Rigol DS1022C hack brings it up to 100MHz speed


[Andreas Schuler] has been playing around with his Rigol DS1022C digital storage oscilloscope. It’s an older model which can capture samples at up to 25MHz, but [Andreas] claims to have quadrupled that using a service menu hack. His technique changes the settings to use the DS1022C at 100Mhz.

Usually a hack like this includes some test measurements that confirm the hardware is actually sampling at the higher rate, and is not just claiming that it has the ability to do so. We’d love to hear from you in the comments if you’ve got this piece of bench hardware and decided to try it for yourself. His method enters in a sequence of buttons from the system info menu. If done correctly this will add a service menu option that wasn’t there before. A bit of navigation leads you to the screen seen above, where you can change the model number to DS1102C. This is the more robust 100MHz cousin of the 1022.

If you think you’ve seen this hack before it’s probably because the Rigol 1052E was previously pulled to 100MHz with a firmware hack.

52 thoughts on “Rigol DS1022C hack brings it up to 100MHz speed

  1. The Rigols (at least the older 1052-era ones) sample at a way higher samplerate than should be neccessary for the analog bandwidth they have. The 1052 hack disabled an analog bandwidth-limiting filter. It did nothing for the samplerate which is well above what would be necessary for 25, 50 or 100 MHz analog bandwidth.

    1. One thing I loved about HAD was the fact you very rarely had to click through to read an entire article, only if you want to read the comments. This is especially handy when browsing on a slow mobile connection.

      If it provides HAD with more revenue then great otherwise I vote to have the entire articles back.

      Oh and get off my lawn.

      1. Agreed. Still only using half page whilst cutting down article size. Would properly question it but after the last re-design I really don’t think it’s worth it. Surprised HAD has done this without asking the reader-base considering the highly negative response recieved at the last redesign.

      2. +1

        I think it would be nice to see screenshots before the actual updates, and comment on them since people really care about changes like this on HaD. I know, I’m shamefully asking for a lot of work. :-)

        I’d actually pay for subscription on HaD if it was available. $5-10/month sounds alright.

        1. “I’d actually pay for subscription on HaD if it was available. $5-10/month sounds alright.”

          Wow! You’re certainly not the bottom-feeding tightwad that I am! B^)

    2. ANOTHER layout change :(

      Even worse than the previous layout.

      Please please please put it back to the layout before the layout we just lost, smaller picture which almost always had the whole article text which could be read without having to do any scrolling (previous image and text size was too big) so we only had to click the link for accessing the embedded video and/or comments.

      1. OR… leave the small picture size as it is but put back the whole text of the article on the front page, headlines and quick summaries of stories/articles are fine but I really hate reading half-articles that force me to click a link to read the rest.

        1. I’d like more descriptive html alt img tags for the blondes wearing T-shirts, I really struggle to know what’s being shown in the ads when I use lynx with this new layout.

        1. I never use the main page so I didn’t notice any layout change, but it does seem to have done some weird things to the RSS feed. As well as the shorter article, the images are now missing and the link to the comments is gone.

          1. Same here, I was refreshing my rss trying to figure out where the picture was since the text was so minimal. Then realized they cut it out. It was quite fine the way it was?

      1. Capitalism and economics. Cheaper to make one model than several, but you want to soak people for what they are capable/willing to pay. You need to artificially split the market into different segments so you can charge each their maximum capable price.

        An example is a bridge in medieval times. Same bridge, but you want to soak nobles for a dollar, but peasents don’t have that much. So, you charge people riding on horses (nobles) a dollar, and foot traffic a penny.

        Same thing applies to airfare. Business people want to get in, do business, get home and are flying on the company dime. Charge then full price. Families can’t pay as much, but are willing to stay over a weekend and/or book further in advance, give them a deal. Same airplane seat though.

        Same hardware in both models, but “pros” and companies will pay for the higher bandwidth. Hobbiests on a budget can’t afford the full price, so you limit the features slightly and sell it for cheaper.

        1. I’d personally think that using the same PCB, but populating a few different chip-locations would allow you to produce the cheaper versions a bit cheaper than the expensive models. On the other hand, starting up a production run for a PCB-series is probably quite expensive as well….

        2. A cow-orker was telling me that 1.6Tb flash drives may available in a year.
          I suggested that it won’t happen because the mfgr’s will milk it for what it is worth,
          for instance, IF (just saying) the largest flash drive on the market today was 64Gb,
          they will continue to release a 128Gb, then a 256Gb, a 512GB, and a 1Tb flash drive in that order with sufficient time for first adopters to scoop up each one at the initial PREMIUM prices before introducing the next model. They would never THINK of introducing that big of a jump and lose all the potential income they could make in the interim.

          1. 750GB and 1TB SSDs are already available for the general consumer market at around the same price per GB as their smaller brothers. 1.5TB next year sounds about right

        3. Great examples. I even knew of a hard drive company that would do the exact same thing. All drives were the same speed/size but adjusted by a resistor on the board

      2. I don’t see anything wrong with this at all. Selling more expensive scopes makes the overall business model work. They probably couldn’t stay in business if they sold the scopes with all features turned on for the lowest price. By maximizing the profit of what people will pay for X or Y feature… they’re making it more economical to sell reduced feature scopes for less money than they otherwise could. You’re effectively getting subsidized cheap scopes, with the bonus of potential easter eggs to turn on features you didn’t pay for. Why force people to pay for features they’re not willing to pay for? The ones that don’t need the features don’t have to pay for them, and the people that are willing to pay for the features enable the entire scope line to be cheaper. Everybody wins.

        1. I suppose they could make it “fair” by deliberately using crappy components in the cheaper models. They’d have to run an extra production line, of course, so it’d cost more. But then people would finally have the shit they paid for, and not a resistor more! That should keep the customer happy.

