If only there was a meter that could detect the right multimeter for the job, huh? When you’re someone who needs to use a multimeter to read voltage, resistance, or current, it can be hard to pick just one. There are so many out there, and they all claim to have something unique to offer. Digital multimeters, analog, auto-ranging multimeters, multimeters that have data hold or input impedance, the list goes on.
We hope this post helps you to cut through the electric surge of fluff and helps you to find the best multimeter for the job. This article’s information is as accurate as the time it was last updated, so if a product isn’t available anymore, let us know.
Carry on reading or jump straight to our number #1 pick here.
First Here’s How We’ve Determined the Best Multimeters
There are several factors we considered when we determined what the best multimeter for the job is. For one, price when compared with features. We have cheap, expensive, and mid-range meters on this post.
Also, we looked at reviews. No multimeter is going to be perfect, but we picked products that have a high rating on Amazon.
Finally, we looked at features, and what features would appeal most to people. Some people may want a multimeter that is small. Others may want an analog over digital. These features help certain multimeters stand out.
#1:KAIWEETS Digital Multimeter (Best Value – All-Purpose)
If you’re looking for a digital multimeter that has the most balanced features, and a multimeter that has the best price, you can’t go wrong with this one.
First, you can use it for a wide amount of applications. It does have AC and DC measurements, with DC current being the default and the ability to switch to AC current. It’s great for diagnosing any issue that you have, be it for your car, household, or any other area that has electricity.
Another reason this is one of the best multimeters on the market is that it is easy to use. It has a dial that you can switch, along with a flashlight you can use to provide a means of seeing what you’re doing. This digital multimeter shines in regards to user-friendliness.
Also, the LCD display is quite intuitive, changing to red if it detects a live wire. When the battery is low, the digital multimeter will tell you. It also powers off automatically in case if you forget to turn it off.
This is a safe unit as well. Besides giving you an accurate reading and an interface that’s designed to provide you with the most information, the KAIWEETS has protection from burning and high voltage. It even includes a protective case, so if you drop it, it’ll make sure it avoids any fall damage.
Reviews of this digital multimeter have been stellar. Most of the reviews have reflected what the product claims to offer: an easy to use a digital multimeter that gives you an accurate reading. There are some negative reviews, mostly with defective units that were DOA or stopped working a few months later. However, that is a small minority, and the company does seem to respond to every negative review.
#2: Fluke 117 (Best Machine)
The KAIWEETS multimeter is our first choice in regards to the best multimeter, as it offers that perfect sweet spot of quality and value. However, if you want a digital multimeter that is the highest quality, and you have some extra money to spend, the Fluke 117 is the way to go.
One reason you may want to get this product is that it has VoltAlert technology. This means that you can detect voltage without any contact, making it one of the safest types of multimeters. Also, Fluke 117 is one of the best for stopping false readings. False readings can occur due to stray voltage (also known as ghost or phantom voltage,) where two electric units close to each other can interfere with the voltage readings.
Besides that, this product has True RMS. True RMS or root mean square, helps you measure AC units on loads that lack linearity. If you have this, then picking multimeters with True RMS is the way to go.
Finally, this multimeter has a whopping 400 hours of battery life on its LCD display, if you don’t have the backlight on. It can also survive extreme temperatures, with its operating temperature being -10C to 50C, or 14F-122F.
As you can imagine, reviews for this digital multimeter have been phenomenal, with a 4.8 out of 5-star rating. Most multimeter reviews say that it’s a great product for an electrician, and it gives out some of the most accurate voltage readings.
There are very few negative reviews. They mostly concern the LCD display. Some reviewers say it’s hard to read, and that you have to look at it through a certain angle if you want to see anything. However, these reviewers may have bought a defective display, as most people have no problems.
#3:Tekpower TP7050 (Best of the Analog Multimeters)
Analog multimeters don’t have a display, and instead, use a needle to show its readings. These types of multimeters are used much less nowadays, but they still have their uses.
