Test and Measurement News

June 2012

Raspberry Pi Meets DrDAQ

The new Raspberry Pi single–board computer is such an obvious match for our own DrDAQ, the compact single-board data logger, that we just had to put the two together. The result is a Debian Linux driver and C++ example code, now available for free download.

Now you can add all of these DrDAQ I/O channels to your Raspberry Pi project:

  • 100 kHz oscilloscope
  • Arbitrary waveform generator
  • 4 digital I/Os (2 with pulse-counting input and PWM output)
  • 24-bit RGB LED
  • Built-in light sensor
  • Built-in temperature sensor
  • Built-in microphone
  • Resistance measuring input
  • 3 external sensor inputs (buy our sensors or design your own)
  • pH/redox sensor input

Download the driver and example code and read the latest Raspberry Pi news, all on our forum

Coming soon: Python wrapper for the DrDAQ driver. Check our website for details.

SDK for MathWorks MATLAB

All PicoLog and PicoScope devices can be controlled from MATLAB by writing your own code using the free SDK supplied. The following resources are also available:

  • Example script for PicoScope 2000 Series 
  • Guidance notes for PicoScope 3000A Series 
  • Signal generator script for PicoScope 5000 Series 

World’s Simplest Logic Analyzer for $5

The Code and Life blog at codeandlife.com has an ingenious design for converting the PicoScope 2204 oscilloscope to a logic analyzer. Source code is included for collecting data from the oscilloscope, and display and serial protocol decoding are provided by an open source program called Open Logic Sniffer.

Entwicklung non–isolated Schaltnetzteil mit world–wide AC input

For our German-speaking readers, this application note by Ralf Ohmberger at www.amplifier.cd shows how a PicoScope 2205 was used in the development of a switching power supply. You will find an interesting discussion of the relative advantages of digital storage scopes and dual-beam analog scopes, as well as plenty of PicoScope screen shots illustrating how much detail PicoScope can show compared with even a well-focused CRT.

Try Google Translate for a machine-translated English version (accuracy not guaranteed!)

Tech Tips

Zooming in during slow sampling with PicoScope

Q. I wish to be able to clearly see a sine wave (zoom in), while I am recording data in slow sample mode, to scan it for any unwanted disturbances. For that, I need the signal to “flow” on my screen from right to left, so that I don’t need to continuously move my zoom window to follow the signal. Currently, the signal simply plots itself from left to right, which makes it impossible to be always zoomed in to the most recent data. Additionally, I wish to be able to set a trigger event, but I wish to also be able to see the data even when the trigger is not satisfied in case some unexpected event occurs so that I can start recording manually. Is that feasible?

A. Yes. If you set up PicoScope so that it is running in streaming mode, usually 100 ms/div or slower depending on the preferences setting, you will see a trace running across the screen. If you now select Single trigger mode and set up a trigger condition that does not normally occur, you will have a trace that continually streams but doesn’t go past the trigger point. Zooming in on this will give you what you are looking for.

Working with multiple waveforms

Q. How can I open multiple PicoScope .psdata files as different channels (or something similar) in order to use math channels on them?

A. You cannot open multiple .psdata files, but you can get the result you seek using Reference Waveforms. Open one .psdata file at a time, copy it into the Reference Waveforms list, then repeat with all .psdata files. You can then combine the Reference Waveforms with live inputs or with each other using Math Channels. (Video: How to use Reference Waveforms.)


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Software releases

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