This purchase, and subsequent post, have been more than half a decade in the making. At least six years, which is slightly more than half a decade. Hence, my use of the phrase more than in the first sentence. Are you going to mock my spelling of multimeter soon too?

Yes, I’ve finally replaced my highschool-era device with a fancy new LCR meter, the Pro’sKit MT-5211. I wish I could say this was the result of studious, well-documented, and thorough research, but it was the one that Medhi uses in his ElectroBOOM videos, and he’s delightful.

Here he is experimenting with induction cookers:

Medhi demonstrating induction cookers, with a MT-5211 pictured

I lucked out on the price, on several fronts:

  • Being based in San Francisco for a month, so I didn’t have to pay the Australia Tax™ for expensive overseas shipping and GST, and whatever else Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull wants to charge the rest of us so he can hand out tax cuts to the top.

  • Using my boss’s Amazon Prime account for free overnight shipping to the office, rather than paying for local postage.

  • Getting an otherwise fully-tested unit, with warranty, in a damaged box for less than a third the original price!

  • The seller had typo’d the name as mustimeter, so presumably others hadn’t been able to find it which kept demand and the price low. I only found it by looking for the exact model number.

  • Did I mention not paying the Australia Tax?

All in all, a low three digit purchase became a low two digit purchase. Which this meter could pick up, given its resolution! A bit of a precision joke for you there.

Alas, I don’t have my Nagato Yuki figure with me to take a picture with, like I’ve done with all my hardware purchases going back a decade here, so this recent cute promo art from Nagato Yuki-chan will have to suffice. The laptop may also provide a sense of scale, which is another precision pun for you there.

Yuki-chan with the muskimeter

Little did I know that among an inundation of recent emails though, regular contributor William Hales emailed me further details, which looks interesting and worthy of being passed on:

A note on LCR meters: the LCR-T4 project (widely cloned) is a useful first step if you don’t want to throw cash on the “traditional” boxed units. Lookup “LCR tester” on eBay.

Cheap variants: between 10-20 AUD shipped. No case, simple two-line ASCII display. Expensive variants: around 40AUD shipped. Case, buttons, colour TFT display. Otherwise the same internals doing the testing.

There’s a whole long thread about this platform and its relatives on the EEVblog forums. The author’s also on there.

My boss also reminded me of the EEVblog 121GW Multimeter which also looks amazing, but a little outside my price range. It’s a sweet looking unit though.