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A tool that electronics enthusiasts, both amateur and professional, can not miss is a good multimeter. In our buying guide, you will find more information that will help you decide which best multimeter meets your needs.
The multimeter (also called a tester) is a multifunction electronic instrument used by most electricians, mechanics, and other types of technicians such as solar panel specialists capable of measuring current and all electronic activities.
You will also find a more detailed examination of the 11 most sought-after multimeters on the market. Among all models currently available, the list includes both professional and amateur models. But the positions occupied are not only related to the level of performance or the value for money.
- Top 11 Best Multimeters 2021 Reviews
- #1 Best Multimeter For Electronics: Etekcity Digital Multimeter
- #2 Best Multimeter For Electricians: Klein Tools 69149 Multimeter
- #3 Best Multimeter For Automotive: Tekpower Mastech MS8268 Digital Multimeter
- #4 Best Multimeter For The Money: Siglent Technologies SDM3045X Digital Multimeter
- #5 Best Multimeter For HVAC: Fieldpiece HS33 Stick Multimeter
- #6 Best Digital Multimeter: Proster 3999 Digital Multimeter
- #7 Best Budget Multimeter: Cen-Tech Digital Multimeter
- #8 Best Fluke Multimeter: Fluke 117/323 Kit Multimeter
- #9 Best Clamp Multimeter: Proster 6000 Counts Clamp Multimeter
- #10 Best Analog Multimeter: Gardner Bender GMT-312 Analog Multimeter
- #11 Best Pocket Multimeter: ALLOSUN EM3082 Pocket Digital Multimeter
- What Is A Digital Multimeter?
- Why Use A Multimeter?
- Features to Consider When Choosing The Best Multimeter
- Different Types Of Multimeters
- Manual Range Vs Auto Range
- Digital Vs. Analog Multimeters
- Top 3 Best Multimeter Brands
- Final Words
- Bonus: How To Use Etekcity Multimeter MSR R500
- Latest Multimeter Bestsellers on Amazon
Top 11 Best Multimeters 2021 Reviews
#1 Best Multimeter For Electronics: Etekcity Digital Multimeter
- ACCURATELY MEASURES: This...
- Handy Troubleshooter: Data Hold...
- SAFETY PROTECTION: The multimeter...
According to the opinions of the savviest and experienced buyers of electrical sensing equipment, Etekcity Digital Multimeter is the best multimeter for electronics engineers and for home and amateur use. And we can consider it one of the best multimeters of 2021.
This digital multimeter is the cheapest of all those examined in our guide. It is easy to use and is equipped with a back-lit LCD that allows you to perform tests even in poorly lit environments. Despite being sold at low cost, they make it with good quality materials and are extremely functional. Besides the tests for continuity and overload protection, it can also perform non-contact NCV voltage tests.
The only flaw is constituted by the supplied tips that are of poor quality and consequently prevent accurate readings. It has often caused an incorrect evaluation of the current. So users better replace them immediately.
- Lies in the low price range but ranks among the best-selling models
- Excellent quality level both for the materials and precision
- The non-contact NCV detection system emits an audible and visual signal illuminating the display
- To get maximum precision, it is preferable to change the cables with the test leads.
Despite the negligible cost, Etekcity Digital Multimeter offers an excellent quality level. The precision level can be improved by replacing the tips with better ones.
#2 Best Multimeter For Electricians: Klein Tools 69149 Multimeter
- The MM300 multimeter measures AC/DC...
- The NCVT-1 has a bright green LED...
- NCVT-1 has a digitally-controlled...
Klein Tools 69149 Multimeter is a category III model without problems even with high power loads such as motors, distribution sockets, and distribution panels. Therefore, it is suitable for both professional and domestic applications.
The multimeter comes with everything necessary for its immediate operation. The accessories supplied include four batteries, the instruction manual, a type K thermocouple, and a pair of cables for measurements. They equip it with protections against overloads and short circuits. A back-lit LCD can display up to 6,000 different readings as the mode of retention of the readings and automatic shutdown.