There are some reasons why you may prefer analog multimeters over digital multimeters. Analog doesn’t need any batteries, and they are less likely to overheat. Analog is also better if you are dealing with fluctuating signals. Also, some people may just prefer the traditional meter. Perhaps that’s what they grew up with, or maybe they like the aesthetic.
The Tekpower multimeter can read both AC voltage and DC, and it has accurate readings. It’s also quite easy to use. The multimeter reviews on this product have been extremely positive as well. Most people are satisfied with the meter’s readings, and they pointed out that it’s good for the price. Some reviewers were less than positive, mostly saying that the readings weren’t good or there was a defective unit.
#4: AstroAI Digital Multimeter (Best Low Cost)
You may purchase this digital multimeter if you’re on a budget, as it doesn’t cost too much. It’s also good for DC voltage, as it does lack the ability to measure AC voltage. It does lack some of the more advanced features (you wouldn’t expect a cheap unit to have True RMS, would you?) but for your average person, who needs to measure low voltage, it can get the job done. Just make sure the multimeter can measure the current and you have a good product on your hands.
You may wonder how the reviews of this digital multimeter have been. Surprisingly, most reviews have been positive. They say that this is a part of the best multimeters for the price, and it measured quite well. Others say that the customer service was amazing.
There are some negative reviews, mostly with the “you get what you pay for,” attitude, but they are in the minority. It’s cheap and has good customer service should the unit fail, so it’s a part of the best multimeters when you’re on a budget.
#5: Mini Digital Multimeter 4203A (Best Mini Multimeter)
One reason why you may choose this over the other analog or digital multimeters is the fact that it’s portable. Multimeters are not gigantic or anything, but this mini multimeter is much easier to store. It fits right in most pockets or bags.
The Mini can measure quite a few currents and has an impressive voltage range. In addition, it has some unique features as well, such as auto-power off. If you’re looking for some the smallest, yet effective digital multimeters on the market, you can’t go wrong.
So, how are the reviews? All positive! There aren’t too many reviews, but none of them are under 4 stars. People say that it’s one of the best digital multimeters for projects where you don’t have too much space. The worst criticism anyone has had of this product is that it has no band to close the cover. Overall, we say that this is a small, yet effective meter.
What About the Cheapies? Our Best Products Under $X
Most multimeters you find on Amazon are quite affordable
#1 Best Under $70: Klein Tools MM600
This multimeter from Klein Tools is one of the best multimeters for the price. It can measure up to 1000V in ACDC, and it’s durable as well. Detecting a low battery and replacing it is quite easy as well. Another reason why you may choose this multimeter is that it’s good for any basic environment. Reviews have been positive, with some saying that it’s an auto-ranging multimeter that beats the competition. Others say that it can’t go up to 1000V as described, but these are in the minority.
#2 Best Under $30: Etekcity Auto-Ranging Clamp Meter
This meter has a few unique features. Besides having auto-shutoff, being easy to use, being easily portable, and having other features you’ve come to expect from a unit, it also has a clamp to it.
This clamp can measure electrical units for AC, as long as the conductor is under 26mm. This allows you to measure without interrupting the electrical circuit.
So, how are the reviews? You know the drill; they’re positive. Most reviewers say that this is great for the price, measuring the voltage of all relevant electrical products without any problems whatsoever. A small fraction says it’s a cheaply made unit that failed after the first use, or they have an issue measuring electrical readings. However, these are in the minority.
#3 Best Under $20: INNOVA 3320
If you’re looking for a multimeter that’s cheap but has some of the ideal features, then the INNOVA 3320 is for you. It has drop protection, auto-ranging, and other little features that give it a nice bang for the buck.
