An oscilloscope? Yes, I want one, but is it really worth the money? Will I use it enough to justify the investment? It’s cool and all, but…

An oscilloscope is certainly not necessary for someone programming microcontrollers and building small electronic projects. But it does provide a way of looking at electrical signals – and that’s cool, because normally electrical signals are very difficult to see… I had one for a while when I was much younger and remember how much fun it was to look at the signal generated from a microphone.

So, I decided to buy an oscilloscope. I wanted a oscilloscope that’s not too expensive, and I wanted one with (at least) two channels. So I ended up buying a Velleman PCSGU250, which is a two channel PC oscilloscope. It’s powered by the USB and is completely controlled through the PC software. It also has a very nice function generator and some other cool features. For more info, check out the homepage.

Velleman PCSGU250

Unfortunately, only one probe is included with the oscilloscope, so I had to go back the next day and buy a second probe separately.

So, do I really need an oscilloscope? It has certainly helped me understand things such as button bouncing, rotary encoders, how capacitors charge and discharge and much more.  Simply: I’m glad I bought it!


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