- Just connect the measurement cables and turn the selection ring to the quantity you want to measure
- It displays the data on the large backlit LCD.
- Thanks to this technology, the multimeter can detect the voltage with no physical contact and emit a double signal, light, and acoustic.
- Unfortunately, it is subject to a limitation regarding the capacity and continuity readings that are inaccurate.
The multimeter is the best multimeter for electronics repair. It means we can also use it on panels and distribution sockets, and up to a maximum voltage of 1,000 Volts. So, it is also suitable for professionals.
#3 Best Multimeter For Automotive: Tekpower Mastech MS8268 Digital Multimeter
- AC/DC 1000V/10A 200KHz 200uF 40Mohm...
- LED / Sound Warning when incorrect...
- Auto and Manual Ranging with...
For those wondering where to buy a new professional portable digital multimeter that is good value for money, we suggest looking at the model MS8268 manufactured by Tekpower. Compared to the other professional digital testers in our guide, Tekpower Mastech MS8268 Digital Multimeter is available at a helpful cost.
The MS8268 model is the ideal measuring tool for automotive as it is specially designed for intensive use. It comes with a display capable of displaying the count up to a maximum of 60,000. Besides, it collects all measurements performed as True RMS values.
Read more: Best Digital Torque Wrench For Cars
Aside from current, voltage, capacitance, and resistance, the multimeter can also measure current loops from 4 to 20 milliamperes. The structure is solid and resistant. So, we can also use it in the manufacturing industry.
- Measures even the current loops that are created in controllers intended for industrial applications
- The manufacturing materials and the performance is excellent
- The package also includes the shockproof case
- The only flaw is the instruction manual is slightly difficult to understand
Tekpower Mastech MS8268 Digital Multimeter is the best multimeter for mobile repairing for professional needs such as automotive and factory.
#4 Best Multimeter For The Money: Siglent Technologies SDM3045X Digital Multimeter
- Dual display. True RMS. Basic DC...
- Dcv/dci, acv/aci, 2/4 wire R, C,...
- Built-in cold junction compensation...
The SDM3045X multimeter, produced by Siglent Technologies, is a low-cost bench multimeter that stands out for its multifunction capabilities. Besides the measurement modes, it also works as a clock, alarm clock, and environmental thermometer.
It features a back-lit 19,999-count LCD with adjustable light intensity. Bluetooth speakers allow it to function as a wireless speaker while working. It is switchable for manual or automatic operation. The unit can measure current and voltage, both alternating and direct. The product also features capacitance, resistance tests, and diode On-Off tests with values expressed in True RMS.
Siglent Technologies SDM3045X Digital Multimeter is the best multimeter for electronics hobbyists for home and amateur use, and students of electrical engineering. The package also includes the test leads with the relative cables and the instruction manual, which are only in English.
- Works as a clock, alarm, ambient thermometer, and Bluetooth case
- A decent level of accuracy, especially when used in automatic mode
- Many additional functions that are extremely versatile
- Not recommended for professional use. It is suitable for home, amateur and school use only.
Despite being an economic model, Siglent Technologies SDM3045X Digital Multimeter enjoys a decent level of accuracy, especially when used in automatic mode.
#5 Best Multimeter For HVAC: Fieldpiece HS33 Stick Multimeter
- Non-contact Voltage
- 400AAC and Capacitance
- High Voltage and Continuity...
Fieldpiece is a US company specialized in the production of detection, analysis, and verification instruments. And its brand has gained notoriety thanks to the reliability and excellent quality of its products.
The HS33 is a standard multifunction digital model that falls into safety category III with double insulation. So, it can perform voltage measurements in direct and alternating current up to 600 Volts and direct current up to 10 Amperes. The unit comes with complementary functions of continuity, resistance, diode test, and test on 9 and 1.5 Volt alkaline batteries.
They also equip the Fieldpiece multimeter with a large back-lit LCD and a switch that allows you to switch from one function to another. It also has the Data Hold function to hold the readings on the display and complies with IEC safety standards.
