Lab Test Bench– Oscilloscopes and Waveform Generators

Stocking a basic lab for electrical engineering classes is expensive. One piece of equipment can cost hundreds or thousands, and that’s not always feasible, especially if you’re trying to stock a personal lab. Keeping this in mind, Instructables user  submitted a project to the Digilent Design Contest that focused on implementing both hardware and software to build a small, affordable oscilloscope and waveform generator.


As affordability is the priority of this project, most of the parts listed are generic. You will need a chipKIT WF32, a USB A to micro B cable, wires, a PmodAD1, a PmodDA1, a rotary encoder like the PmodENC, a 128×64 LCD, and a 4×4 matrix keypad. You’ll also need some software. MPIDE, oscilloscope software, the ADC module library, and the DAC module library from Digilent are all necessary.

Once you’ve gathered the materials you need, create an MPIDE project. This particular one can be done via one of the examples, the ADCSPIDemo. Load that and then the DAC demo project under the examples. Then, use two SPI modules for to configure the oscilloscope and waveform generator with the code provided in the Instructable.

This is a great way to set up your own lab test bench on the cheap. While this project hasn’t been completed yet in its entirety, we here at Digilent look forward to seeing the final results!


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About Amber Mear

I was the Digilent blog editor, and now I'm a contributor. I love learning about wearables and writing about social issues in STEM. Outside of work, I can be found watching Netflix with my cat, working on an art project, or trying to find new, delicious local foods.

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