      3. You remind me of Marx for 2 reasons:
        1 – you criticize capitalism
        2 – instead of actively doing something about it, you only seat on your ass and bitch about it
        As others said, they charge you for software features: arguably, why are there several Windows 8 builds then, the code has been written, they’re only locking out features at compile time, and noone complains about “crippling”.

        1. Of course they complain about “crippling”. That is why the most vocal complainers are what is sometimes referred in a derogatory fashion as “freetards”. For them everything should be free, or almost, unless they produce it themselves – something that rarely happens. And apt analogy with Marx. He complained and criticized but never produced much and always lived on others, specially poor Engels. The quintessential primary anti-capitalist, after all. But something tells me had he been alive when his books (that Engels edited and published, by the way) became popular, he would be fighting for copyright and demanding fees from everybody. :-)

          1. I don’t want to get political on Hackaday, but my BS detector went off :-)

            “2 – instead of actively doing something about it, you only seat on your ass and bitch about it”
            Have you read even a line about Marx’s life? C’mon, even a glance at the wikipedia article would suffice.

            “He complained and criticized but never produced much and always lived on others”
            Really? The communist manifesto, or Das Kapital is not “much”? Well, he only changed history that’s all (for better or for worse, that’s another matter).

        2. Plenty complain about the windows crippling. And then pirates find a way of turning basic into the full edition with a simple key, people rejoice. And bitching about it is doing something. It’s called the invisible hand of the market. Bitching and not buying and piracy and hacking regulates the market. CAPITALISM.

          1. Except it doesn’t work that way. People bitch and then buy it anyways. Even piracy is still playing into the status quo because a pirated piece of software means less users, less feedback and pressure and less funding, ergo less development for alternative software.

          2. You can think of piracy and hacking to unlock features the same thing as buying the product at zero price. You’re still opting for that product instead of others, which means no income for the competitors, which means you’re still playing in the same team as the company you try to spite. You’re cementing their market share for that product.

      4. What doesn’t feel right is that the manufacturing cost of ‘best’ model is usually fully or mostly paid by the price of cheapest model, and it’s ‘just’ a matter of recovering investments in design processes. That’s how things are working, but some of us are still thinking that prices are defined by cost of manufacturing. How can we address this? make it all FOSS to pay for coding effort and pay nothing for copying it?

        1. It took me a long time to overcome the same thought process. What we have to realize is manufacturing is only a small piece of a large puzzle including research and development, overhead, setup, packaging, shipping, handling and distribution. Otherwise, two eggs and a strip of bacon at Denny’s would cost you $0.10. Rigol spent extra time and effort engineering their hardware and software to perform at the highest level. If you don’t want the highest level performance, they don’t give it to you, and they don’t expect you to pay for that part of the development. Seems fair to me.

          1. Ridiculous. They didn’t spend extra time to do it. Their goal was 100%, and once they were done, they went in, changed three things, and crippled it to 25% performance. There was no extra effort or design or testing or anything. It’s like designing a car with a v8, and artificially limiting it to 50mph.

          2. Either it’s because of the way you learn playing shops, and about money, and primary school, or possibly it’s some cultural remnant from when cost + profit was the only way of doing trade. When people sold simple commodities that had value from their intrinsic material + any physical work done.

            The current method, for oscilloscopes and so much other stuff, is counter-intuitive. But then so’s half the Universe.

    1. For one thing, it can be cheaper to buy 100,000 good ADCs than 20,000 each of varying quality. And once you’ve designed the PCB with all the tolerances and stuff for a good, fast scope, there’s no point designing 3 crappier ones that don’t work as well.

      Basically it’s the savings in mass-producing identical models are greater than the savings in using lower-quality parts in the cheaper models.

      But to differentiate them, and serve different segments of the market, they cripple the cheap ones in software, so there’s still a reason to buy the expensive ones. I think Henry Ford wrote about this, it’s one of the early discoveries in economics.

      Obviously when hacks like this get out, it spoils that plan, but companies will still buy the expensive stuff for the peace of mind and guaranteed quality, since they can’t complain at Rigol when their 25MHz scope won’t work at 100MHz. And people don’t usually care what they pay for stuff when it’s the company’s money.

      If you really NEED a 100MHz scope, pay the money. This is just an added feature that’s nice when it comes for free, but most people wouldn’t pay for.

  2. If there is some code you can enter to change the settings, is that a hack? Sure, it wasn’t their intention to publish the code but that doesn’t make it a hack in my mind. You are still using a function the developers put there.

    1. It’s a hack because for finding the code, the firmware was reverse engineert. Better, the firmware was reverse engineert for hacking other things(playing pong on a rigol) and a side product was this code. In my opinion, reverse engineering is a big part of hacking.

  3. The most benefit to everyone could be if they always released the best functioning hardware for the fair price based on manufacturing and R/D. Then everyone has the best scope for a reasonable price (with more people buying scopes in general), and progress accelerates (as everyone is always using the most advanced equipment) not only benefiting everyone, but perhaps also stimulating the economy. (a bit of a stretch for this scope, but extrapolated to an ideal generalization)

    1. That is why open source programs get so good (linux, apache, etc), instead of 300 companies developing theyr own version of a wheel and risking it not being able to be mounted on the latest cars, everyone contributes to the same wheel and profit from servicing the car.
      Even when you got the gerbers and BOM for a device, diferent suppliers will build very different quality devices, the product will also be supported in different ways, be it software updates ou warranty, this is enought for different market segments that instead of competing for features (in the spec range), compete for quality and durability.
      There is also a good presentation from sparkfun about open hardware http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGhj_lLNtd0

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