Industrial & ScientificTest, Measure and Inspect

Top 9 Best Digital Oscilloscopes, Electrical Measurement Tools in 2019

A digital oscilloscope, which also goes by the shortened version of an o-scope, is an electronic test instrument for voltages. Its role is to display the changes in an electrical signal, with it plotted on a Y and X-axis.  Once the oscilloscope has the waveform, it can analyze the data and look for frequency, amplitude, time intervals, distortion, rise time, and more.

The oscilloscope market is massive, with a whole host of different options to suit experts and amateurs alike. Each offers different features to suit various needs, and they are all in different price groups as well.

If you’re ready to purchase a new o-scope, then read on. Below, we’ve listed nine excellent options for those who are just learning the basics, and people who are experts in their field. Read through the pros, cons, and features, and see if you can identify a new digital oscilloscope that ticks all the boxes. 

1. Siglent Technologies 4-Channel Digital Oscilloscope

Siglent Technologies 4-Channel Digital Oscilloscope

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By Siglent Technologies

If you’re ready to upgrade your testing equipment, then look no further than this digital oscilloscope from Siglent. With favorable reviews from many of its purchasers, it’s clear to see it’s a standout on the market for many reasons.

The first standout point is its quantity options. While you could buy one at a time, you are also able to buy up to five in one lot. If you need to buy in bulk, then this is an ideal option. This digital oscilloscope is also affordable for all those who require high-quality equipment that’s worth its weight in gold.

It has four channels, 16 digital channels, and both a WiFi adapter and USB AWG module. Users also like that it boasts 1Gsa/use, 100Mhz, and 1Mpts. It’s a standard decoder, but it packs a punch with how much it has to offer. 

The user interface is clean and responsive, and it has almost no lag at all. Even the webserver is impressive as it updates quickly. 

The probes are decent, it has 14 divisions on the signal grid instead of the more common 12, and the cables are flexible and slim. The only things you need to watch are the hook and 1X/10X switch. The switch is easy to move by accident, and the hook can catch on the hat and doesn’t always clamp on the lead effectively. These points aside, this oscilloscope is worth your inspection. 

Features

  • Four channels
  • One, two, three, four, and five-pack options
  • 1Gsa/use
  • 1Mpts 
  • 100Mhz
  • Standard decoder
  • 16 digital channels 
  • WiFi adapter
  • USB AWG module 

Pros

  • You can buy more than one at a time
  • Many digital channels
  • Affordable to buy 
  • The user interface is clean and responsive
  • It has 14 divisions on the signal grid 
  • The probes are decent
  • Almost no lag
  • The cables are flexible and slim
  • The web server updates quickly 
  • It comes with a LAN connection 

Cons

  • The 1X/10X switch is easy to shift by accident
  • The hook catches on the hat and doesn’t clamp on the lead correctly all the time 

2. Siglent Technologies 2-Channel Digital Oscilloscope

Siglent Technologies 2-Channel Digital Oscilloscope

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By Siglent Technologies

Trying to find a digital oscilloscope that’s affordable and high-quality is not only challenging, but it can seem almost impossible. Until you come across this oscilloscope from Siglent Technologies, you might think it is. 

This high-quality oscilloscope is packed full of exciting features that are sure to take your electronic testing needs to the next level. It only has two channels and doesn’t have logic analysis, but it can do all the basics – and to a high standard.

It has a beautiful, gray color scheme, it’s lightweight, and has USB compatibility. It also has 200Mhz bandwidth, which is usually far more expensive than this model.

You can enjoy real-time sampling, the option to buy up to five at a time, and 1Gsa/use along with 14 Mpts IRecord length. 

There is not a lot you won’t like about this digital oscilloscope from Siglent Technologies. It has high-frequency support, a simple dial layout which won’t take you long to learn, and even probe calibration is a breeze. This powerful and fast digital oscilloscope could be the answer to your electronic testing needs at a novice level. 

