Best Cheap Multimeters ($30 or Less) – Top Picks & Reviews

DANIEL FOSTER

As an electrical engineer from Stanford University with over 7 years of experience using multimeters.

If you’re like me, troubleshooting electrical issues can be frustrating without a working multimeter. Buying a new one can be a headache, especially on a tight budget. That’s where the search for the best cheap multimeter comes in.

After extensive research and testing, I’ve compiled a list of affordable multimeters. I’ll share my experiences with these meters, from checking car battery voltage to troubleshooting household electrical problems.

MODELPRICE
AstroAI TRMS 6000$34
Crenova MS8233D$27
Klein Tools MM400$55
Innova 3320$30
Fluke 101$45
Etekcity MSR-R500$13

Let’s dive into a full review of each of these affordable multimeters!

1. AstroAI TRMS 6000

Features

  • 3 5⁄6 digit, 5999 count display
  • 2 times per second sampling speed
  • Automatic or manual range selection
  • Polarity Indication
  • Overload Indication
  • Low Battery Indication

The AstroAI TRMS 6000 – is a personal favorite of mine when it comes to affordable multimeters. This little gadget is a powerhouse regarding accuracy and durability, making it a great choice for anyone who needs a reliable meter that won’t break the bank.

I’ve had the pleasure of using the AstroAI 6000 on a number of occasions, and I have to say, I’ve been impressed every time. This meter boasts a wide range of features that you wouldn’t typically find on a budget-friendly device, including an auto-ranging function and a backlit LCD display.

But what really sets the AstroAI 6000 apart from other cheap multimeters is its accuracy. I’ve put this meter through its paces on various tasks, from measuring AC/DC voltage to testing continuity, and it’s never let me down. Plus, with its sturdy construction and well-placed protective features, I feel confident taking it with me on the go – whether that means bringing it out to the garage or taking it on a camping trip.

In short, I’d say that the AstroAI 6000 is a fantastic choice for anyone who needs a reliable, accurate multimeter without spending a fortune. It’s one of my top recommendations for anyone looking to upgrade their toolkit on a budget.

Package Includes

  • AstroAI DM6000AR True RMS Digital Multimeter
  • Test Leads (Pair)
  • K-Type Thermocouple
  • Multi-Function Socket
  • User Manual

Pros

  • True RMS
  • Auto-ranging capability
  • Large LCD backlit screen
  • Data hold, max/min, continuity buzzer and diode test
  • Overload protection

Cons

  • Not suitable for measuring DC current
  • No transistor test function

2. Crenova MS8233D

Features

  • 100% Safety Assurance
  • Auto-ranging Tester
  • Backlight Display
  • Data Hold, Maximum Value Hold, Function Switching
  • Auto Power OFF
  • Sampling Speed: 3x/second

Oh, the Crenova MS8233D – a multimeter that certainly doesn’t skimp on features! This little gadget is a true jack-of-all-trades, capable of measuring everything from AC/DC voltage and current to resistance, frequency, and more. It’s a veritable Swiss Army Knife of electrical testing tools.

Now, I’ll admit – I haven’t had quite as much hands-on experience with the Crenova MS8233D as I have with some other multimeters. But what I lack in personal experience, I’ve more than made up for in research. And let me tell you, this meter has a lot going for it.

For starters, there’s its sleek design. The Crenova MS8233D is built to meet IEC61010-1 & CAT II 600V over voltage category and double insulation standards, which means you can trust that it’s safe and reliable to use. And despite all its features, it manages to maintain a compact, lightweight construction that won’t weigh you down.

Speaking of features – this meter has plenty of them. From its backlit display and data hold function to its maximum value hold and auto power off features, it’s clear that the folks at Crenova went all out when designing this device. And with its ability to measure diode continuity and frequency, it’s a great choice for anyone who needs a versatile tool for electrical testing.

Of course, no product is perfect, and there are a few things about the Crenova MS8233D that I don’t love. For one thing, I’ve found that the auto power-off feature can be a bit finicky – sometimes, it seems to turn off too quickly, even when I’m actively using the meter. Additionally, while the backlit display is a nice touch, it can be a bit dim in low-light conditions, which can make it difficult to read.

But overall, I think the Crenova MS8233D is a solid choice for anyone looking for an affordable, versatile multimeter. It may not be perfect, but it’s definitely a contender in the budget-friendly category.

Package Includes

  • Crenova MS8233D Digital Multimeter
  • Test Lead
  • User Manual

Pros

  • Auto-ranging feature
  • Backlight LCD display
  • Portable size
  • Data hold function
  • Affordable price

Cons

  • No true RMS
  • Battery not included
  • Limited durability

3. Klein MM400

Features

  • Versatile Voltage & Current
  • 600V AC/DC Voltage
  • 10A AC/DC Current
  • 40 MOhms Resistance
  • Robust & Safe Design
  • Convenient Battery Management

READ: Klein MM400 Review

Well, look who we have here – the Klein MM400! This little guy has been making waves in the electrical testing world for a while now, and I’ve had the of getting my hands on one to see what all the fuss is about.

Let me tell you, this multimeter is a real workhorse. It’s got a CAT III 600V safety rating, which means it can handle some serious electrical currents without batting an eye. With the ability to measure up to 600V AC/DC voltage, 10A AC/DC current, and 40 MOhms resistance, it’s a versatile tool that can tackle just about any job you throw at it.

But don’t be fooled by its impressive capabilities – the MM400 is still a budget-friendly option, typically costing around $55 to $60. That’s a steal when you consider all the features it packs in.

One minor gripe I have with it is that the screen can be a bit difficult to read. But let’s be real – that’s a pretty minor quibble when you consider all the things this multimeter can do.

