Top Rated Measuring Meters – Ratings & Comparison in 2017
With so many measuring meters to choose from finding the right one can seem impossible, especially if you don’t know what you are looking for. In this buying guide we have included information that will help you understand the various types of measuring meters, along with tips that will make it easier for you to choose the right one.
How to choose the best measuring meter
It is always a good idea to have a set spending limit in mind, regardless of what type of measuring meter you are looking for. Measuring meters can and do vary dramatically in price depending on the type, and there are some that you should expect to pay more for. Meters that measure crystal structures or the height of a cloud base will cost significantly more than those that simply track time or the temperature. Even though the price of the meter will depend on what it is designed to measure having a set spending limit will help you narrow down your options, once you have decided on the type.
There really are too many types of measuring meters to list in this buying guide, but it is important to choose the right one. For example if you are trying to measure the ph levels in your soil, purchasing an inexpensive thermometer would simply be a waste of your hard earned money. You can find several websites that list the various types of measuring meters and their uses, and this can be an invaluable tool when you are trying to choose the right one for your needs.
The industry that the measuring meter is used in can also be a helpful tool in finding out which one is best suited for your needs. Some of the fields that often use one or more types of measuring meters include, cycling, fitness, health care, gardening and automotive. You can even find devices that are capable of measuring alcoholic contents.
Once you have figured out what type of measuring meter you need, it is time to consider the materials used in its construction. This will depend on the type of meter, along with your spending limit. Most fitness meters are designed to be carried or worn throughout the day, and this means that you want it to be lightweight and durable. In some cases you might even want a fitness meter that is constructed from waterproof materials.
If the measuring meter is going to be used for outdoor applications you want it to be constructed from durable materials. Metal is typically more durable than plastic, and great for when the meter needs to be planted in the soil. You will find many of the meters used in healthcare constructed from plastic or combined with metal, and once again your budget will help determine which one is right for you. If you are planning on measuring electrical currents in any capacity you will want to choose a meter that is constructed specifically for this field. This ensures that the meter is capable of keeping the charge safely grounded.
Ease of Use
While most people are capable of reading a thermometer, odometer or speedometer, some of the other types of measuring devices are not always designed to be easy to use. Even the meters designed for scientific applications should be easy enough for an amateur to successfully operate.
Digital measuring meters are usually the easiest to read, but you want to make sure that the one you choose is also simple to program. The buttons should be clearly marked, and you want the menu to be easy to navigate through. The numbers on thermometers, odometers and similar devices should also be easy to see, even at a slight distance. This is especially important regarding speedometers since it is important to always know how fast you are going.
If you are new to using measuring meters included directions are a must, and these helpful guides can even benefit experienced users. Most of the leading manufacturers also have “how to” guides posted on their home sites. Even though using a measuring meter can seem intimidating these devices can be relatively easy to operate, and in some cases you might even have fun.
Finding the right measuring meter for your needs
Measuring meters are no longer used strictly for scientific applications. These convenient devices can be found on a variety of household appliances and on some electronic devices. There are also several types that are designed to be used independently. Whether you want to measure water temperature, soil acidity or even the volume level of a crowd’s applause, you can probably find a meter that will suit your needs perfectly.
While having several types of measuring meters to choose from does have advantages, it can also be a disadvantage. Scrolling through the various types of meters can leave you feeling overwhelmed, and their names often do little to explain their specific function. Even though measuring meters are used in a variety of fields, their names can make the average consumer believe that they are still just for use by the scientific community. With names like “pyrheliometer” and “pycnometer” it is not surprising that many consumers only feel comfortable using a thermometer.
While chances are you won’t need to measure solar insolation, which is what you use a pyrheliometer for, you might have use for a pyrometer which keeps track of high temperatures. Marksmen and construction workers can benefit from a tachometer which measures distance, and almost everyone has had their blood pressure taken with the use of a sphygmomanometer. Once you understand what the measuring meter is used for, it is easier to see how these convenient devices can work in industries other than science.
Our goal is to help you understand the different types of measuring meters on the market so you can feel more comfortable around them. Once you understand the various types of measuring meters and their uses, you will be able to confidently choose the right one that fits your specific needs.
Types of measuring meters
Measuring meters are convenient tools that are used in a variety of industries. While some consumers may still mistakenly believe that measuring meters are only for use in the scientific community these convenient devices can be found on construction sites, in vehicles, and even hanging on a fence outdoors keeping track of the temperature. You can find meters that will measure almost everything, and finding the right one can be confusion. This is why we have some of the most commonly used measuring meters reviewed below so you can confidently choose the right device that will meet your needs.
Best light meter
A light meter can be an invaluable tool for both amateur and professional photographers. It will accurately measure the amount of light in the scene so photographers can easily set the correct exposure time. A light meter will help ensure every photo comes out crisp and clear, even if you are using black and white film. It can also cut down on expensive processing costs since you don’t have to worry about photos being over or underexposed.
