Author Topic: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold  (Read 4447 times)

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Offline 1anX

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CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« on: November 14, 2018, 01:13:13 am »
Looks like Dave has new competition in this micro current measurement device. It looks extremely similar to Dave's device, but is indeed different and looks like a very good variation to a theme!

https://lowpowerlab.com/2018/09/26/currentranger-auto-ranging-current-meter/

https://youtu.be/uFel6cXnl_4

« Last Edit: November 14, 2018, 02:04:05 am by 1anX »
 

Offline 1anX

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2018, 02:14:46 am »
The CurrentRanger's ability to auto-range sets it apart from the uCurrent Gold. It also features hackable firmware and many useful options such as Bluetooth and plug in display!

Has anyone on this forum got one?

I'm tempted to buy one and am curious if anyone can let me know of their experience in getting one shipped to Oz.
 

Offline Gyro

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2018, 12:24:56 pm »
Aside question, but one with a purpose - what is the lowest voltage range and resolution of your DMM?


EDIT: To clarify. In my opinion, don't waste your money on any of them (I see the one you listed is $120!). They all have the same fundamental flaw - only 3 non-optimal, shunt resistor values.

Having simple 1mV / nA / uA / mA conversion factor is all very simple and convenient, but it results in huge gaps in the shunt resistor values (10mR, 10R, 10k). It's far better to use the optimal shunt resistor for your needs and do the maths (eg. a 1mV / 10uA range).

If your DMM has decent mV (probably 100uV on 3 1/2 digit) resolution. Then go out and buy a set of resistors 1 decade apart, eg. 10mR, 100mR, 1R, 10R, 100R, 1k, 10k, as you need and of whatever tolerance you see fit. Either use them as-is or mount them on a board with whatever convenient connectors you wish.

Connect whichever resistor that best meets your anticipated current and acceptable voltage burden in series with the load. Measure the voltage (mVs) directly across the resistor (to avoid connection resistances). And calculate the resulting current.

One other thing, beware of using shunt resistors above 10k. The load resistance of the meter (probably 10M) becomes significant. At 10k it only results in 0.1% error but at 100k, its 1% etc. You can do it, just take the meter loading into account.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2018, 01:02:33 pm by Gyro »
Chris

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Offline MadTux

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2018, 08:15:25 pm »
For that price I take a Keithley electrometer/sourcemeter anytime, the oldish ones, like Keithley 610C or 616 are available on ebay for similar price. And they measure current down to picoamps/femptoamps without any shunt drop.

Digital ones, such a K617 also have autorange, but usually cost a little more. For around $400 you can get a Keithley 236 sourcemeter and power the device from it directly, while measuring voltage and current down to mV/pA.

These things would be nice, if available for like $5 from china,  but $120, mhhhh no.


« Last Edit: November 14, 2018, 08:17:41 pm by MadTux »
 

Offline alex-sh

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2018, 11:20:36 pm »
The CurrentRanger's ability to auto-range sets it apart from the uCurrent Gold. It also features hackable firmware and many useful options such as Bluetooth and plug in display!

Has anyone on this forum got one?

I'm tempted to buy one and am curious if anyone can let me know of their experience in getting one shipped to Oz.


I got one. uCurrent Gold is not for sale  ;)
Given that I am measuring sleeping current (30nA-5uA) and wake-up (18mA) current, this is exactly what I need.
Cannot recommend it more.

Taking into account its price, I do not think it is a competitor to Dave's uCurrent Gold though.
 

Offline alex-sh

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2018, 11:34:03 pm »
For that price I take a Keithley electrometer/sourcemeter anytime, the oldish ones, like Keithley 610C or 616 are available on ebay for similar price. And they measure current down to picoamps/femptoamps without any shunt drop.

Digital ones, such a K617 also have autorange, but usually cost a little more. For around $400 you can get a Keithley 236 sourcemeter and power the device from it directly, while measuring voltage and current down to mV/pA.

These things would be nice, if available for like $5 from china,  but $120, mhhhh no.

I think you are comparing apples with pears. The size and weight of Keithley 610C or 616??? It is an old huge analogue meter.
Keithley 617 is nice, but currently the lowest price on eBay is $950. Keithley 236 is even more expensive. How is this comparable with a small
device measuring nA for $120? For what its worth, this is a brilliant device. Hackable, very portable and very accurate. Autoranging is handy measuring sleeping current.
And the noise in nA is much smaller than in uCurrent Gold (Dave, you have got to do something about it in the next rev).
 
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Offline exe

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2018, 04:24:12 pm »
+1 here for size and price concerns. I wanted to buy quite a few boat anchors, but my bench is just an office desk. Desk real estate is not for free :).

Prices for second-hand equipment are also insane (on ebay). I understand that old test equipment is cool, but when sellers ask for Keithley 2000 about as much as for new DMM6500... Reasonable deals require a lot of patience nowadays.
 

Offline 1anX

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2018, 09:26:30 am »
A new video comparing the CurrentRanger to the uCurrent Gold in measuring supply and sleep current to an ESP32. A really well done comparison and it looks like the uCurrent Gold has been displaced by the newer challenger in these test conditions.

