Best Multimeters in the UK

Review & Comparison, Last Update September 8, 2017
When dealing with electric equipment in any way we consider a multimeter, which is a tool capable of measuring various electric and thermal parameters an indispensable device. We offer you to check a helpful buying guide that contains the comparison of  5 best multimeter models available. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2017
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Measurement Type
Accuracy
Measurement range
Display
Functionality
Safety
Conveniences
Casing
Range Selection
Warranty
 
PROS

The casing protects the device from dust and water and significantly extends its scope of application.

CONS

This multimeter doesn't measure milli- and microamperes.

OUR VERDICT

We can recommend this digital multimeter to those who need to get a simple and robust device, as it comes with a 3-year warranty. The unit measures all of the most important values.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type

Contact

Accuracy

0.5% - 10%

Measurement range

DC Voltage - 600V

AC Voltage - 600V

DС Current - 10A

Resistance - 40MΩ

Display

Digital: 6000 counts

Functionality

Diode test, Resistance and continuity, Min/Max/Average to record signal fluctuations

Safety

6 kV peak per IEC 61010-1 600 VCAT III, Pollution Degree 2

Conveniences

Large white LED backlight allows working in poorly lit areas, Compact true-rms meter, Data hold

Casing

Rugged housing with IP42 protection rating

Range Selection

Manual / Auto

Warranty

3 years

PROS

The device is able to measure the duty cycle and allows working with impulse signals.

CONS

The manual lacks informativeness.

OUR VERDICT

In our opinion, the Proster PST99 will be a great choice for people working in the daytime and needing a powerful measuring instrument.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type

Contact

Accuracy

0.5% - 10%

Measurement range

DC Voltage - 1000V

AC Voltage - 750V

DС Current - 20A

Resistance - 40MΩ

Display

Digital: 6000 counts

Functionality

Diode test, hFE test, Continuity test, Duty cycle, Temperature

Safety

Not specified

Conveniences

Large LCD, Strong antimagnetic and anti-jamming performance, Unit symbol display, Data hold, Auto power off, Low battery indication, Function protect

Casing

Protective rubber sleeve & stand

Range Selection

Manual / Auto

Warranty

1.5 years

PROS

The device can be switched off by turning the select button in both directions, so it will last longer.

CONS

The display has a low count number.

OUR VERDICT

We recommend this model to those who don't need a device for a frequent use but strive to get high-accuracy measurements.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type

Contact

Accuracy

0.5% - 1.5%

Measurement range

DC Voltage - 600V

AC Voltage - 600V

DС Current - 10A

Resistance - 20MΩ

Display

Digital: 2000 counts

Functionality

AC/DC voltage, AC/DC current, Resistance, Frequency, Continuity, Diode

Safety

EU safety standards EN61010-1, Complies with ROHS environmental certification

Conveniences

High performance, High reliability, LCD display with backlight, Compact handheld digital multimeter, Auto range

Casing

Durable plastic casing

Range Selection

Auto

Warranty

Amazon's 30-day return policy

PROS

The LED backlight on the rear panel of the casing allows you to see the objects your are measuring even in the full darkness.

CONS

The display backlighting and the rear backlight always work together and exhaust the battery.

OUR VERDICT

It's an electric multimeter which is suitable for users looking for a device with a wide measuring functionality and contactless operation capability.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type

Contact / Contactless

Accuracy

0.5% - 4%

Measurement range

DC Voltage - 1000V

AC Voltage - 750V

DС Current - 20A

Resistance - 60MΩ

Display

Digital: 6000 counts

Functionality
AC/DC Voltage, AC/DC Current, Resistance, Live Line testing, Diode test, Triode test, Capacitance, Frequency, Temperature measures
Safety

CE, EN61010-1-2-030 CAT III 1000V CAT IV 600V EN61010-2-033, ROHS

Conveniences

Data hold, Backlight, Auto power off, Low battery indicator, Overload protection, Short-circuit protection

Casing

Rubber sleeve

Range Selection

Manual

Warranty

Amazon's 30-day return policy

PROS

An excellent manual provides a profound description of the device application and features. The unit has an ergonomic casing that provides a firm grip.

CONS

Replacing the battery requires some effort due to a specific casing design.

