Author Topic: Bench Multimeter / Power Meter  (Read 207 times)

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Offline SmallCog

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Bench Multimeter / Power Meter
« on: November 16, 2020, 03:25:35 am »
Hi folks,
At my workplace I often find myself needing to know how much energy a small device is consuming, think things like dataloggers, cellular modems, sensors, data radios, etc.

I've managed to snag a budget of approx. $1500 AUD (1000US/Euro) to buy something to measure this with.

Some of the devices we measure will have consistent small loads, we'll just be looking to confirm a spec sheet. Others (such as a cellular modem) will be quite peaky and quick.

We'll probably be putting things on test anywhere from a few hours to a few weeks - depending just what we're looking to see.

Wishlist so far is:
Can record to a USB memory stick or SD card or something in a nice simple format like CSV - doesn't need to be connected to a PC whilst logging
Consistent timebase on the logged data rather than the silly Fluke hand held logging multimeter
2 channel capability so we can do simultaneous voltage/current measurements or 2 different voltage measurements.
Suitable for the peaky transient sorts of measurements we're looking to see.
Reputable brand/known product (not a Kickstarter or something as much as I'm keen to support innovation)
I will need to purchase new from an Australian distributor.

I was thinking that something like a R&S HMC8012 bench multimeter would do everything I want, but one of my colleagues is keen to be able to log 2x Voltages at the same time.

On that note we've had issues with gel cells being over charged lately when the device charging them lets them float too high so it will probably be used to do things like log panel and battery volts on solar regulators, or monitor voltage and current from a plugback charger so ideally it will be able to handle at least a few amps and be autoranging.

Love to hear some suggestions!

If a bench meter with logging isn't right for the job then I'm keen to hear what is!

Offline nightfire

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Re: Bench Multimeter / Power Meter
« Reply #1 on: November 16, 2020, 04:16:18 am »
You basically want to do data aquisition (DAQ)

A multimeter with a scanner card is one solution to that, or some specielized logging hardware. I myself also have currently a somewhat similar project on low prio going on, and I had a close look at the labjack series of Loggers. Current logging probably will need some shunt and perhaps an opamp system like the Āµcurrent gold...

Online tautech

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Re: Bench Multimeter / Power Meter
« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2020, 05:57:07 am »
@ SmallCog
The SDM3055-SC will do what you want with its inbuilt 16ch scanner card however it's right at the top of your budget.

TrioTest seem out of stock of them though.  :(

Appvision should be able to source them too however they currently show the SDM models without the scanner cards which cannot be added after purchase.

Lots of info about these here:
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