Author Topic: U1272A - Yay!  (Read 23667 times)

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Offline orbiter

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #25 on: February 07, 2011, 02:28:21 pm »
Great pics and run down on the meter PetrosA.

I noticed somebody mentioned fuses for it. They look like the same fuses (and rating) that are fitted to my Agilent DMM (U1252B.) So just in case your interested, you can get them from Agilent direct. I got two spare sets for my DMM and IIRC they only cost me about £14 total for two of each.

orb

Thanks orb, that price sounds pretty reasonable. Hopefully with the obvious warning the U1272A gives off when the leads are in the current terminals, I won't be blowing any fuses any time soon... Plus I probably wouldn't use the probes but a clamp.

No probs mate ;)

Just one thing to note PetrosA. As I am a hobbyist and didn't have an Agilent account (although I suppose I do now after my order :) ) When I ordered the fuses there was a delay. So I rang Agilent after about 10 days. It seemed they had to ask me a couple of questions in relation to my order, this was so that the info could be put on a form which had to be filled in (by them.) The form was apparently some sort of agreement confirming I wouldn't be using my new DMM fuses for any sort of terrorist activity etc :o. Perhaps the fuses had to come from the US or something, although they were supoosed to be in stock  ::)

The Agilent guys were very helpful though so there's nothing to be concerned over, I guess it's just some crazy security thing they have to check on. A week or so later though the fuses turned up :)

Regards

orb
« Last Edit: February 07, 2011, 02:33:14 pm by orbiter »
 

Offline Frangible

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #26 on: February 07, 2011, 05:52:07 pm »
The form was apparently some sort of agreement confirming I wouldn't be using my new DMM fuses for any sort of terrorist activity etc :o.
The way things are going around here, soon we'll have to fill out one of those every time we go buy a bottle of plant food. :(
 

Offline johnboxall

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #27 on: April 01, 2011, 07:06:46 am »
Here is continuity test:

BTW where is the micro processor, under the LCD ??


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Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #28 on: April 27, 2011, 06:38:57 pm »
I took a fresh good read of this thread .   :)

Lots of info so to verify them as soon my own U1272A arrives.

PetrosA is there any information as model revision on it , or on the software, like firmware version ?

The one that I will get, comes directly from the factory in Malaysia , so I bet that it would be fresh baked like a cookie.
Oh my , just remembered that also the 28II came direct from the factory of Fluke , also as fresh baked cookie  :D

« Last Edit: April 27, 2011, 06:40:30 pm by Kiriakos-GR »
 

Offline PetrosA

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #29 on: April 28, 2011, 02:24:50 pm »
Kiriakos, the only revision number I saw was 004 (board marked as U1271-26500). I haven't tried to look for a firmware number in the menu anywhere, but that doesn't mean it's not in there someplace...

I also got the IR cable so I'll be testing that out for datalogging and hopefully sometime soon will get around to posting a user experience review of the meter and accessories. One thing I will say about the datalogging is that the software is a mishmash of USB to RS232 virtual port which slows things down and forces you to choose a port each time you start the software and connect the meter (at least on my Asus EeePC netbook...). The little bit of time I spent with the software so far was not very impressive and a new, more powerful version would be very welcome.
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Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #30 on: April 28, 2011, 02:45:33 pm »
I will ask the question no matter what ( if sounds as silly ) ...  :)   did you download the latest version ( 2011) from their web site ?   
 

Offline PetrosA

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #31 on: April 29, 2011, 05:13:31 am »
I have version 1.2.1.0 downloaded a few weeks ago. As far as I can tell, it's the latest version.


I had a free day today plus a power outage from lightning, so I had some time to play with the software a little bit. Here are some observations:

- Getting the meter connected is finnicky and doesn't always work the first time around. This is because of the virtual COM port.
- I can't get the software to see both readouts. This may be some configuration problem, but I would think the software should automatically display whatever secondary reading I have set in the DMM.
- The minimum sample interval is one second - much slower than the DMM can read. Booooo.
- You can present the data either as a list or as a graph. The list format is ok, but I don't use it. The graph format is easier to read for customers but has one major problem i.e. the timestamp for the graph format is only given in seconds since sampling starts (0-...), not as hh:mm:ss. This is not useful for me at all, since many times what I need to record is voltage output with a timestamp to show someone from the power company what problems a customer has on site. No one is interested that I sampled for 600 seconds - they want to know what time it was.
- The graph can only be exported as a .bmp file which means that it can only be as large as I can get it on my netbook screen. It would be way nicer if the software could create a .pdf with the graph in vector format so that it contains all the points in the log, as well as being scalable with full resolution. The second best option would be to have a standard, large size for outputting the graph in bitmap form, but I'd seriously prefer the .pdf option.

