There are quite a number of USB PC oscilloscopes available. There are also a number of factors as to why I rule a lot of them out. This is best USB oscilloscope review, in my opinion.
Then the other half of the problem is the fact that to get better performance the hardware from a USB oscilloscope has to be better. Then the price goes up and with excellent performance oscilloscopes now available for extremely competitive prices (read here for my guide to the best hobbyist oscilloscopes) it’s hard to see where the pricier USB PC oscilloscopes are going to fit.
For your money, less than £50, you get a very solid metal case. Apparently it’s anodised aluminium and it certainly gives you the impression of quality and durability. This simply connects to your computers USB port with no other power supply needed. The case has connections for the supplied probes and that’s about it for setting the hardware up.
As for the software there are reports that it won’t work on windows 7 or later. That may be the case with the supplied disc but to be fair does anyone ever use these? Anything that I buy that has an installation disc and I just check the manufacturer’s web site. There’s usually a later driver or for later versions of windows.
I’ve also seen review saying that this oscilloscope won’t synchronise or display waveforms properly and that there is a problem with the timing on the software. I haven’t found this to be the case at all. Connecting to a wave form and setting the triggering had the waveform displaying accurately and stable.
The probes are good, as is the hardware for the price you pay. Update the software from the manufacturer’s website and you’ve got a very reasonable oscilloscope. It’s certainly better than the soundcard version because of the USB hardware that cuts out going through the audio input.
Some other reviews have been quite hard on the hantek. I’m not sure what they were expecting from a £50 computer add on. Sure it’s not going to compete with a dedicated £300 machine but if you can’t afford that sort of money it’s better than having no oscilloscope.
I think a lot of the criticisms have come from people who have expensive fully featured oscilloscopes and are comparing what it can’t do. If you don’t have, and can’t afford a fully featured scope then this will certainly help you learn and may help you know more about what you require when you come too look for a dedicated oscilloscope in the future.