10 Best Multimeters of All Time

Best Multimeters of All Time

What kind of multimeter are you in the market to purchase? The greatest multimeters will provide you with the information you need fast and correctly. A subpar multimeter, on the other hand, will only offer you headaches.

Electricians tool kits commonly include a multimeter as a basic diagnostic instrument for everything from testing batteries to determining the amount of voltage in a circuit. Multimeters, on the other hand, are useful for DIYers who want to check their home’s wiring or fix electrical items. Additionally, they’re a useful tool for amateurs who want to fool around with electronic circuits and make things like pedometers and motors, as well as humidity sensors.

What is a Multimeter?

Multimeters are electronic devices that combine the functions of volts, resistance, and current measurement into a single unit (or lack thereof). When discussing multimeters, it’s important to distinguish between digital and analogue multimeters. There are only minor distinctions between the two, and while they both accomplish the same goals, their fundamental difference lies in the way they present the data.

Analog meter:

Using an analogue metre, a scale reading will be provided with a deflection pointer (a physical moving needle points to the measured value on a paper scale). There are no flashy screens here; instead, there is a glass panel with data printed on it. Traditional multimeters are still used by certain old-school electronic gurus, who prefer them because they can keep track of fast fluctuating readings.

Digital meter:

A digital metre displays a numeric reading on a screen, such as an LCD, so that you can see it clearly. With an analog-to-digital converter system (ADC), the analogue signal is converted into a digital one, which may then be processed and shown in numerical form on the metre screen, removing the need to understand needles and graphs. Nowadays, digital multimeters are significantly more prevalent than analogue multimeters due to the large range of options and functions they offer, as well as the generally higher levels of accuracy they normally provide compared to their analogue counterparts.

Auto-ranging multimeter

Voltage, ohms, and current are all measured in terms of units, just like any other object. Ranges are a term for groups of these increments, just as distances are. An auto-ranging multimeter is a digital instrument that can automatically determine the measurement range and show you the result. A multimeter with this feature makes troubleshooting components a lot easier for beginners and people who don’t have the time or need to sit and sort through the many ranges.

Manual ranging multimeter 

To get a correct result, a manual-ranging multimeter requires the user to specify a range rather than being auto-ranged. As a result, in order to get a reading, you need to be familiar with these ranges and where they appear in the project you’re working on. In general, an expert in their industry will be able to get more accurate readings with an auto-ranging multimeter than they would from an auto-ranging multimeter.

Clamp multimeter

Many of the features of a digital multimeter apply to a clamp multimeter. If you’re looking to measure the current in a live circuit, it’s an excellent choice. Measurements of voltage, resistance, and so on can be made by using the clamp. That reduces the risk of possibly life-threatening series readings.

BEST MULTIMETER SPECIFICATIONS

A multimeter’s performance is determined by its specifications. Understanding the capabilities of different multimeters in terms of AC/DC voltage, current, and resistance is what we mean by specification.

Make sure you get a multimeter that has a CAT safety rating higher than what you need to use electrical appliances. Use a multimeter that can handle more current than your power supply can handle. This will prevent any potential dangers from occurring. True RMS value and low input impedance are important features to look for when purchasing high-quality multimeters.

Additionally, you should look for features such as blast shielding on the inside, shrouded banana plugs, extra-large backlights, auto shut-off, and input protection for Cat II-III, as well as a multimeter that is capable of all of these tests.

Accuracy

Make sure your multimeter is accurate before using it. In this context, accuracy refers to the maximum amount of inaccuracy that can be tolerated in the readings of a multimeter. The multimeter you buy should be able to test both alternating current (AC) and steady-state (DC) current.

Frequency measurement

Within a specific frequency range, some multimeters can measure frequency as well as current and voltage.

Energy capacity

Knowing the circuit’s energy capacity in advance is a good idea. Your multimeter’s ability to withstand transient voltage will be determined by this.

Resolution

The number of digits at which a signal intensity can be assessed is referred to as the resolution of a device. It’s a measure of how small fluctuations in the input signal influence the output signal. If you’re looking for the most accurate reading possible, you’ll need more time to get there.

Input impedance

A multimeter with a wide input impedance range is an excellent choice for a digital metre since it provides accurate measurements and is easy to read. This is essential if you’re going to be taking measurements on any kind of electronic equipment that could be damaged. Ghost voltages are prevented in the low impedance mode.

It is preferable for LCD panels to have a backlit display that is easier to read in low light.

