Handheld oscilloscope suggestions?

Thread Starter


Joined Nov 17, 2006
I'm in the market for a cheap (like student cheap, <$300 prefferably less) handheld oscilloscope, likely used. It doesn't have to be anything fancy, just something portable that'll give me a waveform and the standard measurements. The ability to connect to a computer would be a huge plus, but is in no way necessary. Even if you can't make a suggestion I'd appreciate any advice on what not to buy as well. Is anything out there such a nightmare that I should avoid at all costs.


Joined Apr 20, 2004

Don't think you're likely to find much of an instrument for that kind of money. What are your requirements, like audio waveforms only? Displaying logic takes hundreds of MHz bandwidth. Even $3000 doesn't get that much of an o'scope.

If you're that limited as to funds, you might do better investing in a good meter.


Joined Nov 17, 2003
You could try your local university to see if they have any old equipment stock that you could purchase. Universities tend to upgrade their equipment fairly regularly and may have a several year old oscilloscope that may be within your price range. You should also be able to try out the scope to see that it satisfies your needs.

Other than that, like sci-3d says you could look at the possibilitiy of a PC oscilloscope.


Thread Starter


Joined Nov 17, 2006
Yeah, I don't need to much, just somethinig for audio wave forms as well as troubleshooting some EE labs without actually having to run into the lab.

I was looking at a used Fluke 91 Scopeometer (pretty old), as well as the Velleman HPS40 right now. Also craftsman scopes come up every once in a while on ebay and they are supposedly made by fluke.

Past that my university (or any other nearby one with EE) doesn't make widespread use of handhelds so picking up a used one that way isn't really possible.

I'm going to be picking up a full sized scope when I move out of this apartment but thats still a ways away so it's more something to keep me until then and experiment with.

Thanks for the suggestions.


Joined Aug 9, 2006
Sounds good. That second one I suggested is small, even though it is not handheld. It's about 8.8x3.6.x11.5inches so it wouldn't take up a ton of room.

Anyway, let us know what you decide on, and how pleased you are with the performance!


Joined Jul 22, 2006
How about these two: one based on a normal PC or a laptop sound card, the other based on a Pocket PC sound chip. It has an oscilloscope, spectrum analyzer and signal generator. You can download from http://www.virtins.com and try it freely before you buy. The price is much lower than your budget limit.