Here's a sample of the graph output from my meter, as large as I could get it on my netbook. It would look pretty crappy at this resolution if I tried to print it out in landscape on A4 or letter sized paper...
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Offline Bored@Work

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #32 on: April 29, 2011, 07:38:37 am »
The list format is ok, but I don't use it.

I think their lies your problem. Export the list data and post-process it, e.g. with Excel, gnuplot, Scidavis,  gaw, or whatever floats your boat into a nice graph.
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Offline PetrosA

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #33 on: April 29, 2011, 12:02:22 pm »
... Export the list data and post-process it, e.g. with Excel, gnuplot, Scidavis,  gaw, or whatever floats your boat into a nice graph.

Well... I've heard of some of those programs ;) The only software I'd know how to use to make a graph would be a vector illustration program, and that wouldn't be automated. If there were an easy way to do this with a script or something, I'd be happy to try it - otherwise, it's beyond my realm of abilities :(
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Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #34 on: April 29, 2011, 03:25:56 pm »
PetrosA,  is it possible to upload an saved data logging event from the DMM to the computer ?

And see if the recorded sample rate was any faster ?  

For your information, I just found that Chauvin-Arnoux has also an similar DMM with the same communication system (DMM PC),
I have the feeling that all of them, are using the same software .. (compatible)

Unfortunately the Chauvin-Arnoux software , is not available for download , so to test with it, the Agilent .  ;)
  
Look the attachment .
« Last Edit: April 29, 2011, 03:28:30 pm by Kiriakos-GR »
 

Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #35 on: April 29, 2011, 03:49:26 pm »
On a second note , it looks that the Agilent software called as Basic edition.

This gives room so to speculate, of the existence of the Advanced edition too.
( Call your friends about it, and find out the truth)


Here is an picture of the interface .



.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2011, 03:53:48 pm by Kiriakos-GR »
 

Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #36 on: April 29, 2011, 04:42:19 pm »
On a third note  :D  

I think that I have good news, just installed the software, and found on the settings,
that other that 1S minimum timing , you can set it also to 0 (zero) if you enter the value manually with your keyboard.
The software accepts the setting and saves it ,  but I have no DMM to test what happens ..  ;)




 
« Last Edit: April 29, 2011, 04:45:09 pm by Kiriakos-GR »
 

Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #37 on: April 30, 2011, 04:53:42 pm »
oh well it looks that I was very optimist .

Agilent should had an sticker over the range switch with the message:

READ FIRST the 168 pages in the manual BEFORE USE  

Like the F16 planes , with the yellow Key tag  : Remove before Fly

On topic :

1) The Data logging it is limited to 1 Second intervals ..
2) The collected data format, does not help with Date time descriptions  
( check the image at the bottom )
Section Retrieving saved log

3) There is an work around, so to find the Time of when an specific value occurred.
Only by the use of Data logging recorded with PC connection.
(The idea about to manually inspect 10000 records , on the DMM screen it is a joke, even to think about it.)  
And so :
You write down in a paper the time that you started the data logging .
Example 10:31:00 am .  
And you ADD to this number the additional seconds from the entry that you are looking !!
Example :
The Log entry   A00010 was recorded at 10:31:10 am

The same work around works also for the graphical presentation,
like the picture that you had posted above.

Ok I admit it , the Data logging is not practical to use,
with this device + software combo ,
but you have an way to log something.  :)

My final word could be , that the Data logger is not the strong point of the U1272A .
 




« Last Edit: April 30, 2011, 05:06:08 pm by Kiriakos-GR »
 

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #38 on: April 30, 2011, 09:54:12 pm »
Sounds like Fluke has the better solution for data logging, at least with the 180 series (I expect the 280 series to be better), which was the original target of the U1270 series. It does store time stamps with each data point, and will only log a new point if the value changes. This is especially useful for rare phenomena (eg. once per day the mains voltage drops due to a large load switching on). I think it also registers the min/max/avg at each point. Unfortunately you have to buy a $$$ Fluke 280 series meter to get that these days.

Agilent's solution sounds very simplistic to me, like how it was done thirty years ago, or how a student would implement it.
 

