Multimeters have a long history from the time of the Wheatstone bridge was used in a galvanometer in the 1820s. Today, we enjoy advanced uses of multimeters thanks to technological milestones. Some incredible functions available in modern multimeters include speaking measured value, computer connectivity, thermocouple probe for temperature measurement, etc.
If you are shopping for a new multimeter for any use, our insightful guide for 2017 has you sorted. We discuss top brands such as Fluke, Tekpower and others. These products are popular with electronic engineers, electricians, solar technicians, auto mechanics, and hobbyists among others.
Are you a fan of analogue multimeters? Even though most of the featured devices are digital (we noted that the market is more excited about digital multimeters), there is a whole section about them towards the end of this guide. As we offer this guide, we wish to reiterate the fact that multimeters are available in a broad range of capabilities, from auto ranging to RMS, and that higher specs and more features do not necessarily translate into a better tool. Use this reliable guide to gather the facts before you buy your best multimeter.
Table of Contents
- Table of Contents
- Digital Multimeters
- Best Multimeter under $200 – Best Multimeters for Electronics
- Best Multimeter under $100 – True RMS Multimeters
- Best Multimeter under $50 – Auto Ranging Multimeters
- Best Multimeter under $10 – Best Cheap Multimeter
- Analog Multimeters
- Should experts use analog or digital multimeters?
Best under $200
Best under $100
Best under $50
A digital multimeter is a combination of capabilities of various task meters, so it measures voltage, current, resistance, capacitance, etc. Typically, it has four main components namely input jacks, display, buttons and dial. It may also come with black and red wires (leads/ probes).
Ranging can be either manual or automatic. Manual ranging forces the user to think about the measurement even before selecting a suitable range on the meter. Fortunately, the auto-ranging feature is common in modern digital multimeters. This function saves the user a lot of time.
What devices do you normally repair, install or use? If you deal with computers, variable speed drives and electronic lights, you need to invest in a True (Root Mean Square) RMS responding digital multimeter for accurate measurements of sinusoidal and non-sinusoidal ac waveforms. They also tend to be more expensive. As you will note as you read this guide, the price of a digital multimeter depends on the level and number of features.
Best Multimeter under $200 – Best Multimeters for Electronics
When you go to the market to buy a multimeter worth around $200, you expect a few things from the product. The device should at least perform the following tasks:
- Measure voltage, current and resistance
- Measure capacitance
- Have quality leads
- Check for continuity
- Measure frequency
- Have the auto ranging feature
If it can do these things, do not hesitate to take it. Of course, there is the important task of comparing various features depending on your needs. The featured products have important certifications and offer advanced features, but finer details make the difference.
All the meters in this category are fit for experienced professionals who have an eye for detail and accuracy. They have been designed using the latest technology and can withstand harsh work environments. Like analog meters, these ones are particularly excellent in measuring signal fluctuations. Sample these devices and see which fits your needs.
Fluke 117 Electricians True RMS Multimeter Review
Features true-rms for accurate measurements on non-linear loads
What is so attractive about the Fluke 117? It has to be its lightweight and compact design. The ergonomics are simply irresistible. Without any doubt, the fact that it comes from a renowned manufacturer contributes a lot to the extensive popularity of this multimeter. Comparing the $168.67price with the available features, you realize just well priced this gadget is.
The gadget has received numerous positive reviews in recent years in different shops including Amazon and eBay. Its popularity may also be linked to its wide range of measurement applications- DC/AC voltage, frequency, capacitance etc. With this gadget, troubleshooting even the most complex jobs is effortless. It has a simple design that enables both rookies and experts to perform their tasks easily.
As expected, the tool has true RMS capability, which is a valuable feature for electricians constantly dealing with nonlinear loads. Another notable feature is auto-ranging capability, which is also of great importance to electricians and other professionals.
The tool’s lowest AC/DC voltage range is 600mV while the highest is 600V. It has six resistance ranges between 40MΩ and 600Ω. To add to an electrician’s convenience, the device also measures current ranging from 6A to 10A.
