Test and Measurement News

September 2012

Win a PicoScope 3406B!

Enter now for the chance to win a PicoScope 3406B in our new prize draw!

The PicoScope 3406B is a high–performance 4 channel USB oscilloscope with enough bandwidth and buffer memory for a wide range of analog and digital design, troubleshooting, testing and measurement tasks. With its built–in signal generator and arbitrary waveform generator, it gives you a complete test bench in one compact unit. Here are the main specifications and features:

  • 200 MHz bandwidth
  • 128 MS deep memory
  • 1 GS/s real–time sampling
  • Advanced digital triggering
  • 200 MHz spectrum analyzer
  • Function generator and arbitrary waveform generator
  • FlexiPower: powered by USB or AC adapter supplied
  • Full PicoScope software with math channels, automated measurements, advanced digital triggering, mask limit testing and serial decoding
  • Free software development kit for creating your own custom applications
  • Free software updates

Enter the PicoScope 3406B Prize Draw (the competition code is CM128)

Focus on: Portability

The PicoScope Handheld Oscilloscopes are our smallest USB oscilloscopes, with all the electronics fitted inside a compact probe. A pushbutton stops, starts and configures the oscilloscope, and a built–in light illuminates the device under test. Supplied with the full version of the advanced PicoScope 6 software.

The PicoScope Ultra–Compact Oscilloscopes offer amazing value for money, with advanced digital triggering and a built-in arbitrary waveform generator. This may be the only test instrument you need.

The PicoLog 1000 Series Data Loggers are an extremely cost–effective way to get into data logging. The price includes a terminal board for easy connections and the powerful PicoLog software with chart and spreadsheet views.

Description Channels Specifications
PicoScope 2104 Handheld Oscilloscope 1 10 MHz, 50 MS/s
PicoScope 2105 Handheld Oscilloscope 1 25 MHz, 100 MS/s
PicoScope 2204 Ultra–Compact Oscilloscope 2 10 MHz, 100 MS/s
PicoScope 2205 Ultra–Compact Oscilloscope 2 25 MHz, 200 MS/s
PicoLog 1012 Data Logger 12 10 bits, 1 MS/s
PicoLog 1216 Data Logger 16 12 bits, 1 MS/s

Debugging an I²C Bus with a PicoScope Mixed–Signal Oscilloscope

The PicoScope 2205 Mixed–Signal Oscilloscope (MSO) has 16 digital channels that are typically used to monitor parallel data buses, plus 2 analog channels, but don’t forget that you can use them for serial data too. With PicoScope’s serial decoding feature that means you can decode up to 18 buses at once.

We’ve published a detailed application note using an Analog Devices AD5325 DAC as the device under test. The PicoScope MSO allows you to view the DAC’s analog output on the same timebase as the serial data, in this case in I²C format.

Read “Debugging an I²C Bus with a PicoScope Mixed–Signal Oscilloscope

Best of the Web: Linux Radio Projects

PicoScope shortwave radio receiver

What better to follow last month’s software video display application than a PicoScope radio receiver? Forum visitorjkahrs has written a Linux application to stream data at 5 MS/s using a PicoScope 2000 Series scope.

Read the “PicoScope: new Linux driver for 2204 & 2205” forum thread

RFID sniffer

“OpenPICC Sniffer” is an open–source project based on the OpenPCD near–field communications hardware for 13.56 MHz RFID. It uses a PicoScope 3204A oscilloscope and a custom front end to decode RFID transactions.

Linux and Windows drivers for the PicoScope 3000 Series scopes are available free of charge from our website, so why not use a PicoScope in your next application?

Visit the OpenPICC Sniffer website

Tech Tips

Serial decoding with non–standard baud rates

Q. I’ve watched the video and the RS232 serial analysis tools look great, but I need to analyze a non–standard baud rate. Can I do that in PicoScope 6? The drop–down list box suggests not.

A. Yes, you can. PicoScope is not limited to the standard rates in the drop-down list. They are only there as shortcuts to the most commonly used values. You can type any baud rate you like in the box, subject to the capabilities of your scope.

Saving PicoScope 6 settings

Q. What’s the difference between saving a PicoScope settings file and selecting ‘Save Startup Settings’?

A. If you regularly capture different types of waveform with a particular timebase, voltage range and other options, save a .pssettings file for each type. You can double–click these files in Windows Explorer, open them from the PicoScope File menu or simply drag and drop them into the PicoScope window, and you can have as many of them as you like. The ‘Save Startup Settings’ command tells PicoScope to make its own private copy of the current settings and use them whenever the program starts, or when the Home button is clicked.


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