The DT830D is a digital multimeter made in China. It is capable of measuring voltage, current, resistance, transistor, diode, and has a signal generator function. It cannot measure capacitor values.
There are many branded versions of this meter all with the same model number. I managed to find UNI-T, DOSS, Fuke, Haoyue, Nora, and Sunwa. These are all identical to the one shown in this article and based on the same 830 series chip.
This digital meter has the ICL7106 Chip on Board (COB) package and the accuracy figures are very much the same as those for the DT830B.
This meter does not come with a service manual, or instructions of any kind. Instead, the accuracy figures are on the back of the box. If you need more information regarding accuracy then please refer to the DT830B article. If you need a service manual, then I have a section on the ICL7106, which should be very useful because it has a multimeter circuit.
The price of this meter is very low. On eBay, one seller was willing to sell it for as little as £2.50. The price in India is even lower with the rupee equivalent of £1.50.
I decided to get this meter for three reasons; it has a bright attractive colour, it has a signal generator function, and it was only £2.50 including postage!
Good Points: It comes with a fitted 9 V PP3 Pakko battery, so it is ready to be used. These batteries are very popular in Asia, as they are one of the best manufacturers of batteries. I remember buying one of these when I was on holiday and it lasted almost forever.
I tested the voltage measurements up to 20 V and found them to be accurate. The resistance measurements up to 2 MΩ were also good enough for hobby use. The signal generator function also worked fine. The transistor test function was also fine, and the diode test measured the forward voltage drop accurately!
The LCD is nice and clear and the segments are thick enough to be legible. The contrast appears to be much better than the earlier meters. It provides an HV symbol, and a negative symbol.
It has the CE mark; however, if I remember correctly, this is a self-certification logo and does not constitute any type of independent formal testing.
Bad Points: You should be aware of some minor cosmetic issues. The probe plugs did not fit properly or sit straight. The front sticker for the switch was poorly stuck with an uneven finish.
LCD Contrast - Excellent
As you can see, the LCD contrast is wonderful! If you have a digital multimeter that was over five years old, then the good news is that they have made huge advances in LCD technology.
There are very few LCD manufacturers, and therefore some of the high-end meters will also have the same display.
Fuse: Un-Fused Shunts
For the current measurement, the instructions on the back cover indicate that there is a fuse protection. However, if you look inside, there is no fuse!
A fuse is a very important safety device that should be included in all meters. Even some of the cheapest budget-end designs have them.
Un-fused shunts mean that your meter has no way to protect itself from over current situations. In such a situation, the PCB trace will burn, or the main chip damaged, and therefore your meter will not last very long.
Since there is no fuse protection, the maximum current ratings may not be accurate either. On the meter, there is a marking indicating “200 mA max”. Is this the rating of the PCB trace?
This meter could get damaged if the setting is on 200 mA, and you pass 1 ampere through it by mistake. You will have to be very careful when you are measuring current, or best not to use it at all to measure current.
Probe Wire Resistance
The probe wires show a resistance of 0.5 Ω and the quality appears to be the same as the earlier designs in the DT830 series. If you decide to use this meter, you will need better probes, otherwise do not use the 10 A option to measure current.
Even though my one came sealed and brand new, the probes were making intermittent connections. I contacted the sellers and they were happy to provide replacement probes.
1000 V Arc Test
Although this meter has 200 V, 750 V, and 1000 V settings, I would not use this meter for any kind of high voltages in this range.
For me to use it for higher voltages, I would require serious assurances, including arc test reports, and some heavyweight British safety certification logos before I would even consider it. The European CE mark on its own is meaningless to me.
The Sniff Test
I recently had an email from my friend Avid -- a German Wikipedian -- who said that when he smelt the plastic he was seeing the women...
He was convinced that the Chinese were mixing chemicals into the plastic to make him see them... He even showed me photographs of his extensive meter collection that he used for sniffing purposes...
I sniffed this one and I am sorry to report, Avid, that I did not see any women... :-)
Based on the excellent DT830B chip, this meter has the same accuracy figures, and provides adequate readings.
The plug and socket system on the DT830B seemed slightly better than on this. However, this information comes from a sample of ONE, which I bought. They could have made better batches, and you might get something completely different, hopefully better.
The digital multimeter factory is always making improvements to their production line, and chances are that they may have improved the design. In which case, it would be worth buying!
For non-critical and hobby use up to 20 V and 200 mA, this might be fine - but as Scotty always says -- "I cannot guarantee it though!"
On the plus side, it is a nice cheerful bright colour! I just love the colour, and for £2.50 including postage, it is a bargain! I would not be too surprised if this meter ended up selling in pound stores, in which case I would probably take five.
This article continues, and in the following sections, you can see the inside circuit, case, selector switch, and more.
This Article Continues...DT830D Digital Multimeter
DT830D Circuit Board
DT830D Digital Multimeter Repair and Fuse
DT830D How to Use Instructions
DT830D Box and Packaging
DT830D Design Review
DT830D Battery Replacement