PicoScope 6000E Series
Ultra-deep-memory, high-performance oscilloscopes and MSOs
PicoScope PC-based instruments use the host computer’s display, which is typically larger and of higher resolution than the dedicated displays installed in traditional benchtop oscilloscopes. This allows room for simultaneous display of time- and frequency-domain waveforms, decoded serial bus tables, measurement results with statistics and more.
PicoScope 6 software scales automatically to take full advantage of the improved resolution of larger display sizes, including 4K ultra-high definition models. At 3840 x 2160 resolution—over eight million pixels—PicoScope allows engineers to get more done in less time through split-screen views of multiple channels (or different views of the same channel) from the device under test. As the example shows, the software can even show multiple oscilloscope and spectrum analyzer traces at once.
Large, high-resolution displays really come into their own when viewing high-resolution signals with the PicoScope 6000E 12-bit FlexRes models. With a 4K monitor, PicoScope can display more than ten times the information of some of our competitors’ scopes, solving the problem of how to match a big display and features with a small-footprint portable oscilloscope.
PicoScope also supports dual monitors: instrument control and waveforms displayed on the first, and large data sets from serial protocol decoders or DeepMeasure results on the second. The software can be controlled by mouse, touchscreen or keyboard shortcuts.
PicoScope’s persistence mode options allow you to see old and new data superimposed, making it easy to spot glitches and dropouts and estimate their relative frequency – useful for displaying and interpreting complex analog signals such as video waveforms and amplitude modulated signals. Color-coding and intensity-grading show which areas are stable and which are intermittent. Choose between Digital Color, Analog Intensity, Fast and Advanced display modes or create your own custom setup.
An important specification to understand when evaluating oscilloscope performance, especially in persistence mode, is the waveform update rate, which is expressed as waveforms per second. While the sampling rate indicates how frequently the oscilloscope samples the input signal within one waveform or cycle, the waveform capture rate refers to how quickly an oscilloscope acquires waveforms.
Oscilloscopes with high waveform capture rates provide better visual insight into signal behavior and dramatically increase the probability that the oscilloscope will quickly capture transient anomalies such as jitter, runt pulses and glitches – that you may not even know exist.
The PicoScope 6000E Series’ HAL4 hardware acceleration can achieve update rates of 300 000 waveforms per second in fast persistence mode.
PicoScope can decode 1-Wire, ARINC 429, BroadR-Reach, CAN & CAN-FD, DALI, DCC, DMX512, Ethernet 10Base-T and 100Base-TX, FlexRay, I²C, I²S, LIN, PS/2, Manchester, Modbus, SENT, SPI, UART (RS-232 / RS-422 / RS-485), and USB 1.1 protocol data as standard, with more protocols in development and available in the future with free-of-charge software
Graph format shows the decoded data (in hex, binary, decimal or ASCII) in a data-bus timing format beneath the waveform on a common time axis, with error frames marked in red. These frames can be zoomed to investigate noise or signal integrity issues.
Table format shows a list of the decoded frames, including the data and all flags and identifiers. You can set up filtering conditions to display only the frames you are interested in or search for frames with specified properties. The statistics option reveals more detail about the physical layer such as frame times and voltage levels. PicoScope can also import a spreadsheet to decode the data into user-defined text strings.
Click on a frame in the table to zoom the oscilloscope display and show the waveform for that frame.
One waveform, millions of measurements
Measurement of waveform pulses and cycles is key to verification of the performance of electrical and electronic devices.
DeepMeasure delivers automatic measurements of important waveform parameters, such as pulse width, rise time and voltage, for every individual cycle in the captured waveforms. Up to a million cycles can be displayed with each triggered acquisition or combined across multiple acquisitions. Results can be easily sorted, analyzed and correlated with the waveform display, or exported as a CSV file or spreadsheet for further analysis. For example, use DeepMeasure with PicoScope’s rapid trigger mode to capture 10,000 pulses and quickly find those with the largest or smallest amplitude, or use your scope’s deep memory to record a million cycles of one waveform and export the rise time of every single edge for statistical analysis.
Mask limit testing allows you to compare live signals against known good signals, and is designed for production and debugging environments. Simply capture a known good signal, draw (or have PicoScope auto-generate) a mask and then measure the system under test. PicoScope will check for mask violations and perform pass/fail testing, capture intermittent glitches, and can show a failure count and other statistics in the Measurements window.