OUR VERDICT

This multimeter will help you solve household electricity issues. The unit's accuracy and measurement ranges allow you to repair wires in your house and vehicle.

detailed parameters
Measurement Type
Contact
Accuracy

1% - 2%

Measurement range

DC Voltage - 200V

AC Voltage - 500V

DC Current - 10A

Resistance - 200MΩ

Display

Digital: 4000 counts

Functionality
Diode Test, Continuity Test, Low battery indicator, Continuity buzzer, Overload protection
Safety
IEC61010 CAT.III 1000V, CAT.IV 600V overvoltage and double insulation standard
Conveniences

Built-in support stand for hands-free use, Data hold, Backlit LCD

Casing
Protective rubber sleeve for drop protection
Range Selection
Manual ranging
Warranty

1 year

What is a Multimeter

A multimeter is a multi-purpose measuring instrument, the functionality of which encompasses those of multirange ammeter, ohmmeter, and voltmeter. This small device allows detecting faults and faulty connections in a power network, checking coils inductance, measuring line voltage, DC and AC current. These are only the basic tasks multimeters are designed to perform. Though to be able to access all those possibilities and features, you should choose the right type of a multimeter. Our review explains what features are to be considered in the first place so that you can make the right choice.

Another indispensable item car owners should have at hand is a car battery tester, whereas a soldering iron may prove useful for repairing a wiring.

What Features to Compare

Measurements & Accuracy

When choosing an analogue or a digital multimeter, first of all, you need to determine the multimeter operation method and types of parameter measurements you plan to perform with the device. For clarifying the required multimeter features, you should figure out the electric parameters you need to measure. Thus, specialised DMM (digital multimeter) devices for professionals are capable of measuring not only basic parameters (AC and DC voltage, current, resistance) but also capacitance, inductance, temperature, frequency as well as pulse width and interpulse periods. Some multimeters can perform a continuity/loop check.The second important set of parameters includes the measurement accuracy and range. A relative accuracy, which is often specified in multimeter datasheets and ranges from 0.025% to 3%, is the error of a multimeter measurement compared to the value obtained with the device used to calibrate the multimeter. With that, a multimeter with a relative accuracy of 1.5-3% will meet basic household demands, while a multimeter with a better accuracy is optimal for laboratory testing or engineering works.The measurement range defines the smallest and the largest values measured for a certain parameter. The bigger the range is, the better a multimeter suits industrial and engineering purposes.

Conveniences

The third aspect we find important to consider is the convenience, including ergonomics, displaying for readings, and general controls arrangement. You need to assess the device’s ergonomics in terms of a good grip; thus, a device with better ergonomics will provide a better grip. The multimeter convenience also influences the measurement precision. However, such useful features as a built-in flashlight, continuance check, auto shut-off, and the Hold feature for retaining your measurements are also beneficial for the measurement precision. Another convenience-related design element is the multimeter display. The display size is crucial: the bigger the display is, the more numbers it can show and the higher the multimeter's resolution is. The resolution in the vast majority of cases is specified as a number of decimal digits displayed. If the most significant of these digits cannot take all values from 0 to 9 it is often termed a fractional digit. For example, a multimeter, which can display up to 19999 (plus an embedded decimal point) is said to display 4.5 digits (99999 for a full 5 digit device), while the 3.5 digits device shows measurements up to 1999. The display backlight will help you see the readings even in the darkness.In terms of a measurement method, multimeters can be divided into contact and non-contact. There are also combined electronic multimeters that can measure using contact (probes) and non-contact (jaw opening clamp) tools.

Usability

The last but not the least multimeter parameters to keep in mind are safety and usability. It’s all about choosing a measuring device that conforms to anticipated operating conditions and has an adequate protection (moisture and splash protection, shockproof plastic, protective case). The next noteworthy feature is the electrical protection of multimeter inputs along with the electric safety class (protection from an electric shock in case of high voltage current occurrence on multimeter inputs). In most cases, the electric class or IEC protection class is clearly specified on a device label and manual. According to the requirements of the IEC1010-10 standard, all multimeters are referred to one of the four electric safety classes: CAT I — for low-voltage devices circuitry, CAT II — for local power supply circuits, CAT III — for distribution power supply chains installed indoors, and CAT IV — for analogous distribution chains laid outdoors.

