What Does an Oscilloscope Look Like in Slow Motion?

Craft & Design Music Technology
What Does an Oscilloscope Look Like in Slow Motion?


Oscilloscopes are useful and interesting tools for analyzing all kinds of electronic signals. When properly connected to a waveform source, a nice green line is displayed on the screen.

What might not be entirely evident, however, is that although it appears to display solid green lines, they are generated with a glowing green dot sweeping from left to right. Electromechanical Engineer and UCF graduate Anthony Garofalo decided to put this on display for the world to see in the first video below.

This video was taken with a Sony RX10 II camera capable of filming at an incredible 1,000 frames per second. According to Garofalo, “It’s a great camera that films in 4K, takes great pictures, and slow motion video.”

YouTube player

For an even cooler set of waveforms (this time in “normal-mo”), Garofalo displays some really interesting shapes in the second video. He used a normal iPhone to generate the waveforms seen there and is quick to note that Jerobeam Fenderson created the original sound file for it. Fenderson’s video sounds awesome on headphones, but it’s interesting to see it displayed by Garofalo’s oscilloscope.

YouTube player

According to Garofalo, he “took an aux cable and cut one connector off and stripped the wires. [He] connected channel 1 from the oscilloscope to the left channel of the aux cable and channel 2 to the right channel of the aux cable. The oscilloscope needs to be in X-Y mode in order to display lissajous figures.” He also notes that this could be done with a spare headphone cable, and that there are actually apps available on the app store to help generate waveforms. From a quick search, it also appears that this type of program is available for Android as well.

[via Reddit]

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Jeremy is an engineer with 10 years experience at his full-time profession, and has a BSME from Clemson University. Outside of work he’s an avid maker and experimenter, building anything that comes into his mind!

View more articles by Jeremy S Cook


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