According to the best light meter reviews this handheld model by Sekonic is perfect for beginners and experienced photographers. Its compact size makes it easy and convenient to carry with the rest of your gear, especially since it comes with its own protective storage bag.
It is also designed to be durable so it can withstand the rigors of traveling. The clearly marked controls ensures that this device is incredibly easy to operate, even if it is your first time using a light meter.
It will not only measure the light in your chosen setting, but also the amount emitted by the flash.
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Also referred to as a volt-ohm meter (VOM) a multimeter is a helpful tool often used by professional electricians, but it can also be a convenient device to have in a home workshop. It combines three functions in one compact device so you can easily and safely measure electrical current, voltage and resistance. This way you can safely troubleshoot any problems or simply take accurate measurements without worrying about possible electrocution. If you are working on electrical appliances, controls or wiring systems a multimeter can make the job safer and significantly easier.
Fluke 28 II True-RMS Rugged
There are several reasons why the best multimeter reviews recommend this digital model by Fluke. Since it is digital the multimeter is easy to read, even for beginners, and you also have the benefit of the high resolution display.
The clearly labeled keypad is also backlit so you can easily program it in low light settings. It is designed to be used in industrial and residential settings and comes with a durable construction.
The multimeter is sealed to prevent dust and moisture from getting in, and it can even withstand occasional drops when it is in the included protective holster.
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If you want to be able to accurately measure wind speeds you need an anemometer. Meteorologists depend on these devices when they are studying weather patterns, and anemometers can also be used in other industries. Physicists use them when they are studying air movements, and these devices can also be helpful in some velocity experiments. The aerospace and automotive industry use anemometers to calculate wind speed around airplanes, automobiles and even rockets in an effort to improve their aerodynamics.
It is not hard to see why the best anemometer reviews recommend the 45158 by Extech. Not only does this compact device measure wind speed, but also humidity levels, temperature and dew point.
It comes with a dual screen so both readings are displayed, and it is also designed to be easy to see in almost any lighting.
You will appreciate how easy it is to program, along with the fact that you can choose to see the measurements displayed in the metric or imperial system.
Since it comes with a protective casing you can use this anemometer indoors or outside, and it will even float if it is accidentally dropped in the water.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($123.74)
Best pH meter
A pH meter is a convenient tool that is a necessity if you are growing vegetables and other plants hydroponically or if you own a pool. Some gardeners also can’t imagine not knowing the ph level of their soil before they start planting. The ph level of a substance is based on a scale ranging from zero to 14, with seven being considered “neutral”. If the ph level is below 7 it is considered acidic and readings above this base number are alkaline. Knowing the ph level of a substance is important if you want to be able to grow strong healthy plants or swim in a pool without irritating your skin.
The best ph meter reviews agree that that the MW102 by Milwaukee is one of the top rated models on the market. It is priced to fit almost any budget, but it is still capable of providing you with accurate readings.
This handheld device is easy to read and operate thanks to the digital display and clearly labeled keypad.
You have the advantage of being able to use the ph meter right out of the box, since it comes with an electrode and calibration solution.
Milwaukee even included a 9 volt battery with their ph meter so you have everything you need to get started.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($112.92)
Anyone that enjoys brewing their own beer knows how important a refractometer is, and this is not the only application this convenient device can be used for. It can measure the sugar content in a liquid, along with nutrient levels in juice or plant sap so you will know instantly if your plants are healthy or if changes need to be made. It can even help you keep your aquarium healthy simply by measuring the amount of light refracting through the liquid.
Ade Advanced Optics 0-32 Brix
As stated in the best refractometer reviews this device from Ade Advanced Optics is incredibly easy to use.
The Brix scale is clearly printed on the tube and it will accurately measure the amount of sugar present in beer, wine, juice or almost any other liquid.
Since this refractometer comes with a clear case the measurements are easy to read so you will know instantly if any changes need to be made.
CNC machinists can also benefit from this meter since it can be used to measure coolants, oil and even stamping compounds.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($22.99)
Measuring how fast gases or liquids travel through a pipe is easy with a flowmeter. Plumbers, mechanics, engineers and even wineries can all benefit from the information displayed on one of these devices, especially if you think that there might be a leak or clog in the pipe. These convenient measuring devices can also be referred to as flow gauges, flow indicators or liquid meters, but regardless of the name they all perform the same task.
The best flowmeter reviews agree that this model by Ameriflame is ideal for use in a variety of applications. It is designed to be easy to use and to provide you with accurate readings whether you are measuring the flow rate of gas or liquids.
It can also act as a regulator and thanks to the built in safety valve you can extra pressure. The brass hardware ensures long lasting durability, and it also comes rubber band that helps to protect the sensitive gauge.