The electric protection of multimeter inputs is very important too, as in most cases multimeters get damaged due to non-observance of the maximum voltage or current measured, occurrence of electrical fast transients and while connecting multimeter probe tips to a live wire with the multimeter switched to resistance measurement mode. To avoid a failure of the appliance, manufacturers implement multimeter inputs protection of different types: electronic and electromechanical (thermal protection), with a conventional fuse or a combined protection. An electronic protection means are the most effective as they provide protection for a widest current value range, offer the best versatility, rate of response, and reset time.

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Fluke 115 HVAC

Extra Protection

Fluke company was founded in 1948 and since then it has been involved in the development and production of testing and troubleshooting devices vital for the functioning of enterprises, offices, and hospitals. So, as we searched for the best models, we couldn't omit the Fluke 115. The multimeter is equipped with a large backlit LCD display that has 6,000 counts. Firstly, this display will let you see its readings even in the darkness, secondly, it will deliver the measurement accuracy within thousandths. The device is powered by an alkaline battery that provides up to 400 hours of runtime (if the display backlight isn't on). As for the measuring capabilities, the Fluke 115 is able to check AC/DC voltage, resistance, continuity, capacitance, and amperage. Moreover, the allowable measuring range is rather wide, so the tool can be successively used for domestic needs. Speaking of safety, we should say that this model has CAT III safety rating to work with distribution networks. In addition to the electric protection, this multimeter is guarded physically, being fitted with a stiff plastic housing of IP42 protection rating to secure the device against water drops. The device weighs only 550 g and is easy to handle even for a long time. Its package includes two probes, an alkaline battery and a casing.

Having reviewed this model, we can recommend it to people looking for a simple but functional metering instrument to check most common electric and electronic parameters.

Review of Fluke 115 HVAC

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


Fluke 115 HVAC
Fluke 115 HVAC
 

Proster PST99 Auto-Ranging

All-round Device

This is one of the most powerful multimeters the measurement range of which reaches 1000V for DC and 750V for AC. Hence, the device can be successively used for home measurements as well as in small workshops, laboratories or factories which employ high voltage. The PST99 is equipped with a display that is able to show 6,000 counts and comes without backlight that's a bit inconvenient for using it in some gloomy place. But, under normal conditions, the meter will accurately measure voltage, amperage, resistance, capacitance, frequency, test the continuity, diodes, and transistors, as well as measure the temperature. Moreover, the temperature can be measured in Celsius and Fahrenheit and this option makes the multimeter extremely functional and allows convenient temperature measuring without additional electronic gear. What is more, you will be able to make measurements manually and automatically. Whether you deal with 110V or 380V, the device will automatically pick the right range and show you correct readings. The Data Hold button is another agreeable feature which allows recording the measurement values. The tester is powered by two ААА batteries and equipped with an indicator that flashes when the batteries run low. Apart from the multimeter, you will find a temperature probe, two multimeter probes and a zip carrying bag.

In all, we believe this multimeter is perfect for people who work at daytime and need a truly functional measuring instrument.

Review of Proster PST99 Auto-Ranging

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


Proster PST99 Auto-Ranging
Proster PST99 Auto-Ranging
 

Crenova MS8233D Auto Ranging

Handy Regardless of Situation

The MS8233D multimeter by Hyelec is capable of measuring all the essential parameters and has a lower price than most marketed multimeters have. So, let's look at this device in detail. Firstly, its wide measuring range is similar to those of pricier models, making the device appropriate for home tasks. Apart from that, we found the backlit display in this multimeter, so it will be comfortably used at any time. Despite only 2,000 display counts, the device will deliver precise measurements and will prove its convenience in home use. By the way, the display backlight can be switched off with a designated button to save the battery charge. The device is powered by a 9V battery that provides a pretty long operating time. As for convenience features, we would like to mention the automatic operation of this multimeter. So, you will not have to worry about the range setting as the Crenova device will determine it independently, just set the right measurement unit. Also, the Hold button will be convenient for remembering the displayed data and maintaining the measurement log. In the end, we would like to mention the convenience of the round select button. You can see the “OFF” inscription on both sides of the scale, and it means that you can switch the multimeter by turning the Select button in either direction. This feature allows working faster and use the button more efficiently. Exploring the device's package, we found two test leads and a user manual.

This electronic multimeter is recommended to those who are going to use it from time to time and do not need ultra-accurate readings.

