Selecting an LCR Meter on Amazon.com
An LCR meter is an electrical testing device that measures three impedance characteristics in alternating current circuits: L stands for inductance; C stands for capacitance; and R stands for resistance. Electrical impedance is a measure of total opposition to the flow of alternating current in a circuit, given in terms of these three characteristics. Inductance is the ability of an inductor coil to create voltage in response to the flow of current in it. Capacitance is the ability of an electronic component to store an electric charge, and resistance is the opposition to the flow of current. LCR meters are commonly used in research, development, and testing of electronic equipment including transformers, power supplies, and electrical motors.
Sometimes referred to as an impedance analyzer, an LCR meter comes in handheld models for use in the field or manufacturing floor and benchtop models for use in the lab. LCR meters commonly have an LCD screen to display readings and measurement settings. Some meters can output data to a computer for storage and analysis, and some include functionality such as data hold, minimum/maximum/average reading, or tolerance sorting mode. They may measure additional parameters including phase angle (θ), AC resistance (Rac), quality factor (Q), dissipation factor (D), admittance (Y), conductance (G), reactance (X), susceptance (B), and DC resistance (Rdc).
Considerations when selecting an LCR meter include the frequency range of the equipment or component to be tested and the voltage required by the device under test (DUT). LCR meters offer selectable or programmable frequencies for testing impedance characteristics. Selectable frequencies such as 50/60Hz, 120Hz, 1kHz, 10kHz, and 100kHz are common. Programmable frequency ranges provide the ability to match the frequency at which the DUT will operate. Voltage values for testing may be selectable, such as 0.1V, 0.25V, and 1V, or adjustable, for example in 50-millivolt increments.