Reviews on the INNOVA 3320 have been extremely positive. Some reviewers say that it’s a nice little meter for the price. They say that if you need to use a multimeter for the most basic electrical use, this meter is great. A minority say that the meter is cheap, lacks any useful features, and failed after first use. However, these are in the minority
# 4 Best Under $10: Product: LeeWoo Multimeter
It is possible to find a digital multimeter for less than 10 bucks, and this product proves it. This product has accurate readings, is easy t use, and has everything else you expect from digital multimeters. In addition, it has mostly positive reviews, with many reviewers saying that it works and that you can’t complain too much about its lack of sophistication for the price.
Buyer Tips: How do you buy a Good Multimeter for YOU?
What is a Good Quality Multimeter?
A good quality multimeter depends on what you need it for. Some people may only need a simple, digital multimeter that helps them with smaller electrical needs. Others may need more. Let’s look at some features of a quality multimeter.
Auto Range Vs. Manual Range
When you’re looking for a multimeter, a thing you may notice is that some claim to be an auto range, while others say manual. You may wonder what the difference is. With a manual, you have to set what type of range you want, and it can be a hassle. Meanwhile, an auto-range does it all for you.
Think of it as a camera. In many cases, you can let the camera do the work for you. However, there are some cases where you may need the manual mode to get the results you’re looking for. Many digital multimeters will have both worlds, making sure you don’t have to choose.
What it Can Measure
When choosing digital multimeters, another thing you have to consider is what it can measure. Most multimeters should be able to measure minimally 50mV or 20mA and have a maximum of 1000 voltage and 20A. Depending on what you need it for, you may be able to suffice with a weaker unit, but some people may just want to pick a digital meter that does a little more.
You also need to find multimeters that can measure ohms. Many electrical units have ohms or megaohms, and it’s important that your meter can measure this for the most accurate readings.
Also, you need to consider input impedance when you purchase a meter. The input impedance of a meter will make or break the resistance. A 10M ohm meter is a good input impedance to choose from.
Lights and Backlight
When choosing a digital multimeter, consider purchasing one that has a backlight. When you are measuring electrical units, you have to have a little light in the multimeter itself, especially to see the display. A cheap electrical multimeter may lack a backlight, making it hard to see, or the backlight may poor. Also, consider a multimeter where you can choose to turn off the backlight or not. If you can be able to read the display without the backlight, the battery will last much longer.
Meanwhile, you may want a multimeter that has a light built in to help you see what you’re doing. Some people don’t need it, but if you’re trying to repair an electrical device and your hands are full, having a multimeter with a flashlight in it can make your life so much easier.
Auto Power Off
Another feature of a good multimeter is the ability for it to turn itself off when not in use. Obviously, you should turn it off yourself when you’re not done, but sometimes you forget. Or, you may think you hit the button, but you didn’t. An electrical multimeter that powers off automatically can save you quite a bit of grief with replacing your batteries.
Data hold, also known as an auto hole, is a good feature when you need a precise reading. It’s often included as a button you press, but not all of them have it. See that the multimeter you purchase does. That way, it can save you a whole lot of trouble when you’re trying to measure certain voltage.
Sometimes, you may choose a multimeter that is based on a brand that you like. You may enjoy Halfords multimeter products, and you may end up sticking to that. Others may consider getting a multimeter, Halfords in mind, but end up being unbiased and trying to find the multimeter that’s best for the job. You may want a product that’s partnered Amazon Services LLC Associates, or you may not care. It’s all up to you.
Even if you don’t consider yourself a butterfingers, you can still drop the meter. Most meters are designed to take a fall, but resistance to drops can vary.
You may be surprised by how many bells and whistles a multimeter has. Many of them are not necessary for the proper multimeter experience, but some of them can help out quite a bit. Perhaps do a little bit of digging and find the multimeter that has the most features that you need. Sometimes, a gimmick may be useful. One example is the meter that includes a clamp.
Finally, one thing you should consider is the price of the meter. If you look up multimeters on Amazon, you may notice a wide range of prices. Some of them are quite affordable. You may end up getting a meter for less than $20. Other times, you may have to pay five times that amount. The more expensive ones are better for jobs that are more suited for an electrician, while the cheaper units are good for a small job. There are also mid-range multimeters, which are good for those jobs in-between.
