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Can anyone advise which multimeter to buy

Discussion in 'General Electronics Discussion' started by ehayashi300, Jan 17, 2013.

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  1. ehayashi300


    Jan 17, 2013
    Hello All.

    I am going to buy a multimeter, this is to replace my old analogue meter.

    I would like it to be able to measure:

    AD & DC Voltages
    Diode test & Transistor test

    Would also be nice if it was auto ranging.

    I have heard Fluke are good. can anyone recommend which model is best value for money. I have looked at the full range and am kinda confused which one would be best for my needs.

    Thank you in advance.
  2. Jotto


    Aug 24, 2012
    What kind of meter do you have now? I might trade a DM501 meter made for Sencore, its a decent meter, I would say it compares well with Fluke.

    Depending on what your doing and where to you want to go, I would invest in a cheap meter if it's just a hobby, if your wish a professional unit I would recommend the Fluke 87 series. All meters can test diodes and transistors, capacitance is not on all models.
  3. CocaCola


    Apr 7, 2012
    I won't argue that meters like Fluke are top of the line, and the 87 series is pretty much the go to model for many... But you can get a hell of a lot of decent meter from China for chump change vs what you will pay for a Fluke... No, it's not as good but in all reality and truth it's 'good enough' for most people (especially hobbyist) and still a huge step up from an analog meter...

    Even the sub $5 models out of China do a lot, but if you spend $20 or $30 on a China meter you can get a feature rich one that does a lot more... I'm not going to recommend any particular one off hand as the 'all in one' chip guts used in these meters are re-branned and marked as 1001 different meters by 1001 different companies out of China... Heck in many cases you will find 10 clearly different models with the same model number, just because said model number is getting some buzz on whatever... My advise if you go with an Asian model is to look at feedback and choose one that others have reviewed...

    If you consider an Asian model look at a site like search for 'multimeter' and then organize by 'best rating' or 'most reviews' and see what others are saying, even if most of the reviews are silly you can get a feel most of the time..
  4. (*steve*)

    (*steve*) ¡sǝpodᴉʇuɐ ǝɥʇ ɹɐǝɥd Moderator

    Jan 21, 2010
    You can also get "Chinese" versions of some Fluke multimeters.

    These are manufactured for Fluke, but to a lower standard. Typically the difference is that the probes and probe connections are not as highly rated (so not safe for use in high voltage or high power environments). Otherwise they are pretty good.

    EEVBlog did a teardown, so you can see hat the differences are and what Dave had to say.
  5. donkey


    Feb 26, 2011
    atm I am looking at my $5 au multimeter and it hasn't missed a beat for the nooby stuff I do. when I get my hands on the new toys I may consider upgrading.
    as with all itemsthat you buy consider the following what you want it to do now, and how long you want it to last. right now a simple $5 one might do you, but in say6 months you want to play with something else and you will upgrade then. but if you think you need the upgrade by the end of the week then save the $5 and go for the better one now.
  6. ehayashi300


    Jan 17, 2013
    Thank you everyone for your suggestions. Steve, that clip was really interesting.

    In all honesty I'm sure I'd be fine with a fully functional $11 made in China model, but it's now looking like a birthday present so I may as well ask for a Fluke anyway. :)

    I'm thinking one of these: Fluke 117 should last me a lifetime.

    Still, if money's no object (if only) there's plenty to choose from:
  7. (*steve*)

    (*steve*) ¡sǝpodᴉʇuɐ ǝɥʇ ɹɐǝɥd Moderator

    Jan 21, 2010
    I have a very old multimeter that was bought for me when I was about 14 years old (I think). It is analogue, 20kOhms/volt and now looks very tired. And I pulled it out the other day because I needed another meter.

    No matter how humble, a multimeter is always useful, even if you later replace it with something that is far more all-singing and all-dancing.

    The advantage of having cheap multimeters is that you're less afraid of breaking them (I'll admit to having killed a current shunt in one of mine...)
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