An hobbyist oscilloscope is a device that, when you plug it into something that emits a signal such as a crystal chip on an electronic board and turn it on will display the visual representation of that on its screen. It is a very useful tool for many types of projects and can be used by tinkerers, Makers, or anyone who likes to work on old electronics to find out what is wrong with their equipment.

In recent years, manufacturers have begun to offer USB oscilloscopes that have all the functionality of traditional standalone scopes but can be powered by your computer instead of a dedicated machine. These new devices are becoming increasingly competitive with their bench-top counterparts and at a much lower price. They also have the advantage of being portable and can be used on any laptop or desktop.

Exploring the Rigol DS1054Z Oscilloscope

When shopping for a USB oscilloscope, look for one that has at least two channels to allow you to monitor and measure two different signals simultaneously. It should also have a high sample rate to ensure that you can see all of the data in your signal. You may also want to consider buying a model with an integrated waveform generator for more versatility.

The PicoScope 2204A is a good option for those looking for a more advanced USB PC Oscilloscope that can function as a logic analyzer and protocol decoder. The PicoScope comes with well-written software that makes it easy to use and offers a lot of advanced features in a small, lightweight package.