Poll

Are you interested in seeing more handheld meters tested?

This testing is pointless! Please STOP damaging these meters!
3 (6.4%)
 Yes, I would like to more meters tested.
44 (93.6%)

Total Members Voted: 47

Author Topic: Handheld meter robustness testing  (Read 651773 times)

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Offline malagas_on_fire

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2750 on: August 21, 2018, 10:55:08 am »
Good luck for the Fluke 189 . A new variant of the UNI-T 181? Humm maybe they also had review the board layout to supress the ESD fragility on the 3.3V switching internal PSU.

I think uni-t aims for the entry level for newer to electrical / electronics in controlled enviroments, but the uni-t 181A/B it should be beyound that due to it's price range. Ask them for a test :P



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Offline stj

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2751 on: August 21, 2018, 12:18:45 pm »
it's possible that if you speak to the right person an UniTrend they may support you with free meters.
it would be worth it to them to both know what needs to be fixed, and to get good reviews to people.

they are watching and learning, look at the fuses & stuff in the newer meters - better than the 20mm glass  crap in the early stuff.
 

Online Fungus

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2752 on: August 21, 2018, 12:49:57 pm »
They are watching and learning, look at the fuses & stuff in the newer meters - better than the 20mm glass  crap in the early stuff.

I'm not sure they learned that from joe's videos.
 

Online rsjsouza

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2753 on: August 21, 2018, 01:44:02 pm »
I think uni-t aims for the entry level for newer to electrical / electronics in controlled enviroments, but the uni-t 181A/B it should be beyound that due to it's price range. Ask them for a test :P
The UT181 is categorized by them as "Industrial True RMS Multimeters":
http://www.uni-trend.com/productslist.aspx?IntroCateId=1024&ProductsCateID=1024&BaseInfoCateId=1024&cateid=1024&ViewCateID=1024
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Offline malagas_on_fire

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2754 on: August 21, 2018, 06:58:26 pm »
I think uni-t aims for the entry level for newer to electrical / electronics in controlled enviroments, but the uni-t 181A/B it should be beyound that due to it's price range. Ask them for a test :P
The UT181 is categorized by them as "Industrial True RMS Multimeters":
http://www.uni-trend.com/productslist.aspx?IntroCateId=1024&ProductsCateID=1024&BaseInfoCateId=1024&cateid=1024&ViewCateID=1024

Yeah that's another issue too and the box also has a electrial board design . but they skipped the IEC related to ESD testing back when joeqsmith tested it.

Their website has some errors, for example the uni-t 204A clamp meter has a MAX mode in the specs section but in reallity is REL mode :P

If one can make knowledge flow than it will go from negative to positve , for real
 

Online joeqsmith

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2755 on: August 22, 2018, 01:21:00 am »
it's possible that if you speak to the right person an UniTrend they may support you with free meters.
it would be worth it to them to both know what needs to be fixed, and to get good reviews to people.

they are watching and learning, look at the fuses & stuff in the newer meters - better than the 20mm glass  crap in the early stuff.

At the very end of the video, I show the test running real time.  That's just five transients.  The 189 has ACV, ACmV, DCV, DCmV, Ohms, Capacitance and temperature modes that I run through.  So 7 times how ever long that 5 transients took.  Then I run + and -, so multiply by 2.   That's just one voltage level.   The point to all that is even if the meters are free, the time is not.   

Some time ago, someone at UNI-T did reach out to me.  I think they had a new meter that had the auto dimming back light that they were offering to me to look at.  I would be fine with that except I wanted to make it very clear to them what I do on channel and if they sent me the meter, I would run it like any other meter and document the results.   They never responded and I can't say I blame them.   To date, only Brymen has been so bold to stand behind their products.   

When you think about the other brands that have held up so well,  they could have some good free advertising but the channel is small and they may see no value in it.  I'm fine with it. 
How electrically robust is your meter?? https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsK99WXk9VhcghnAauTBsbg
 

Online joeqsmith

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2756 on: August 22, 2018, 01:30:18 am »
I think uni-t aims for the entry level for newer to electrical / electronics in controlled enviroments, but the uni-t 181A/B it should be beyound that due to it's price range. Ask them for a test :P
The UT181 is categorized by them as "Industrial True RMS Multimeters":

That's what Gossen calls the Ultra as well, while testing at 1V/meter. 
How electrically robust is your meter?? https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsK99WXk9VhcghnAauTBsbg
 

Online Fungus

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2757 on: August 22, 2018, 07:04:10 am »
The UT181 is categorized by them as "Industrial True RMS Multimeters":

Does anybody still believe them?

Show us the UL certificates, etc.
 

