Midpriced, 1.5-GHz-bandwidth DSOs provide a broad array of features
According to Boyd Shaw, product manager of Yokogawa Corp of America’s Test and Measurement Division, the company’s DSOs (digital storage oscilloscopes) are among the best kept secrets in the US electronics industry. Shaw says that YCA’s scope sales place it fourth in the United States but that the Japan-headquartered company does far better not only in Asia, but also in Europe. Shaw believes that YCA’s US DSO market share will receive a big boost from the introduction of the DL9000 series, which includes four four-channel, 1- and 1.5-GHz-bandwidth real-time-sampling scopes, whose prices start at $10,995.
In the two-channel mode, the 1-GHz units acquire 5G samples/sec on each channel (Picture). (With all channels active, the sampling rate drops to 2.5G samples/sec on each channel.) The 1.5-GHz units can sample twice as fast. At each bandwidth, you can choose between units with maximum memory depth of 2.5 or 6.25M samples/channel.
The scopes provide an impressive array of operational and connectivity features, some of which may be unfamiliar to users of US-manufactured DSOs. For example, although most US suppliers have now standardized on color grading to indicate the duty ratio of pixel illumination, YCA is sticking with intensity modulation, not, as you might think, because intensity modulation is less expensive or easier to implement than color grading—in a DSO, it is not—but because many users find intensity-modulated displays more intuitive. In this regard, the DL9000s’ intensity-graded displays mimic analog-scope displays in a way that many users are bound to find more informative and user-friendly than color-graded displays.
The DL9000 designs go to great lengths to rapidly acquire lots of waveforms with minimal time between acquisitions and to quickly display the acquired data in the most meaningful ways. By segmenting memory when the record length is shorter than the full memory depth, the scopes can acquire waveforms with minimal time between acquisitions. One display mode uses the intensity-grading feature to create a single display that overlays the multiple acquisitions. However, all data from each acquisition remains in memory, and you can individually inspect each waveform to search for anomalies. If the accumulated length of all waveforms exceeds the memory depth, the unit discards the oldest acquisitions from the FIFO memory.
Other features include both front- and rear-panel USB ports, an optional 100BaseTX/10BaseT Ethernet interface, a trigger-comparator output for use with external equipment, a go/no-go output for use in production testing, an optional built-in strip-chart recorder, and two PCMCIA slots. (By installing an appropriate card in one of these slots, you can add an IEEE 488 interface.) The units have many built-in filtering and statistical functions. Unlike most Windows-based DSOs, these scopes run under a ROM-resident version of Windows CE. Shaw says that the results are faster start-up, greater operational stability, and more room for your data on the optional 20-Gbyte internal hard drive.
Yokogawa Corp of America, 1-770-254-0400, www.yokogawa.com/us/.