Temperature measurement

Get a digital multimeter with a two-differential thermocouple temperature function for frequent monitoring of thermocouples. Using this feature, two temperatures can be recorded at the same time.

It will be easy for you to choose the proper multimeter if you keep in mind the above seven factors.

How Do Multimeters Work?

Multimeters are one of the best options for job-site accuracy and adaptability because they are used for practically any electrical operations. They’re an essential part of every electrician’s toolkit, and using them on home electronics projects allows for far more precise work.

Even if you may find unique tools for each of the measures performed by a multimeter, the cost and complexity in transporting over a dozen different instruments make the multimeter a definite winner. It is safe to use specialist multimeters if you are an electrical technician with specific demands, such as checking HVAC systems.

In a nutshell, multimeters are a staple in electricians’ tool boxes for good reason: they’re versatile, inexpensive, and compact.

List of Best Multimeters

There is a large range of multimeters on the market, each targeted toward a certain project or specialty and capable of doing both basic and complex circuit testing. In contrast to the typical DIYer, electricians and HVAC technicians will benefit from the more advanced features of professional tools.

The greatest multimeters can be tested with your own hands, so keep reading to find out more about the best multimeters.

1. BSIDE ZT100 Digital Pocket Multimeter

BSIDE ZT100 Digital Pocket Multimeter

Key Features

  • Auto-scaling system
  • High-voltage 550-volt resistance, capacitance, and frequency file protection
  • A large, backlit display with a sampling rate of about 3 times per second,
  • Data retention 
  • Relative value measurements are just some of the features of this device. 

BSIDE’s ZT100 multimeter boasts a big, illuminated display with a sampling rate of roughly 3 times per second, which is very remarkable given its small size. When it comes to testing modes, the BSIDE has a wide range of manual and automatic detection modes as well as a complete LCD readout.

It’s possible that using this little multimeter and all of its settings and data will prove more difficult than you’d like (as it did for us). To be honest, we would have wanted to have all of these features integrated into a single larger unit for greater convenience of use, even if having the correct tool for any work is clearly beneficial.

Even so, the ZT100 is a terrific value considering the capabilities and testing modes it delivers at a reasonable cost. If you’re searching for the smallest multimeter with the most options, this BSIDE model is the one for you..

Pros

  • The lightweight and compact form makes it easy to carry in any toolbox..
  • At this pricing point, it offers the broadest selection of automatic and manual detection options.
  • Even in direct sunshine, an LCD screen with an inverted orientation is significantly easier to see.

Cons

  • It can be difficult to decipher information from a crowded display area.
  • Adjusting a tiny space with a large number of functions can be tough.

2. TekPower Digital Multimeter

TekPower Digital Multimeter

Key Features

  • Accommodates amperage from 20A to 40A;
  • Resistance from 40m Ohms;
  • Frequency from 10MHz to 1000MHz
  • Relative mode. 
  • Voltage detection 

Amperage ranges from 20 to 40 amps. It can be helpful to compare a tool to a similar one that doesn’t justify its price in order to see if it’s worth the money. This TekPower digital multimeter is both pricey and unimpressive in the digital multimeter category.

The TekPower’s key selling point is its connectivity, which it fails to live up to despite claiming to be both Bluetooth and PC compatible. Neither feature worked properly in the unit we tested, and the CD that came with it wouldn’t play on any of our three PCs.

Add to that the fact that the device is made of cheap plastic and has no auto-off feature, as well as the fact that most measures are wrong in most operating modes, and we see no need to purchase it.

Pros

  • claims to be the first mobile phone-connected multimeter,

Cons

  • The product we tested didn’t have Bluetooth or USB connectivity.
  • Plastic structure is flimsy.
  • A tremendous rip-off for the value offered.
  • Because it lacks an auto-shutoff feature and quickly depletes battery power.

3. Extech EX330 Auto-Ranging Mini Multimeter

Extech EX330 Auto-Ranging Mini Multimeter

Key Features

  • Digital multimeter with 12 capabilities in a small, convenient package.
  • Measure DC voltages from 0.1mV up to 600V
  • Measure DC voltages from 0.1mV up to 600
  • The Extech EX330 is an excellent portable multimeter. For those just starting off, this is an excellent low-cost option because to its simple controls and user-friendly UI.
  • For those just starting off, this is an excellent low-cost option because to its simple controls and user-friendly UI.It allows you to record your highest reading even if you reach a new peak each time.
  • Max Hold is always up to date with the latest information.
  • In order to keep an electric reading while you consider your options, you can use the Data Hold feature, which freezes the current display.
  • For troubleshooting electrical circuits, the capacitance option provides the ability to charge a capacitor with known current and measure voltage.