What’s the best Multimeter for an Electrician?
This article mainly looks at multimeters for general use. We’re assuming that no one here is an electrician. However, if you are, you do need a more advanced multimeter. The $35 multimeter on Amazon can work well, but not if you’re a professional.
#2 on our list, the Fluke 117, does work well for an electrician. If you want a good, digital meter, you have to spend well over $100 to get it. Make sure it has a high voltage, has all the features you need, and can handle any electrical need you have.
How do you put a Multimeter together?
One of the best features of any multimeter is how easy it is to put together. You don’t need to use anything special, and it only takes a few seconds. You just connect the ports to the multimeter, put in the battery if it’s digital, and you should be good to go.
Of course, not all multimeters are created equal. Some multimeters that have unique features or accessories may require some unique instructions. In this case, we encourage you to read the manual to learn about all the features and how you can put them together.
When Were Multimeters Invented?
This decade, the multimeter will have been around for over 100 years. As more people were using electronic devices, the need for a multimeter increased. Donald Macadie, a British Post Office engineer, was said to have made the first multimeter. Before the multimeter, you had to carry around different devices. He became annoyed at having to carry around a separate unit for each use. Macadie wanted something that could measure amps, volts, and ohms, so he made what became the multimeter, which quickly became one of the most important devices for electric maintenance.
My Meter Was Inaccurate, or it Was Dead on Arrival
Sometimes, that happens. No matter how high quality a multimeter is, you may end up with a dud. When this happens, you shouldn’t leave a bad review just yet. Contact the manufacturer. Chances are, they can replace or refund you. Other times, such as through an Amazon purchase, you can return or replace automatically.
If the product ends up going defective with time, consider the warranty. Many meters have at least a one year warranty, so if you fall under that warranty, you should be able to get a refund without any questions asked.
When reading reviews, you’ll typically run into people who have received a dud. This doesn’t reflect the majority of reviews, so you can end up buying the meter with some peace of mind.
Verdict: Your Best Multimeter
Phew. We’ve vetted the voltage, we’ve mastered the multimeter, and we’ve rounded up all the reviews. Now, let’s look at the best multimeter from 1 to 5.
First, we have the KAIWEETS multimeter. This one is the best well-rounded multimeter. It’s the one that will fit most of your voltage measuring needs, all under a price that isn’t too shabby. It’s that happy medium between cheap and expensive meter that an electrician would use.
Second is the Fluke 117. This multimeter is the most expensive one here, and it’s one used by the professionals. If you need an extreme job, or just want a good multimeter to last you a long time, this one is worth it. However, if you don’t have much money, you should be satisfied with the last one.
Third, we have Tekpower TP7050. This is an analog multimeter. You may believe that these are old, but they have their uses. They’re good for when you don’t want any batteries, or when you’re in a hot area. In addition, their readings can be a little more stable depending on some circumstances. In almost all cases, you should go digital, but there are some circumstances where going analog may be in your best interest.
Fourth, we have the AstroAI Digital Multimeter. This one is cheap. If you don’t have much money, but need a meter, this one is worth it. While there are some drawbacks to it, this is great if you’re in a pinch. It may also be a good little backup if you need it.
Fifth, there’s the Mini Digital Multimeter. This meter is small and portable, making it great for those jobs where you don’t have that much space. Besides that, this meter doesn’t offer anything unique, but it’s great for when you need something big that comes in a small package.
Not to mention, we have the cheapies as well, which can you see above. If none of the five interest you, you may want to look at one of the cheapies. These are good if you’re on a budget, so take a look at those as well.
And that’s it. Those are the multimeters. All the electricity in our brains is short-circuiting because of these multimeters. They’re a good way to troubleshoot an electronic, and if you end up finding out that you need a professional, you can call one up and they can further assist you. They’re also good for an electrician. Pick one and get testing!