It is easy to get so excited about the attractive look, firm grip and other features that you forget the drawbacks on this tool. How much do you need a holster on a multimeter? Maybe rarely, but the fact that the Fluke 117 Electricians True RMS Multimeter does not have this component does not portend well for some users. In addition, the lack of an auto-hold feature is a blow to this gadget. The LED screen may be large and backlit, but it has a glaring problem; you may not see the digits if you are not looking at the screen from a 90 degrees angle.
Fluke 115 Compact True-RMS Digital Multimeter Review
True-rms for accurate measurements on non-linear loads
The price of the Fluke 115 Compact True-RMS Digital Multimeter may be above the $100 mark (this is common with many Fluke models anyway), but this is an indication that the manufacturer has not lost interest in the middle and entry-level segments of the market.
There are reasons why many people consider this dream equipment for a beginner electrician for nothing. The multimeter has accuracy that is rare with others of this price range. Accuracy is especially eminent in the true RMS current and voltage readings. The maximum voltage (AC and DC) range for this device is 600V. Other ranges are 60V and 6V. Both capacitance and resistance have five ranges each.
Field service technicians tend to love this multimeter because of its low weight. Its readings are also quite straightforward, so the user can read them at a glance. Since this tool is almost the same size as a phone, you can put it in the pocket as you walk around in the field. When working in poorly lit areas, the LED backlight comes in handy. It also has the auto ranging capability.
On the flipside, professionals or experienced electricians may feel dejected because this gadget only goes up to 10A range, to add to 6A range. In addition, this multimeter is often unable to detect small currents in computers and other electronics. The user may also have to view the display at a right angle owing to reportedly poor display contrast.
Safety is a key feature in the Fluke 117-it has the coveted CAT II600 V rating. Customer reviews show that this equipment is among the safest available in the market.
If you have used Fluke 117, do not even think of getting 115; it is obviously a downgraded version. Probably this view is a bit confusing going by all the wonderful ratings on various platforms, but you only need to consider some of the gadget’s issues, including lack of mA range and poor display to understand this view.
Amprobe AM-570 Industrial Digital Multimeter with True-RMS Review
Temperature, duty cycle
This is probably the best multimeter for any professional electrician working in demanding conditions where troubleshooting and maintenance is the norm. At a weight of 0.86 kg, the tool is easy to carry and use. It has several irresistible features, the most popular being the capability to measure up to 1000V, for both AC and DC. This and the 10A range make this device ideal for the industrial environment. Here are some other features that are equally relevant for industries.
- True RMS
- low impedance function-detects stray voltage
- low pass filter- for variable frequency drive measurements
- dual thermocouples
- Audible continuity
- Max/min memory
- Data hold
- Relative zero mode
Of importance to note is that the Amprobe AM-570 provides an excellent performance in regards to safety. This is in line to its CAT III 1000V and CAT IV 600V ratings. In addition, it has an LED flashlight, which is indispensable if you plan to use the device in low-lit areas. The same case applies to the backlit screen that has been a hit with users. Remember you get all this at a very affordable price of slightly over $100.
Although the tool has both auto and manual ranging features, some professional electricians will probably not rush for this gadget owing to its slow response. Of course, you do not expect this meter to compare to high end ones, it is only that it does not fit the requirements of more professional applications. Still, it is excellent equipment for a student or amateur working on low-level projects whose voltages do not exceed 1kV.
Well, this multimeter also measures temperature. If you intend to apply this feature, remember to get a temperature probe to add to the items in the box-Instruction Manual, Velcro strap, Test leads, and 9V battery, among others.
Best Multimeter under $100 – True RMS Multimeters
Did you know that you do not have to spend more than $100 for a good true RMS multimeter? Yes, you can get a nice multimeter for as little as $70. Just to make things clear from the onset, this is not a gadget for measuring everything from outdoor temperature to light intensity. The good thing is that with this money, you will get a gadget that is sturdy, reliable and long lasting. While you may not get all the fancy features on these tools, they still have some of the most critical qualities including auto ranging and true RMS functions.