The EX330’s frequency measurement ranges from 0 to 10 MHz, making it ideal for swiftly identifying power problems without the need for cumbersome computations.

With an LED light and audible tones, the Extech AC Voltage Detector should be your go-to tool when testing domestic electrical systems for voltage levels.

One of the most capable multimeters on this list, the Extech EX330 is competitively priced when compared to the other selections. Even if it’s not the best, this model should be taken into consideration before making a final purchasing decision by those who are searching for a pocket-sized gadget that can nevertheless do some heavy lifting in terms of voltage measures, resistance readings, or continuity checks.

Pros

  • Data Hold and Max Hold
  • The ability to automatically adjust the range
  • It’s easy to use and intuitive.
  • A low-cost multimeter for automobiles – less than $50

Cons

  • Incorrect RMS voltage
  • Improvements could be made to the Display.

4. Greenlee DM-45 Multimeter

Greenlee DM-45 Multimeter

Key Features

  • Large, easy-to-read displays
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Feature packed
  • Replaceable fuses for easy field repair
  • Frequency, capacitance, duty cycle, temperature, battery test and analog bar graph are just some of the features available on these meters

Greenlee’s auto-ranging digital multimeter eliminates the need to make educated guesses about the current being examined. Standard black and red probes are included, along with an integrated stand. Ac/dc voltage, resistance, and current, as well as capacitance, duty cycle and temperature are all tested by Greenlee. It also includes a bright green backlit display, making it easy to read.

There is a rubber cover on the Greenlee that may be removed and put back on for cleaning purposes throughout the test. The built-in pedestal and screw hook cutout on the back made it easy to set it atop a motor or hang it from a screw or nail. With a green backlight, the green colour was also the brightest in the test. That, and a carrying case, are the only things that are lacking from it.

Pros

  • Rubberized surface for increased traction
  • Backlight with a lot of brightness
  • Built-in stand and hanging hook drawbacks

Cons

  • Temperature sensors are not included in this kit.

5. AstroAI Digital Multimeter

AstroAI Digital Multimeter

Key Features

  • Inches: 5″ and 3/8″
  • Two samples per second are taken.
  • Selecting a range using the automatic or manual methods
  • Indicators for reverse polarity, an overload, and a low battery
  • A 9-volt battery is needed to power the device (included)

A wide variety of measurements can be performed on a device using a variety of different types of test equipment. Frequency In terms of measurement capabilities, this multimeter measures voltage, resistance, current, capacitance, continuity, and frequency, among other things. The frequency range is 0-60 MHz.

Using its test slots, you can test diodes, transistors, and other electronic components. Like most of the other multimeters on our list, the auto-ranging multimeter can detect both AC current and voltage.

It has a big LCD screen with a backlight and the ability to save data. It doesn’t have a power button and powers on and shuts off on its own when not in use. The kickstand and the hanging magnet make it easy to store and take measurements.

Heavy-duty construction and built-in F 400mA/600V and F10A/600V explosion proof ceramic fuse tubes provide greater protection and security, as well as overall reliability, for the multimeter. There is a three-year warranty on this multimeter.

Pros

  • A function that is both specific and precise
  • Turning on and off by itself
  • A three-year warranty is a fair minimum.

Cons

  • There aren’t any specific drawbacks to mention here.

6. Fluke 117 Electricians True RMS Multimeter

Fluke 117 Electricians True RMS Multimeter

Key Features

  • AutoVolt and low input impedance modes provide faster and more accurate readings
  • Measures AC and DC currents with accuracy
  • The multimeter that electricians have been waiting for
  • The company’s slogan, “Ideal Multimeter,” is dead on. 
  • 3 Years warranty

Even if you believe your multimeter is perfect, it will never compare to how much easier your job as an electrical engineer on the road will be with a FLUKE gadget.”

When it comes to purchasing a digital multimeter, Fluke’s latest model is a good choice. All the bells and whistles an electrician will need to complete their work are included in one device.

The LED backlight status indicator lights on top of each number make reading measures much easier, even in the dark, thanks to the LCD’s crystal clear display!

Your work site can be exposed to harmful voltage levels as long as this metre is in use! CAT III safety rating

Not to mention True RMS accuracy, which is uncommon in modern metres because no other measurement method except direct current (DC) yields precise results (which AC does).

