Signal generator

A signal generator is an invaluable piece of test equipment. The output from a signal generator is a repeating waveform whose characteristics are set by the user. Signal generators can be used for research and development purposes, along with the servicing and repair of electronic equipment.

Most PicoScope PC oscilloscopes include an integrated signal generator. The signal generator is controlled using the PicoScope software.

Sweep mode

When sweep mode is activated, the PicoScope signal generator produces a frequency that changes steadily between the selected Start Frequency and Stop Frequency. You can set the Sweep Type to Up (increasing frequency) or Down (decreasing frequency). There are also Up Down and Down Up modes that sweep the frequency alternately up and down.


By default, the signal generator runs continually when the Signal On box is ticked. Triggers can be used to start and stop the signal generator on command.

Trigger Source can be:

  • Scope - the signal generator starts when the scope is triggered
  • Manual - starts when you click Trigger Now
  • Ext Input - started by a signal on the EXT input

You can specify the number of cycles of the waveform to be produced after each trigger event.