A multimeter is a necessity in our line of work. Any multimeter is better than not having one, but here are some of my favorite picks for me and for students. Each one is a compromise between cost and performance. Choose what works for your budget. My favorite by far is a Fluke, but at $300 plus, we can’t afford them, let your future company pay for those.
You really can’t go wrong spending money on a multimeter. Even if you have one, it’s worth it to have two (measuring voltage and current at the same time. I probably have a dozen laying around the house and car not including the Flukes I use at work.
$50 – Extech EX330 – Autoranging Mini (All-Around Winner)
This is my top pick for price vs performance. At $50 it is autoranging, compact and just as accurate as my $100 ones.
$20 – Extech MN35 – Digital Mini (Budget Winner)
Here is a quality pick on a budget, the only downside is that it is not autoranging (you have to manually select the range of values you want to measure, which can get frustrating when you are first starting out)
$40 – Amprobe AM-510 – Autoranging
Amprobe has always been a solid and accurate brand for me, here is a quality and affordable version they make.
$25 – Mastech MS8217 – Autoranging
I put this one here with some caution. I am not familiar with this brand, but I’m putting it here because it is a fairly inexpensive autoranging multimeter.
$100 – Amprobe AM-570 Industrial Autoranging w/ TrueRMS
I’m putting this one here because it’s my go to multimeter when I’m not at work using a more expensive and calibrated unit.