Fluke’s 3-year warranty is one of the most generous in the industry, and they confirm their devotion to this generous offer.

Pros

  • Measuring the TRMS.
  • The ability to automatically adjust the range.
  • Indicators for the lowest, highest, and mean values
  • The one-handed design is compact and ergonomic.
  • Measurement resolution that is extremely precise.
  • 600 volts CAT III readings are supported.

Cons

  • None of the above.
  • Thermocouple is missing.

7. Klein Tools CL390 Digital Clamp Meter

Klein Tools CL390 Digital Clamp Meter

Key Features

  • Test lead holder on side of clamp and optional magnetic hanger for meter  for hands free operation
  • Non-contact voltage tester integrated into the clamp jaw
  • High-visibility reverse contrast LCD display for improved view ability in all ambient lighting conditions
  • Automatically ranging True Root Mean Squared (TRMS) measurement technology for accuracy
  • Measures AC/DC current and NCVT via clamp and AC/DC voltage, resistance, frequency, DC microamps, capacitance, duty cycle, diode test, and continuity via test-leads, and temperature with thermocouple
  • Measures temperature with a K-Type thermocouple probe
  • Auto-power off after 10 minutes to conserve battery life

You should check out this model from Klein Tools if you’re looking for a test clamp. In order to test one conductor at a time, the CL390 Digital Clamp Meter has a side-mounted trigger and an end-mounted jaw-mounted non contact tester. Standard testing leaders for amperage, voltage, resistance and capacitance are also included in the box. It comes with a K-type thermocouple that can be readily installed for fast temperature measurements.

As far as I’m concerned, there’s something to be said about this clamp meter. Because it’s easy to test with one hand (once we split the wire on our office fan), but also because it’s a convenient way to suspend the meter while working with the leads, we gave it high marks. As a bonus, the non-contact tester allowed us to swiftly check for voltage on wires and devices. The negative display was also a hit with us because it was easy to decipher. One thing we’d like to point out is that, while a wonderful hanging clip, a clamp metre might not be necessary for a DIYer.

Pros

  • One-handed operation is a snap.
  • Designed to allow for hands-free lead management.
  • Non-contact testing is an advantage.

Cons

  • For the DIYer, this may not be necessary.

8. INNOVA 3320 Multimeter

INNOVA 3320 Multimeter

Key Features

  • Measures current (AC: milliamps only), voltage and resistance. 
  • Auto-ranging.
  • Loaded battery tester.
  • 6.4 ounces (180g)

Drop protection is a feature found in only a handful of other multimeters, including INNOVA’s 3320 Auto-Ranging Digital Multimeter. A simple set of rubber corner guards ensures a long service life for this multimeter, making it an excellent value for money option.

The INNOVA’s huge LCD screen and easy-to-read front-facing buttons make it a very user-friendly device at an exceptionally low cost. Even though it lacks some of the features of our top pick, this multimeter is still a great option for the DIY enthusiast on a budget.

Pros

  • The rubber corner guards keep it safe from falls.
  • Display with a large LCD screen and well-labelled functions
  • Accurate measurements are made simple with the help of the auto-ranging feature.

Cons

  •  Extremely low cost and long-lasting
  • It lacks the ability to conduct temperature tests.
  • Unprotected against over-loads by default

9. KAIWEETS Digital Multimeter

KAIWEETS Digital Multimeter

Key Features

  • Display: RMS 6000 Counts, 3 5/6 digits
  • AC Voltage: 100mV – 750V
  • DC Voltage: 100mV – 1000V
  • AC/DC Current: 600µA – 10A
  • Resistance: 999.9Ω – 99.9MΩ
  • Capacitance: 10nf – 100MF
  • Frequency/Duty: 10Hz – 10MHz
  • Polarity, overload, and low battery indication

There are many applications for this KAIWEETS multimeter with its 6000 true RMS counts of auto-ranging, such as precise AC/DC current and voltage measurement; frequency measurement; resistance measurement; capacitance and diode measurement; battery checking.

A sophisticated tester, it is frequently used to diagnose electrical problems in manufacturing, automobiles, and homes alike. 2.9-inch LCD backlight display with dual readings and bar graph. Non-contact voltage testing, live function with sound and light alarm, date retention, low battery indicator, auto power off, max/min data and auto range are just some of the many features that make it so versatile and useful.

