Multi-meter advice...


Most Honored Senior Member
Jan 20, 2018
Murfreesboro, TN
I've owned a LOT of cheap multimeters. They break. I drop 'em, or catch the leads in a fan belt, or knock 'em off the shelf. The $7 Harbor Freight kind have extremely flimsy leads, I broke one of those without it being any kind of abuse. The $20 kind rarely last more than 3-4 years, the $7 kind rarely last more than 2 years.

For the price of a $400 Fluke, I can replace the $7 multimeter 57 times. If I can average one multimeter a year, I can just keep buying the cheap ones until I'm 104 for the same money. Cheapies make more sense.

But--the $7 Harbor Freight multimeter does not come with the features I'd want inside a tube amp. Alligator clips, beep continuity testing, and capacitance testing. Spring for a $20-30 meter that has those features.

Bill Moore

Oct 28, 2019
New Mexico
I've had Fluke for years, and after leaving the power company I was working for, I purchased a Fluke 87 to replace their 77 I had been using. That was 1990! It died a year ago, and was not repairable, so I bought a $35 unit from CE, (Antique Electronic Supply), just never could get used to it, no auto off, manual ranging.
I found a Fluke on CL a few weeks ago, the "cheap" model 179, lots of good features you expect from them for $140!
(My Fluke 88 has been used in the shop almost daily since '91, other than the screen connector, and a few fuses from user error, no problems!)

Seamus OReally

Outta here
Gold Supporting Member
Feb 11, 2019
Way out west
Modern day mentality, buy junk from our enemies, insert ridiculous reason here.

Zero pride of ownership in tools is a serious personality flaw.

I went to yard sale last summer (TOOLS! it said) and it was a whole wall of Harbor Fright Tools, Harbor Fright everything, compressor, wretched quality air hoses.

To me, everything in that garage wasn't even worth the gas to take it all to the dump.

Like Snap On used to say: Buy quality, cry only once.
You know, you sure talk a lot unfounded trash. When it comes to personality analysis, you might want to stick to discussing things you understand.


Sep 6, 2010
Cheap fluke is what I'd get. I repair elevators and I never use audible continuity. I always want to see the exact reading. Its a habit from 30 years ago when my cheap meter would lie to me if the resistance was to high.