Data logger, oscilloscope, signal generator and more!

DrDAQ is a versatile instrument that connects to the USB port of any PC. Using the supplied PicoScope software it can be used as an oscilloscope, spectrum analyzer and signal generator.

From just £95

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Scalextric Subaru Challenge - results


The general idea was to track the time taken for the car to complete a circuit. See the PicoScope display below for an example of how it works:

Subaru Scalextric Challenge PicoScope display

Notice the two different peaks. The lower peaks represent the car on the inside track, the larger peaks represent the car on the outside track. It can be seen that the car on the inside was overtaken by the car on the outside. The reason for the difference in signals is that the nearer the car is to the light sensor the less light reaches it, thus the resistance is greater which makes for a bigger voltage drop.

The above display shows that the car on the outside overtakes the car on the inside.

From the above screen capture in PicoScope it is possible to calculate the speed of the Scalextric cars using the following equation:

Velocity = Distance / Time

The car on the inside can be seen to take 2997 ms to travel 3.7 metres. The first stage is to identify the units, to compare the car to the real thing we should use mph and hours.

Distance (km) = (3.7/1000) = 0.0037
Time (Hours) = (2997/(1000*60*60)) = 0.0008325

The average velocity can now be calculated:

Velocity = 0.0037 / 0.0008325 = 4.44 km/h

There are 1609 metres to the mile so:

Velocity = 4.44/1.609 = 2.759 mph

If the same calculations are performed for the car in the outside lane then its average velocity is seen to be 3.698 mph.

The above speeds do not seem very fast, however this is just a demonstration of how to log the average speed of the devices. In practice the staff here at Pico managed to get a top average speed of around 8 mph with the car on the inside lane.

Following on from this experiment there are a number of other parameters that can be recorded:

  • Maximum speed
  • Power consumption of each car
  • Automation of all of the readings


  • The kit (2408B) is of obvious quality, easy to setup and calibrate and the free to download software has a reasonable learning curve. Superb kit, superb support, what more can I say.

    Rop Honnor
  • I have been using my 4224 PicoScope for years. I travel abroad so this has been ideal due to its physical size. Storage of waveforms on my Laptop is very easy allowing me to quickly email waveforms to my Colleagues.

  • Not many USB scopes works on Win & Mac & Linux too, so that proves me that guys from Pico really cares about us, customers. This made my decision much easier when I was looking to buy an USB scope.

    Raul Trifan
  • We have been using Picoscope 6404D for quite some time, and are amazed by its accuracy and powerful emulations while working with numerous signal evaluations.

    J Mohanty
  • PicoLog TC-08: This is a very nice unit that works consistently and reliably.

    Jeff Hulett
  • It is a great scope. I had a weird problem - it did not work on one of my PC’s. Customer service gave me first class service. If I could give 6 stars for customer service - I would do so.

    Niels Larsen
  • Perfect Partner for Development of Encoder controlled Stepper Motor Actuators. Since the included software is really stable, this type of device is a great tool for great tasks!

    Helmut Schoettner
  • A superb piece of equipment worth its weight in gold

    Nigel Clinch
  • So simple to use & beats any other I have ever used hands down.

    John D Samsing
  • Great functionality in a compact size. I really like moving the mouse pointer to a position and having the Time and Voltage display the values at that point. Calibration equipment is a breeze with that feature.

    Don Horein

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