Offline insurgent

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #39 on: May 01, 2011, 08:28:46 am »
On a third note  :D  

I think that I have good news, just installed the software, and found on the settings,
that other that 1S minimum timing , you can set it also to 0 (zero) if you enter the value manually with your keyboard.
The software accepts the setting and saves it ,  but I have no DMM to test what happens ..  ;)



The logging software is indeed lacking.
If I manually specify a zero in the "seconds" field the software will poll at a faster rate. On my machine I would get about 5-6 samples per second using that setting (Quad core @ 2.8 w/ baud rate of 19200).

PetrosA: FYI, To get it to log the secondary display values, click the "Secondary" button on the "Data Logging Table" tab. Note that this will reduce the number of samples per second that you get when you are using the "0" seconds setting. Also, it will log to file. You might just import that into Excel/OpenOffice and build your own charts with the  X-axis showing the date/time.
It's strange when you use the secondary display via their software; when I want mV on primary and frequency on secondary, it forces a reversal and has the unit display frequency on the primary and mV on the secondary. Not sure why this is.

A simple COM port loop in software at 19200 seems to show the value updating at 100 millisecond intervals (image Datalog2: timestamp in milliseconds+reading).
You could use the following commands and roll your own datalogger if you feel the urge:
*IDN?  = Unit Identification. Returns Model/Serial/FW version (e.g.  Agilent Technologies,U1253A,MY11110011,V1.20)
CONF? = Setting for primary function (e.g.  "VOLT:AC +5.00000000E+00,+1.00000000E-04")
CONF? @2 = Setting for secondary function (e.g.  "FREQ +1.00000000E+02,+1.00000000E-03"). Returns error (*E) if secondary not enabled.
FETC? = Return value for primary function (e.g.  +7.15881000E-03 )
FETC? @2 = Return value for secondary function
Note these configuration commands are examples and you can't override the actual selector switch on the unit (i.e. You can't set it to TEMP when it's on AC)
CONF:VOLT:AC = Configure Voltage for AC
CONF:PULS:PDUT = Configure PW/Duty cycle
There are more of these, I just haven't recorded all of them.

LOG:AUTO xx = Read internal auto-log postion xx value
LOG:HAND xx = Read internal manually logged position xx value

SYST:BATT? = Battery status (e.g. +3.51933000E+01  not sure what units this is in)

Note that I have the U1253A so I don't know if all the commands are valid on the U1271A, though I'd imagine they are the same except maybe the valid range for the LOG commands.

Take care,

John
« Last Edit: May 01, 2011, 08:32:48 am by insurgent »
 

Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #40 on: May 01, 2011, 10:01:52 am »
Hello John , thanks for posting your findings ..

With your findings , my speculation looks that it does work,
and this is a great find .   :D  

Well yesterday , I did an very in-depth reading of all the manual.
( so to find every detail about the U1272 and compare it with what I own )

I did check your graph (No1), and it looks that you got there as Max, three sample rates per second.    

At this point I like to say, that I do Not see things like to be a race or something.
The data logging are a similar process with the Min/Max/Average function.
And found lots of details mostly from Fluke users manual  about it .

It looks that Fluke and Agilent agree , that in the given time of 250uS ( between of any taken sample),
the result are reliable.
In faster sample rates , the possibility of an error grows by some percentage .

Fluke are very clear that at Min/Max/Average there is an 100mS rate, and 250uS at  Peak/Min/Max/Average,
(I just found how to get in there yesterday )
 :)
And now I know that I must use Peak , when I need maximum reliability .  

Unfortunately Agilent has no details at all about the Min/Max/Average sample rate ,
All that it says is that at their own  Peak function, the sample rate are also 250uS.


There is no need to say , that your findings about the Com port speed,
its an great info ..  100mS  .. that's great  ,  and so the connection speed gets out ,
from the equation of the negative factors. ( Does not slowdown things )  ;)
« Last Edit: May 01, 2011, 06:55:25 pm by Kiriakos-GR »
 

Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #41 on: May 01, 2011, 07:01:00 pm »
People  I need a favor , some one to send me by email ,
few files measurements  by the data logger.
So to load them on my software and play with it ..
(examine the potentials of the software )


« Last Edit: May 01, 2011, 07:13:03 pm by Kiriakos-GR »
 

Offline PetrosA

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #42 on: May 02, 2011, 03:37:26 am »
I have my secondary set to measure temp in Celsius but I can't seem to find any way to get that info in the software (temp doesn't show up as an option in the list). I don't really need secondary to show up in either the list or graph forms, so it's no big loss and since graph resolution is dependent on how large the graph is displayed on screen, I have all the other windows/displays/graphs closed anyway. The only things I'd really like to see are a timestamp on the graph and a vector based graph output. I use a netbook at work which is weak at best, let alone if I need to have multiple programs opened to deal with data files just to create graphs. With the save function they use now I could just as well do a screen save and crop it to email a customer or print out. Seems pretty lame for a 97 MB download ;)
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Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #43 on: May 02, 2011, 04:10:49 am »
I had watch before few hours an Agilent Video about bench top multimeters,
they throw the data to Excel ... and from it you can do miracles ( about graphs ) 2D 3D what ever.

