Picture of Oscilloscope! THE EASY WAY! DIY
Oscilloscopes are all so EXPENSIVE! So one day, December 4, 2011, I was thinking of something to do because I was bored and had done all of my schoolwork. I decided, because I have been wanting an Oscope (Oscilloscope) for a year now, but my parents never got around to buying me one, I just made one! With that said, being only 14 in 8th grade, I do not make much of an allowance, if not any. I thought that maybe sharing this with the world would be helpful for those, like me, do not either make much money or have a tough budget. Although I may have a simple Oscope, it does the job. Please read all of the instructions first.

Step 1: Supplies

Picture of Supplies
Processing IDE Oscope.PNG
Arduino IDE for Oscope.PNG
There are not many supplies needed to build this Oscope, but you will need the following: an Arduino (any kind will work), a computer (just to program one thing and to see your Oscope, you will not need to use it for this project forever), and two jumper cables.
john1a made it!1 year ago

Just made it! Quite cool and easy!

the arduino loop() I used for Arduino IDE 1.5.5:

void loop() {

int val = analogRead(ANALOG_IN);

Serial.write( 0xff);

Serial.write((val >> 8) & 0xff);

Serial.write((val) & 0xff);


Screenshot from 2014-07-20 15:19:21.png
john1a john1a1 year ago

Oh, I am using Linux Ubuntu 12.04 and I exported the Processing sketch to a standalone program. Everything working as intended!

I maybe make an update of the processing code sometime, to include voltage indications. Any help is welcome!

YuvalS13 months ago

it doens't work on uno rev3 with 1.64 soft

hey it gives an error message saying "Could not load font Zigguart-HTF-Black-32.vlw" even if i have placed it in the data folder of my sketch.......please tell me how to fix it

cherrysnow1 year ago

excellent job! but I have some questions to ask you.What's are circle1,circle2 and circle3 used for ? I can see you only displays circle3 so is it the button?,however,when i tried to display circle1 and circle2.I found no any other thing appeared and when i pressed the button,the oscolloscope didn't show the wave

codegamc1 year ago

this is a very interesting project and you did a great job, the only thing that could make it better was a technical explanation of how o'scopes work for the people that do not understand how they do their little magic, and some more comments within the code. i think you did a great job though, and its quite ingenious for a 14yo, though your 16 now, so I'm sure you've moved on to new exciting things and don't care about this any longer, which is understandable.

simonfrfr (author)  codegamc1 year ago

The way an Oscilloscope works is actually an internal ADC's (Analog to Digital Converter) output is used to determine the voltage. The reading works like this: Voltage over Time. Which is how the program on Processing works.

This looks fantastic and I'm really excited for the next version of this you've mentioned you're working on - can't wait! I'm a hobbyist working on mostly analogue synth electronics, so I don't need a $300 (second hand) o'scope. It's a good excuse for me to clutter my house more and get into Arduino too!
sarnathkj2 years ago
Sorry the connection was lost....... But I did everything right. Don't Know what I'm doing wrong :(
simonfrfr (author)  sarnathkj2 years ago
Do you have windows?
knexfreak322 years ago
Your code wont work for me pleas fix it :(
simonfrfr (author)  knexfreak322 years ago
Explain what doesn't work please.
twenty92 years ago
This oscilloscope is far from being perfect, but the beauty - not to say the ingenuity - is in its simplicity.
(I had some small electronical problems and was thinking about buying an oscilloscope just to find the bug. With the help of this instructable it was very easy to find the bug.)
The casing for my 'ArduScope' is an empty matchbox and it will be a permanent help in my toolbox.
Thank you!
simonfrfr (author)  twenty92 years ago
this code isnt compatible with arduino 1.0, it would be great if you can update it.
"As of Arduino 1.0, the 'BYTE' keyword is no longer supported.
Please use Serial.write() instead."
this is the error
simonfrfr (author)  ajjajajjajnose3 years ago
Its funny, I am making a second version of this with my Newton Labs group.
simonfrfr (author)  ajjajajjajnose3 years ago
actually, it is, the command was changed to "byte()"
Treknology3 years ago
You're only 14 and built this? You need a good kick up the butt, hard enough to knock you up a couple of grades at school.

Like others, I think your headline photo is a little deceptive. Not being familiar with u.s. products, and certainly not searching hard for an Oscilloscope when I shelled out money for a good one, the headline photo suggests that you have built an entirely stand-alone unit (hack out of a laptop?) with so many finger-adjustable analog features that, if true, would have been a fantastic (as in 'fantasy') result.

Keep up the good work.
simonfrfr (author)  Treknology3 years ago
Thank-you so much. :D I love the picture of your LCARS, its funny because I love Star Trek. :D
megapix3 years ago
Nice job. This should let you see signals when a voltmeter just isn't enough. And it gives you plenty of opportunities for upgrade projects. For example, you could add some input protection so you don't damage your Arduino if you measure a voltage thats a little too high (I've included a sketch as an example).

You might want to include a photo of the display screen or a screen shot from your video in the instructable, perhaps even as the main photo. That might help people understand your project better. Keep up the good work.
simonfrfr (author)  megapix3 years ago
Thanks I will take that into consideration, but I am building a newer version of this for a display that you can take with you anywhere :D
I second this! Would be great if you showed your user interface. Maybe a video demo of all the things it can do. Thanks for posting this instructable!
static3 years ago
Respectfully while I wouldn't expect this to perform anywhere near the commercial unit in the lead photo, there's is nothing in this instructable that compels me to consider duplicating the project. Nearly impossible to tell if you have designed a serviceable oscilloscope. Good luck in the contest.
simonfrfr (author)  static3 years ago
Well It is not supposed to but that is a picture of an Oscope right? Plus I will be adding more later as another one to perform more than basic zoom and plot, I will add signal generators into it and more, PS thanks for making a comment.
simonfrfr (author) 3 years ago
Please post comments so that I can help you or so I can see how it worked out for you. Thanks.