- Perfect for professionals, amateur and domestic environments
- The shell is very resistant and covered with a layer of soft rubber
- Comes with a case, test leads, and measuring cables.
- Unfortunately, the auto-off function is missing,
The HS33 multimeter is the best HVAC multimeter with essential functions, but it is high quality both in terms of materials and assembly and in terms of performance.
#6 Best Digital Multimeter: Proster 3999 Digital Multimeter
- 【Update Version 3 3/4 Digital...
- 【Measuring ability】 With this...
- 【Special Features】 Low Battery...
The digital multimeter produced by the English brand Proster is characterized by a relatively low cost but by all the features typical of models intended for professional use. The 3999 model can measure the alternating and direct voltage, temperature, current, resistance, capacitance, frequency, and duty cycle.
It can also test continuity, transistors, diodes, and display the true RMS value. They also design the tester for non-contact sensing and features a 6,000-count, back-lit display, overload and short circuit protectors, and LEDs for illumination. So, we can use it in dark environments.
They power the meter by three AAA batteries including in the package along with a pair of test probes, a temperature probe, two alligator clips, and the instruction manual. It is intended for domestic use.
- The price is easily accessible even for those who have a limited spending budget
- It has all the measurement functions typical of multimeters intended for professional use
- It has a magnet that allows it to be fixed to metal surfaces
- As this is an inexpensive digital multimeter, do not expect top readings accuracy
Although Proster 3999 Digital Multimeter is a hobby-class instrument, it has all the measurement functions typical of multimeters intended for professional use, including the display of True RMS values.
#7 Best Budget Multimeter: Cen-Tech Digital Multimeter
- Features an easy-to-read 3-1/2...
- Resolution: 1999
- Data hold retains information after...
The Cen-Tech model is only in the seventh position because, despite its outstanding characteristics, the level of accuracy is not such as to allow it to compete with other models of similar cost produced by more famous brands.
The fact remains it remains ideal for hobby, domestic, and above all didactic use. Cen-Tech Digital Multimeter has the advantage of having the same measurement functions of a professional digital multimeter of a voltmeter, ammeter, ohmmeter, diode, and battery tester.
- It is made of good quality materials and is covered with a layer of rubber
- The structural quality is excellent
- Compact, relatively light, and also durable. It also comes with a foldable stand for bench use.
- Unfortunately, the accessories supplied do not include the carrying case and the instructions are only in English.
Cen-Tech Digital Multimeter offers the same functionality as a professional portable digital multimeter. But the level of accuracy cannot compare with that of similarly priced models produced by the most famous brands.
#8 Best Fluke Multimeter: Fluke 117/323 Kit Multimeter
- The 117 multimeter measures AC and...
- The 117 multimeter features true...
- The 117 multimeter features low...
Fluke 117/323 Kit Multimeter is designed especially for electricians and features and possesses the same features as the Tekpower Mastech MS8268 examined above, but except for the current loop measurement functionality. However, Fluke 117/323 has a non-contact voltage sensing mode.
Except for this detail and the high price, the two devices differ little. Both offer excellent performance and quality, but the Fluke is penalized by a much higher cost and therefore less accessible than the Tekpower.
- The low input impedance also eliminates errors because of phantom voltage
- It also possesses the function of the non-contact voltage detection
- Accurate, compact, light, and resistant
- Compared to other portable professional digital multimeters, the Fluke is priced significantly higher
The portable detection instruments built by US firm Fluke are famous for their high accuracy, and the digital multimeter 117/323 is no exception
#9 Best Clamp Multimeter: Proster 6000 Counts Clamp Multimeter
- 【Reliable Clamp Multimeter with...
- 【Auto-Ranging with NVC】The...
- 【Clamp Measuring】Clamp jaw...
At first glance, Proster Clamp Multimeter appears almost identical to many other digital multimeters manufactured by different companies. They base it on a standard device manufactured under license and marketed by different brands.
