Multimeter or Continuity Tester???
Jul 7, 2008 at 9:26 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 12

Zorlac

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I am going to start building cables and maybe one day branch out from there. I would really like to buy a Fluke Digital Multimeter, but I am not so sure I really need all the bells and whistles of a multimeter.

For building cables, I would think testing continuity is about all you need right?

So will this work?

Fluke T5-600 electrical tester T5 600
 
Jul 7, 2008 at 9:31 PM Post #2 of 12

AudioPhewl

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May as well spend a third the price and get a cheap, but good, simple multimeter...

You don't need a Fluke. They make great gear, but you certainly don't need one for making cables...

~Phewl.
 
Jul 7, 2008 at 10:15 PM Post #3 of 12

error401

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Agreed. Get yourself a $5 meter from Harbor Freight and you'll be fine for building cables. If you want something a bit nicer, here are a few more options:

Multimeter Model MAS 830
RSR LCR and Digital Multimeter Model MS 8222H (kinda handy since it includes an L-meter)
RSR MS 8000 Series Digital Multimeters Model MS 8217
Extech Compact Multimeters Models EX310, EX320, EX330 (go for the 330)

If you must have a Fluke, start with the 114 around the same price as the one you linked, but a lot more appropriate.
 
Jul 7, 2008 at 11:07 PM Post #4 of 12

jonjon0nline

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+1 on the Harbor Freight DMM.

I picked it up for like $2 when they had a weekend sale and I haven't needed anything more.
 
Jul 7, 2008 at 11:20 PM Post #5 of 12

Zorlac

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What else besides continuity testing do I need for building cables? And thanks for the other options!
smily_headphones1.gif
 
Jul 8, 2008 at 12:33 AM Post #7 of 12

bperboy

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Quote:

Originally Posted by jonjon0nline /img/forum/go_quote.gif
+1 on the Harbor Freight DMM.

I picked it up for like $2 when they had a weekend sale and I haven't needed anything more.



It's also all I've ever used!
biggrin.gif
 
Jul 8, 2008 at 12:42 AM Post #8 of 12

breakfastchef

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If you go beyond cable-making and venture deeper into audio DIY, a decent DMM will allow you to match resistors, check your ground, read AC and DC voltages and other stuff I have not yet done. For an investment of $30 or less, you can get a decent DMM for most anything you might wish to measure. I use an Equus 10 megaohm DMM from WalMart for around $25 in the automotive section.
 
Jul 17, 2008 at 9:11 PM Post #9 of 12

dgbiker1

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I second error401's Extech recommendation, nice cheap DMMs. I just started using one and I'm perfectly happy with it. I "grew up" on Flukes in all the labs I worked in, and the Extech hasn't left me wanting more for my DIY jobs.
 
Jul 18, 2008 at 1:44 AM Post #10 of 12

nine

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Go through error401's list, and pick one of the meters with a continuity function. The audible beep is absolutely invaluable when trying to trace out cables.

If you are really inclined to spend money, I'd suggest investing in a good set of very fine tipped probes. Most of the probes that come with the meters are designed for use in power systems, and are way to large for working on fine-pitch electronics. I have a set of the Fluke TL910 probes, and they're worth every penny.

nine
 
Jul 18, 2008 at 2:07 AM Post #11 of 12

ericj

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For most entry-level DIY work, the cheap harbor freight edition will work just fine.

I wish i still had one i bought several years ago, that had captive probes with a good strain relief on the entry point, and no battery door. It was sturidier than the new version.
 
Jul 18, 2008 at 9:16 AM Post #12 of 12

fordgtlover

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The two feature I find very useful on my new (but still cheap) DMM is the continuity buzzer (as already suggested), and the autorange feature.

As suggested also, some good probes. Mine are called parrot clip. They're great for clipping onto components for matching, or when installed.

Actually, I think the probes cost more than the DMM.
 

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