Tuesday, April 29, 2014

SMD R, C and Diode Test Meter

I first started using SMD components in Homebrew Electronic Projects, because they are much cheaper, smaller to store, and the NEW more interesting functions are only available in very small SMD packages. Also, since my early days at Hewlett-Packard, I have always enjoyed working under a microscope on new and interesting things.

As a hobbyist, the one tool that I have always wanted was a good SMD Multifunction Tweezers Test Meter to measure SMD component values. When I first started with SMD's, there was only one very expensive Multifunction Tweezers product available, and if I remember correctly, it was about $1200. Over the years, they have come down in price. I think now they, and the "knockoff" brands, are around $350.

These more expensive Tweezer Meters will "Auto Scan" for; Inductance, Resistance, Capacitance, Diodes, and simple Continuity. All of these functions would be nice to have.

SMD Component
Testing Tweezers
But, $350 is still more money than I want to spend on a Meter.

Recently I found an interesting Tweezers Test Meter,  with maybe a fewer functions at Adafruit.com for only $27.95

Such a Deal ! At that price, I can not afford to be without.

Yes, this model has a few less functions than the expensive sets, but it is similar to the cheaper "Tool Box VOM" that we all have, it should get the job done.

This tool, provides Resistance, Capacitance, Diode, and simple Continuity testing (no Inductance), which are just exactly the functions that are most often needed. Along with my Soldering Iron, I expect this to be my "go-to-tool" on the build bench.

I ordered the Tweezer Test set from Adafruit (along with a few other components/parts) late Friday afternoon, and then received the order on Monday afternoon (shipped from New York to Seattle). Adafruit must have one heck of a Order Fulfillment process that can process an order, and then pick-and-pack products for over a weekend delivery.

A followup post will be provided after I have used this meter a few weeks.

FYI: I am not an agent of Adafruit, I am just a happy customer. The image used within the post was obtained from the Adafruit.com web site without their permission, I hope they will not object to its usage here. 


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