That's why I need test files , so to explore all the potentials.

By the way from the images posted from John , there is time stamp and date ..
Is there a problem about time stamp only in the temperature logging ?


   
 

Offline insurgent

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #44 on: May 02, 2011, 04:22:37 am »
I have my secondary set to measure temp in Celsius but I can't seem to find any way to get that info in the software (temp doesn't show up as an option in the list). I don't really need secondary to show up in either the list or graph forms, so it's no big loss and since graph resolution is dependent on how large the graph is displayed on screen, I have all the other windows/displays/graphs closed anyway. The only things I'd really like to see are a timestamp on the graph and a vector based graph output. I use a netbook at work which is weak at best, let alone if I need to have multiple programs opened to deal with data files just to create graphs. With the save function they use now I could just as well do a screen save and crop it to email a customer or print out. Seems pretty lame for a 97 MB download ;)

Note that the normal "temperature" display on the meter by default is not actually the secondary display of the unit. It's just a convenience display of the ambient temperature at the time and is not available for logging (that I know of). If you want to log temperature, you have to set the unit in temperature mode via the mode switch.

I really thing the best bet for your purposes is to log to a file and then produce a graph with some other program. The log file can be considered your "vector" file and can be scaled & labelled however you see fit.

Take care,

John
 

Offline Kiriakos-GR

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #45 on: May 02, 2011, 07:28:22 am »
John thanks allot for the files .. You are my hero   :D

Here is the temperature of your coffee cup , plotted to Excel..

Now I need a good sleep .  ;D



 

Offline tigerstyle

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #46 on: September 11, 2011, 07:08:01 am »
I've not read the whole thread yet, saving that for tonight!

But with the Uni-T DMMs (I'm looking at a slightly lesser 61E/C) can I set it up to log for 12 or 24hours solid?
Ideally I'd like to log some appliances in my house over that period to work out there consumption. Water cooler, pc, TV etc.
I think I can set it to not turn off automatically after 15 minutes so should be safe, but can it hold that much data? Will the battery last that constant use?

Thanks!
 

Offline Bored@Work

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #47 on: September 11, 2011, 07:38:04 am »
Ideally I'd like to log some appliances in my house over that period to work out there consumption. Water cooler, pc, TV etc.

That is not a good idea. You will miss the phase by just measuring current, and these cheap meters can't do more than that. Maybe more important, often these cheap meters have measurement duration restrictions in the current range, like measure for no longer than five seconds and then let the meter cool down for a minute. You know, cheap meter manufacturers usually don't care about safety. If they put a warning like this in the manual they really mean it.

If you just need the sum or average over time then get some of these electricity usage monitor. Even the one with that stupid name (What was it? Kill-a-fart? Something like that ...) should serve you better in this case. The simple ones are affordable consumer products. I have seen one or two such electricity usage meters with data logging capacity,  too. But these were expensive. Maybe the price has come down in the meantime.

« Last Edit: September 11, 2011, 07:41:56 am by BoredAtWork »
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Offline tigerstyle

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #48 on: September 11, 2011, 09:03:15 am »
Awww yeah, forgot about that :( thanks for the reminder!

http://www.reichelt.de/bilder/web/xxl/D100/UT61C.jpg looking at a nice high-res pic there it's the first time I've seen it state '15minutes between use' as well!

I'll do it with a series of point measurements instead, maybe one of those wall meters is worth a look. I'd love to log the whole house power here, but old has has too much hidden wiring!
 

Offline ejeffrey

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Re: U1272A - Yay!
« Reply #49 on: September 11, 2011, 01:07:48 pm »
DMMs are great for spot checking current draw, but not long term monitoring of amp-range currents.  As BAW says, the cheap ones may have safety issues.  Even the higher end stuff typically has a required cool-off period.  Hopefully in the expensive meters the issue is not safety, but the accuracy of the shunt resistor over temperature and the fuse lifetime but I wouldn't count on it.

For more serious AC power monitoring a current clamp meter is the way to measure current draw.  For power, you want a kill-a-watt meter or similar which will give RMS voltage and current with real and apparent power, plus the integrated energy/average power draw.  Higher priced units will also give you things like crest factor, harmonic content, and phase difference.
 


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