Although design and limitations are the same for all appliances regardless of brand, there are substantial differences in manufacturing materials, performance level, and other minor details.
Proster Clamp Multimeter is especially suitable for home and hobby use. And as a laboratory instrument, it is a perfect preparatory for beginners and students of technical institutes. It stands out above all for its excellent quality-price ratio. Even if it suffers from some limitations, it is functional and very easy to use.
- Proster Clamp Multimeter is a compact and functional device
- It is complete in functions and has the advantage of being extremely simple to use
- One of the most popular models in the economic range
- It has the standard defect of the difference in temperature detection that could vary from 1.5 to 2.5 degrees more than the actual value
Proster Clamp Multimeter is a good inexpensive digital multimeter. Its characteristics make it suitable, especially in the hobby field. But many also use it in the laboratory.
#10 Best Analog Multimeter: Gardner Bender GMT-312 Analog Multimeter
- Manual range selection includes a...
- Easy to read, color-coded displays....
- Includes test lead input icons for...
Gardner Bender GMT-312 Analog Multimeter is the best multimeter available on the market among the analog models. Although Gardner Bender has now ceased its activity, they still sell many of its products online and are extremely sought after, especially by professionals and plant engineers.
They equip it with a graduated scale with an angular excursion of 100 degrees. Its high precision surpasses even the most recent digital models. Because of details of great ingenuity such as the mirror behind the hand, it eliminates parallax errors and the ability to measure low Ohm values.
- Features that have remained unsurpassed, such as the 100-degree angular width, which is still a record
- High precision and efficiency
- High versatility
- Since Gardner Bender has gone out of business, its products have become increasingly difficult to find; better buy it while it is available.
Gardner Bender GMT-312 Analog Multimeter can measure alternating current, direct current, voltage, ohms, capacitance, and even decibels with a four-range from -10 to +62 dB.
#11 Best Pocket Multimeter: ALLOSUN EM3082 Pocket Digital Multimeter
- Auto range pocket size digital...
- 3 1/2-digit LCD, with a max....
- Design for measuring DC and AC...
Our ranking ends with the ALLOSUN EM3082 Pocket Digital Multimeter that contains six functions in one. It is very complete, versatile, and suitable for the most varied uses. It also has all the features that both an amateur and professional user could wish for. You can make a measurement convenient and quick, such as the contactless voltage detector and the auto-range that simplify the work.
It is also resistant, reliable, and has a backlit and very large LCD screen for immediate and easy reading. If you are looking for a multimeter that guarantees high performance and that has a wonderful quality and price ratio, then the tester made by ALLOSUN could represent a more than valid solution from this point of view.
We conclude our guide with the presentation of the major strengths and weaknesses of the multimeter proposed by ALLOSUN and with the site where you can buy it directly from your home.
- You will measure both voltage, current, and resistance values and temperature and humidity values
- Additional functions that not all new multimeters offer yet.
- The values that can be measured with this device are fairly acceptable, as are repeatability and accuracy
- The multimeter falls into the category of an amateur rather than a professional product.
The price of ALLOSUN EM3082 Pocket Digital Multimeter is much higher than the prices of other multimeters to be used at an amateur level.
What Is A Digital Multimeter?
The multimeter is an instrument suitable for measuring electrical quantities. It is a must-have hand tool for any electricians. It can detect direct and alternating voltage, direct current, alternating current, and electrical resistance.
The more complete models can also measure electrical capacitance, frequency, temperature, and sometimes even inductance, and perform test tests on diodes and transistors.
These tools have improved so much that it requires no special technical knowledge to handle them. There is no need for a mortgage to buy one since technological progress has meant that testers of different price ranges ideal for all budgets came out on the market.
Why Use A Multimeter?
- Automatic Readings
- Tremendous Accuracy
- Auto-polarity Checking
- Voltage Checking
- Continuity Checking
Features to Consider When Choosing The Best Multimeter
The higher the category, the higher the protections the multimeter is equipped with. The product specifications that fall within CAT I are suitable for measuring very low currents, voltages, and powers.