Many electricians are using these meters for repair and troubleshooting applications in standard systems. If you are field professional, getting a decent gadget from Fluke, Extech and other leading brands without necessary exceeding your budget is not a bad idea. Here are three products under this price category for a start.
Fluke 323 True-RMS Clamp Meter Review
Jaw opening measures current in a conductor up to 30mm without touching or interrupting the circuit
This is a popular tool for both residential and commercial electricians not only for its true RMS feature, but also because it is efficient and portable. Most reviewers cite a comfortable grip as one of the best features of the device. Since readings are easy to take, one can use the fluke 323 meter even in awkward environments, for instance on a ladder. This is also an important quality for electricians who are constantly doing quick tasks.
Fluke Corporation claims that the device is designed to work in difficult environments without compromising on reliability in diagnosis. I tend to agree with this-the device has the right ergonomics. Furthermore, the readings are free from noise.
Since this is an auto ranging multimeter, choosing the appropriate range for your measurement is a walk in the park. For multimeters, weight has a direct effect on ease of use. The manufacturer was keen on this-the devices weighs at only 265g. A size of 207 x 75 x 34mm is also convenient for electricians.
Unfortunately, this device may not measure low resistance values because its ranges are between 400 Ω and 4 kΩ. Another drawback is that the test leads are a bit bulky, making them prone to getting lost. The device does not come with any particular protection for the leads, so damage to these crucial components is common.
In case you are looking for a simple device for measurements that are capped at 4kΩ, 600V and 400A, then you need to consider the Fluke 323 True-RMS Clamp Meter. It is easy to carry and its ergonomic qualities are excellent. The device has many desirable attributes, but several convenience and usability issues tend to keep many users away. If you are comfortable with the measurement range (clearly the biggest shortcoming of the multimeter), this is definitely an equipment to add to your tools rack.
Extech EX210T True RMS Multimeter with IR Thermometer
Low current capability with resolution to 0.1μA
Have you ever wondered what the qualities of a good budget multimeter are? I think that RMS is a must, as well as auto ranging and fuse. True RMS meters are popular because they offer accurate measurements for distorted waveforms. The Extech EX210T True RMS Multimeter offers these features together with an IR thermometer. Note that the EX210T is the only model with a built-in IR thermometer. This thermometer comes with a laser pointer whose purpose is to locate hot spots with a Distance to Target Ratio of 4:1.
An affordable price for a gadget as dependable as the Extech EX210T is sure to elicit excitement among users. The last time I checked online, the price for this tool was $71.19, which is on the lower side for a device so sturdy and accurate. Talking of accuracy, this digital multimeter boasts of 0.5% accuracy. It can even do better than this according to online customer reviews.
The fact that this meter has many ranges of measurement for both current and voltage should excite any professional electrician. Voltage is measurable within 200 mV, 2V, 20V, 200V and 600V. For current, the ranges are 200 µA, 2000 µA, 20mA, 2A and 10A.
If you already have another meter and are new to electrical applications, you may wonder why you need to buy an extra meter in the name of the Extech EX210T. There are two simple answers to that concern. First, any experienced electrician will tell you that on numerous occasions, one needs to take two different measurements simultaneously. Second, having two meters helps in checking readings against one another, to remove any trace of doubt. In addition, the Extech EX210T has an IR thermometer for safer and more reliable temperature checks.
The point here is not that the Extech EX210T is the best multimeter ever, but to emphasize the excellence of this multimeter in comparison to its price.
Extech EX430 True RMS Autoranging Multimeter
Relative function for establishing a base line reference
From the name, one can already tell that this brand is built for many uses. The device measures capacitance, current (AC & DC), voltage (AC & DC), duty cycle, frequency and temperature. You can also measure continuity and test your diodes using this equipment.
Away from its multiple functions, the Extech EX430 has a number of incredible features that can satisfy any professional electrician. Here is a list of some of these features:
- Auto power off
- K-type thermocouple (inbuilt)
- Warning for wrong connection
- Protection for input fuse
- Auto ranging
This tool with high-level protection is designed for extreme working conditions. That is why a standard set comes with a protective holster. Other items in the set are Type K temperature probe, integrated stand, test leads and Velcro strap.