Features

  • Two channels
  • Gray color scheme
  • One, two, three, and five-pack options
  • 200 Mhz bandwidth
  • Real-time sampling
  • 1Gsa/use
  • 14 Mpts IRecord length
  • USB host 
  • SPO technology

Pros

  • It has high-frequency support 
  • The layout of the dials is easy to learn
  • Probe calibration is effortless
  • It’s powerful and fast
  • It has a rich scope 
  • Competitive pricing given its bandwidth 
  • Exceptionally responsive
  • Lightweight to move around

Cons

  • It only has two channels 
  • It doesn’t have logic analysis 

3. Rigol Digital Oscilloscope 

Rigol Digital Oscilloscope

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By Rigol

If you’re testing the waters with a new digital oscilloscope, then let it be this one from Rigol. Before you move onto something bigger and better, it’s a good idea to start with the basics. Even though this oscilloscope is quite basic, it still meets the mark for everything you might need to carry out testing at a standard level.

It has 50 Mhz bandwidth, four channels, and a sleek, gray color scheme. This digital oscilloscope is also far lighter and smaller than several others like it for sale thanks to its durable plastic construction. 

What people also like is that it has free software included in the purchase, USB host, and a seven-inch display with 800 x 480px resolution. You’re unlikely to have any problem using and seeing all of its functions.

It has a 24Mpt memory, 1Gsa/second sampling, and a 30,000 wfms/second wavelength capture rate. It’s clear to see this digital oscilloscope is ticking all the right boxes. It also has ethernet, comes with context help, and the controls are responsive.

There’s no denying that this digital oscilloscope won’t suit expert users because it’s missing some high-end functions. It also has high noise, problems with weak frequencies, and the triggers can be finicky at times. The FFT is also not all that great. In saying that, beginners can take delight in learning the ropes on a digital oscilloscope that’s high-quality and ideal for a range of functions. 

Features

  • 50 Mhz
  • Four channels
  • Gray color scheme
  • Plastic construction
  • 24 Mpt memory
  • 1GSa/second sampling
  • Free software bundle
  • 30,000 wfms/second wavelength capture rate
  • USB host 
  • Seven-inch display 
  • 800 x 480px resolution

Pros

  • It doesn’t take long to learn how to use
  • Lightweight and compact 
  • It has ethernet 
  • Affordable price 
  • It comes with context help 
  • The controls are responsive 

Cons

  • It has a high noise level
  • The FFT is not that great 
  • Frequencies can slip through the cracks 
  • The triggers can be finicky at times

4. Hantek Digital Storage Oscilloscope 

Hantek Digital Storage Oscilloscope

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By Hantek

When you see the price of high-end digital oscilloscopes, you may wonder if you’ll ever be able to afford one. After all, they can cost hundreds of dollars! Fortunately, you don’t have to start at the top. Instead, you can buy a beginner’s model of a digital oscilloscope that has many of the basic features you require. You can then upgrade as you learn all there is to know about the product.

If you have decided to start with a beginner model, then consider this one from Hantex. It’s a digital oscilloscope that has a lot to offer the average amateur.

It has USB, a bandwidth of 100 MHz which is reasonably impressive, and a record length of 40k. It may only have two channels, but that’s also more than enough for the average novice. Those who purchase this digital oscilloscope can also be impressed by its crisp and clean seven-inch color display, trigger mode, and device connectivity with USB hosting. Even the four math functions will be a pleasant surprise for those who purchase this model.

If you’re unsure about investing in a digital oscilloscope, then enjoy peace of mind with Hantek’s warranty. If this oscilloscope doesn’t work as it should, the manufacturer will make it right within 12 months. 

This cost-effective unit has a conveniently small footprint, easy-to-understand buttons, and a reasonably excellent sampling rate and frequency. Even the probes work well. Given its price and target market, you aren’t going to get perfection, however. The software can be slow to read data, and it can be a bit laggy to use. The power button also feels cheap, and it can take a while to start up.

Those points aside, this competitively priced digital oscilloscope is not one to leave off your wishlist when you’re on the hunt for a quality product to start with. 

Features

  • USB 
  • 100 MHz bandwidth 
  • 1Gsa/s sample rate 
  • 40K record length 
  • Two channels
  • Seven-inch color display
  • Trigger mode
  • USB host and device connectivity 
  • Four math functions

Pros

  • It comes with a one-year warranty 
  • Ideal for beginners
  • Affordable to buy 
  • It’s well made
  • Straightforward to learn how to use
  • Convenient small footprint
  • The buttons are easy to understand
  • The sampling rate and frequency are ideal for learners 
  • The probes work well

Cons

  • The software can be slow to read data from the scope 
  • It can be a little laggy to use 
  • The power button feels cheap
  • It can take a while to start up

5. Siglent Technologies Digital Storage Oscilloscope

Siglent Technologies Digital Storage Oscilloscope

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By Siglent Technologies

Before you go out and buy an expensive digital oscilloscope that’s far above your experience level – why not start small? Choose something affordable and easy to manage before you join the big leagues. This digital oscilloscope from Siglent Technologies might be able to help.