Ever spotted a glitch on a waveform, but by the time you’ve stopped the scope it has gone? With PicoScope you don’t need to worry about missing glitches or other transient events. PicoScope can store the last ten thousand oscilloscope or spectrum waveforms in its circular waveform buffer.
The buffer navigator provides an efficient way of navigating and searching through waveforms, effectively letting you turn back time. Tools such as mask limit testing can also be used to scan through each waveform in the buffer looking for mask violations.
The spectrum view plots amplitude against frequency and is ideal for finding noise, crosstalk or distortion in signals. The spectrum analyzer in PicoScope is of the Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) type that, unlike a traditional swept spectrum analyzer, can display the spectrum of a single, non-repeating waveform. With up to a million points, PicoScope’s FFT has excellent frequency resolution and a low noise floor.
With a click of a button, you can display a spectrum plot of the active channels using up to the full bandwidth of the instrument. A full range of settings gives you control over the number of spectrum bands (FFT bins), window types, scaling (including log/log) and display modes (instantaneous, average, or peak-hold).
You can display multiple spectrum views alongside oscilloscope views of the same data. A comprehensive set of automatic frequency-domain measurements can be added to the display, including THD, THD+N, SNR, SINAD and IMD. A mask limit test can be applied to a spectrum and you can even use the AWG and spectrum mode together to perform swept scalar network analysis.
PicoScope can be programmed to execute actions when certain events occur.
The events that can trigger an alarm include mask limit fails, trigger events and buffers full.
The actions that PicoScope can execute include saving a file, playing a sound, executing a program and triggering the signal generator or the AWG.
Alarms, coupled with mask limit testing, help create a powerful and time-saving waveform monitoring tool. Capture a known good signal, auto-generate a mask around it and then use the alarms to automatically save any waveform (complete with a time/date stamp) that does not meet specification.
With PicoScope 6 you can select simple functions such as addition and inversion, or open the equation editor to create complex functions involving filters (lowpass, highpass, bandpass and bandstop filters), trigonometry, exponentials, logarithms, statistics, integrals and derivatives.
Display up to eight real or calculated channels in each scope view. If you run out of space, just open another scope view and add more. You can also use math channels to reveal new details in complex signals, for example graphing the changing duty cycle or frequency of your signal over time.
The custom probes feature allows you to correct for gain, attenuation, offsets and nonlinearities in probes, sensors or transducers that you connect to the oscilloscope. This could be used to scale the output of a current probe so that it correctly displays amperes. A more advanced use would be to scale the output of a nonlinear temperature sensor using the table lookup function.
Definitions for standard Pico-supplied oscilloscope probes and current clamps are included. User-created probes may be saved for later use.
Our free PicoSDK software development kit allows you to write your own software and includes drivers for Windows, macOS and Linux. Example code supplied on our GitHub organization page shows how to interface to third-party software packages such as National Instruments LabVIEW and MathWorks MATLAB.
Among other features, the drivers support data streaming, a mode that captures continuous gap-free data directly to your PC or host computer at rates of over 300 MS/s, so you are not limited by the size of your scope’s capture memory. Sampling rates in streaming mode are subject to PC specifications and application loading.
There is also an active community of PicoScope users who share both code and whole applications on our Test and Measurement Forum and the PicoApps section of the website. The Frequency Response Analyzer shown here is a popular application on the forum.
PicoScope 6000E Series oscilloscopes are also supported by the PicoLog 6 data logging software, allowing you to view and record signals on multiple units in one capture.
PicoLog 6 allows sample rates of up to 1 kS/s per channel, and is ideal for long-term observation of general parameters, such as voltage or current levels, on several channels at the same time, whereas the PicoScope 6 software is more suitable for waveshape or harmonic analysis.
You can also use PicoLog 6 to view data from your oscilloscope alongside a data logger or other device. For example, you could measure voltage and current with your PicoScope and plot both against temperature using a TC-08 thermocouple data logger, or humidity with a DrDAQ multipurpose data logger and suitable sensor.
PicoLog 6 is available for Windows, macOS and Linux, including Raspberry Pi OS.