You will also find the measurement ranges for the Extech EX430 very appropriate. For current measurements, the range is 0.1µA- 20.0A. When it comes to voltage, AC and DC measurements have different ranges. For sure, no electrician can complain about AC and DC ranges of 0.1mV- 750V and 0.1mV -1000V respectively. Capacitance measurement is also reliable-it ranges from 0.1nF- 100µF. The same case applies to resistance measurement, which falls between 0.1Ω and 40.0MΩ.
An issue that users keep mentioning is the poor positioning of the fuse. Reaching the fuse is an unbelievable hassle that involves removing about three sets of screws. There are also several components-including circuit boards and a metal shell-to remove before you can access the fuses. Just pray that you never have to remove or replace a fuse on this gadget.
The readings are huge and this is good for many users, but not all. A section of users thinks that the size of the readings is exaggerated and intimidating. What is your take on this portable tool?
Best Multimeter under $50 – Auto Ranging Multimeters
You have already paid thousands for school fees, mortgages and all the other major costs. Is there is any point of paying hundreds for a digital multimeter when all you want is to learn a few things about electronics? Get an affordable gadget and you can perform most of the basic electronic tasks around your home.
Getting a good digital multimeter for less than $50 appears impossible. I have good news for you; many stores sell quality digital multimeters at very affordable prices. These are not the days when owning a multimeter was nothing short of a mega investment.
If you are interested in the best multimeters under $50, we have taken time to do the analysis for you. Remember that while these tools perform basic functions, they may not be the best for precise and accurate measurements. Do not expect these devices to have auto ranging and true RMS capabilities. Still, you can enjoy doing simple home based projects such as testing your car.
Extech EX330 Autoranging Mini Multimeter with Built In Thermometer with Type K Remote Probe
4000 count autoranging multimeter measures AC/DC voltage and current, resistance, frequency, duty cycle and temperature
For a price of around $50, this is one of the best digital multimeters to grab. There is probably no better gadget than this at this budget price. Just check its features- it can test voltage, resistance, current and capacitance. Other parameters are frequency, duty cycle and diode. The fact that the Extech EX330 offers at least 12 crucial features means that the need to switch from one gadget to another is minimized. From this alone, you realize that even a professional electrician can own this device. To crown everything, this multimeter comes with a tilt stand, data readout and continuity tester.
The Extech EX330 has some of the most diverse ranges of measurement you will ever find on a budget multimeter. For example, you can measure voltage in 400mV, 4V, 40V, 400V, and 600V ranges. Current can be measured in five different ranges namely 400μA, 4000μA, 40mA, 400mA and 10A.
You only have to hold the gadget or simply look at it to appreciate why it is so highly rated on ergonomics. A slightly wider top face makes the tool so simple to the grip. Adding that to its low weight of only 500g, there is no reason one should be stressed when using the equipment anywhere. Even if you were to add the holster, the tool weighs 260g only.
What would you say about a 147 x 76 x 42mm multimeter having such a large display? The extra large 4000 count LCD display is quite some surprise, since this tool is just a mini meter. With this feature, you can take all your readings without struggle. Do not forget it also has an auto hold function for easier measurements.
Of note also is the rubber casing, which offers reliable protection to the meter. Therefore, you can expect to use this wonderful gadget for many years to come, as long as you give it care.
Klein Tools MM500 Auto Ranging Multimeter
True-RMS for accurate measurement in all applications
Are you looking for a user-friendly meter fit for any professional electrician? The Klein Tools MM500 Auto Ranging Multimeter is a product designed for real life environments, so its user friendliness is not really a surprise. Its strength, for example, is something out of the ordinary. The device does not even have a plastic casing, as has been the case with several other meters reviewed here. Are you wondering how strong the meter can be on impact? Experts believe the device can withstand a drop impact from 10 feet or 3 meters. This means that you do not have to worry as you climb the ladder with the device. You can toss it to the ground without worry of damage or malfunction.