It has a lower-end 50Mhz of bandwidth, and you can choose from a standard or upgraded option. It also stands at only 6.2 inches high and 12.7 inches long, making it a small, compact, and easy to manage digital oscilloscope that could be all you require.

It operates with two channels, has a 32k record length, and a 500MS/s sample rate. You’ll likely also be impressed by its high-resolution display and both LAN and USB interfaces. 

 There’s no denying that this digital oscilloscope is not going to be suitable for a professional, but for an amateur, it’s going to tick many of the boxes. It’s affordable to buy, has a built-in frequency counter and automatic measurements, and it even has a zoom function. 

Whether you’re in product design, electrical engineering education, or on an assembly line, this digital oscilloscope is likely to suit your needs well. Check it out and see if it’s right for you. 

Features

  • 50 MHz bandwidth
  • Standard or upgrade options
  • 6.2-inch height 
  • 12.7-inch length 
  • Two channels
  • 500MS/s sample rate
  • 32k record length
  • High-resolution display
  • USB and LAN interfaces

Pros

  • Affordable to buy
  • Suitable for product design, assembly lines, electrical engineering education, and more
  • It has advanced triggers for signal isolation
  • It comes with a built-in frequency counter and automatic measurements
  • It displays five parameters
  • It has a zoom function
  • It’s an improved model on the manufacturer’s old one
  • It doesn’t require any warm-up time
  • Setup is easy

Cons

  • It has a bit of lag 
  • It can feel glitchy and buggy
  • It’s a bit noisy

6. SainSmart Portable Digital Storage Oscilloscope

SainSmart Portable Digital Storage Oscilloscope

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BY SainSmart

It would be no easy feat to carry a digital oscilloscope on the road with you everywhere you went, but how else are you supposed to get accurate measurements? Fortunately, SainSmart has come up with a solution. 

Instead of lugging around a massive digital oscilloscope, you can purchase a small, compact, and portable model that would fit in any small bag or pocket. This product, with a color display and 8mb flash storage, is solving many people’s problems. 

It has two analog channels, an operation channel, and a 19 Msa/s sample rate. For peace of mind, the battery is reasonably sizeable as well, at 500 mAh. There is more than meets the eye with this portable digital oscilloscope. 

It has 1MHz bandwidth, trigger modes of ascending and descend edge, and a USB micro port to seal the deal. The 2.8-inch screen may be challenging to use at times due to its size, but you may forgive that point due to the impressive 320 x 240px resolution. 

It’s well built, reliable, and entirely convenient to use. It may not have all the features you need, but it’s suitable for quick and easy use on the road at a moment’s notice. It’s well worth your inspection. 

Features

  • Color display
  • Portable design
  • 8mb flash storage
  • Two analog channels
  • One operation channel
  • 1 MHz analog bandwidth 
  • 19 Msa/s sample rate 
  • Ascend and descend edge trigger mode 
  • USB port 
  • 500 mAh battery
  • 2.8-inch screen size 
  • 320 x 240px screen resolution

Pros

  • It’s well built and solid
  • Easy to take with you anywhere
  • Affordable to buy
  • A lot of features and measurement options 
  • Reasonably accurate measurements
  • A lot of menus and sub-menus
  • Great finish

Cons

  • The small size can be challenging 
  • It only has one probe
  • The factory calibration is not great 
  • A lack of instructions for use

7. Rigol Dual Analog Digital Oscilloscope

Rigol Dual Analog Digital Oscilloscope

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By Rigol

This digital oscilloscope won’t win any awards for high-end design or functionality, but it’s more than suitable for those who require reliability. This digital oscilloscope is an attractive option for many people, and its features will surprise you.

It has dual analog channels, 1 Gsa/s sampling, and USB storage for convenience. The white color scheme is a subtle difference from others, and the 5.7-inch color display is crisp and clear for easy viewing. It has an external trigger, 20 different wave parameters, and a built-in menu for effortless navigation. The icing on the cake is the PC application software to help even novices operate this digital oscilloscope with ease. 

