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B&K Precision bench multimeters, good?

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by Joerg, Dec 7, 2012.

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  1. Joerg

    Joerg Guest


    In the market for a new bench meter, 4-1/2 digits is sufficient. To my
    surprise I saw on their web site that B&K is an American company which,
    of course, I'd gladly support. Is it true for their meters and stuff
    that they are at least engineered here? Are they good? Looking at the 2831E:

    I really like VF displays, much more so than LCD.
  2. I've got a hand held B&K DMM. I like it, pretty much the same
    readings as a more expensive fluke, whenever I've checked. I've also
    got a bench voltmeter from Keithley (2100), 6/12 digits, not much more
    than the B&K.

    George H.
  3. Guest

    when I saw B&K I thought Brüel & Kjær , but I guess it is not the same

  4. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Thanks, good to know. The Keithley is more than 2x the price even as a
  5. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Yeah, I don't have a personal EBay account. And I really like the fact
    that the B&K has USB connectivity. I tend to use that a lot because then
    I can watch a trend from across the room, BIG numbers on the screen.
  6. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Thought the same a few years ago. However, this one is a US company (now
    branched out worldwide). The founder might have European roots, but more
    in Germany than in Denmark.
  7. P E Schoen

    P E Schoen Guest

    "Joerg" wrote in message
    I like my Fluke 45, which has given me good service for over 20 years. Its
    true RMS accuracy is better than the B&K, and some are available on eBay for

    The B&K is about 0.4% accuracy on true RMS:

    The Fluke 45 is about 0.2%:

  8. B&K and Bruel and Kjaer are NOTHING like each other. If their meters
    are like their power supplies that I've seen they're just rebranded
    Chinese (probably Taiwan invested Chinese) product.
  9. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Hmm, that's a bit concerning. Was the quality low?
  10. Klaus Bahner

    Klaus Bahner Guest

    Don't know the B&K, but if your budget is flexible I can recommend the
    Fluke 8845A/8846A. Excellent and extremely useful bench meter.

    Only minuses are that it likes to stay connected to the mains even if
    switched off, perhaps to keep the reference heated. If completely
    disconnected it takes a long (say 30 sec) initializing phase before it
    can be used. Found it also annoying that the maximum logging length is
    limited to 50.000 measurements even if you store on an USB stick (8846A).


  11. Pretty standard for decent Chinese stuff (usuable but not overly
    impressive). Personally, I'd go for the Agilent 34401, but I know this
    is a fraction of the price.

    Best regards,
    Spehro Pefhany
  12. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    It's really overkill, I don't need 6-1/2 digits. 4-1/2 is fine for me.
  13. P E Schoen

    P E Schoen Guest

    "Klaus Bahner" wrote in message
    It does have excellent AC True-RMS accuracy of 0.04% RDG + 0.02% Range, but
    it is AC coupled. The Fluke 45 uses a calculated AC+DC measurement which is

    The 8845/6 also has Kelvin resistance measurement which is lacking on the
    45. I think that is a very important feature, especially measuring low ohms
    or to compensate for lead and clip resistance.

  14. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

    Ok, so maybe I should take the plunge then.
  15. Joerg

    Joerg Guest

  16. Hmm interesting, thanks.

    I've used my 2100 for ~0.1% (four figure) measurements. (Mostly as an
    AC and DC voltmeter) Beyond that I don't have anything to compare it
    to. What was your problem?

    George H.
  17. Woah... what's up with that? Does the fluke return to normal if you
    unplug the Keithley?

    George H.
  18. Yeah, the menu control's not the greatest.
    I've got other test gear that doesn't remember what I was doing last,
    that seems a common failing.

    Any issues with the accuracy?

    George H.

    And one
  19. Sorry, I meant the 34410A (the 34401A is the predecessor). It's LXI
    Class C compliant as well as having USB.

    Not too bad for such a nice instrument.

    Best regards,
    Spehro Pefhany
  20. Dang, that sucks. I thought Keithley was a leader in test and

    Is there some dynamic that can go wrong when a company gets too big,
    or too old?

    George H.
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