To perform measurements on domestic systems, we need CAT II multimeters. Products marked CAT III are suitable for measuring panels, distribution sockets, and electric motors, while we use the CAT IV for high voltages and powers, such as those of industrial systems.
A multimeter offers all the measurements we need and maybe even some convenient extras. It is of fundamental importance that the instrument is accurate to return accurate measurements. Two parameters that determine the accuracy of a multitester are resolution and precision.
The first important thing to test is precisely the range of measurements that a multimeter makes available to us. It must be suitable for the use we plan to make with this instrument.
They measure the frequency of a multimeter in hertz (Hz). It shows the number of complete turns of the circuit made by electricity in one second in AC circuits,
All multimeters are born as voltmeters and measure the electrical voltage or potential difference, both direct (DC) and alternating (AC). So, it is the measurement you will always find on any multimeter. There are two other measurements now extremely common, even in very low-end models.
When we talk about resolution referring to a multimeter, we mean the level of detail that this can achieve in the measurements. How many numbers after the decimal point it can show in the weakest detections and how many digits above the decimal point in the strongest ones.
It measures the input impedance in ohms (Ω). It shows how much resistance electricity encounters in transit. We know that the analog multimeters have an impedance lower input to that of the digital multimeters. This impedance shows the sensitivity of the measured current. The higher the input impedance, the better the measurement of any voltage.
The electric current of a multimeter is measured in amperes (A). It shows the amount of energy passing through the tested circuit.
Through the use of an accessory or integrated sensor often present in clamp models, the multimeter can measure the temperature of a device or an environment. You can always choose whether to use the Celsius or Fahrenheit scale.
Data Hold Functions
The key indicator of resolving a multitester is the number of digits that its display can show. The resolution is expressed in two ways as by counting the number of digits physically supported or by the maximum number the display can show. It does not correspond to the maximum potential given by the number of digits.
To understand how to choose a good multimeter, you must first take into consideration the current regulations on the safety of electrical equipment, and in particular the CEN EN standard of 61010. This standard has established four different categories of membership, identified by the Roman numbering I, II, III, and IV. They show the safety level of the instrument in sequential order.
It should be clear that what determines the validity of a multimeter for professional use is not the category it belongs to, but the level of accuracy of its measurements.
The cost of one of these instruments can vary from $20 to 4300 depending on the type, portable or bench, and the manufacturer. To influence the price, it is the characteristics of the device starting with the structural ones. Usually, portable models are the ones that cost less. But even in this case, there are price variations determined by the category to which they belong.
As far as portable models are concerned, the cheapest are those of category I-II that the price does not exceed about $50. For the units belonging to categories III and IV, they are much more expensive and their price can vary from $150 to $300 depending on the model and the manufacturer.
Different Types Of Multimeters
Industry professionals in HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) need specialized multimeters, just like the Fluke 117. For example, the Fluke 117’s built-in thermometer and micro-amp measurement function are ideal for HVAC applications. To keep costs down, Fluke has removed the high amperage selection from this model.
Auto-ranging Digital Multimeter
Auto-ranging multimeters will connect to the devices and come up with desired parameters. By doing this, you save yourself the hassle of having to know all the values of resistance, capacitance, and voltage. This multimeter will find the right value for you.
If you keep going down, you’ll see the Fluke brand pop up multiple times. What can we say about it? It is one of the best manufacturers of measurement and diagnostic tools around. The company produces instruments with high-quality materials, and the Fluke 117 HVAC multimeter is no exception.
In an analog multimeter, they then make the electricity absorbed by the circuit under test to circulate in the magnet, creating a field that gives the coil a rotary motion. They connect it to a spiral spring calibrated in such a way as to resist rotation.
The result of the measurement corresponds to the intensity of current required by the driving torque of the coil to equal or exceed the resisting torque of the spiral spring.
