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Mitutoyo ABSOLUTE 500-196-20 Digital Caliper, Stainless Steel, Battery Powered, Inch/Metric, 0-6" Range, +/-0.001" Accuracy, 0.0005" Resolution

4.7 out of 5 stars 165 customer reviews
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Specifications for this item
Brand Name Mitutoyo
Part Number 500-196-20
Number of Items 1
Material Type Stainless Steel
Size 0-6"
Specification Met N/A
System of Measurement Inch/Metric
UPC 000000000093 , 520480532292 , 603908399506 , 520480532315 , 603908314196
Additional Features Thumb roller^zero-setting
Display LCD
EAN 0520480532315 , 0520480532292 , 4946368526287 , 0000000000093 , 5055396122237 , 5055413663934 , 0603908399506 , 0603908314196
Is Recalled? N
Item Depth 40mm
Item Weight 13.6 ounces
Manufacturer Series Number 500 Series
Manufacturer Warranty Description Manufacturer
Maximum Measurement 0-6"
Measurement Accuracy +/-0.001"
Output Type N/A
Overall Length 233  mm
Power Source Type Battery
Range 0-6"
Resolution 0.0005"
Specific Uses For Product Depth , Inside , Outside , Step
Style Name LCD
Tip Description Standard
UNSPSC Code 41111600

The Mitutoyo ABSOLUTE 500 series caliper is a Digimatic digital caliper th... See more product details


Mitutoyo Deals

Product Features

  • Hardened stainless steel construction for protection of caliper components
  • Four-way measurement capability for multiple applications: outside diameter (OD), inside diameter (ID), depth, and step
  • Digital, single-value readout LCD display in metric units for readability
  • Position memory for retaining measurements
  • Function control buttons on the face, for ease of use: Origin, On/Off, and Zero/ABS (Absolute Scale)

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Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 1.6 x 4.5 x 10.7 inches ; 13.6 ounces
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Domestic Shipping: Item can be shipped within U.S.
  • International Shipping: This item is not eligible for international shipping. Learn More
  • ASIN: B001C0ZPNO
  • Item model number: 500-196-20
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (165 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,570 in Industrial & Scientific (See Top 100 in Industrial & Scientific)
  • Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here
  • Discontinued by manufacturer: Yes

Product Description

The Mitutoyo ABSOLUTE 500 series caliper is a Digimatic digital caliper that is made of durable hardened stainless steel and uses Mitutoyo’s ABSOLUTE linear encoder technology, which allows you to “set and forget” the origin and measure in awkward or difficult locations.

This digital caliper has LCD readout and function control buttons on the caliper face, including Origin to set and retain the original measuring point, and Zero/ABS (Absolute Scale) to zero-set the LCD display. It uses the metric measuring system.

Although identical to dial and vernier calipers in its ability to make precise measurements, the digital caliper also has an LCD, which clearly shows values and increases reading reliability over the other types, and reflects all ABSOLUTE system activities. The Absolute Scale (ABS) function tracks the origin point you set, even after shutoff. Once on again, the caliper can immediately start measuring, without zero resetting or concern of overspeed errors. The LCD can be "zeroed out" before making and comparing incremental measurements without having to subtract the first measurement from the second.

The calipers use the ABSOLUTE electrostatic capacitance linear encoder which helps prevent overspeed errors. They measure outer diameter (OD), inner diameter (ID), depth, and step, where the butt end of the fixed jaw measures one end of a work piece before its upper/lower or inner/outer "steps" are measured. LCD Resolution is 0.01mm. Also included are origin-setting, zero-setting, and on/off automatic shutoff function buttons. A Digital LCD Data Reading Hold function is available with the optional Data Hold Unit (sold separately). An alarm alerts the user to low voltage and scale contamination and counting value composition errors. A rolling thumb wheel makes fine adjustments and a thumb screw locks the scale’s position. Response speed is unlimited. Each caliper includes, and is powered by, one SR44 silver oxide cell battery that lasts approximately 3.5 years with continuous normal use.

Calipers measure the distance between two opposing sides of an object. They make inside, outside, depth, or step measurements, according to their type. Calipers are commonly used in architecture, metalworking, mechanical engineering, and machining. The simplest calipers have two legs to mark the two points and require a ruler to take the measurement. More complex calipers use two sets of jaws instead of legs and have up to two graduated scales. Vernier, dial, and digital calipers give direct and accurate readings and are functionally identical, having a calibrated scale with a fixed jaw, and another jaw with a movable pointer that slides along the scale. The vernier caliper has a scale sliding parallel to the main scale for an additional, fractional reading to improve measurement precision. The dial caliper has a circular dial with a pointer on a toothed gear rack replacing the second vernier scale. As with the vernier, this second measurement is added to the reading from the main scale to obtain the result. The digital caliper takes a differential by zeroing the display at any point along the slide, with an LCD that displays a single value in English and/or metric units.

