NOTE: A lot of this is now outdated, as Tektronix have released some interesting scopes lately (2015).
This started out as a comment, but I'm expanding it to an answer:
Basically, Tektronix is not competitive in the digital oscilloscope market any more.
Your comparison is fundamentally flawed too. You are comparing Tektronix's bottom-of-the range scope to Rigol's middle-of-the-range model.
The actual Rigol scope that best matches that Tektronix scope is the DS1102E.
- Both have tiny, crappy, QVGA (320*240) screens
- Neither have intensity grading.
- The Rigol still has a lot more sample memory, 1 Mpoints vs. 2.5 Kpoints.
Note that the Rigol scope listed above is only US$400!
Really, if you're shopping for a US$500-US$3000 DSO, the only two players on the market even worth bothering to look at (at least at the current time) are Rigol and Agilent. They are the only two people on the market that offer intensity grading (Rigol call it "Ultravision" and Agilent call it "InfiniiVision").
This is a technique that actually measures the time the input waveform spends at each ADC value per X-axis time-step, and actually varies the intensity of the drawn scope trace to reflect the period of time the input spent at that voltage. This produces a display that actually somewhat resembles a traditional cathode-ray oscilloscope. It is absolutely a excellent feature, and I, at least personally wouldn't even consider a DSO that lacked it at this point.
Basically, Tektronix are just not producing DSOs worth looking at. They did have some good DSOs in the early 2000s: they produced a nice, primitive DSO, garnered a significant chunk of market share, and basically then sat there resting on their laurels and stopped innovating. This is supported by the teardowns I've seen of some of their late-model scopes, which were using rather ancient silicon for their processing.
Note that this is changing, but only for Tektronix's higher end. They're doing some really cool stuff with their MSO devices (mixed-signal oscilloscopes). They basically combine a spectrum analyzer and a DSO, and for RF work, they look excellent. They're also $50K+.
Then, Agilent came along and basically completely wiped the floor with them in short order, with their much deeper memory scopes, and introduced intensity grading.
Now, Rigol have subsequently come out with a competitive mid-range scope line that makes them also worth considering, together with Agilent.
As far as I can tell, Tektronix's superb reputation should only really be applied to cathode-ray oscilloscopes (I have several, all Tektronix). They really didn't take the transition to digital, and its high innovation rate well at all.
If I were buying a scope now, I would look for:
Absolutely essential at ANY price-point:
- Greater then 100 KPts memory.
- 640*480 or larger screen. This is why I never bought one of the cheaper Rigol scopes
Absolutely essential a >~$1K price-point:
Nice to have:
- High waveforms/second
- This ranges from merely nice to totally essential, depending on what you are using the scope for. If you're glitch-hunting, you pretty much have to have high waveforms/second rates for decent coverage. The Tektronix scopes are an order of magnitude lower in waveforms/second then the Rigol and Agilent scopes (though the latest ($$$) Agilents are even better).
- Protocol decoding, at least as an option
I've never used this particular oscilloscope, but I'll give it a go. Note that you'll need to figure out how to incorporate the command sequence I've recommended below into whichever data acquisition software package you're using (LabVIEW, MATLAB, VEE, etc.).
Start by resetting the oscilloscope's controls and settings to their "factory setup defaults" (see also appendix B "Factory Setup" in the TBS1000 Programmer manual [hint: search for "tbs1000 programmer manual" on tek.com]). This is done by issuing the SCPI "*RST" command:
Display channel 1, AND turn OFF channel 2:
Configure the horizontal, vertical, triggering controls, etc. as desired—e.g., horizontal time/div = 1ms/div; channel 1 volts/div = 1V/div:
Configure the oscilloscope to acquire a single waveform when the oscilloscope detects that the triggering conditions are met:
Acquire a single waveform ("run once"):
Wait for the data acquisition to complete. This is done by issuing the SCPI query "*OPC?" (operation complete?). As stated in the oscilloscope's Programmer manual, "[t]he *OPC? response is not available to read until all pending operations finish", meaning the *OPC? invocation blocks until the oscilloscope finishes the data acquisition task.
In the WAVEFORM commands group, use the CURVE? query to transfer Channel 1's waveform data from the oscilloscope to your computer:
Note that the "CURVE?" query returns a stream of bytes that are typically stored in a buffer that your program creates for this purpose (e.g., a character array, or a byte array). Your program then parses the desired information from the stored data in the buffer. Exactly how this is done depends entirely upon the programming language and instrument I/O libraries you're using—e.g., LabVIEW, MATLAB, VEE, etc.—and is left as an exercise for the reader.
P.S. If you need help writing the code for a specific programming language, I recommend you find/use forums that are dedicated to the particular programming language you're working with—e.g., LabVIEW instrument I/O programming forums; MATLAB instrument I/O programming forums, etc. Those folks would be much better suited to answering programming language specific questions than the folks in an electronics forum. (<- Not complaining/whining, just sayin'...)