Depending on the measurement to be performed, it is advisable to use certain types of the multimeter. Digital multimeters are more suitable for making measurements that require little electricity consumption. They have a higher input impedance than analog models.
Clamp Digital Multimeter
The automatic clamp multimeter allows you to test alternating current by opening a clamp. This compact unit contains a great intrinsic utility, it can store information. It will let you know when you have reached a point of maximum reading. The clamp-type can also automatically enter sleep mode to save your autonomy.
Manual Range Vs Auto Range
Auto-ranging means that the multimeter can recognize what you are testing. So, there is no need to enter the measurement range manually. Just let the device do the work by choosing the measurement.
Manual Range Meter
However, the above feature is not possible with a manual ranging multimeter. There are preset ranges and to get a reading you need to know which range of values the component falls under.
Digital Vs. Analog Multimeters
To perform the measurement, the digital multimeter must absorb electrical energy from the circuit to be examined. And it is done through two cables with relative tips at the ends that apply to the circuit to close it and circulate the current. For the measurement of the Ampere, it is preferable to use the amperometric clamps as they offer greater safety.
The analog multimeter uses the same operating principle as the galvanometer. It absorbs electrical energy from the circuit being tested, to perform the measurement. Like the galvanometer, the analog multimeter uses a permanent magnet inside which there is a coil free to rotate on the axis perpendicular to the magnetic field lines.
Top 3 Best Multimeter Brands
1. Klein Tools
The brand of inferior quality, but consequently also with more affordable prices and remaining in fairly accurate measurements, are the emerging Klein Tools.
From our point of view, the best brand is undoubtedly AstroAI. It produces instruments with high precision, solid, and with a very low degradation rate.
Fluke Corporation is a leading US company in the production of detection equipment. And for many years, it has also been a supplier to the American military and aerospace sector. Currently, it continues to operate only in the portable instrumentation production sector where it occupies a leading position worldwide.
1. Which brand multimeter is best?
A fundamental question that must be asked when purchasing the instrument concerns the usage. For professional use, the equipment must be absolutely precise and robust. If you are learning how to use it at home, you do not need any special accessory functions and you can opt for a good inexpensive digital multimeter.
In online sales, it is easy to find appliances of any brand. Tests, comparisons, and the opinions of those who regularly use them often help to identify the model best suited to specific needs.
At the top are the most reliable brands in the sector, they are the US firm Fluke, Tekpower, and Proster. The instruments produced by these companies are those characterized by the highest level of accuracy in the readings.
There is a lot of competition at the low end of the portable multimeter market, and there is no brand that dominates the others. Many big brand meters at this level are designed by other companies, usually Asian houses you have never heard of.
2. What is a wonderful quality multimeter?
The multimeter does not affect the category to which it belongs. We can classify portable models into one or more categories from I to IV. And the same goes for bench devices with the difference that in this case, the cost is higher even for models that fall into the categories I-II.
The quality of the test leads used for measurements affects the accuracy of the readings. Units supplied with the instrument accessories, if this is cheap, it’ll be of poor quality. Therefore, replacing them with higher quality ones can lead to a marked improvement in the performance of the multimeter.
3. What is the best cheap multimeter?
Cen-Tech Digital Multimeter is the smallest product. It is the cheapest and made of lower material quality.
4. What is the easiest multimeter to use?
ALLOSUN EM3082 performs basic measurements and is easy to use and interpret. So, if you are looking for a simple electronic multimeter that does its job, it is the one for you.
Thanks to the best multimeter, different electrical quantities can be measured. In particular, we have listed 11 models fundamental to voltage, intensity, and electrical resistance. Even the cheapest and least advanced tester will provide data on these three measurements. Some more expensive models can also measure capacitor capacitance and frequency.
In fact, in the first places, we find the Etekcity Digital Multimeter intended for domestic use and widely used thanks to the affordable price. If you plan to use the digital multitester occasionally, purchasing the inexpensive Fluke 117/323 Kit Multimeter is a wise idea.
Bonus: How To Use Etekcity Multimeter MSR R500
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