Digital Oscilloscope Applications


The big term now days, at least for those sporting tablets and smartphones, is “apps”.  So, are there apps for oscilloscope functions?  Yes sir; you bet there are.

For the iPad or the iPhone there is a neat little app from Onyx Apps.  It contains support for waveform viewing and signal generator thus providing a complete generator set and output viewing of the unit under test all in the iPad.  This software app costs about USD$15 and can be found on iTunes.  Here are the basic functions it provides:

Real-time waveform display (60 FPS)
Triggering modes: Normal, Auto, Single
Set trigger level and pre-trigger time
Built-in function generator
Reference signal calibration
Pause function to get a screen capture
Measure signal data using cursors
Use “finger pinch” on screen to set voltage and time base
Double tap screen to enter Black Panel mode
Four color themes to choose from
Retina display support

Input is typically acquired via the built-in microphone. In addition, various options exist for feeding external signals.

Shown below, courtesy of Onyx, is a setup for checking square wave response of an amplifier.

The picture above illustrates some ways of attaching probes to both devices — using USB audio interface for the iPad and a KV Connection cable for the iPhone/iPod touch.


Likewise, there are apps for Android devices and they are interesting little portable solutions as well.  The DroidTesla is a SPICE (Simulation Program with Integrated Circuit Emphasis) testing simulator that will be of particular interest to those wanting to look in on Integrated Circuits.

DroidTesla claims that it “offers the Trapezoidal(I’ll add a GEAR method later) integration methods to approximate the state of the reactive elements.  Although for most circuits, both methods will provide almost identical results,  it is generally regarded that the Gear method is more stable, but trapezoidal method is faster and more accurate.”

From DroidTesla they now can simulate:
-Potentiometer (available only in pro version)
-Light Bulb (available only in pro version)
-Ideal operational amplifier
-Bipolar junction transistor (NPN PNP)
-MOSFET N-channel depletion
-MOSFET N-channel enhancement
-MOSFET P-channel depletion
-MOSFET P-channel enhancement
-PN Diode
-PN Led diode
-PN Zener diode
-AC current source
-DC current source
-AC voltage source
-DC voltage(battery) source
-CCVS – current controlled voltage source
-CCCS – current controlled current source
-VCVS – voltage controlled voltage source
-VCCS – voltage controlled current source
-Square wave voltage source (available only in pro version)
-Triangle wave voltage source (available only in pro version)
-AC ampermeter
-DC ampermeter
-AC voltmeter
-DC voltmeter
-Two channe oscilloscope (available only in pro version)
-SPST Switch (available only in pro version)
-SPDT Switch (available only in pro version)
-Voltage controlled switch (available only in pro version)
-Current controlled switch (available only in pro version)
-AND (available only in pro version)
-NAND (available only in pro version)
-OR (available only in pro version)
-NOR (available only in pro version)
-NOT (available only in pro version)
-XOR (available only in pro version)
-XNOR (available only in pro version)
-JK flip-flop (available only in pro version)
-7 Segment Display (available only in pro version)

If you are making an oscillators you have to put a small initial value on some of the reactive elements, they explain.

The DroidTesla is a free download! (You can do an Internet search for it).

There are other apps available.  They will be covered in later columns.  Have a great day.

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