Automotive Newsletter

October 2008

New Case Study: Direct Injection — Poor Performance

This month we have an interesting case study for you, written by a real PicoScope user who has kindly offered to share his diagnostic knowledge.

Direct Injection — Poor Performance. A 2003 Vauxhall Signum (same as a Vectra C) arrived at the workshop with a slight misfire and a more general flatness under acceleration. Follow the story as the problem was solved using a Pico oscilloscope.

Read “Direct Injection — Poor Performance” by Dave Hill

Technical Information and Tips

Here is a quick tip for those of you who are using PicoScope 6.

Manually configuring input ranges

We all know how to use the automotive menus to configure the software. Choosing a preset test from the menu automatically sets the input ranges that are suitable for the particular component that requires testing. In practice this works very well, but what about some of the more advanced tests that use more than one channel, just like those in our tutorial series?

Well, if you click on the black button that appears after each of the individual channel settings, you will be presented with a drop-down menu. At the top of this new menu you should see a white box that as standard displays x1. If you then click on the down arrow button at the right-hand end of the box a further menu appears. At this point you can select one of the custom probes suitable for the component being tested, mainly from the automotive menu. Once selected, the ranges in the usual selection box will change to suit the chosen probe. For example, choosing the 60 A Current Clamp (20 Amp Mode) will then give ranges in amps. Once you are happy with the settings don’t forget to save the waveform, and you can then use it again later as your own preset test!

Here’s a summary of the latest technical resources that you can find, free of charge, on our website.

  • Library of waveforms captured using the Automotive Diagnostics Kit
  • 10 engine management tutorials
  • 12 Real-Life Diagnostics stories from professional motor mechanic Nick Hibberd
  • PicoScope Automotive Oscilloscope Guide. Almost one hour long, this video guide contains everything from what an oscilloscope is and why you need one, to how to run simple tests and take measurements. Request a free CD

Engine Management Diagnostics Courses

If you own, or are thinking of buying, a Pico Automotive Diagnostics Kit, you mustn’t miss ourEngine Management Diagnostics course. This provides expert training on the fundamentals of engine management diagnostics, together with plenty of hands-on experience with our kit. The course is run several times a year around the UK.

These courses are popular, so book your course now!

Training Courses This Month

Engine Management Diagnostics using PicoScope

East Surrey College, London
28-29 October 2008

This two-day course introduces the basic working principles of engine management systems, component testing and system diagnostics using oscilloscopes. The course is split between theory sessions and practical demonstrations in a workshop using the Pico Automotive Diagnostic Kit on engine rigs.

Forthcoming Exhibitions and Training Dates

Visit the exhibitions page at for full details of upcoming exhibitions and training dates.


Please visit Pico Exhibitions for the latest list of exhibitions and trade shows that Pico and its representatives will be attending.

We're hiring!

Thanks to our continuing success and growth Pico are always seeking talented people to join our company.

Please visit to see our current vacancies. We look forward to hearing from you!

Software releases

Our latest software releases are available as free downloads. To check which release you are using, start the software and select Help > About.

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Contact details

Pico Technology, James House, Colmworth Business Park, St. Neots, Cambridgeshire, PE19 8YP, England
Tel.: 01480 396395 (+44 1480 396395)
Fax: 01480 396296 (+44 1480 396296)

Pico Technology North America Inc.
320 N Glenwood Blvd.
TX 75702
United States
Tel:+1 800 591 2796 (Toll Free)

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