Review of Crenova MS8233D Auto Ranging

Crenova MS8233D Auto Ranging
Crenova MS8233D Auto Ranging
 

Janisa PM18C

Backlit Display and Other Cons

Janisa is owned by Peakmeter that was founded in 1988 in China and has become one of the top manufacturers of metering tools for less than 20 years. The Chinese government even recognised it as a National hi-tech company. Studying its product range, we have found a really interesting PM18C multimeter. Its main peculiarity is a non-contact voltage measuring. To check voltage distantly, set the meter to appropriate mode and approach its top part to the object checked. You will see the indicator lights above the display flashing green if voltage is present. Naturally, this multimeter performs a contact measurement of voltage, amperage, resistance, frequency, capacitance, check diodes and transistors, and determine the temperature. Switching between values is only manual here, so, while checking parameters, make sure to pay a lot of attention to the measuring process. In addition to the backlit display, the device is fitted with a LED light on the backside that flashes up together with the display's backlight. Hence, you will be able to see the readings and the work area clearly. We would like to praise the temperature measurement capability that may turn to be useful in some situations. The meter is made of plastic and enclosed in a rubber sleeve that will dampen shocks if the device is accidentally dropped.

Considering the features of the Janisa PM18C, we can recommend it to users looking for a multifunctional device with a contactless measurement and a flashlight.

Review of Janisa PM18C

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


Janisa PM18C
Janisa PM18C
 

Etekcity MSR-R500

Perfect for Non-professionals

Do not get misled by the low price of this digital multimeter because the widespread “low-priced product is a low-quality product” cliché is not about this device. This small multimeter packs a lot of instrumentation features, which really turn it into a necessity for amateur users. The measurement precision this digital multimeter exhibits gives us the right to refer it to medium-precision instruments. The maximum measurement error not exceeding 1.5% just goes to show this. Similarly to more expensive tools, this multimeter is capable of measuring electric current, voltage, and resistance as well as continuity and is capable of testing transistors or diodes. This model will prove itself indispensable in checking and repairing power sockets, electric wiring, fuses, and automotive wiring. To eliminate the electric shock hazard the Etekcity MSR-R500 multimeter was manufactured in a case with double isolation and electric shock protection. To ensure the integrity of the multimeter and its components, the casing was made shockproof and conformant to IEC61010 CAT.I 600В, CAT.II 300В standards.

Review of Etekcity MSR-R500

Nothing Is as Complicated as it May Seem

Owing to intuitive controls and ergonomic design combined with usage safety, this multimeter becomes a good choice for inexperienced users. To perform a measurement with this digital multimeter, all you need is to set the measurement type with the switch and use the device. With that, the MSR-R500 digital multimeter was designed compact and suitable for one-handed operation. The Data Hold feature permits saving the readings to compare them afterward with the newly obtained ones and evaluate the efficiency of the measures taken. With the overall minimalistic controls arrangement approach, the manufacturer designed this multimeter with two buttons beside the dial. The first button activates the Data hold function the other button is a display backlight switch. The backlight comes in handy when you need to perform measurements in dimly lit areas. To facilitate the multimeter use even further, the MSR-R500 is equipped with a kickstand on its back side, which helps keep the device in place when put on any horizontal surface and freeing your hands to manipulate the probes.

Etekcity MSR-R500 in the use

Curious Fact

In the late 1800s, a real war broke out between the inventors of AC and DC current: Thomas Edison and Nicola Tesla. Edison's camp made an attempt to eliminate the possibility of alternating current transmission by means of power lines by legislative action. However, as it is well known, the preference was given to Tesla's AC current transmission scheme.

More Products to Consider

If you are a real handyman who can handle any housekeeping task, you should certainly get an infrared thermometer.

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


VIDEO
Etekcity Digital Multimeter Review
Etekcity MSR-R500
Etekcity MSR-R500
 

Sources:

1. How to Use (and Choose) a Multimeter! Instructables.

2. Ken DePue How to pick the right meterFluke.

3. Multimeters Buying GuideeBay. March 19, 2014.

4. How to Use a Digital Multimeter or DMM: choosing a DMM, control settings on the DMM, and DMM featuresInspectAPedia. Jan 14, 2015.

5. What to look for in a multimeter?Stack Exchange Inc.

6. Multimeter, Wikipedia. October 7, 2016.

7. How to Use a Multimeter, SparkFun.

8. Juan Rodriguez What is a Multimeter? Where to Use It and When, The Balance. June 21, 2016.

9. How to Use a Multimeter, Science Buddies.

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