Siglent Instruments: Some First Impressions About Software

Ya’akov

Joined Jan 27, 2019
6,856
Thanks to various feed back here on the forum, I recently purchased a Siglent scope, along with companion AWG and MSO options, as well as a bench supply, a standalone AWG, and a DMM.

Siglent SDS1204X-E 4-Ch 200MHz Super Phosphor Oscilloscope
Siglent SPD3303X-E DC Power Supply
Siglent SDG2042X 40MHz Function/Arbitrary Waveform Generator
Siglent SDM3055 5½ Digit Dual-Display Digital Multimeter

My general first impression is that Siglent's instruments are high value for the dollar and well built. The interfaces have various idiosyncrasies I would change but nothing that makes them unusable. The limited testing I've been able to do satisfies me so far.

One of the reasons I bought these basic bench instruments all from one vendor was for compatibility when it comes to automation, which I intend to do for some projects. They all have Ethernet and USB, and they support VXI-11 (TCP VXIbus protocol) and USBTMC (USB Test and Measurement Class). These are standards, and so you don't have to rely on Siglent software.

But, Siglent does offer "EasyXXX" programs where XXX is some appropriate description for the type of instrument (e.g.: EasyScope, EasyPower, etc.). It seems that "Easy" was chosen to confuse the user. The software is not "Easy". It is old, not just old in the sense of versions but in UI design and philosophy; It is arcane; and, it is poorly documented.

The first trouble is that you must install National Instruments NI-VISA runtime for the programs to communicate with the instruments. This is free, but it is massive. If you are not going to be using LabView it's super-overkill for a simple communications layer—but it freed Siglent from having to write that part since they were already going to have to write LabView drivers, which they've done.

Ya’akov

Joined Jan 27, 2019
6,856
LabView is one example of better software, and doesn't have to be expensive:
Thanks for this! I wasn't aware of the home license. I've purchased out, and I'm waiting for fulfillment to download it.

This is a great option. I don't *love* LabView, but it's probably the best thing available.

Thanks again.

Ya’akov

Joined Jan 27, 2019
6,856
Well, the LabView struggle begins. The huge size and unnecessary complexity is burdensome, but two of four instruments are talking to it at this point, and today the other two will join them. What a mess the drivers are, what an ugly, outdated interface.

I am also forced to use Windows, which I really would rather not, but first world problems plague us all.

v1x2w3

Joined Jan 20, 2007
54
Thanks for documenting your Siglent software experience Yaakov. (And, grats on your 4 piece Siglent Elab purchase)

I installed NI-VISA but still couldn't get the software to see the oscilloscope. Since you and others don't think much of the software, I'll just skip it.