In 2016, electrical goods and home appliances exist in greater quantities than ever before. That, of course, means that electrical goods and home appliances are malfunctioning in greater quantities than ever before and that, in turn, means more people need multimeters than ever before.
Because the demand for multimeters is so high, there is no shortage of companies dipping their toe into the pool and throwing their hat into the ring. There are dozens of companies manufacturing multimeters today; however, some of them do not do it as well as others. Many of the brands which entered the game after the boom don’t have the expertise or manpower necessary to produce quality meters and so their products are purchased solely by hobbyists trying to spend the least amount of money as possible.
Professionals and people who take home improvement seriously should not go to an unknown brand of multimeter just because they are offering a cheap product. Doing so could result in serious harm coming to yourself or the appliances you come into contact with. It is in your best interest to spend a little bit extra and go with an established brand such as Fluke, Klein Tools, or Extech.
As great as Fluke and Klein Tools are, today we are going to be discussing Extech and some of its most popular brands.
In 1971, the company began producing a series of handheld test and measurement tools with the intention of becoming a popular supplier among the tradesmen and DIY enthusiasts of the world. Fast forward four decades and Extech has done just that, ranking among the top brands in the world for a variety of tools, including multimeters.
For any brand to be successful, it is important that the people running it love what they do and are knowledgeable about the products which they are producing and the industry in which they make their living. Every employee of the company is all of those things, with each member of the team dedicated to producing a product which they themselves would like to use. There is no cutting of corners to save money or re-releasing of products under different names.
The products which the company puts its name on are considered by many in the know to be the very best on the market. Each model offers all of the features you would expect from a high-end multimeter and also a number of features unique to the brand. They live up to the Extech name, which itself is a combination of the words “excellent” and “technology”.
Best Extech Multimeters
1. Extech EX330
The first Extech model we’re going to review is the EX330 Mini, which is a digital model with extra large 4000 count display.
The EX330 is filled with helpful features such as auto-ranging and has the ability to measure voltage, current, resistance, capacitance, frequency, and temperature. It can also be utilized to carry out diode tests. Unlike a lot of multimeters on the market, this model features non-contact AC voltage detection, minimizing the risk of painful repercussions should something go wrong.
One of the greatest things about this model is its compact size. In case you didn’t guess from the name, the EX330 Mini is quite a bit smaller than other meters out there. Working with a large multimeter can often time be quite tedious. While they have many features, they can be bulky and a burden to carry around. The EX330 manages to ease these troubles without losing anything in terms of performance or features.
This product boasts a CAT III 600 V safety rating, so it can be used in commercial buildings without fear of an incident occurring. It is ideal for electricians and others who deal with electricity every day.
2. Extech EX430
The 430 is quite a bit different to the other products we’ve looked at on this list. For a start, this isn’t a mini multimeter, though it still manages to be quite compact while offering a wide array of features. It is also a true-RMS model, giving it a distinct advantage over the competition. Those who use multimeters regularly love true-RMS meters as they allow the user to measure sinusoidal and non-sinusoidal waves.
The 430 was designed by Extech to be used exclusively by professionals, and so comes loaded with features which make an electrician’s life infinitely easier. For example, it includes data hold and auto power off, along with input fuse protection and a misconnection warning.
This meter can do everything you would expect from a multimeter reading wise and does so with 0.3 basic accuracy. It is another model with a CAT III 600 V safety rating, so those who purchase it can be sure they are getting a tool which they can use under some of the most demanding conditions imaginable.
3. Extech MN35
The MN35 is another high-performing mini multimeter and is quite similar to the previous meter, though there are a number of differences. While the EX330 was a 12 function model, this model has only 8 functions, though you shouldn’t write it off just yet.
The MN35 can measure AC/DC voltage, DC current, resistance, type K temperature, and continuity. It also features a 1.5V and 9V battery test function. All readings from this model are extremely accurate and are represented in a timely manner on the meter’s large 4000 count screen.
Despite its small size, the MN35 is remarkably durable. It is surrounded by a thick layer of rubber which ensures no harm comes to the device, be it accidentally hit against a doorway or unintentionally knocked from your hand while you work. With the high performance and accuracy combined with its incredible toughness, you won’t have to purchase another product for a long time after you get your hands on the MN 35.
Extech multimeters are a fantastic middle ground for those who don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars on a product from a brand like Fluke but know it is a bad idea to go with an unrecognized name. That is not to say that going for an Extech multimeter is a compromise; far from it. Extech’s products are powerful and respectable tools made by people who know exactly what they’re doing and exactly what their customers are looking for.