This tool can measure as much as 750V for both AC and DC circuits. It also has a resistance range of 4000Ω to add to its continuity measurement capability. The auto hold feature enhances convenience- it enables the user to take readings in awkward locations.
Ergonomically speaking, the shape of the device says it all. Even in the weakest of grips, it is simply difficult for the tool to fall to the ground.
Other impressive features of the Klein Tools MM500 are:
- Auto ranging
- Ability to measure 4KΩ resistance
- Automatic detection of AC and DC voltage
- Comes with batteries and test leads
- Low battery indicator
- Auto power off
- Optional replacement leads and carrying case
While these are great features, you realize that a professional electrician may not really be at home with this meter. It is only ideal for measuring voltage, resistance and continuity. For other features, one may need to use a more advanced meter. If you are ready to pay more (about $110 on Amazon) for extra features, the Extech EX505 is a perfect replacement. However, if you focus is on a pocket friendly and compact device that does the basics, the Klein Tools MM500 fits the bill.
Proster Auto-Ranging Digital Multimeter 5999
Offer two AAA battery, a pair of test leads & K-type temperature probe. You could use our multimeter right away
This is another digital multimeter that any professional electrician should have. It has impressive accuracy, auto-range switching, data holding among other special features.
It is a latest version so its LCD Display is easy to the eye. The tool can take measurements of as much as 2000uF and 5999. It has superb measuring capabilities. Some of the measurements it can take include:
- AC/DC current and voltage
- Duty cycle
In addition, the tool comes with the auto ranging function. The multimeter provides several ranges such as 600mV-600V for voltage, 600Ω-60MΩ for resistance and 600uA-20A for current. It also comes with a ready charged 9V battery and two test leads. With these qualities, this multimeter should fulfill the needs of not only an electrician, but also professionals in radio-technology, laboratories and factories.
It does not matter where you use this tool; it will still be reliably efficient. The manufacturer’s details show that the allowable working environment for the device is a relative humidity of 80% and a temperature of -10˚C to 50˚C. I do not know of a place that does not normally offer these conditions.
On the downside, the tool may not survive many hits and falls because its case is not strong enough. Yes, the rubber sleeve provides some protection and its soft feel is okay, but this comes at the expense of ability to stand the heavy knocks synonymous with the working environment.
Many users have also complained of not being able to use the manual. This is understandable considering that the English used is not particularly of the highest quality. For instance, following instructions for doing a continuity test is somehow frustrating.
Despite these drawbacks, the fact that you could get down to your work immediately you buy this multimeter makes it worth buying.
Best Multimeter under $10 – Best Cheap Multimeter
Any serious workshop needs test equipment, but this is not to mean that it must bankroll. Even the occasional electrician needs a budget DMM. You have heard about all those warning statements about cheap stuff-unreliable, dangerous, inaccurate… but is it that difficult to get a good but cheap meter. There are quality budget multimeters out there. One thing for sure, a meter of this price may not produce the same accuracy and precision as top of the range options. These multimeters are your best bet for measuring continuity of a circuit in the most affordable way.
If you are an occasional electrician or you have just started using a digital multimeter, you should probably start with the tools suggested below to gain some experience. As you become more comfortable with the measurements, you can upgrade to a higher version. There are numerous low priced multimeters in the market. All you need is to check their features and specifications keenly and choose the most relevant to your needs.
General Purpose AC/DC Hand-held Digital Multimeter
Checks continuity of wires, fuses and electrical system components
As the name suggests, this multimeter has a maximum reading of 1999 making it ideal for checking simple electrical systems and household components. It is particularly popular with automotive owners. A key advantage of this device is safety, a quality that suits the usage mentioned. This is also a bonus for the inexperienced user. For convenience purposes, the handheld tool has a sizeable LCD screen. This adds to the impressive accuracy of the multimeter.
The simple shape is only one of the reminders that this is a tool for beginners or hobbyists. At only 0.17 kg weight, this gadget is one of the most portable around. Its small package size of 4.1 x 1.7 x 1.7 inches means that you can easily perform measurements for fuses, cells, batteries, wires and similar simple electrical components.
