Getting a new multimeter?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by Nicholas, May 16, 2013.

  1. Nicholas

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Mar 24, 2005
    Hi guys!

    Well, upcoming birthday and my wife is pushing me for ideas. So I'm
    looking around trying to get some inspiration. About ten years ago
    an internet-friend shipped me a Metex M-3850 and I've been using it
    ever since. I even lost the battery cover:D

    I have no idea of this is an OK multimeter, but it has served me well.
    Would I get a lot of difference by upgrading? The Metex has slow
    continuity-testing, which is quite annoying:)

    So, should I get something like a Fluke 87 or the like?

    Advice is very welcome!!



    EDIT: Ok, the Fluke 87 seems crazy-expensive!! or is it? I can't figure out with the V's etc :)
    Last edited: May 16, 2013
  2. paulktreg

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jun 2, 2008
    Flukes are expensive but you get what you pay for and they are probably the best.

    What do you use your meter for Nicholas and how often?
  3. Nicholas

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Mar 24, 2005

    I use it a lot...for everything from resistor-checking, solenoids, unmarked LEDs,
    checking voltages on circuit boards and power supplies. All kinds of voltages
    from 0.5V up to hundreds.

    I think the budget would be best at 50 to 100 quid, approx.

  4. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
    I have a fluke 87 but I just bought my son a Klein MM2200 from Home Depot. It has nearly all the same functions for about 1/3 the price of fluke. It does not have the hiRes option where the fluke kicks up to 20000 counts and gives an extra digit of accuracy (and much wider working range).


    What ever you get, make sure your next meter has auto-ranging and auto-power down.
  5. Dr.killjoy

    Well-Known Member

    Apr 28, 2013
    Check out UNI-T61E -Price $55 bucks or

    Years ago I picked up a fluke 77 series II for cheap and love it..
  6. ErnieM

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 24, 2011
    A Fluke, any Fluke, will serve you well for the rest of your list.
  7. Ωhm

    New Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    You might consider the Amprobe 37xr-a which offers capacitance and inductance capability. The inductance capability is something you rarely see on a meter and it really comes in handy for general electronics hobby work. While not a dedicated LCR meter, it will get you in the ballpark for basic measurements. This makes it an all around great digital true RMS multimeter for the electronics workbench.

    This was the old Meterman and is now Amprobe branded and Amprobe is Fluke's value brand, all under the Danaher umbrella. A nice 10,000 count, 0.1% accuracy meter that is hard to go wrong with given the price. This meter retails for $110 on

    I own this meter and while I could have spent the extra cash on the Fluke 87, I chose the 37xr-a because it provides me more functionality for less money. Every meter is a compromise but this one hits a sweet spot, it is rugged, full featured, and has a nice display w/blue LED backlight (though this shuts off sooner than i would like to conserve battery power.) Weak spots are the continuity test and burden voltage. Dave Jones from the EEVBlog reviewed it here he uses it every day and he states that it's his 2nd preferred multimeter behind Fluke. If you had to buy one meter... Good luck with your choice.
    Last edited: May 16, 2013
  8. THE_RB

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 11, 2008
    I agree, instead of an expensive brand name meter get a cheaper brand with a lot more features.

    They are all pretty accurate these days, so if you get one with capacitance, inductance even frequency meter built in, that will have a LOT of value to you.

    Or maybe convince your wife to go for a couple of cheap kits of test equipment, so you get some fun of building and get better performance/dollar.
    Kits offer benefits like ability to repair and adapt (so they become life-long tools).

    There are some great kits for freq meters, LCR meters, etc.
  9. Dr.killjoy

    Well-Known Member

    Apr 28, 2013
  10. Buxton137

    New Member

    May 16, 2013
  11. MrChips


    Oct 2, 2009
    Geez. My wife would never buy me a multimeter for my birthday. She knows better.
  12. Dr.killjoy

    Well-Known Member

    Apr 28, 2013
    LOL My old lady was going to buy me one but I bought a used fluke 77 series II for cheap but I really wanted the uni-t61E but could not come up with a good reason why I need 2 meters..