Online rsjsouza

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2758 on: August 22, 2018, 12:28:47 pm »
Yes, not for this particular case... Or for most other cases, although the UT61 variants sold in Europe seem to be ETL listed.
Vbe - vídeo blog eletrônico http://videos.vbeletronico.com

Oh, the "whys" of the datasheets... The information is there not to be an axiomatic truth, but instead each speck of data must be slowly inhaled while carefully performing a deep search inside oneself to find the true metaphysical sense...
 

Offline malagas_on_fire

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2759 on: August 22, 2018, 02:15:37 pm »
To be honest i bought one uni-t 204A at a local store to read current from solar panels or for higher loads in AC without breaking circuits.

It has ETL and Intertek logo, a good jaw, 3999 counts, temperature and some accuracy

My bad call was i thought it was true RMS acourding to the specs of this website : https://www.uni-t.cz/en/p/clamp-multimeter-uni-t-ut204a

After a while i found a post here that stated it was not true RMS and also have confirmed against the BM235 and aneng 8001  :palm: . Not the best deal but at least it has done it's work and payed itself.

If one can make knowledge flow than it will go from negative to positve , for real
 

Online joeqsmith

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2760 on: August 23, 2018, 12:43:57 am »
The UT181 is categorized by them as "Industrial True RMS Multimeters":

Does anybody still believe them?

Show us the UL certificates, etc.
I hope all of the testing I have shown has not caused you to become so cynical.   :-DD
How electrically robust is your meter?? https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsK99WXk9VhcghnAauTBsbg
 

Offline stj

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2761 on: August 23, 2018, 02:45:48 am »
the low just got lower.

check out the integrated "spark gap" on this brand new DT830!!!  :wtf:
 

Offline stj

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2762 on: August 23, 2018, 02:49:47 am »
To be honest i bought one uni-t 204A at a local store to read current from solar panels or for higher loads in AC without breaking circuits.

It has ETL and Intertek logo, a good jaw, 3999 counts, temperature and some accuracy

do you know what chipset it uses?
we may be able to "improve" the specs with an eeprom hack.
 

Offline malagas_on_fire

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2763 on: August 23, 2018, 08:12:11 am »
The UT181 is categorized by them as "Industrial True RMS Multimeters":

Does anybody still believe them?

Show us the UL certificates, etc.
I hope all of the testing I have shown has not caused you to become so cynical.   :-DD

No worries. I rather have data and testing to have a better ideia of the value for the money, than buying a product that fails in a middle of a work. I have some uni-t's and they are good for learning purposes or CATII usage. But also consider other brands like brymen, amprobe, fluke.

But of course i got surprised when the ut 181a failed and Lol on the pocket meter
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Offline malagas_on_fire

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2764 on: August 23, 2018, 08:16:05 am »
To be honest i bought one uni-t 204A at a local store to read current from solar panels or for higher loads in AC without breaking circuits.

It has ETL and Intertek logo, a good jaw, 3999 counts, temperature and some accuracy

do you know what chipset it uses?
we may be able to "improve" the specs with an eeprom hack.

That would do a great idea but after warranty expires. I'll ask uni-t about the specs.
If one can make knowledge flow than it will go from negative to positve , for real
 

Online joeqsmith

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2765 on: August 26, 2018, 02:15:15 am »
Replaced the supercap in the old Fluke 189 and tested a few different resistors for the lead detection circuit.  Then it was back to transient testing the old girl.   

https://youtu.be/8t8nkCbYJVc
How electrically robust is your meter?? https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsK99WXk9VhcghnAauTBsbg
 

Offline bitseeker

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2766 on: August 26, 2018, 05:55:35 am »
Resistors roasting on an open board... ♫

 ;D
I TEA.
 

Offline kcbrown

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2767 on: August 26, 2018, 06:42:31 am »
why not blow one to hell, then re-list it on EvilBay?  >:D

"Fluke 189 for sale, barely used"

("accidentally" neglecting to mention that it had been "used" about 5 minutes before Joe's tests blew it to kingdom come)    :-DD
 

Offline malagas_on_fire

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2768 on: August 26, 2018, 12:28:43 pm »
why not blow one to hell, then re-list it on EvilBay?  >:D

"Fluke 189 for sale, barely used"

("accidentally" neglecting to mention that it had been "used" about 5 minutes before Joe's tests blew it to kingdom come)    :-DD

"Fluke 189 for sale, calibrated, electrically test pass"

PS.: batteries not included :P
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Online joeqsmith

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2769 on: August 26, 2018, 05:03:48 pm »
Resistors roasting on an open board... ♫

 ;D
The season is coming up. 

why not blow one to hell, then re-list it on EvilBay?  >:D

"Fluke 189 for sale, barely used"

("accidentally" neglecting to mention that it had been "used" about 5 minutes before Joe's tests blew it to kingdom come)    :-DD

"Fluke 189 for sale, calibrated, electrically test pass"

PS.: batteries not included :P

It seems like a pretty tough meter.  It may be 18ish years old but still outperforms most of the meters I have looked at.   

