Tektronix 2213 Oscilloscope Tutorial

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Joined Nov 23, 2022
One of my scopes (Tek 2213) I got from my late father-in-law, an electrical engineer. I also have an older R453. He passed about 10 years ago before I got into electronics... oh the conversation's we'd have if he were still around.

When I was just out of college, I built a variable DC power supply from a Radio Shack book... but it never worked. A few years later after I got married, he fixed it for me... I blew the voltage regulator during assembly. Still use it to this day and always think of him when I turn it on. In fact, a few months ago I modified it by lowering the overall voltage to give me better resolution. In doing so I had to look up the specs on that very voltage regulator that he fixed for me.

I used one of them a few months ago to calibrate a BBD chorus pedal, so I know the basics. But I need to get more familiar with using it.


Joined Oct 2, 2009
Tektronix 2213 Oscilloscope is a good workbench first oscilloscope.
I will start you off with a brief introduction. The first thing to do, if you have not already done so, is get the User Manual.

https://users.physics.unc.edu/~sean/Phys351/techresource/docs/2213 User Manual.pdf


Think of an oscilloscope as having three operational sections:

1) Vertical Amplifiers - to move the electron beam in the Y-direction (vertically - up and down)
2) Horizontal Time Base - to move the electron beam in the X-direction (horizontally from left to right)
3) Trigger Control - to determine when the electron beam should start moving.

Trigger Control (3) is the most important part and most difficult part to understand and master.

First things first.
Step 1 -Know your input probes
You will notice that the CH1 and CH2 BNC input connectors are marked 1MΩ 30pF. This information is important.
Now examine your input probes. Are the probes simple x1 attenuation or does it have dual attenuation setting, x1 and x10?
We will discuss this in further detail once we have your answer.

Step 2 - Find the trace on the screen
We do this challenge in our electronics lab. We mess around with all the controls and then ask students to get a horizontal trace on the screen. This is your challenge as well. The message here is: don't fiddle with the controls blindly at random. Know and memorize the function of every control, switch and button. Go to the User Manual if necessary.

We will step you through in another post on what every control, switch and button does and how to be successful at Step 2.