 
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Offline Gyro

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2018, 11:55:11 am »
Damn, despite my previous disparaging comments on cost and range limitations, I'm warming to it now.  :-[

The autoranging is obviously fast enough to avoid brownouts. I hadn't realized it offered the other stuff like display and datalogging support too. Open source firmware to tweak it to your needs too.  There's obviously a significant amount of design work gone into it.

It looks as if it certainly justifies the price differential in terms of increased function and BOM cost (although from a very high starting point). It would still be nice to see more current ranges for accuracy but I can see that it fits the intended target active/sleep current monitoring application very well.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2018, 12:15:03 pm by Gyro »
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Offline joeyjoejoe

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2018, 02:38:31 pm »
Would either of these beat out even relatively high-end bench meters? SDM3055? DM3058E?
 

Offline LapTop006

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #10 on: December 09, 2018, 03:27:03 pm »
A new video comparing the CurrentRanger to the uCurrent Gold in measuring supply and sleep current to an ESP32. A really well done comparison and it looks like the uCurrent Gold has been displaced by the newer challenger in these test conditions.

One of these days I'll get my hands on a Keysight N6705, but they're so expensive. Another option in the Keysight space is the N2820A probe.
 

Offline Marco

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #11 on: December 09, 2018, 03:44:11 pm »
For that price I take a Keithley electrometer/sourcemeter anytime, the oldish ones, like Keithley 610C or 616 are available on ebay for similar price. And they measure current down to picoamps/femptoamps without any shunt drop.

Lose some max burden voltage, add some DC offset burden voltage ... transimpedance mode is not perfect. Also autoranging from transimpedance at low currents to shunt at high currents is complex and for the Keithley picoammeters not actually done, they peak at 20 mA. Range switching is also slow, 10s to 100s of ms.

If you want to measure current consumption for a circuit at high resolution in time and with wide dynamic range, this is pretty good.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2018, 03:47:01 pm by Marco »
 

Online Electro Fan

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2020, 04:05:13 am »
Would either of these beat out even relatively high-end bench meters? SDM3055? DM3058E?

Looking at uCurrent Gold and Current Ranger, or other similar "cost-effective" solutions for measuring low current .....

Tried using the search (since someone will often ask "have you tried searching"?).  Answer is of course yes (almost always do) but here's some proof :)

Anyway....

Saw this question posted by joeyjoejoe.... and would be interested in knowing the answer.

Anyone have an answer or any thoughts on his question......?  Thx
 

Offline SilverSolder

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2020, 02:16:02 pm »
Would either of these beat out even relatively high-end bench meters? SDM3055? DM3058E?

Looking at uCurrent Gold and Current Ranger, or other similar "cost-effective" solutions for measuring low current .....

Tried using the search (since someone will often ask "have you tried searching"?).  Answer is of course yes (almost always do) but here's some proof :)

Anyway....

Saw this question posted by joeyjoejoe.... and would be interested in knowing the answer.

Anyone have an answer or any thoughts on his question......?  Thx

Even high end meters don't typically have the low burden voltages (low shunt resistance) like you find in the uCurrent et al.   Furthermore, using your scope on a shunt resistor has the same problem:  the shunt has to have a high enough resistance to give a useful reading on the scope.   So the uCurrent type device solves a need even if you have a high end meter.

 

Online Electro Fan

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #14 on: June 02, 2020, 03:17:50 pm »
Would either of these beat out even relatively high-end bench meters? SDM3055? DM3058E?

Looking at uCurrent Gold and Current Ranger, or other similar "cost-effective" solutions for measuring low current .....

Tried using the search (since someone will often ask "have you tried searching"?).  Answer is of course yes (almost always do) but here's some proof :)

Anyway....

Saw this question posted by joeyjoejoe.... and would be interested in knowing the answer.

Anyone have an answer or any thoughts on his question......?  Thx

Even high end meters don't typically have the low burden voltages (low shunt resistance) like you find in the uCurrent et al.   Furthermore, using your scope on a shunt resistor has the same problem:  the shunt has to have a high enough resistance to give a useful reading on the scope.   So the uCurrent type device solves a need even if you have a high end meter.

Perfect - thanks for that answer - it’s what I was looking for.

I’ve been watching your other thread - very impressive what you guys are accomplishing.

Edit:  link to other thread:
https://www.eevblog.com/forum/beginners/static-control-requirements-for-picoamp-measurements-using-ucurrent-gold/
« Last Edit: June 02, 2020, 03:25:09 pm by Electro Fan »
 
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Offline Wimberleytech

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Re: CurrentRanger vs uCurrent Gold
« Reply #15 on: June 02, 2020, 09:00:42 pm »
I have had the uC Gold on my list of things to own.  This thread inspired me to order one  :clap:
Last time I looked they were out of stock (a year ago or more), but today they are in stock and on sale. YAY!
US - AUS exchange rate is pretty good, so I feel like I really got a bargain.

Looking forward to its arrival.
 


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