Mitutoyo manufactures precision measuring tools, metrology equipment, and systems. The company was founded in Tokyo in 1934 and formed Mitutoyo America Corporation in 1963, which is headquartered in Aurora, IL.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

These Mitutoyo calipers are much more expensive than the Chinese-made units that you can get in the $10-30 range. However, while the cheap Chinese calipers are probably plenty accurate for most home users, there is a reason for the price difference.

I previously had a couple different Chinese-made calipers, which did have a solid feel and looked to be pretty well made. But they both exhibited a very fundamental problem - they did not always return to zero when the jaws were closed. For one thing, just closing them at a faster rate or with a little more force would usually result in a negative reading. But regardless of how they are zeroed (varying force and speed), they weren't even consistent. I never felt confident that the measurements were reliable.

Then I found the Mitutoyo 500-196-20 calipers on sale for $90, so I picked up a pair. Handling the calipers, I was surprised at how light they are. They are probably half the weight of either of the Chinese calipers I previously owned. I installed the included battery and set the origin, and immediately tested the accuracy when closing the jaws. It returned to zero every time, regardless of speed or force. Over the time I've owned them, with regular use and never having re-set the origin, I have yet to see any inaccuracy when closing them or repeating known measurements.

I was very pleased with the obvious quality of these calipers, and then I randomly came across an interesting article comparing calipers in terms of power consumption and accuracy. I'm not allowed to post a URL here, but google "davehylands caliper battery" and it's the first result. There is a good explanation of why you need to use high-quality SR44 silver-oxide batteries, and some experiments showing how the Mitutoyo calipers are superior to their cheaper competitors. Various metrology sites have further information comparing brands, and Mitutoyo are generally considered the best, while not always being the most expensive.
10 Comments 123 of 128 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Another reviewer mentioned quality and battery usage on cheapo calipers. I spent $40 on the best caliper at my local hardware store. It was shiny and had a big display. All that was negated by it burning through one battery a month. Those LR44 button cells are expensive enough. If i had to buy a dozen of them every year, i'd pay for the Mitutoyo pretty quick.

I've seen these calipers at every company i've worked for. They seem to be the most popular quality calipers. I got mine for around $90 as well and love them. Their battery is supposed to last around 4 years or so. I can live with that :)

I know people are used to paying so little for a lot of electronics these days. If you actually NEED a digital caliper, get a good one. This one is excellent.

October 2011 Update:

My caliper still works great and still on the original battery. I was thrilled with it when new and even happier still nearly a year later. Can i give it six stars?
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This is probably the best digital caliper in it's price range. Made in Japan. Very accurate, smooth movement. Measures down to the thousandths. Easy to use. Comes in a nice plastic case. This is about as accurate and reliable as any mechanic will ever need.
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I absolutely love these digital calipers. You definitely get what you pay for. They are extremely accurate and hold the zero all of the time. The battery lasts a very long time. I started out with cheaper Franfort Arsenals for $30 and sold them after a few months. If you are going to be serious about hand loading these are a must have on your reloading bench!
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After using the same product at work for several years I purchased a pair for home use. In the past this brand has worked very well and held up under hard use. When we had these calipers checked for calibration they were always within tolerance, so no adjustment was ever required. Anyway, great product and company if you need a good pair of calipers you cannot go wrong.
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I'm a mechanical engineer, and I use these at work as well. These are the calipers to buy if you want quality without emptying your wallet. If you have the money though, Starret makes great measurement tools.
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This is a great mid range caliper at a good price. Very accurate (I checked against some gauge blocks and my micrometers) and 0s with no problems. Very well built and I am looking forward to getting years of use from it. Unlike s couple of the cheap Chinese made ones I have seen it will instantaneously convert between inches and mm when you push the button.
A couple of the real cheap ones only work in one or the other e.g. you set 0 push the button and measure and get either inches or mm but not both.

Probably overkill for wood working but still a great tool.
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This Digital Caliper is worth every cent I paid for it. I have wasted money on the $25 to $40 calipers, but realize I had to do that to appreciate this Mitutoyo.
The inexpensive calipers do not make the same measurement twice. They never turn off, just the display goes blank. The Mitutoyo's measurements are accurate and repeatable. Measure it once and every time after it is the same. You should invest in quality measuring devices for what ever you use them for.
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