Triggers on oscilloscopes are nothing new. In fact, the oscilloscope became a much more useful tool in 1946 when Howard C. Vollum and Jack Murdock invented the triggered oscilloscope and in 1947 built the Tektronix Model 511.
Flash forward to today and you’ll find that triggers are still an essential oscilloscope capability. The difference is that today’s signal are far more complex, which make isolating just the event of interest using basic triggers difficult and time consuming.
As befitting Tektronix’ heritage, the company continues to innovate in the area of oscilloscope triggers. Last year, we introduced a new approach to dealing with complex signals called Visual Trigger. Available on Windows 7-based oscilloscopes, Visual Trigger allows engineers to create shapes using their mouse or touchscreen that closely match the desired waveform of interest. This highly intuitive capability is changing the way engineers interact with the trigger system on an oscilloscope.
How big a breakthrough is Visual Trigger? Enough that the editors of Design News selected Tektronix and Visual Trigger as the winner of the 2012 Golden Mousetrap Award in the Electronics and Test category, beating out several other nominees. The Design News Annual Golden Mousetrap awards competition honors innovation in the development of new products in automation, electronics, materials, and design tools.
If you’re not familiar with the use of Visual Trigger yet, take a few minutes to watch the hands-on walk through below. This demo show how easy it use to use Visual Trigger to stabilize a signal on your oscilloscope’s screen.