It may not be the flashiest or most expensive multimeter out there, but it gets the job done with efficiency and reliability. And really, what more could you ask for?

Package Includes

  • Test leads
  • Thermocouple with adapter
  • Batteries
  • User manual

Pros

  • Quality brand is known for reliability
  • Compact and user-friendly design
  • Clear display with backlight
  • Auto-ranging and micro-amps feature
  • Comes with a thermocouple

Cons

  • Not True RMS
  • Not ideal for industrial use

4. Innova 3320

Features

  • Auto-Ranging
  • Protective Rubber Corner Guards
  • DC & AC Current Measurement
  • Small Battery Load Test
  • 10 Megohm Input Impedance
  • Auto Shut Off Feature
  • UL Listed

Innova 3320 is a digital multimeter for the budget-conscious. It may not have all the bells and whistles of some of its pricier counterparts, but for its low cost (around $30, give or take), it certainly holds its own.

First of all, let’s talk about that auto-ranging function. With the 3320, you can kiss goodbye to the days of manually adjusting the range for each electrical value you want to measure. This nifty feature saves you time and hassle, allowing you to focus on the task at hand without constantly fiddling with the meter.

But wait, there’s more! The 3320 also comes equipped with a battery testing function that lets you assess the health of your battery with ease.

The Innova 3320 is primarily designed for basic electrical testing, so it may not be as accurate or reliable for more complex tasks.

But hey, for around $30, the Innova 3320 is a steal. It may not be the fanciest multimeter on the market, but it gets the job done and then some. So if you’re a DIY enthusiast or an automotive tech looking for a budget-friendly and user-friendly option, the 3320 is definitely worth a closer look.

Package Includes

  • Innova 3320 Multimeter
  • 2 x Probes
  • User Manual

Pros

  • Accurate measurements
  • Versatile testing functions
  • Auto-ranging feature
  • Large, easy-to-read display
  • Diode and continuity testing
  • Affordable price

Cons

  • Limited durability
  • Non-backlit display
  • Short leads/probes

5. Fluke 101

Features

  • Precise 0.5% DC Accuracy
  • CAT III 600V Safety Rating
  • Diode & Continuity Test (Buzzer)
  • Compact & Lightweight
  • Rugged Durability
  • Automatic Shutdown
  • Easy Battery Replacement

This little guy packs a punch for its size and price range (around $40 – $45). With a sleek and compact design and lightweight, you can practically perform electrical tests with one hand tied behind your back (though we don’t recommend actually trying that).

Don’t be fooled by its small size, it offers reliable and accurate measurements with a basic dc accuracy of 0.5%.

Ideal for residential and commercial electricians, heating and air conditioning technicians, and anyone in need of basic electrical tests, the Fluke 101 won’t disappoint. Plus, it comes with a diode and continuity test with a buzzer, making it even more versatile.

And let’s not forget about safety, with a CAT III 600 V safety rating, you can rest assured that you’re protected from potential electrical hazards. And if you forget to turn it off after use, no worries, it’s equipped with an automatic shutdown feature.

All in all, the Fluke 101 is a solid choice for those looking for a reliable and affordable multimeter.

Package Includes

  • Fluke 101 Digital Multimeter
  • 2 x Test Lead
  • User Manual

Pros

  • Fluke reliability
  • Accurate measurements
  • Compact size
  • Auto-ranging feature
  • True RMS measurements
  • Backlit display
  • Data hold function
  • CAT III safety rating

Cons

  • No capacitance or temperature measurements

6. Etekcity MSR-R500

Features

  • Automatic Shutoff
  • Overload Protection
  • Manual Ranging
  • Backlit LCD Display
  • Data Hold
  • 1999 Max Display Value

The Etekcity MSR-R500 – the David among Goliaths in the world of multimeters. As an entry-level device, this little guy is perfect for students and hobbyists who need a reliable multimeter without breaking the bank. And with a price as low as $12.49, it’s definitely one of the cheapest options out there.

It can quickly deliver accurate readings at a speed of 2-3 times per second. And with the ability to test AC/DC voltage, DC current, resistance, diodes, continuity, and more, it’s perfect for a wide variety of applications.

One of the things I really appreciate about the MSR-R500 is its rubber case, which provides protection against damage. And with overload protection, you can feel safe using it for all your electrical needs. Plus, the backlit LCD display makes it easy to read results, even in dimly lit environments.

There are some trade-offs. The MSR-R500 is a manual range device, so it may take a bit of getting used to for those used to automatic ranging multimeters. But once you get the hang of it, this little guy will quickly become your go-to for all your DIY electrical projects.

Package Includes

  • MSR-R500 Multimeter
  • Hook Clip
  • Test Leads
  • User Manual

Pros

  • Affordable price
  • Accurate measurements
  • Overload protection
  • Diode and continuity testing
  • Portable size

Cons

  • Limited durability
  • Non-backlit display
  • Only for Beginners

Final Word

Well, that concludes our discussion. Finding the best cheap multimeter is all about balancing price with functionality. While there are certainly more expensive models on the market that may offer additional features or greater accuracy, for most DIY enthusiasts and hobbyists, a budget-friendly multimeter will be more than sufficient for their needs.

Ultimately, whether you’re an amateur electrician looking to tackle small-scale projects around the house or simply someone who wants to have a reliable tool on hand for occasional use, a cheap multimeter can be an excellent investment. By following our recommendations above, you’ll be well on your way to selecting the perfect model for your needs – one that provides accurate readings, durable construction, and easy-to-use functionality at an affordable price point.

So, go ahead, pick the one that suits you best, and start measuring like a pro!

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