pulse width, window, dropout, logic and runt pulse detection
  • FlexiPower™ system: power either from USB or DC input
  • Compact, ergonomic design with all I/O on front panel
  • Powerful PicoScope software with automatic measurements, mask limit testing, channel math, color persistence mode, programmable alarms and serial decoding
  • Free SDK for controlling the scopes from your own applications

Full specifications and ordering information for the new PicoScope 3000 Series 4–Channel Scopes

New Videos on the PicoScope 2205 MSO

If you own the PicoScope 2205 Mixed–Signal Oscilloscope (MSO) or are thinking of buying one, you should benefit from our latest new training videos. Industry expert Pete Darby explains how to use the scope and the software to best advantage.

The PicoScope 2205 MSO packs a 2–channel 100 MHz oscilloscope and 16–channel logic analyzer into a compact, portable case.

Three Things You Didn’t Know About PicoScope

If you’re a PicoScope beginner then there are some features you might not have discovered yet. Here are three of the most useful.

1. Scaling feature for all types of probes. PicoScope has a number of built–in probe types, such as 10:1, and also allows you to define new ones. Click the channel button (labelled “A”, “B”, “C” or “D”) on the toolbar, then the “Probe“ menu at the top, then the required probe in the list. For example, if you selected “x10”, that channel is now set up to use a 10:1 probe.

2. Movable center line on y–axis for unipolar signals. Each PicoScope channel can be moved up and down by dragging its y–axis (the column of numbers to the left or right of the screen). If your signal is unipolar (for example, in the range 0 V to 1 V), you can drag the center line to the bottom. Adjusting the vertical scale to 2x will then allow you to make full use of the window.

3. Each signal displayed in a separate row. In PicoScope, each channel has its own y–axis. By default, these all occupy the full height of the display so signals often overlap. To separate them, right–click on the display and choose “Auto–arrange axes”. PicoScope will then move and resize all the channels so that they do not overlap.

Make sure you have the latest version of PicoScope. Download your free copy of PicoScope today.

Best of the Web

“The Raspberry Pi and DrDAQ each pack a lot into a small package and seem like natural companions.”

Soon after the release last month of our Raspberry Pi driver for the DrDAQ Data Logger, Andrew Back wrote about his experience with the driver on the DesignSpark blog. Perhaps you can follow in his footsteps and create your own application for the DrDAQ.

Read more about our Raspberry Pi driver on our forum

Tech Tips

Where did rapid triggering mode go?

Q. I would like to use rapid triggering mode with my PicoScope 3204A to avoid gaps between waveforms, but although it is listed as possible in the data sheet, it isn’t offered in the PicoScope trigger menu.

A. Rapid triggering mode is available only on the shorter timebases. Select a timebase of 1 ms/div or shorter and, if the scope supports it, the Rapid option will appear in the trigger menu.

PicoScope 3000 Series sampling rate

Q. Do the PicoScope 3000 Series scopes sample at 500 MS/s under all conditions, or can I reduce the sampling rate? Specifically, 8 MS storage is plenty for me if I can sample at 30 MS/s (but not at 500 MS/s). It’s not clear to me that this flexibility exists however.

A. The PicoScope software automatically adjusts the sampling rate depending on the timebase to make best use of your scope’s memory. You can check the sampling rate in the Properties panel, available under the Views menu. Similarly, with the software development kit (SDK), it is possible to set the desired sampling interval and number of samples to capture.


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)
Fax: 01480 396296 (+44 1480 396296)

North America Office:
Pico Technology, 320 N Glenwood Blvd, Tyler TX 75702, United States
Tel:+1 800 591 2796 (Toll Free)
Fax:+1 620 272 0981

Asia-Pacific Office:
Pico Technology, Room 2252, 22/F, Centro, 568 Hengfeng Road, Zhabei District,
Shanghai 200070, PR China
Tel: +86 21 2226-5152

Email: sales@picotech.com