When I started all this testing, I wouldn't have given you a dollar for a Fluke meter.  My disdain for them ran pretty deep.  :-DD   But I am also data driven and can't deny that they have learned how to make very robust products over the years.   Hard to say is they are now on the down swing of that cycle. 

I've shown it's fairly easy to design a handheld that will survive some basic low energy transients.  I've seen a few people comment about how you can add a few dollars in parts are have a very robust product.    It does not always seem to be a cost problem.  I've looked at some fairly high priced meters that did not perform very well at all.   At some point, the engineers also need to know how to design robust products.   
How electrically robust is your meter?? https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsK99WXk9VhcghnAauTBsbg
 

Offline floobydust

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2770 on: August 26, 2018, 05:47:22 pm »
It's very difficult engineering things for transients, as the outcome is destructive - something fails and everybody scratches their heads and guesses what went wrong.  It's like an airplane crash.

A Teseq is very expensive. $30K and even more for calibration and upkeep, another $6k for the H/W and F/W upgrades. For something rarely used and seen as a small regulatory hurdle, management doesn't want to put any money into it. Consider selling your transient generator ;)

You do a run and after the explosion, there is no high speed camera footage as to where the breakdown started.
It is quite a clown car for the junior engineers, who are terrified of using the transient generator and later stunned that they have no data or equation to reconsider.
Months go by and the product is late to market, pressure is on. The product has no budget dollars or room for bigger parts and clearances. I could go on and on.

It's mostly a problem of engineers not understanding the safety standards, the high costs with consulting UL/CSA over $400/hr, and the high costs of the test equipment, all to meet a few paragraphs in a safety standard- as the boss sees it.
 

Offline malagas_on_fire

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2771 on: August 26, 2018, 06:00:33 pm »
The flukes are really good and the one i used and like a lot was the 117. They have the formula ( component selection, board layout, rotary switch)to build a robust meter and it is appliable to various types of meters, even the little fluke 101.

Some of the brands take "gidelines" to design products that may meet the expected CAT without certification because that costs money. Here an ut61e Intertek / GS costs 82 Euros  or for more 20 euros you can order a brymen BM235 or a fluke 17B+ that has backlight, better fuses, input protection, rotary switch but of course less resolution and no PC connection.
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Online joeqsmith

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2772 on: August 26, 2018, 06:43:37 pm »
It's very difficult engineering things for transients, as the outcome is destructive - something fails and everybody scratches their heads and guesses what went wrong.  It's like an airplane crash.

A Teseq is very expensive. $30K and even more for calibration and upkeep, another $6k for the H/W and F/W upgrades. For something rarely used and seen as a small regulatory hurdle, management doesn't want to put any money into it. Consider selling your transient generator ;)

You do a run and after the explosion, there is no high speed camera footage as to where the breakdown started.
It is quite a clown car for the junior engineers, who are terrified of using the transient generator and later stunned that they have no data or equation to reconsider.
Months go by and the product is late to market, pressure is on. The product has no budget dollars or room for bigger parts and clearances. I could go on and on.

It's mostly a problem of engineers not understanding the safety standards, the high costs with consulting UL/CSA over $400/hr, and the high costs of the test equipment, all to meet a few paragraphs in a safety standard- as the boss sees it.

The stories I could tell......   :-DD :-DD :-DD

My generators are toys compared with an actual combo generator.   I've thought about making a video where I show some very simple circuits that a beginning hobbyist may put together that could possibly damage their meter.    Just very low energy battery operated stuff.  The kids already play with the MOTs and do a good job cooking their meters and sometimes their bodies so it's a bit hard to complete with.     
How electrically robust is your meter?? https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsK99WXk9VhcghnAauTBsbg
 

Offline malagas_on_fire

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2773 on: August 26, 2018, 07:13:07 pm »
That's a good start with MOT since there is scavanging components in big scale and buying cheap meters is a good mix for testing it's robustness as  almost one time operation.

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Offline malagas_on_fire

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Re: Handheld meter electrical robustness testing.
« Reply #2774 on: August 26, 2018, 08:09:13 pm »
That's a good start with MOT since there is scavanging components in big scale and buying cheap meters is a good mix for testing it's robustness as  almost one time operation.


Well there is always the good old cell phone charger bricks with 6VA transformers 230V / 6V in back to back configuration or a brand new 12VA 230V / 12V for the newer to start on higher voltages :P

Battery operated? A flyswatter for example
If one can make knowledge flow than it will go from negative to positve , for real
 


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