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My new Fluke 8846A Multimeter
29 April 2012 12:18
About 3 weeks ago a person from Fluke contacted me and informed me that I have won an contest they had on their website and I have forgotten all about that so it come as an big surprise to me. The guy from Fluke told me that I can select some gear from a listed that he has sent me in the mail.
wow, it was an nice surprise and as some may know I am an Fluke gear fan boy and I have a lot of it already, so I was as an small kid in an toy store… what to select, so after thinking about this for an day or two I come to the conclusion that what I really was missing is an very good precision bench multimeter as I already is having an number of handhold digital multimeter like Fluke 289, 789 and so on.
So I ask the nice Fluke guy if it was possible to be the happy owner of a Fluke 8846A 6.5 Digit precision bench multimeter and the response was “Yes and you get in 2-4 weeks”.
So after some waiting time, I then got a very nice package with my new free very cool Fluke 8846A multimeter, so big thanks to Fluke for this nice gift and I must say that I will now be more likely do the contests on their website when I see them.

The technical specifications and details can be seen here at fluke

But the highlights are:

  • 6.5 digit resolution
  • Basic V dc accuracy of up to 0.0024 %
  • Graphical Dual display
  • 100 uA to 10 A current range, with up to 100 pA resolution
  • Wide ohms range from 10 ohm to 1 Gohm with up to 10 uOhm resolution
  • 2 x 4 ohms 4-wire measurement technique
  • Measure frequency and period
  • Measures capacitance and temperature
  • USB memory drive port for logging
  • Communication interface IEE-488.2, Ethernet and RS 232 (including an RS232 to USB adaptor)
  • Communication protocol as Fluke 884x or Fluke 45 emulation and Agilent 34401A emulation
  • Trendplot paperless recorder mode, statistics, histogram
  • CAT I 1000 V, CAT II 600 V
  • Three-year warranty
     

Unboxing the package with the fluke 8846A meter



Front view with the only test leads there was include, so the package don’t include any 4-wire test leads so I have just made me own kelvin 4-wire test lead of some twin 0,75” good wires, 4 banana plugs and some kelvin clips that I got from EBay. I will not make a photo of them but you can see them in the other photos in this blog.



Rear view with the 3 interface ports, trigger port and banana port for test leads.



Measurement of an 10K ohm 0.01% test resistor
On left the Fluke 8846A with 4 wire test lead and on the right my Fluke 287



Measurement of an 1G ohm 5% test resistor (it is two 2Gohm resistor in parallel)
The Fluke 287 cannot measure this one because it is limit to 500Mohm but the Fluke 8846A can measure it without any issues.



For the DC volt measurement, I have an HP 6632B power supply there is also having the 4-wire output terminals so it will automatically adjust the output to compensate for the loss in the wires and there for the output will be very precis.
Here is a photo of the HP 6632B and the black box on the left is the output terminals.



HP 6632B output is set to 0.007 Volt DC, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



HP 6632B output is set to 0.502 Volt DC, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



HP 6632B output is set to 5.002 Volt DC, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



HP 6632B output is set to 12.001 Volt DC, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



For the A measurement in then as with the volt DC measurements I can use the HP 6632A power supply by setting the volt to the max 20V and then set the current limit function to a given value, then the test leads are then simple short circuit over the inputs of the meters.
HP 6632B output is current limit to 0.0022 A and this is the lowest value that I can set the power supply to.
On the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



HP 6632B output is current limit to 0.1025 A, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



HP 6632B output is current limit to 1.0011 A, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



HP 6632B output is current limit to 5.0019 A, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



To do AC volt measurement I then have this AC variable transformer 0-270VAC 2.43KVA and here in Denmark the power grid is 50Hz and 240 Volt AC



Measurement of the 50 Hz, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



Measurement of the 25 Volt AC, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



Measurement of the 100 Volt AC, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A




Measurement of the 240 Volt AC, on the left is a Fluke 287 and on the right the Fluke 8846A



Measurement of a capacitor Tantalum 1,5uf 35V, the Fluke 287 shows it as 1,8uf and the photo show the Fluke 8846A



Measurement of a capacitor 68uf 400V, the Fluke 287 shows it as 64,4uf and the photo show the Fluke 8846A



Measurement of a capacitor 10000uf 25V, the Fluke 287 shows it as 12.0mf and the photo show the Fluke 8846A



Remote controlling the Fluke 8846A from a PC then there is 3 ports on the back and they are IEEE488, LAN and RS232.
I have tested all 3 ports and they works fine without any issues  but here I will show it via the RS232 com port because it is the easiest and echo’s the commands so it is readable.

To tell you what this output means I will then try to explain what I have done here line by line. The "x>" number at the beginning of most of the lines is just line numbers and the meter automatic count them up, so it is not something I have entered.

"System:remote"
This tells the meter to change into the remote command mode and the meter needs to be in this mode in order to response to other commands, this also disable the keys on the front of the meter.

"*IDN?"
This asks the meter to identify itself and the response from the meter is "FLUKE,8846A,xxxxxxx,08/02/10-11:53"
Note: The xxxxxx is the serial number that I have hidden.

"CONFigure:VOLTage:DC 10"
This tells the meter to change the measurement to DC Volt and with the range to 10 Volt

"Read?"
This simply tells the meter to take an measurement and return the value and it has responded with "+4.99488600E+00" and this is 4.99486 Volt DC

So this is how easy it is to control the meter from a PC and if I find the time to do it, then I will make a small application so I can get some smart live logging with cool graphs and a lot more ideas that I have…. But the issue here is the time to do it.


So now I am at the end of this long blog post and I must say that I am very happy with this new cool gear that I got it for free from Fluke, so thanks Fluke and I am sure that I will be very happy with this for years and it will give better and more precise measurements that I have been missing because until now I have only had handhold meters like my Fluke 287 and Fluke 789


Videos, I will upload some video clips and you can see them here

Tooms @ 29 April 2012 12:18 | Comment | Direct link


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