As inexpensive as it is, this digital multimeter is amazingly versatile thanks to its black and red leads. It can test several electronic devices including transistors and diodes. It can take several measurements including voltage, resistance and current up to the 1999 mark. Its ranges for voltage include 200mV, 2000mV, 20V, 200V and 1000V. Ranges for current measurement are 200µA, 2000µA, 20mA, 200mA and 10A.
Cheap electronics are often associated with fast damage, but this does not apply for the General Purpose AC/DC Hand-held Digital Multimeter. It comes with a very reliable overload protector (built in) for meter protection. However, the cables and cover do not seem strong enough for rough environments. Some users have also reported cases of unreliable performance for instance, wrong readings or lack of readings.
Since its first arrival some ten years ago, the multimeter has received largely positive response from users. Its suitability for simple jobs seems to endear to many people. It may not be built for the strenuous professional use, but it works perfectly well for small-scale jobs. If you are professional electrician, you may need to get an advanced level tool for extra measurements and features.
Topone LCD Digital Ohm VOLT Meter AC DC Voltmeter Multimeter
LCD Digital Meter
Topone are at it again with this unbelievably affordable multimeter. The device is black with a yellow cover and weighs at only 113g. On paper, this might seem like the perfect tool for a busy electrician. Definitely, this is a device to consider if you are looking to treat yourself to a simple, affordable multimeter.
The design of the multimeter is something akin to what we have come to expect from Fluke, the industry leaders. From the outlook, it is hard to take anything from the Topone LCD Digital Ohm VOLT Meter AC DC Voltmeter Multimeter.
This meter is capable of measuring voltage, current, and resistance. What you will appreciate is that this meter has a range of 600V as the maximum. Others are 2mV, 200mV, 2V, 20V and 200V. For current, the highest range is 10A while the lowest is 200µA. Remember that the tool has accuracies of ±0.8% +5 and ±3.0% +5 in those ranges respectively. No need to complain though, the device still gives relatively accurate readings.
If you are a professional electrician, several things that should convince you to ignore this multimeter include:
- Does not measure temperature
- Taking it apart reveals reasons for low price
- Sometimes gives nonexistent readings
- Plastic tab breaks with minimal force
Check inside the meter and you will realize why it is so low cost. Everything seems to have been done using the simplest methods and materials. A good example is the fuse, which is attached to the motherboard.
Lack of special features on the device can make usage difficult sometimes. Take for instance if you try to take measurements over the limit. Since the tool does not have auto ranging function, it displays a “1”. This is a warning that you have to do the setting manually.
For the low price, this is a decent multimeter. In general, this multimeter will not help much if you intend to troubleshoot. Nonetheless, it makes an excellent learning aid for an inexperienced person or hobbyists learning about electronic measurements.
ELIKE T-92 Self-Recovery Digital Multimeter Amp/Ohm/Volt
Measures AC/DC current to 20A,ACV to 750V,DCV to 1000V,resistance to 200M,capacitance to 200μF
This is a distinctively gray and orange manual-ranging multimeter that measures voltage, current, resistance and capacitance in different applications including electrical testing, automotive, DIY and commercial projects.
From the appearance, one may think that the multimeter is made from several materials. Wait until you finally have the device in your hands. It is all plastic. Why is this undesirable? If you mishandle the device and it falls, you might as well count your investment gone.
This meter may only help a newbie, and the reasons for this notion start with the manual. Yes, it contains some important info, but it is glaringly erroneous in some sections. A good example is the section where it calls for a non-included 9V battery. For a meter of its price, the large size is a bit strange.
When it comes to quality, the ELIKE T-92 Self-Recovery Digital Multimeter may not compare to higher priced products. Of course, this is to be expected, but when you get a gadget that has a plastic protective cover, then you know you are in for disappointment at some time. Working in harsh environments may call for extra caution. From the photo, there is an impression that the tool has a rubber cover, while in the real sense, it is just a different shade of plastic.
