Android Scope - there really is an app for that!
Android Scope - there really is an app for that!
Saturday, 16 October 2010

If you don't know what an oscilloscope is then you probably won't want this app but if you are into hardware what could be better than a scope app for your Android?



Many programmers, like me, are into hardware as much as software. The ultimate piece of kit for hardware enthusiasts is the oscilliscope - always has been and always will be (unless you lust after a spectrum analyser). Now you can turn your Android (the obvious phone for any hardware person) into a scope with just a small add-on and some software.




The basic idea is the a small analog to digital module based on  Microchip's dsPIC33FJ16GS504 samples two  input channels. The processed data on the dsPIC are then transmitted to the phone  via the LMX9838 bluetooth SPP module. A special App then displays it in oscilloscope format. The App is based on Bluetooth Chat  for the comms and the display uses the SurfaceView object to plot using a Java port of an existing Python program. The project code can be downloaded from and the circuit can be seen at ProjectProto'

The specs of the final system are:

  • time per division: {5us, 10us, 20us, 50us, 100us, 200us, 500us, 1ms, 2ms, 5ms, 10ms, 20ms, 50ms }
  • volt per division: {10mV, 20mV, 50mV, 100mV, 200mV, 500mV, 1V, 2V, GND}
  • analog input (depends on external pre-amplifier configuration): {-8V to +8V }

And from the video below it looks very usable:




What might be more important is that while your colleagues are playing with games and social networking you can use your Android to find out what's wrong with their hardware.

Yes there seems to be an app for that.


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