This portable tool will suit many people. It’s affordable, lightweight, easy for beginners, and even comes with probes. It’s by no means advanced, but it’s likely an excellent starting point. 

Features

  • Dual analog channels
  • 1 Gsa/s sampling
  • USB storage
  • White color scheme 
  • 5.7-inch color display
  • External trigger
  • 20 wave parameters
  • Built-in menu
  • PC application software

Pros

  • Portable
  • Easy for beginners
  • Easy to set and control
  • Affordable to buy
  • Lightweight 
  • It comes with probes
  • Convenient auto button

Cons

  • Poor instructions
  • The calibration updates are slow
  • The probe tip can be loose

8. Tektronix Digital Storage Oscilloscope 

Tektronix Digital Storage Oscilloscope

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By Tektronix

This digital oscilloscope may not be the most affordable model on the market, nor is it the best, but that doesn’t mean it won’t work for you.

With two channels, 50 Mhz bandwidth and a generous five-year warranty, it has a lot going for it. It also comes with a seven-inch color display, excellent sample rate, and a 2.5k record length. It’s clear to see that Tektronix has thought long and hard about how to make a digital oscilloscope that works for the consumer. 

It doesn’t have a cooling fan, which makes it quiet, and it has zoom functionality for convenience. You’ll also appreciate its speed, ease of use, and digital precision for accuracy. This digital oscilloscope does, however, have a few problems. The refresh rate isn’t high, and the triggers are not always reliable. It also has a few glitches. It’s up to you to decide whether you can handle those points. Otherwise, you may like to look elsewhere. 

Features

  • Two channels
  • 50 MHz bandwidth
  • Five-year warranty
  • Seven-inch color display
  • Real-time 2GS/s sample rate
  • 2.5kpts record length

Pros

  • Generous warranty period
  • It doesn’t have a cooking fan, so low noise
  • Real-time and fast
  • Easy to use 
  • Digital precision for accuracy
  • Zoom function for convenience 
  • Automatic functions

Cons

  • The refresh rate isn’t great
  • The triggers are not always reliable
  • It has a few glitches 
  • Expensive to buy

9. Tektronix Digital Oscilloscope 

Tektronix Digital Oscilloscope

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By Tektronix

This digital oscilloscope from Tektronix may have an expensive price tag, but it’s worth its weight in gold. If you are a professional who is need of a reliable oscilloscope to take your measurements to the next level, this model is it.

It comes with four channels, 100 Mhz bandwidth, and a nine-inch color display. This screen is far more extensive than many others and allows you to view 15 horizontal grids and 50 percent more signal than other models. 

It has a one gs/s sample rate, 20m record length, and convenient WiFi interface. This interface offers wireless communications capability support. 

Sealing the deal is the generous five-year warranty. You can’t look past this digital oscilloscope if you need something that screams quality and reliability. 

Features

  • Four channels
  • 100 MHz bandwidth 
  • Nine-inch color display
  • 1 gs/s sample rate
  • 20m record length
  • WiFi interface
  • Five-year warranty

Pros

  • Generous warranty period
  • Ideal for professionals
  • It has a large display that shows far more signal than others
  • The probe interface supports current, active, and differential probes
  • Convenient automatic scaling and units
  • Suitable for a wide range of people

Cons

  • Expensive price tag 

Considerations for Purchasing a Digital Oscilloscope

Given the significant investment that a digital oscilloscope can be, it’s not a purchasing decision to make lightly. You have to do your homework, find out what’s available, and make sure you make the right call. Here are a few of the many things to consider before you buy your new digital oscilloscope.

  1. Price

    The first thing to think about is price. Set a budget and stick to it. You can then narrow down your options within that price range. The more you spend, the better the digital oscilloscope is, but that doesn’t mean more affordable options aren’t going to impress you. There are several products on the market that are more valuable and desirable than their price tags would lead you to believe.

  2. Needs

    The digital oscilloscope market is massive, with a whole host of different options to suit all manner of users. Before you jump into a purchase, make sure you know what you need. Professionals often require something more complicated (and expensive). Novices, on the other hand, often want something basic and functional, but that will help them step onto the electronic measurement ladder.

  3. Features

    The more you spend, the better the characteristics of a digital oscilloscope tend to be. Pay attention to the full feature list of any model before you buy it. You can then get to know its display size, sample rate, record length, various interfaces, and whether or not it comes with a warranty.

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