Author Topic: What brands of multimeter can I trust?  (Read 4497 times)

Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #25 on: May 27, 2019, 10:06:44 am »
I still have my old White gold WG023, but newer meters generally have more functionality,  i have a Fluke DMM in my work van and that has taken well over 14 years of abuse without issue.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #26 on: May 27, 2019, 01:22:53 pm »
My WG022 has finally gone to silicon heaven.  Well, it ostensibly works, but the readings drift all over the place, and there doesn't appear to be anything I can do with the single calibration pot that improves matters.

But I've taken a punt on the EEVBlog 121GW meter.  It has several unique features aimed at the electronics hobbyist that make it a very attractive option in the price range.  Things like a 15V diode test range (for zeners and LEDs), the ability to log data at intervals to Micro-SD card[1] as well as over Bluetooth, an inverse continuity test mode (beeps when the circuit is broken, for troubleshooting dicky wiring) and a VA measurement mode[2].  It's also got the low burden voltage circuitry of the ┬ÁCurrent built-in.  The use of 4*AA cells as a power source in a relatively small package is pleasing, too.

The main disadvantages are that it's relatively slow at auto-ranging (though not as badly as it was in early versions of the firmware, and this may be improved further in future), and the red silkscreen for some of the function markings is almost unreadable in bad light (I expect this to be fixed in later hardware batches).  If you read horror stories about knob problems, these were fixed before the current production run.

It's Not A Fluke, but it's not really trying to be.  It's under active community development (you can just download the schematic, the comms protocol is open, and I wouldn't be surprised if a completely open firmware appears eventually).  I'd regard the firmware as beta-test quality.  Very nice toy.


In cheap meter news, I've also acquired a UNI-T UT210E, entirely on the basis of its ability to measure small (down to a few milliamps) DC current via a clamp.  Witchcraft, I know, but it actually works[3], and it's a very convenient thing to be able to do.  It can do the usual voltage/resistance measurements via probes, too, but it's not the sort of thing I'd trust at mains voltages, and it's only a 2000 count meter.  They have other models in the range aimed at higher currents.


[1] For safety reasons the SD card slot is inside the battery/fuse cover, requiring a screwdriver to access, so it's not really a substitute for a proper data logger for regular use, but it's a nice feature to have for one-offs.
[2] Budget constraints mean it lacks the hardware for true power.
[3] You have to position the clamp and then zero the reading to eliminate static magnetic fields.

To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Valiant

  • aka Sam
    • Radiance Audio
Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #27 on: July 24, 2019, 11:16:54 pm »
So if I was buying again I would deffo get a Fluke, if only to cover my ass when doing installs etc.
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Kim

  • Timelord
Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #28 on: July 24, 2019, 11:28:38 pm »
So if I was buying again I would deffo get a Fluke, if only to cover my ass when doing installs etc.

Yeah, can't beat a fluke for arse-covering and mains electrical stuff.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

CommuteTooFar

  • Inadequate Randonneur
Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #29 on: July 25, 2019, 09:33:59 pm »
I must be silly. Everyone here wants a fluke.  I bought a Brymen BM235.  I searched reviews of it and there were some good reviews on youtube with people checking it against calibrated loads resistances etc. They concluded that there were few better multimeters at the price.  An equivalent fluke would cost a lot more.

Vince

  • Can't climb; won't climb
Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #30 on: July 26, 2019, 12:16:26 am »
I found this to have very good advice on multimeters
Multimeters Tips and Tricks
216km from Marsh Gibbon

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #31 on: July 26, 2019, 12:18:55 am »
I must be silly. Everyone here wants a fluke.  I bought a Brymen BM235.

Nice meters those.  Wish more meters did the flashing the backlight in continuity mode thing.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #32 on: July 26, 2019, 09:31:12 am »
I'm thinking I would like an analogue multimeter, not an AVO8 type but not a tiny Amazon one* either.  I have a digital one, decades old but still going, but there are just some things where a moving needle is better.

Any recomendations?

I have one of those, even more decades older but the input resistor has snapped - ought to get round to mending it really.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #33 on: July 26, 2019, 11:13:32 am »
I'm thinking I would like an analogue multimeter, not an AVO8 type but not a tiny Amazon one* either.  I have a digital one, decades old but still going, but there are just some things where a moving needle is better.

Any recomendations?

An oscilloscope?
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #34 on: July 26, 2019, 11:33:10 am »
Some modern digital multimeters have a bar graph that's designed to update quicker than the numbers and emulate a moving needle. Beware some manufacturers have copied this feature without the faster updating, because they know how people shop on the internet.

I think if you go looking for  newanalog meters you're going to have a hard time avoiding badly made rubbish, for the same reason. You're better off with secondhand or NOS.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: What brands of multimeter can I trust?
« Reply #35 on: July 26, 2019, 11:44:38 am »
Thought experiment: How many updates per second does a digital meter's bar-graph need before it outperforms an analogue meter mechanism?
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...