Questions from a newcomer - which upgrades are compatible?


I have a DSO quad which I am pretty happy with, but would like to explore some of the software upgrades available. The problem is information regarding various upgrades is scattered throughout the forums and wiki, and to avoid having to read through 20 pages of forums I would appreciate if a few of my questions can be answered. I think having all these questions in one place could also benefit any other newcomers like me who are struggling to find comprehensive information in one spot.

The start-up screen for my DSO shows the following info:

Hardware Ver V2.70 Serial No: C0CEC171 DS203 Mini DSO SYS Ver 1.52 DS203 Mini DSO APP (PLUS A1) Ver 1.03 Reload parameter form disk
I made my purchase on Dec 15, 2013.

From my understanding, the following pieces of software are present on the device:

  • Firmware (boot-loader…is this what the SYS file is?)[/]
    ]Application (what’s normally running when you’re using the scope)
  • FPGA Configuration file (Not sure how this is accessed)

I found the following list of user applications: … plications
And additionally the stickied thread at the top of this sub-forum (the GCC “community” app) viewtopic.php?f=26&t=2957

Here are my questions:

  • Is my understand so far correct?
  • Are these the most recent apps available?
  • The code on the github repo from the original designers (on the seeed-studio github…I can’t link because I’m a new user) contains APP V2.32, V2.35, V2.51…are these much newer than mine (Ver 1.52)? Why did my unit not ship with the latest app? Or is this something else? Can I safely use these apps?
  • Will the community app work with hardware version 2.7? It says it requires “SYS 1.50 1.6” and gives a link to the HEX file, but no additional information about that HEX file is given. From looking at the schematics, there are no hardware changes from V2.6 and V2.7 that would affect the firmware.
  • I have learned that there are up to 3 “slots” for applications to be stored (accessed by holding down the different buttons while powering the unit on). This wasn’t really mentioned on the wiki. My question: if you’re uploading a new application how do you choose which “slot” it will be stored in? If you choose one with existing software, will it overwrite it? Also, I saw mentioned somewhere that some apps use two “slots”. Is this correct?
  • I would also like to mention that my quest for better software started when I realized the single-shot (SINGL) and normal (NORM) triggering modes are very buggy with the stock APP (almost useless). Does anyone know which APPs have a well functioning single-shot and normal triggering modes?

Sorry for the many questions, but I’m having trouble finding good information.


  1. Your understanding is pretty good. There are actually 4 areas of software on the device. The DFU is the really basic start up code and is responsible for updating the other 3 pieces of software. It is the ‘Disk’ that appears when you start up with 1st button pressed. You should never update the DFU. It is painful to recover from getting this corrupted. SYS is like a BIOS, FPGA is the binary code for the hardware logic array.

  2. I wouldn’t start from the wiki for most recent apps. The wiki is out of date. You are best deciding on the software then looking through the relevant thread. I.e. Community for Community / Wildcat scope, Gabonator scope etc. Often the most recent is just in a zip in a post. is a useful collection but doesn’t have Wildcat.

  3. The stock APP version got renumbered at some point. I would switch away from stock anyway.

  4. Hardware 2.70 has 2MB disc memory and actually has good compatibility with the alternative firmware which was originally developed for this type of unit. Later versions with 8MB disc memory and had compatibility issues but there are versions now which seem to work OK with these.

  5. There are actually 4 slots. APP1 is the default when powered up. APP2,3,4 get launched when button 2,3,4 are held down during power up. BUT some Apps like most of the major scope APPs take up two adjacent slots. So the stock APP or alternative scopes like Community or Wildcat take up APP1 and APP2 leaving APP3 and 4 free. The APPS are linked to particular slots when built. So for example you can get an APP1, APP2 or APP3 variant of Community. Loading the appropriate variant determines which slot it is loaded into.

  6. In my opinion all of the alternative scope apps are much better than the stock version. Better triggering, better functionality, better handling of data, easier to use on button presses (e.g. less reliance on toggle switch central press down). As you have SYS 1.52 already then just put Wildcat 3.3 APP on. If you use the Community APP then you need to update to an updated SYS otherwise some of the signal generator frequencies will be wrong. You could try Wildcat out first on slot 3 leaving your existing scope alone, but you will rapidly decide to put it in slot 1 and forget the existing one. That will then leave slot 3 and 4 for things like PAWN, logic analysers, etc.