A few months back my multimeter was stolen from a house I was remodeling and I replaced it with an MM5000 model from Klein. As much as I miss that old meter (it and a job as an industrial electrician paid for my engineering degree), I enjoy having a new one. Here's what I can tell you about it.

My first impression of the MM5000 is that it's a rugged, well protected device designed to stand up to jobsite conditions. It comes with a protective carrying pouch and a set of test leads that incorporate removable alligator clips. The pouch itself provides reasonable protection for carrying the meter but it does not provide a suitable pocket to store the leads, separate alligator clips, or other items electricians tend to keep in meter cases.

A protective orange cover fits snuggly around the meter body to protect it from damage. According to the manufacturer the meter has a 10-foot fall rating. I dropped it several times onto concrete from an electrical panel and test bench, with no visible or functional damage to the tool. The protective casing also incorporates a well-constructed stand and an optional magnetic bracket is available to hang the meter on vertical metal surfaces, like an electrical panel door.

Under the protective orange cover is a sturdy plastic housing. A well-constructed battery compartment is easily accessed by removing a single screw that threads into a metal insert. Removing the back cover reveals a circuit board designed for a rugged environment.

The meter takes two AAA batteries. There are no serviceable fuses in the MM5000 as it does not have current measurement inputs and therefore does not need this short circuit protection.

The meter leads insert firmly into the meter plugs – although I would prefer that they be farther apart for easier access with gloved hands. The meter selector switch operates smoothly with positive engagement at each selection and the added advantage of two off positions. I have wondered for years why more manufacturers have not incorporated this feature.

The backlit digital display is large and clear and is easy to read in both dim light and bright sunshine. The viewing angle of the display is good except when the backlight is on and one looks at the display from above.  At certain angles the screen is essentially unreadable, forcing the user to change position or move the meter. Given that the meter will often be positioned below the user (inside an electrical panel or on bench) this can be a little irritating.

The meter has all the key functionality required by an electrician such as A/C and D/C voltage, ohms, audible continuity, however the model MM5000 does not have mA or amp measurement capabilities and therefore may not be suitable for those involved with control systems. For this added functionality, you will have to step up to the MM6000.

The meter has true RMS measurement ensuring that it is suitable for use where there is sine wave distortion (i.e. motor VFD's, high efficiency HVAC and installations with significant electronic loads). In use, the response time on voltage measurement and continuity measurements seemed standard. I did not attempt to verify the manufacturer's accuracy specifications using known calibrated sources.

In summary, the made in the USA Klein multimeter MM5000 is well constructed and provides the key measurement functions required by an electrician. The $150 price tag is in line with what you'd pay for similarly equipped models from other reputable brands. If you are looking at this meter you may want to give some thought to stepping up to the MM6000, for the added functionality that comes from having mA and amp measurement.

Country of Origin: USA Web Price: $150