Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The Rigol DS 1052E oscilloscope 50 mhz to 100 mhz

Rigol DS 1052E now DS 1102E scope
For some time now I have been in the market for an oscilloscope. Like most hams I don't want to break the bank but at the same time want good value for every buck that is spent. My travels lead me to the Rigol DS 1052E 50mhz  dual channel scope. The scope comes in at the low end  price but has had some very glowing reviews. Also one major plus was the ability to "hack" this scope up to a 100 mhz unit! This a a software hack so no need to get into the SMD nightmare. This may not be what is called a 100% ham blog posting but I do know that lots of hams and non hams are looking for a great scope as well info on how to hack this one to a 100 mhz unit. I am going to run down the process (and mistakes) I went through to finally jack the DS 1052E up to the DS 1102E 100 mhz scope.


1. The first thing I had to do was to check what software version was on the scope. To hack the scope your software version has to be 2.00 or 2.02 SP2. Well I checked by simply turning the scope on and looking at the start up screen  mine was 4.00.
4.00 software
2. Now I would have to downgrade to ver 2.00 and on the net I found 2.02 and that was just fine. I loaded it on a thumb drive and plugged it into the scope and the software was downloaded and I was now at ver 2.02.
3. This is were the fun begins....I had to hook up a serial cable (not crossover and female to female) from the scope to pc. It was now time to enter some code via Hyper Terminal!! The instructions are very very very clear on the net.....you mess up the code and you could "Brick" your scope. Looking up "Brick" in a nut shell meant rendering it useless until MAJOR programing or hardware issues were dealt with.
Down grading to 2.02
SO IF YOU ARE GOING TO DO THIS MODE BE VERY CAREFUL CHECK AND DOUBLE CHECK CODE LINES. Having said that I did mess up the code but in the end all did work out.....(side note going to buy lotto ticket seems lady luck was on my side)
4. I entered the code in Hyper terminal asking it to connect to my scope and it did by giving me the serial number of the scope.
5. I then entered code to change the scope from model DS 1052E to DS 1102E and then (according the online instructions) entered the serial number but changing one specific letter to a " B". I then entered that line of code.
6. It was now time to restart the scope and see from the systems info menu if the model changed to DS 1102E and if the serial number had changed to the new number with the "B" in it.
7. It was successful (after a few hiccups)  and I could further verify by turning the horizontal scale down and if it went to 2 nano seconds things were good to go!

Downgrade done
Here are some of the mess ups that happen to me.
1. I was not able to connect the scope at first to the PC hyper terminal program. Turns out I just changed RS232 ports on the PC and all was ok.
2.When I installed a lower software version into the scope and then went to hyper terminal to confirm I did not get any serial number. I restarted the scope and ran the commands in hyper terminal again and I was good to go.
3. For some reason lady luck had me put the "B" letter in the wrong part of the revised serial number. That resulted in a new serial number of @@#$#%%$$% (ya no numbers just junk) on the Rigol start up screen. That was fixed by reloading version 4 software and then in hyper terminal changing the serial number back to the original number. It was then time to start all over again and change the model and serial but pay more close attention this time.
model and serial change
 I am going to be adding a page to my blog in the very near future that gives more detail of the "hack" and were to get the 2.02 SP2 software and the 4.0  you need to upload that as well. The Hyper terminal code needed. How to setup hyper terminal to connect to the scope and finally how to change the serial number and model number of the scope through hyper terminal.

Upgrading back to 4.0 software

2.000ns means 100mhz scope

4.0 upgrade good to go


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