The clear tube is clearly marked so you can easily read the measurements in 1.5 inch increments. To ensure accuracy it is also designed to be “self centering”.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($53)
Meteorologists are not the only ones that can benefit from using a barometer. These convenient measuring devices are also used in ships and airplanes, and can even be found in some homes. Barometers are used to measure atmospheric pressure, which often signals an upcoming change in weather patterns. Meteorologists depend on barometric readings in order to give an accurate forecast for the day, while ships and planes use the devices to help them plan a safe route. Barometers can now even be included in some smartphones, and in some cases they are just as accurate as the other models.
Ambient Weather WS-228TBH
Keep track of any atmospheric changes, along with the temperature and humidity level with this barometer from Ambient Weather.
As stated in the best barometer reviews it will accurately track any changes in atmospheric pressure and clearly display the readings on the blue gauge.
This indoor barometer is designed to be functional and attractive and comes with a 9 inch bezel that constructed from brushed aluminum. When it is combined with the brilliant blue gauge you have a barometer that looks great in your office or living room.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($26.99)
A calorimeter measures the change in energy that occurs when a substance is burned. These convenient devices are often found in scientific labs and are a great way for professors to introduce students to thermodynamics. When food or other substances are burned energy is released, and the calorimeter will keep track of these levels. You can use it to measure the amount of energy a microwave puts off, but the device is most commonly used to determine energy levels and its relation to food consumption.
Eisco Labs Kit
One of the reasons the best calorimeter reviews recommend this model for students is that it comes with a handy guide that will walk you through the simple operating steps.
While this calorimeter may look pretty basic it is capable of providing you with accurate readings so you know how much energy is released when certain foods are burned.
It comes with everything you need to get started, including a convenient food holder. The rubber stopper prevents heat from escaping during the process so you don’t have to worry about inaccurate readings. Whether this is your first time in the lab or you are already familiar with the process, this calorimeter might be just what you are looking for.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($42.37)
Best capacitor meter
If your electronic equipment comes with a capacitor, chances are you will need the corresponding meter. A capacitor meter measures the electrical charge that is stored between the two conducting plates, and while the amount is generally pretty low this can be critical information if you need a quick burst of energy to perform a specific application. Even though capacitor meters are most often used by electricians, you can also find inexpensive models that are great for small applications around the house or workshop.
The best capacitor meter reviews suggest choosing a device that is easy to use and accurate, and that is what you get with this handheld model by Excelvan.
The digital display is easy to read in low and bright lighting, and the clearly marked controls ensure that even a novice will find programming it a breeze.
This capacitor meter is designed to be accurate up to 1 percent so you will know exactly how much energy is stored in your electronic equipment outside of the battery. You will also appreciate its long running time, up to 80 hours on two AA batteries.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($29.99)
Best insulation multimeter
If you work in the electrical or automotive industry chances are you have used an insulation multimeter. These convenient devices are designed to ensure the integrity of the wires or cables that carry an electrical current. They are used to test current, voltage and resistance, and the best insulation multimeter reviews also state that these devices can help you troubleshoot any problems that you might find in the lines or cables. Whether you are testing the integrity of a connecting cable in a motor or a line running through your generator, an insulation multimeter can help you accomplish the task quickly and easily.
There is very little not to like about this insulation multimeter from Fluke. Well known for their high quality and accurate meters, the 1587 lives up to the manufacturer’s reputations.
Every aspect of this meter is designed to be easy and convenient to operate so you can quickly locate the problem in the cable or line.
The LCD display is easy to read in any lighting, and you will appreciate the clearly marked control panel. Capable of testing voltages up to 1,000V, this insulation multimeter is perfect for use at home or in commercial settings.
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Best conductivity meter
Measuring the level of nutrients or impurities in the water is easy if you have a conductivity meter. This handy device is designed to measure the electrical conductivity in a liquid so you know if any adjustments need to be made. This is especially important in aquaculture since the liquid that the plants are growing in is responsible for providing them with all of the required nutrients. Since it can also measure salt and impurities, these meters are a great tool to have if you own a swimming pool.
HD Digital EC-3
According to the best conductivity meter reviews this handheld device is perfect for most residential and commercial applications.
Thanks to the innovative microprocessor technology you have the advantage of fast and accurate readings so you can take immediate steps to correct any purification problems with your water.
It also comes with a digital Celsius thermometer so you can get accurate temperature readings, which can be important if you are using the meter to check for impurities in an aquarium.
A convenient case protects the meter when it is not being used, and you can even clip it onto your belt for easy carrying.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($26.7)
There may be times when you need to measure the parameters associated with fluorescence, which means you need a fluorometer. Typically used in the lab, it allows scientists and researchers to measure the fluorescence of a variety of biological and mineral materials. Some researchers even use a fluorometer to accurately measure samples of DNA, RNA and proteins. Whether you are a student just entering into this exciting field of science or a researcher looking to advance your own experiments, chances are at some point you will need an accurate fluorometer.