Let not the negative highlights of the device blind you to the fact it has a number of amazing features including:
- Buzzer for continuity
- Infrared Data Detection
- Low Battery Display
- Negative Polarity Display
- Sampling Frequency
- Livewire Identification
Its ranges are also worthwhile. Ranges measured are 2mA, 200mA and 20A for current and 200mV, 2V, 20V, 200V and 1000V.
For those who are budding electricians, hobbyists doing DIY projects, the ELIKE T-92 Self-Recovery Digital Multimeter is worth considering. Apart from having a Built-in support stand and overload protection, this multimeter adheres to CATII 600V and IEC61010 safety standards. However, professional electricians, electronic engineers and other professionals in the industry had better invest in a better tool.
Unlike digital meters, analog meters indicate their values using a calibrated scale and needle movement. A few years ago, these meters were more popular than they are today. Unfortunately, the arrival of DMMs seems to have led to a decline in the use of analog multimeters (AMMs).
Perhaps the biggest advantage of an AMM is its ability to check signal power and frequency concurrently. You have probably heard about the reliability of analogue multimeters in measuring changing measurement trends. In addition, analogue multimeters may be preferable in certain situations. For example, these devices have low impedance and a substantial load that makes them suitable for measuring opening circuits.
Parallax errors are common with analogue multimeters because it is not always possible to view the display at a right angle. Another challenge is in choosing the most appropriate range. Nevertheless, there is no reason to shy away from this tool. If you follow the basic, it is easy to use an analogue meter. Find reviews of three popular analogue multimeters below and make the choice.
Tekpower TP8260L Analog Multimeter
High accuracy & Ideal for AC and DC Voltage DC Current up to 10A
If there is one standout thing about the Tekpower TP8260L Analog Multimeter, it is its impressive accuracy. This device can measure current with an accuracy of 3%. It has a 2.5mA Range to support this level of accuracy. Voltage measurements are also appropriately supported with four ranges from 2.5V to 1000V. You can also measure resistance using this tool.
For an electrician or any user for that matter, portability of a multimeter is a crucial consideration. The 0.405 kg-heavy multimeter is a perfect example of a pocket friendly device that still performs excellently. Alongside the user friendly weight, the meter’s size of 6 ½ inches X 3 ½ inches X 1 ½ inches is also suitable for the mobile user. Suitability of this tool for outdoors and remote use is further enhanced by the very reliable battery, which can last for up to 10 hours while in use. The display of this multimeter has a backlight to allow usage even in dim areas.
Transistors come in many packages. In relation to this fact, one of the many challenges an electrician encounters in the field is inability to distinguish between PNP and NPN transistors. With the Tekpower TP8260L, you can forget about this hindrance. This tool has a transistor checker to do all the hard work for you.
An assurance of compliance is something to insist on whenever you are buying electronic tools. As you would expect of a quality device, the Tekpower TP8260L conforms to different standards, including 8Kohm/V AC, 20Kohm/V, DC, EN61010/IEC1010 standard and CAT II 600V.
Functionality is a combination of different factors including ergonomics, accuracy and visibility. While the Tekpower TP8260L may not be the most appealing gadget in this class, it does have backlight and zero adjustment features for that extra convenience. It can serve you for a number of years without being damaged, thanks to a strong outer case.
Tekpower TP7040 20-range AC/ DC Analog Multimeter General Purpose
90 days money back guarantee and 1 year limited warranty
Tekpower created a product that is the perfect blend of quality and affordability. Tekpower TP7040 is made from some of the finest materials in the market, but comes at a reasonable price of only $19.99. With this device, analogue measurements are enjoyable. Perhaps the most reassuring information before you even start to use this meter is that it meets the EN61010-1 standard. Furthermore, the meter has a strong holster.
This tool earns more marks from its bulge at the top, which creates a racquet-like shape. This not only enhances the visual appeal of the meter, but also adds to ergonomics and safety. It is highly unlikely for the device to slip from the hands with such a shape.
Who says analogue multimeters cannot outdo their digital counterparts? The Tekpower TP7040 has managed to win many admirers, even drawing a sizeable number from the digital side. Reviews suggest that this fondness is based on the accurate and timely measurements for resistance, voltage and current. You will note that the meter’s needle is hypersensitive. This is the reason why the readings are usually reliable.