CAT III 1000V, CAT IV 600V, CE, and RoHS approved digital multimeters are included into this digital multimeter. All ranges have an anti-burn design and high voltage protection. Insulated with silicone, it’s designed to endure a long time and keep its shape. It is supported by a three-year guarantee and lifelong technical assistance after the sale.

Pros

  • After-sale service and technical assistance are available for three years.
  • The outside cover has a thick layer of double insulation.
  • Accurately and safely measures a variety of characteristics.
  • It has overload protection, a beeping alarm, a big LCD display, and a battery level indicator.
  • Non-contact voltage sensing and anti-burn protection are built-in as standard features.
  • It’s simple to use and can be put to a variety of uses.
  • Auto-scaling and auto-shutdown..

Cons

  • It is a little pricey.
  • There is a problem with the screen’s backlight.
  • Some people have complained that the NCV feature isn’t up to snuff.

10. Mastech MS8268 Digital Multimeter

Mastech MS8268 Digital Multimeter

Key Features

  • Does most ranges, including mA, µA, capacitance and frequency
  • Auto / manual ranging
  • Continuity buzzer
  • Data hold
  • Transistor gain checker
  • Diode tester
  • Zero REL mode
  • Auto shut-off
  • Backlit display
  • Stated CATII (1000V), CATIII (600V) ratings
  • Incorrect lead input warning
  • Size: 7.7″ (195mm) x 3.6″ (92mm) x 2.2″ (55mm)
  • Weight: 1lb (453g)

With a name like Mastech, you can be sure that the huge and strong multimeters they offer are designed for electricians who prefer to work with old-fashioned tools. Many other multimeters could learn from the inclusion of back-mounted lead holders in addition to all of the typical measuring features on the front control panel.

It would have been nice if designers at Mastech realised how quickly this equipment drains its battery. In order to use it, you’ll need to buy batteries separately. However, if you intend to use this multimeter on a regular basis, you’ll need to stock up on AAA batteries in bulk.

Pros

  • Setting up a large enclosure and display is simple.
  • The device’s lead holders are located on the back for convenient use and storage purposes.
  • Incorporates an auto-range feature for checking for continuity.
  • One-year guarantee

Cons

  • Auto-zeroing does not apply to all readings
  • When in use, batteries are quickly depleted.

Multimeter Benefits

It is essential to have a multimeter on hand while doing any type of electrical work, whether it be changing out a junction box or installing a ceiling fan. Here are our top five reasons for owning one for any do-it-yourself:

  • When measuring voltage, Auto-Polarity Checking might yield both positive and negative numbers.
  • Quickly determining whether or not the circuit under examination is an AC or DC one is made possible using the Voltage Checking feature.
  • Automatic On-the-spot measurements and electrical component troubleshooting are made easier with LCD displays that show readings from your multimeter’s operations.
  • Digital multimeters are known for their extreme precision, with some units measuring to four decimal places. A multimeter can provide you with the information you need to make informed decisions about your electrical work, no matter how large or little the project may be.
  • A piece of electrical equipment’s continuity checking will rapidly show any weak connections or broken wires. While soldering wires, this is particularly beneficial because it allows you to keep an eye on how the repairs are progressing.

Tips

For the most part, you don’t need to spend a lot of money on a multimeter that can perform all of the duties you need it to. We don’t know what features are crucial to technicians in other fields, but we can tell you which multimeters we think are the finest for the automobile industry.

  • A lot of multimeters don’t have backlights, so you’ll be working at night. For the sake of your tongue and teeth, you should invest in a multimeter with this feature if you can.
  • Your brain is an extension of the multimeter. Without that, it’s nothing more than a piece of plastic and electronic components. Your responsibility is to learn about diagnostic procedures and how to use them. The following are some guidelines for testing relays and transmission speed sensors, respectively.
  • To reiterate, multimeters are limited in their diagnostic capabilities, and you’ll need additional instruments to complete the task. A multimeter’s utility is enhanced with the addition of test lights, socket testers, and voltage probes.
  • Working with electricity teaches us how important diagnostic tools are. Check out our guides to Infrared Thermometers and Moisture Meters for more information on similar equipment.

It is safe to say that any of these multimeters is a worthy contender for the title of best multimeter for electricians.

This article should have provided you with some useful information regarding multimeters so that you can go out and get one for yourself or your business. We hope you’ll share this website with your fellow electricians, and feel free to provide your own thoughts and recommendations in the comments section below!

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