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Thread: Multimeters -- Recommendations

  1. #1
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    Multimeters -- Recommendations

    Need a line on an affordable reliable multimeter that doesn't croak and have to be replaced every 6 to 9 months. Any ideas?

  2. #2
    Stray Cap DrGonz78's Avatar
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    What's your price range? What meters do you NOT want to buy again?
    When the going gets weird... The weird turn pro!

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrGonz78 View Post
    What's your price range? What meters do you NOT want to buy again?
    Simpson 260, Fluke 110, and an Amprobe digital meter are what I have settled on. Paid about 30 for each.

    nosaj

  4. #4
    Pickup Maker David Schwab's Avatar
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    Why do they croke? I've been using the same $40 RadioShack meter for the past 12 years! I've even dropped it a few times.
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    ToneOholic! big_teee's Avatar
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    On a digital, the test leads is usually what goes south.
    Most meters will last a while.
    I like the many cheap meters available, for what I do.
    No need to use my Fluke 89 to check many functions.
    One feature I like on a meter, is a separate on and off switch.
    I don't care for the ones where you use the main select switch to also turn it on and off.
    A separate on/off, allows leaving the main select switch to be preset, or left alone, but not many meters have this feature.
    I typed in digital multimeter on amazon, and here's the result.
    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_n...tal+multimeter
    T
    Last edited by big_teee; 09-14-2017 at 06:08 PM.
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    Senior Member salvarsan's Avatar
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    The price important.

    I put $225 into a 5-digit handheld model B&K was discontinuing in 2002. I still have it.
    That functionality in a handheld costs $200-500 today.

    If you want that last fraction of an ohm when doing a DCR measurement, 5-digit multimeters are also called "50,000 count" and are shown displaying 49,999 or 50,000 in the sales copy.
    Similarly 4-1/2 digit ones are 20,000 counts = 19,999.


    Testequipmentdepot.com is a good place to research this.

    You might consider getting a refurbished benchtop meter if the price is right.
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    Old Timer Leo_Gnardo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by salvarsan View Post
    You might consider getting a refurbished benchtop meter if the price is right.
    Gotta put in a word here for my 45 y/o 8000A benchtop Fluke DMM. Just can't kill it, lord knows I've tried.

    Also have a couple $30-40 Shack DMM's both about 25 years old, they keep pluggin' along too.

    No fancy features on any of 'em just ACV, DCV, AC current, DC current, & ohms.
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  8. #8
    rjb
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    OP has not specified resolution & accuracy needs, or mentioned which mm models have croaked or how or why they croaked.

    My little ~45 y/o analog Radio Shack "Micronta" still works... well enough to test pickup polarities....

    None of my litter of $5.99 (FREE with coupon & any purchase*) 3-1/2 digit Harbor Freight "Cen-Tech"s have croaked yet.
    *There happens to be a FREE offer this weekend (Fri-Sat-Sun).
    https://www.harborfreight.com/

    But don't waste the extra dollar for the $6.99 Cen-Tech with battery-killing superfluous backlight. That one did croak.

    My "expensive" HF meter with impact-resistant housing has been dropped into an engine compartment a few times.
    It hasn't croaked.

    A while ago, I tried to salvage an old Simpson that had spent decades in a soggy basement full of shelves of various chemicals.
    But that meter was pretty croaked.

    -rb
    Last edited by rjb; 09-16-2017 at 03:10 AM.
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    Some DMMs have difficulty in measuring DC resistance of a pickup, especially in an electrically noisy environment. The induced voltage can be enough to skew the reading. I have a couple of autoranging Fluke meters and the voltage is enough to flip from resistance scale to voltage. With my Wavetek if I switch on my benchtop fluorescent magnifier I can see the DC resistance shift by 200 Ohms or sometimes more.

    I wonder if this is why sometimes customers complain of differences between the advertised resistance and the one they read?

  10. #10
    ToneOholic! big_teee's Avatar
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    The biggest varible of DCR pickup resistance is the Air Temperature.
    Usually 68-70F degrees will get you close to stock DCR.
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    Senior Member Enzo's Avatar
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    When you try to take resistance readings in an inductive environment, always try setting the autoranging feature to a range hold first. As it hunts during autorange, the current changes, which is enough to kick the coil and the resulting spike confuses the meter, which goes to hunt some more.
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