Multimeter recommendations

  • Hero Member

    What do you guys use? I've been meaning to upgrade my rather rudimentary multimeter as it can't measure AC amps and I'm wondering what to get. I've been doing the basic reading and skimming of youtube and realized that there really is no such thing as the perfect multimeter. It only gets more expensive.

    Digitek DT-2843R - Extremely good value. Good leads if nothing else. (£25)
    Uni-T UT136B (or A) - Cheap and gets the job done. Flimsy leads, no frills. (£10)
    Uni-T UT139C - Relatively new and untested. Seems to be a step up in the budget department. Or down. (~£30)
    Uni-T UT61E - Popular model. Hilariously high burden voltage sadly. Data-logging. (~£30)

  • Admin

    Using a Fluke 87V

    A bit pricey but very solid and fast. Sometime you can find used ones on ebay cheap.

    Recommend looking at some of mjlortons reviews on youtube. Good and informative.

  • Hero Member

    I have the same questionning at the moment... I guess I'll go for a victor 70C which is more expensive but the USB port can be used to make an oscillograph.

  • Hero Member

    @hek Yeah, that is a bit out of my budget perhaps 🙂 Been looking at mjlorton a lot. Also LightAges. My (limited) understanding of multimeters is that expensive models may not be better for what we're doing here, but rather shine in terms of very high voltage, high amperage, security and durability, logging, precision / counts etc. They still struggle with burden voltage and some may not even be better than budget meters in this regard. I'd rather buy a ucurrent gold with that extra money. mjlorton doesn't seem to have a review of that yet. He does mention in one of his videos how they're always sold out.

    @epierre Never heard of it. Also around £30 on AliExpress. It does have the USB feature going for it, but the software looks pretty lousy. The logging in the UT61E seems just as good (?) (though you'd need the USB adapter or better still, a serial->usb cable, and not the cheap Ebay ones, they never work).

  • Mod

    I received my new Extech EX330 yesterday.
    Pretty nice piece of equipment and sort of 'middle of the road' when it comes down to price.

  • Hero Member

    @marceltrapman Where did you buy it? Price? Seems to be on Ebay for £43+£10s/h (to Sweden). Too bad doesn't have free super saver delivery to Europe anymore, they have the Extech EX330 for around £42 as well. And probably other meters as well. Too bad Amazon is kind of dead to me now.

  • Mod

    @bjornhallberg said:

    @marceltrapman Where did you buy it?

    I bought it here.
    They state that they deliver throughout Europe.

    When you have an issue with delivery and you can wait: my brother lives in Sweden and is travelling here in the neighbourhood right now as far as I know.
    I can ask him to bring the thing along (although I am not sure that I can really live up to this promise 🙂 )

  • Admin

    A good complement to a multimeter is a logic analyzer. You can find cheap saleae clones like this on ebay:

    Logic Analyzer on Ebay

    Clip cables


    Or buy the Saleae original (from $99).

    Supports the following protocols: asynchronous serial, I2C, SPI, CAN, 1-Wire, UNI/O, I2S/PCM, MP Mode 9-bit Serial (i.e. Multidrop and Multiprocessor mod), Manchester, DMX-512, Parallel, JTAG*, LIN*, Atmel SWI*, MDIO*, BiSS C*, PS/2 Keyboard/Mouse*, HDLC*, HDMI CEC*, and USB 1.1*


  • Mod

    @hek Yep I agree with the Logic Analyzer.

    Additionally I have a second hand oscilloscope, bought it a couple of weeks ago and I have used it a lot since then.

  • I have a few free (I mean absolutely free) digital multimeters from Harbor Freight here in the US, among others. For the stuff we're doing an oscilloscope is next on my list of home equipment (at work we have everything under the sun). Anyone have a good option? I've been considering a USB version, but would rather find a used digital Tektronix on ebay.

  • Mod

    I have an old Hameg HM404-2 right now.

    Before I considered either a Siglent SDS1102CML or an Owon SDS7102 (both because of deep memory and screen size).

    The reason I went for the Hameg was because it was less than half the costs of the USB versions and I did not know for sure how much I would use the thing.
    And, I guess when I know for sure in a couple of months I can sell it for about the same price or even more 🙂

  • Mod

    @therik I own a picoscope 2205 mso, and am quite happy with it!
    Also includes 16 channel logic analyzer and function generator. Excellent fit not too demanding projects.
    Isolation is problematic though because everything is connected through USB ( including the arduino...)

  • Mod

    @bjornhallberg to by precise in multimeter selection you need to be more or less clear to your own multimeter future usage
    it very depends

    I was very successful by using minipa from at value of $40 for 3 years until I get a requirement to a measurement of the current consumption of the sleeping MCU. I found that to measure current at a precision of 0.1uA you need to spend at least $200

    in general there are 3 factors essential for you to think of:

    • precision

    • functions

    • form factor

    • precisions is noticed as a number of digits, as more digits as higher precisions and much higher price.
      also important to see the absolute precisions for different ranges and different functions to check against your requirements

    • functions. The major functions of multimeter is DC voltage & current + Resistance meter + connection check
      as general plus you can find AC voltage & current, transistors meter, capacitance measurement, frequency measurement etc.

    even you will see capacitance (or even inductance) measurement do not expect any value from this
    the real capacitance & inductance measurement requires you to purchase a separate device called impedance meter or LCR meter

    the most valuable functions for multimeter are DC & AC voltage & current including mV & uA measurement
    plus resistance
    plus connection check

    the good functions also a auto-power off

    • form factor
      it can be handhold the most common. My first was of this form factor. But currently I use less universal but more convenient - 1. desk form factor installed on DIY desk for a while 2. tweezers type RLC meter for quick check of parts values & polarity of leds & polarity+heck of diodes & connections check 3. pen type multimeter is used as a second measurement point to desk version or instead of handhold

    you should also not avoid a well know transistor meter. It is a cool device originally developed by a German freak, but currently you can find many different versions. You can build it yourself or purchase ready to use
    it is unbelievable cool thing
    it can automatically detect was is connected to its 3 pins including capacitors, inductors, resistors, mosfets, diodes, diodes, triodes etc.
    and not only detect but will automatically present for you some important characteristics and also pin assignment
    we most interesting display is here
    we cheapest one
    we most matured is here

    you will definitely find this every "ebay"
    look here

  • Hero Member

    Just to conclude, I did end up ordering the Digitek DT-2843R it was cheap and vastly better than anything I had. $44 incl shipping ... slipped through customs nicely with a declared value of $22.

  • Hero Member

    So far I've been happy with the VICI VC9807A+ that arrived a couple of weeks ago, but I haven't had it long enough to seriously praise it. I wanted the 4 1/2 digits and additional measurements compared to my existing multimeter.

    One "hole" in my previous meter's readings was the jump from 400 ma to 10A. Another digit helped in the resolution I needed for a project, since I didn't find any meters with a 2A or 4A range.

  • Plugin Developer

  • Though Fluke 115 could be a good option if you have enough budget but Fluke 101 is also good basic pocket portable digital multimeter with reasonable price.

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