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Tester or oscilloscope on the data line??

Started by johndobbs, August 12, 2022, 12:25:26 AM

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johndobbs

Is there a tester or oscilloscope that can be used on the data before the first pixel to see the strength or weakness of the data signal.
If so what kind of tester and how would I tell if the signal is strong or weak.
I know about bench testing I'm curious if there is a another option?
Thank You

JonB256

An oscilloscope would show the waveform. It will be DC signal, square wave. If measuring at a GPIO pin, it will be 3.3vdc peak. From a controller, it "should" be 5vdc with nice, clean corners.
Long time Falcon, FPP and xLights user

Poporacer

Quote from: johndobbs on August 12, 2022, 12:25:26 AMIs there a tester or oscilloscope that can be used on the data before the first pixel to see the strength or weakness of the data signal.
An O-scope would be the tool to test the quality of the data signal. The quality is as equally important as the strength. But an O-Scope is typically not needed unless you are just curious or like to tinker.

Quote from: johndobbs on August 12, 2022, 12:25:26 AMhow would I tell if the signal is strong or weak.
Keith did a great video on this here: 

Quote from: johndobbs on August 12, 2022, 12:25:26 AMI know about bench testing I'm curious if there is a another option?
This is about the only real option and trying to test Data signals is really a fairly advanced electronics technique.
If to err is human, I am more human than most people.

johndobbs


johndobbs

I watched that video
Thank you for that by the way
I didn't notice anything on connecting the leads from the oscilloscope I prefer not to guess and burn something up?
I'm looking at a cheap oscilloscope on Amazon
https://a.co/d/i2NKLMy
Unless this one is highly not recommended I just don't want to spend $600 on oscilloscope if I can help it for a hobby?
If the Amazon oscilloscope is not good for this maybe someone can suggest one.
Thank You


JonB256

#5
I haven't connected my old DSO-2090 USB O-scope to Windows 11 yet, but it worked great in Windows 7 and 10 (even in Vista).

On Amazon, there are some for about $75. I used mine to check signal levels back when I was using a lot of DMX RS-485 data. DC waveform. No problems because RS-485 (and Pixel data) are not very high frequency.

Sadly, I'm not even sure where I stored it. :(
Long time Falcon, FPP and xLights user

Poporacer

Quote from: johndobbs on August 12, 2022, 10:44:54 PMI didn't notice anything on connecting the leads from the oscilloscope I prefer not to guess and burn something up?
It will depend on your oscilloscope

Quote from: johndobbs on August 12, 2022, 10:44:54 PMI'm looking at a cheap oscilloscope on Amazon
Is there a reason that you think you need one for this hobby. I don't think anyone uses one for their show. I have an oscilloscope and have never connected it to my pixels to see the data.
If you just want to look at the signal, then that O-Scope will be fine, but if you want to do a detailed analysis, then you might want a better one, but because you don't have an 0-Scope already and understand its functionality, it will be very difficult for you to do a detailed analysis anyway.
If to err is human, I am more human than most people.

johndobbs

Thank you for your comments I appreciate it.

johndobbs

Yeah I was curious to see it visually if I end up using an Famp unless the visual is not as easy as the curve being broken up.
Also forgot to mention I've heard that the cheap o scope in that link maybe suitable for adjusting the gains on a car audio amp I sometimes like to do my own car audio work.
Non-professional of course

CaptainMurdoch

I use a Hantek 6022BE that I picked up off Amazon a few years ago for $60-65 I believe.  I don't pull it out much, but it has been helpful while working on the new DPIPixels code.  I even use OpenHantek to view the data under Linux so I don't have to fire up a Windows VM.
-
Chris

johndobbs

#10
Thank you Captain Murdock

AAH

I couldn't find this video when the topic originally came up but someone linked it today on ACL. Keith has some CRO snapshots of his testing and it's a good video.

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