With over 70 years of supporting humankind’s greatest advances, Tektronix is committed to providing scientists, engineers, and technicians advanced tools to help accelerate global innovation in the health, communication, mobility, and space industries. A leader in the design and manufacturing test and measurement equipment industry, Tektronix called on Tactile to elevate their oscilloscope and arbitrary waveform generator product lines.
In collaboration with Tektronix, Tactile led a five-year research-based interaction and user experience design effort along with defining a new visual brand language (VBL) for their newest products: the 5 Series MSO oscilloscope, the 3 Series MDO oscilloscope, and the AWG5200, an arbitrary waveform generator (AWG). Ultimately, Tactile’s new user interface architecture and VBL inspired Tektronix to extend the design language across future products to unify their brand. The 5 Series MSO is a winner of a 2020 A’Design Gold Award, 2019 Good Design Award, 2019 IDEA Award Finalist, and 2018 Red Dot Award.
Standing the Test
The main objective was to create a next-generation, approachable usability solution while retaining an appropriate amount of Tektronix heritage. Since scientists, engineers, and technicians are using test and measurement equipment to observe the change of electrical signals, they heavily rely on performance accuracy, speed, and ease of use.
On the Road to Discovery
Alongside Tektronix, Tactile traveled all around the US and to five countries to research and understand the user experience. The team identified core design traits based on their research: approachable and easy; trustworthy and durable; and powerful and precise. Collaborative prototyping and user testing
were critical in developing the information architecture (IA), user experience (UX), user interface (UI), and industrial design. In addition to the modern industrial design, we established a new “Tek” blue, determined a new timeless and modern color palette, and defined the color, materials, finish (CMF).
The design team created a user interface providing intuitive touch input, visual and statistical feedback, and improved contextual problem solving. A seamless solution blending the new hardware and software, the 5 Series MSO uses capacitive pinch-zoom-swipe touchscreen, front panel controls, or mouse to analyze and manage multiple signals.
5 Series MSO Oscilloscope
First of its kind for Tektronix, the 5 Series MSO oscilloscope features multiple patent-pending design elements offering a revolutionary experience with unparalleled digital visibility and a cutting-edge pinch-zoom-swipe touchscreen. The new 15.6-inch HD display allows most functions to be performed on screen, minimizing knobs and buttons.
The limited knobs and buttons offer haptic feedback interaction without interrupting the user flow of typical access points. Unique to the 5 Series MSO and an industry first, are the locking foldable feet (patent-pending) that give users more viewing angle flexibility by making simple adjustments to the feet and then locking them into place.
AWG5200 Series and Beyond
Tektronix’s newest AWG5200 Series is an arbitrary waveform generator (AWG) that provides high signal fidelity and scalability for a more affordable price. With the increasing demand for signal generation needs in advanced research, electronic testing, and radar and electronic warfare (EW) system design
and testing, AWG5200 is an all-in-one instrument that offers an advanced set of capabilities. Designed simultaneously with Elemental, AWG5200 features Tektronix’s new VBL—both in the user interface and product design. In 2019, Tektronix released the 3 and 4 Series oscilloscopes on the market that also applies the new VBL.