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steve k.

Multimeter recommendations?

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Fluke 179.  It does everything, and it just works.  It is a bit pricey- don't lose it.

 

t

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(edited)

Fluke is a professional brand which are well engineered and are developed using user feedback so incorporate all of the best features and can be repaired / calibrated for a long life. We don't (or rarely) use anything else in my industry (safety critical railway signalling). They are also professionally priced so might not be appropriate for occasional home mechanic use. If you buy Snap On tools then Fluke is an equivalent brand in electrical test equipment.

I have a multimeter at home with a very similar specification to that Innova one that I bought about 10 years ago in Australia. It has an Australian brand but, knowing how these things work, if I went to buy it today no doubt it would be exactly the same as that updated model you linked to - badge engineered from the same manufacturer. My older version has proven tough and the additional automotive features are excellent. Mine came with an extra set of leads terminated with crocodile clips. This is handy for taking measurements on the car and may be used more than the probes, so if it doesn't come with them I would recommend buying a set.

Edited by Simeon

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I just buy a new Harbor Freight one every time I do electrical work.

 

I wouldn't recommend this method.

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If you're going to use it for automotive/home electrical and less for electronics, you may want to look at a clamp meter that does DC current measurements as well.  I have a fluke 337.  Being able to measure large DC current is handy (starter load).  Mostly only go to 10amp, and you have to insert the meter into the circuit.

 

It doesn't do higher resistance (600 ohm), and only one decimal for Voltage measurements.

 

Pretty much any fluke is a good product.  And they're built to survive drops up to a meter.

 

check ebay/craigslist/kijiji, sometimes you can get deals, especially on discontinued models.

 

 

Hope that helps

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I don't own a Fluke multi-meter but what I do own (AirCheck) is really top notch. Fluke makes some very quality products and I don't see why their multi meters would be anything different. My vote is for either the Fluke or go get one of the free Harbor Freight ones. HF runs coupons "free with any purchase" or "free with over $5 purchase" all the time. I've got a few on the pegboard that work just fine and I don't worry if I lend them out. They work just as great as the $40 multi meter I bought at Sears a while back. 

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I use a Fluke 78 at least one a week professionally, on automobiles.

 

Even when simply checking for presence of voltage, 9 times out of ten, I reach for the Fluke instead of a test light. Safer on modern cars… and super handy after I've installed a complete wiring harness on a customer's car, before I connect the battery… checking for shorts, etc. 

 

​Admittedly, I probably only use 1/5th of it's capabilities…. but I love it. 

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When I was taking classes for my aircraft licensee a Fluke factory guy took one of their meters and with out the case and throw it  Randy Johnson  fast fastball style against a cinder block wall and then put it on the calibration machine and it matched specs, that being said look to Sears for good multi function meter on sale that will do everything a Fluke will do minus the brick wall for a LOT less money     

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(edited)

The real questions that needs answering are;

 

1. do you need Auto Ranging or not,

2. does it have nice BIG letters and numbers,and symbols

3. has it got BRIGHT backlighting,

4. is it nice and SIMPLE to use.

 

I always find that autoranging is a pita, flicking from one range to another ,and never knowing what range its on because you cant see the dinky little text on the poorly contrasting screen, where the backlighting turns itself off just as you are getting the reading, then you cant control the damn thing because you have to go through six layers of menu.

 

The example in post #1 is in my opinion a typical example of the standard Mickey Mouse DMM. Yes its got nice big numbers, but can you see what the other stuff is on the screen. Can you actually read the badly contracted stuff on the selector dial.

 

<\rant>

 

Whats much more useful (for voltage related measuring) is a nice and cheap small scope such as a DSO201. It allows you to measure sensor values over time and not just peak to peak.

Edited by JohnH

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Thank you for all the input. I knew Fluke is one of the best in making this type of equipment. Just was not sure if a $300 price tag item is really what is needed by someone who uses it once every few months.

 

Steve K.

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