One of the advantages of this measuring device, according to the best fluorometer reviews is how easy the SC450 is to assembled.
This allows you to spend more time on your research, and less trying to install the two included filters. The filters allow you to configure the meter to the requirements specified by the intended application so you can be assured of accurate readings.
This fluorometer also comes with easy to navigate software so you can make the appropriate analysis. It will even make the adjustments automatically so you don’t have to lose time trying to do it manually.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($309.19)
According to the best hydrometer reviews there are several reasons why you might find this measuring device useful in the shop or at home. It is designed to measure the density of liquids, and this can be useful in a variety of industries. Wine makers and brewers can easily measure the amount of sugar in a liquid, and it can also be used for aquaculture applications. It is important to remember that temperature can affect density, which means that it is important that you calibrate the hydrometer properly in order to obtain accurate readings.
Goodmanns Test Tube Jar Cylinder
This hydrometer is designed for home beer brewing and wine making kits, but it can also be used to measure sugar content in hard liquor and other alcoholic liquids.
The meter is constructed from laboratory grade glass to ensure durability, and it comes with a flat base to prevent it from tipping over and breaking.
Since it does not have any graduated markings on the cylinder the measurements are easy to read. This measuring meter also comes with Goodmanns 100 percent satisfaction guarantee so you can rest assured that you are getting a good value for your money.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($15.99)
The best spectrophotometer reviews agree that this measuring device can be used for a variety of applications. A spectrophotometer measures the amount of light a substance can absorb and this information can be useful in a range of fields. Health care researchers can measure the effectiveness and safety of a medication and wine makers can ensure that the sugar levels in the liquid don’t drop or spike. Bacterial growth can also be measured with a spectrophotometer, and some scientists even depend on this device to measure certain reactions in their experiments.
M&A Instruments Inc UV-5100B
One of the first aspects you’ll notice is how easy this spectrophotometer is to program and use. The keypad is clearly labeled so you can calibrate the measuring device for your specific application, and you will appreciate the brightly lit LCD display.
You will appreciate being able to save up to 50 groups of data that can even be recovered if the device experiences a power failure. This way you don’t have to worry about losing any of your important data.
The screen can also display up to three groups of data on the large the screen. This makes it easier for you to keep track of your progress and make comparisons during your research.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($1401.98)
Best turbidi meter
If you need to measure the amount of solids in water, beer or other liquids you need a turbidimeter. These convenient devices can accurately measure the amount of yeast in beer, along with the quantity of sediment or microorganisms in water. While some of these measuring meters are designed for use in a laboratory setting, you can also find inexpensive models that are perfect for use at home or in the workshop.
The best turbidi meter reviews often recommend this model by Hach for use at home or anytime you need to measure the level of solids in liquids on the go.
Its compact size makes this turbidimeter easy and convenient to carry, and you will also appreciate how simple it is to operate.
The keypad is clearly marked for easy programming, and this also includes calibration. You can even tranfer the data to your laptop or computer thanks to the optional USB module.
With two modes of operation you can easily program and calibrate this measuring meter to meet your needs.
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One of the most important facts to know about a viscometer is that it can only measure viscosity under one flow condition. According to the best viscometer reviews if you need to measure viscosity levels with variable flow conditions you will probably want to choose a rheometer instead. Home and shop mechanics, along with some machinists can benefit from the readings taken with a viscometer. It can measure oil viscosity without any problems, and this is important if you want to protect your engine.
This viscometer from BYK-Garner comes with a durable wheeled metal stand that not only makes it easy to roll around the shop, it also provides a balanced base when you are working.
The digital display is designed to be easy to read, and the four simple buttons ensure that programming is a breeze. Since it is capable of measuring fluid viscosity levels from 15 to 2,000,000 centipoise it can be used for commercial and residential applications.
You will also appreciate knowing that your readings are accurate down to one percent.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($2045)
Best infrared thermometer
You can find infrared thermometers being used in a variety of applications. An infrared thermometer is designed to measure the amount of heat on an object’s surface. It can be used in food safety applications and as a preventative measure in other fields. Electricians, mechanics and DIY enthusiasts can all use an infrared thermometer to catch heat related problems on engines, wiring or machinery before they turn into expensive repairs.
It is easy to see why this is often considered the best infrared thermometer. It uses a laser to measure surface temperatures that range from -58F to 1202F.
The convenient laser not only ensures accuracy, it also allows you to measure temperatures from a safe distance. It is capable of quickly scanning an area and will display minimum, maximum and average temperature readings or it can be used to measure the temperature of a single object.
You will also appreciate how easy the display is to read, thanks to its backlighting and large digital numbers.
Buy from Amazon.com for ($59.95)