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I'm in the market for an oscilloscope. My previous approach was to get a used Tektronix on eBay. There are plenty of good ones - even 100MHz 4 channel digital scopes for about $1100. However, I started looking at Rigol - specifically the DS1102D. It's two channel, 100MHz BW and it has a 16 channel logic analyzer as well as USB interface and color screen. I know better than to just compare bullet points because Tektronix is a very well respected brand and Rigol as far as I can tell is of Chinese design and manufacture. Has anyone used it? Are there any gotchas? Anything I should watch out for?

Update

I'm liking the answers so far and I just realized Rigol is the scope that had the bandwidth hack, so I'll extend the question to include the BW hack - who has used it and how did it treat you? And has anyone tried it on anything other than the DS1052E?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I hacked a DS1052E to do 100MHz (basically turning it into the DS1102D). I am not sure if there are hacks for any other Rigols. The only reason it works on the 1052 is because it uses the same hardware as the 1102, only the firmware is different. \$\endgroup\$ – DerStrom8 Dec 14 '15 at 15:05
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You can see some reviews at EEVBlog: http://www.eevblog.com/tag/rigol/

Specifically Full review of the Rigol DS1052E (a cut down version of this review was included in EEVblog #1 – Rigol DS1052E Oscilloscope Reviwed) and EEVblog #37 – Rigol DS1052E Oscilloscope Teardown.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Ah, that's good but I can't see it at work :( On a related note, does anyone else get tired of video reviews and posts? I prefer reading. \$\endgroup\$ – AngryEE Oct 21 '10 at 14:56
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    \$\begingroup\$ @AngryEE: I am SO tired of people making videos when they could have just written a blog post. Videos should be for things that can only be shown in video, like a concise demo of the scope's interface, not a bunch of blabbing I don't care about. \$\endgroup\$ – endolith Dec 7 '11 at 1:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Daniel it would be good if you put some content extracted from the review, to make the answer good apart from the link. Isn't it? \$\endgroup\$ – clabacchio Feb 23 '12 at 10:51
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I bought a Rigol DS1052E (50Mhz @ $330.00 US; hackable to 100Mhz) after doing some research and bumping into EEVBlog info. It is not a bad scope. Have not hacked it yet, but I have run tests on SPI, IC2, and Serial. It returned great results. My only gripe so far is that the PC (Windows 7 here) interface will not install. Other than that, great readings and great data retrieved using a USB stick.

Mine did not come with the logic analyzer. Not sure about that part of it.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Do you mean "DS10*52*E"? \$\endgroup\$ – blalor Oct 21 '10 at 12:27
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes I do...apologizes. I bought it from TEquipment @ tequipment.net/RigolDS1052E.html. They had a sale about a month ago and dropped it from $400 to $330 + shipping. You can find the hack @ eevblog.com/2010/04/18/…. Hope that helps. \$\endgroup\$ – ThaKidd KG5ORD Oct 22 '10 at 0:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ Since about Nov, 2011 Rigol lowered their prices the on both the 50 and 100 MHz models. The DS1102E is now ~$400 (was ~$800), DS1052E is ~$330. So IMHO not much point in doing the hack anymore just to save a few bucks. Might as well just get the legit 100 MHz version and keep your warranty. rigolna.com/featured/8 \$\endgroup\$ – Craig Mar 7 '12 at 16:35
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If you cannot see videos at work, I think that it's better you see reviews from Amazon or Deal Extreme

I also have a friend here in Brazil who bought a Rigol and he is very satisfied with it.

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The threads on eevblog are very extensive. It includes independent testing by various modders, including those with high end radio-frequency equipment as well as high quality pulse generators.

Know the mod only changes the input amp limitations, not the real time sampling rate. Unchanged, that still is the rate limiting step in reducing aliasing errors, at 500Ms/s for 2 channels active, or 1Gs/s for a single channel used, the scope will be prone to aliasing errors if 2 channels are used past 50 MHz.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ How is that? Aliasing won't happen until sample_rate/2, or 250MHz. A 10:1 oversampling ratio is used to improve signal resolution and some DSP algorithms. \$\endgroup\$ – tyblu Jan 8 '11 at 22:00
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I just saw success with DS1054z BW, additional triggers, memory depth, etc. However, I hear the 5uV option is not a good idea as it's not calibrated properly.

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