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Oscilloscope Probe and Probe Compensation

Last Modified: May 14, 2018

The NI ELVIS III oscilloscope is compatible with attenuating probes. These are useful for measuring high bandwidth signals because the series resistor isolates the cable capacitance of the probe and the input capacitance of the of the scope from the loading signal. Additionally the attenuating probe allows for measurement of higher voltages.

Figure 1. 10X Attenuating Probe and Oscilloscope Circuitry

Probe Compensation Adjustment

Before taking a measurement, make a compensation adjustment of the probe using the following steps:
  1. Set the Function Generator as follows:
    • Frequency, 1 kHz
    • Amplitude, 1 V
    • Duty Cycle, 50%
    • Square Wave
  2. Perform compensation of the 10X probe on a scope channel by measuring the function generator output.
  3. Tune the capacitor on the probe and observe the waveform acquired by the scope. Stop when there is no undershoot or overshoot of the waveform. The following figure shows probe adjustment compensation scenarios:
  1. Properly Compensated
  2. Under Compensated
  3. Over Compensated

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