Tektronix Oscilloscopes

 Although the oscilloscope can trace its roots to Germany, the success can be traced to the United States Allen Dumont that took it to a production level with a reliable CRT and trigger circuitry to produce a reliable waveform. After WW2 a company called Tektronix formed by Vollum and Murdock patented the time base triggered scope that made reproduction of waveforms a snap but it was expensive (about 5 times more than the common frequency sync scope which Dumont produced). It has been said that at the Electronics trade show Dumont tried Tektronix's 511 (the first) scope and was impressed. When he saw the price he commented to Vollum and Murdock that he wished them luck trying to sell it. In less than 10 years Tektronix would knock Dumont out as a dominant oscilloscope maker. After that all other comanies would try to be like Tektronix.                                                  Vintage Tektronix Oscilloscope Videos on YOU TUBE:  LINK>>     VINTAGE TEK SCOPE VIDEOS            


Tek Plug In Oscilloscope
Versatility and Multi Purpose for the laboratory

The World's First Dynamic Storage Oscilloscope
Before the digital storage, storing information was very complex and expensive. Tektronix came out with a way to store a waveform electronically and design a CRT to refresh the stored waveform so it can be seen. Although Hughes Aircraft first demonstrated storage CRT's it was Tektronix that could mass produce it and made it reliable and easy.

Tektronix 564 (1967) World's First Production Storage Oscilloscope.  Frequency Response 10 MHz. Based on 561 design- Hybrid circuitry and uses plug-in units for versatility as a spectrum analyzer, cable tester, sampling scope, differential comparator etc

RIGHT- Shown with 3L5 Spectrum Analyzer and 3B4 Time Base Plug-ins for Spectrum Analyzer Applications. BELOW- Spectrum Analyzer setup looking at 455 KHz signal

Inside a 564 Oscilloscope- Can you ID the tubes and transistors?

Shown with  for normal oscilloscope mode of operation with 3A1 dual trace vertical plug-in and 3B3 time base generator plug-in with delayed trigger.

Below- Operation as a Storage Oscilloscope. Picture 1 before storage and Picture wave placed in storage.

Picture 1

Picture 2 Stored Image

Tek Plug-Ins for the 560 series Oscilloscopes

Shown from Left to Right

Type 2A63 Differential Amplifier (Vertical)
Type 3A1 Dual Channel Amplifier (Vertical)
Type 3A6 Dual Channel Amplifier (Vertical)
Type 3A74 Four Channel Amplifier (Vertical)
Type 3B3 Time Base with Delayed Trigger (Horizontal)
Type 3B4 Time Base (Horizontal)
Type 3L5 Spectrum Analyzer (Vertical)

Tek Portable Oscilloscopes

For many years Tektronix lead the way and set the standard. In 1961 the 321 was the first transistorized oscilloscope with true portability. The 321 could operate from AC line or from primary or rechargeable batteries. In 1967 the 453 and 454 portable oscilloscopes were the fastest around and set the style of how a portable oscilloscope should be laid out.

Tektronix 321 
(1961) (First Transistorized Model) Actually a hybrid (used 7586 RCA Nuvistor tubes for the vertical input). Time base sweep, portable with rechargeable batteries or AC, 6 MHz frequency response  Model on left is the earliest version.

T321P31 CRT made by Tektronix
Notice the complexity of their CRT compare to the typical oscilloscope CRTs by other makers. The deflection plate are connections near the CRT bell. Also the bell not only has the gray shield but also wire spun on the inside for strength and reliability.

Older models have a rectangular bezel. S/N 2149 shown here:

Newer 321 S/N 4406- Notice the panel changes.

Tektronix 321A (1964) Fully Transistorized used FET for vertical input

Typical View of 321's location for rechargeable batteries

Inside of a 321- All Hand Point to Point Wirin
(made in USA at Beaverton, OR)

Tektronix 453 (1966) Dual Trace 
Iwith delayed trigger. 50 MHz frequency response. Transistor model with two 7586 Nuvistor tubes for vertical inputs. Fully transistorized version model 453A came in 1968-69. Set the stage for future layout of portable oscilloscopes by other manufacturers. The military would make this one of their preferred models for equipment repair.


Tektronix 454 (1967) 

 Same as 453 except  100 MHz
bandwidth and X-Y. This would be the leader in high performance portables until they would top this model with the model 475 ten years later has 150 MHz frequency 


Very compact. Has only two vacuum tubes called Ceramic Tubes. The following year, Tektronix would introduce the 454A which would be completely transistorized.

SCOPE CAMERAS Most used a Poloroid camera back connected to a camera lens with a hood to fit onto an oscilloscope CRT. Most used Poloroid 300 or 667 film (Still available through Fuji film)

Tektronix C31 for 453 and 454 Oscilloscopes

                                                                                   Tektronix C5 for Universal Use