Do not look elsewhere for a quality continuity indicator; the Tekpower TP7040 does the job exceptionally. It has a nice sounding buzzer for this purpose. As for the ranges, voltage measurement is available for 10V, 50V, 250V and 500V for ACV. For DCV, the ranges are 100mV, 2.5V, 25V, 250V and 500V. Ranges for current measurement include 50uA, 5 mA, 50 mA, 500 mA and 10A.
Tekpower is undoubtedly renowned for quality products, so expect the Tekpower TP7040 to last several years before it can register serious problems. This is not to say the device is free from any form of damage or error. In fact, do not even think of dropping this analogue meter; this will mark the beginning or its fast deterioration.
An issue with the meter’s X1 scale has been raised on numerous occasions. Users claim that near the end of this adjustment, the resistance value starts to increase. Hopefully, the manufacturer will do something about this anomaly before it is too late.
Sunwa YX360-TRD 7-Function 16-Range Analog Multimeter With One Touch Capacitance Estimation
AC/DCV DCA Resistance Capacitance & Diode check
A 7 ounces battery powered device that has received mixed customer reviews so far. Its features comprise of anything you would expect from an analogue meter in its price range-user manual, test leads, back stand, plastic case among others.
You can use this equipment to take a wide range of measurements including DC current, transistor leak current, AC/DC voltage, capacitance and resistance. Talking of DC current, this meter has an amazing measurement range, from 10 micro amps to 250 mA. Even digital multimeters find such a performance hard to achieve. It can measure direct current voltage in different ranges namely 0.1V, 0.25V, 2.5, 10V, 50V, 250V and 1000V. For alternating current circuits, the ranges for voltage are 10V, 50V, 250V and 1000V. Ranges for current are 50µA, 2.5mA, 25mA and 250mA. When it comes to resistance, the device is able to do 2K, 20K and 2MKohm.
The device is square shaped, with the measurement screen on the upper half while the controls are on the lower half. For a 6.8 x 1 x 4.8 inches, this means that the readings are visible even from a few meters away. A clear winner for this meter is its rotary selector switch, which comes with reliable detents for the most amazing operation.
You will probably not get a better machine for $16.95 or thereabouts. It is a nice bargain for DIYers and hobbyists learning about electrical measurements. As a circuit tester, it does not look any different from other multi-tester. However, its ability to analyze transistors gives it an edge. If your interest is accuracy, this meter may not be your best option. It fairs very badly against digital meters in this respect.
The meter’s inaccuracy is vividly demonstrated when you try to zero it on the 100K scale. The needle will simply not settle at the beginning of the scale. This meter may only find use in basic lessons such as how to read an analog multimeter, how to do a continuity test and how to do a voltage test.
Should experts use analog or digital multimeters?
Enthusiasts have for a long time argued over the better or worse devise between analogue and digital multimeters. If you are just entering the arena, multimeters are either digital or analogue. While analogue multimeters have a pointer and a simple display, digital multimeters rely on digits and an LCD display to show measurements.
So, which is the better option for experts between the two? Both devices are essential for determining electrical voltage, resistance and current and other parameters. Obviously, the popularity of digital multimeters has grown tremendously in recent years and taken the limelight from analogue tools. Everyone knows that digital gadgets are more accurate hence this wide shift. When it comes to the scale, digital wins over analogue for the simple reason that it sets the scale automatically for the user.
While an analogue multimeter can perform the basic tasks fairly well, it does not have the wide array of features of digital multimeter. For instance, some digital multimeters can measure levels of power; others have additional features such as auto/manual ranging, true RMS and data hold and others still have PC interfaces. No doubt, analogue multimeters show measurement fluctuations and cost less.
Considering the overwhelming benefits of digital multimeters, it appears that most experts would not hesitate to buy them. This is not to take anything away from analogue varieties, which have remained relevant despite the prevailing technological onslaught. Which side of this debate are you in? We would like to know your views.