(Topic ID: 47583)

recommendation for logic probe

By pinstyle

6 years ago

Topic Stats

  • 23 posts
  • 8 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 6 years ago by terryb
  • Topic is favorited by 4 Pinsiders


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    #1 6 years ago

    whats a good logic probe to pick up? i see there are a few people who make them. im looking for a battery powered one unless there is some type of advantage to having one that is powered by the circuit.

    #2 6 years ago


    A mini O-scope might be useful if you are new to servicing games.

    #3 6 years ago

    Have you used that, vid, or know anyone who has?

    Looks interesting.

    #4 6 years ago

    Hhmm, thanks Vid, it might be overkill for what im looking for. I just want to be able to detect pulses, highs and lows. Doing some reading i see there are minimum thresholds for reading pulses. I know something that reads TTL and CMOS would be helpful but thats all i know right now. I dont want the cheapest probe but i also would rather not spend a fortune. Im assuming the min os you linked will do what i need along with other stuff i can learn to use but do you think i need something like this? $100 isnt too bad but im wondering if its more than what i need.

    #5 6 years ago
    Quoted from Prmailers:

    Have you used that, vid, or know anyone who has?
    Looks interesting.

    I've got the old v1 with the plastic case.

    The new v3 looks to be much better with metal case & better specs.

    Install the BenF firmware and unlock everything it can do.

    #6 6 years ago

    Not too much difference in logic probes when testing older equipment like pinballs. BK Precision makes a decent one. Also, Elenco or Tenma are OK. HP makes a good one, but not worth the extra expense in my opinion.

    The Tenma manual sucks (but there's not a lot you need to know anyways), not sure about the Elenco.

    Depending on how the lights are used some peopler prefer one brand over another, but they all give the info you need.

    I would not go with one that has batteries in it. It limits your purchasing options and doesn't add anything. There's always Vcc and ground test points available. In fact the fancier models will set TTL/CMOS based on the input voltages.

    If you want to be able to inject a signal into the circuit get one with a pulser.

    #7 6 years ago

    thank you Terry, i was planning on getting one with a pulser. i'll look around some more and just pull the trigger on one.

    #9 6 years ago

    I use a cheap Elenco probe. It was under $20 and works great for hobby work. I've had it for 15 years.

    #10 6 years ago

    Terry, im a little confused, does the BK DP31A also detect pulses? i see it can generate a pulse, i'm assueming it can read them also but im not sure.

    #11 6 years ago

    It does both. Amazon also carries it at the same price.

    #12 6 years ago

    Thanks Terry, yea i see it for sale in a few places.

    #13 6 years ago

    Anyone know where to get the scope probe you see in clay's guides?

    #14 6 years ago

    Terry, im not sure DP-31A does both. i couldnt fine a users maunal for 31A but i did find one for DP-21, which in the manual it states that DP-21 (to probe)can be used with DP-31A (to pulse). how sure are you that it does both?

    i might just go with the Elenco since i know it does both.

    #15 6 years ago

    confermed, BK DP-31A does not act as a pulse reader/pulse generator, 31A only generates a pulse and is read by their other models.

    #16 6 years ago
    Quoted from barakandl:

    Anyone know where to get the scope probe you see in clay's guides?

    Probably ebay.

    They quit making them, but they used to be a Radio Shack for $39 when on sale, $79 otherwise.

    Google osziFOX

    #17 6 years ago
    Quoted from pinstyle:

    confermed, BK DP-31A does not act as a pulse reader/pulse generator, 31A only generates a pulse and is read by their other models.

    Just found the datasheets and you are correct. I've never seen one before that only did pulses. Live and learn.

    Anyways, the Elenco will do what you want since it looks like the BK probes/pulsers jump up in price quite a bit.

    #18 6 years ago

    Yea im going to go with the Elenco, thanks for the suggestions Terry.

    #19 6 years ago

    sorry, thank you also Mr. Sanctumwear, you to Vid. Vid im sure the mini os is a cool toy, your on a much deeper level than i am. I've learned quite a bit in a relativly short time, i dont want to overwehlm myself.

    #20 6 years ago

    Does this elenco have an audible beep or tone to hear or do you have to watch the LEDs?

    #21 6 years ago

    It is not audible. I've never considered that an important issue and most of the companies that made audible logic probes in the past have discontinued them. I'm sure you could look around and find one, but there's none I'm familiar with.

    2 weeks later
    #22 6 years ago

    what about something like dso150 on ebay?

    #23 6 years ago

    Don't waste your money. It (and other similar products) do not have decent input circuitry (among other problems) and are basically nothing more than a toy.

    See the following blog on cheap o-scopes (my favorite blogger by the way):


    In my mind an oscilloscope and a logic probe serve different purposes. A logic probe is kind of like using the diode/continuity mode on your DMM. I just want a quick go/no-go decision. Is there a pulse, and is it high or low? That's all I need to know.

    On the other hand I use my oscilloscope when I really want to dig down and see what the waveform looks like.

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