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Showing 1-10 of 234 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 261 reviews
on June 12, 2016
I'm reviewing and critcizing Luster Leaf's1880 Rapitest Electronic 4-Way Analyzer. Luster Leaf 1880 Rapitest Electronic 4-Way Analyzer First, I apologize for not writing this review earlier. I received my Rapitest soil analyzer just as I was getting into my very busy schedukle of planting our vegetable garden back in late May.

As soon as I received the unit, I tested the pH meter by putting it in various soils with different compositions. The pH meter level was consistently at 7 (plus or minus a hair or two). Suspecting a defective pH meter, I engineered a small amount of very acidic soil by putting alot of non-pH adjusted sphagnum peat moss in it. (Non-pH-adjusted sphagnum peat moss typically registers a pH level below 5.5.) I thoroughly mixed and moistened the soil and let it set over night. I tested it the next day. The Rapitest pH meter registered 7.0. Not good!

Their pH meter does not work right. The main reason I purchased the Rapitest soil analyzer was to guage the pH of potting soil I specifically engineer for various types of vegetable garden plants. I never checked any of the 3 other guages on it. I don't trust it.

I haven't contact Leaf Luster yet to inform them about the defective unit they shipped to me. I will do that once I get a bit of spare time after putting our vegetable garden in. (I am making time to write this review now, so other people can take it into account when making their purchase decisions.)

I am upset at myself for waiting until the "last minute" to order an instantaneous pH meter. But, I'm more upset at Luster Leaf. I specifically avoided less expensive units (with poor ratings) to increase my chances of gettng a good accurate pH meter. That strategy clearly didn't work. I ended up spending more money for a soil analyzer and still ended up with a worthless meter.
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on April 10, 2017
I thought the reviewers who had bad experience were just had bad luck with a defective device until I got mine and am disappointed also. It is either defective or not sensitive enough to provide reliable information. I mainly bought it to test PH level and fertility but will provide info for all the features.

1. Fertility: I think this test is a joke. It only has 3 readings for too little, idea and too much. Firstable, plants need different ratio of NPP to grow vigorously and healthy. The 3 readings are not suitable to grade soil fertility and actually misleading. Secondly, I have fertilizer, organic compost applied periodically around plants and most of my plants grow crazily and huge but the reading shows "too little" fertility! Test 1 of this device fails miserably.

2. PH: Default is set at 7 and never really move, no matter it is on more acidity soil for berries and tomatoes or more alkaline soil for spinach. My soil is probably on the acid side while I grow squash, bean, onion, scallion, chard, potato, tomato, grapes etc successfully with monster size but spinach doesn't event sprout and asparagus is thin and small. I want to know the soil ph and adjust to more alkaline for spinach but this device fails to show different ph properly.

3. Moisture: The scale is 1 to 10 from dry to 10. If the surface is visibly dry, the device shows 0 at dry level. Plug it to visibly moisturized area, it shows 4. It seems to work on moisture but it doesn't work better than my eyes!

4. Light: It has an index of 1 to 10. The needle moves to 6-7 in green house. It works but I guess I don't really need it to tell me.
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on March 31, 2017
This DOES NOT WORK. When I tested it on plants that were just watered the gauge said they were dry. (The switch was set to measure moisture). The other features also didn't seem to work as the gauge never moved from the left side.
In fact the only time it ever worked was when I measured my watering pale full of water and the gauge finally moved all the way to the right/wet. I must have gotten a defective one. I've read other reviews complaining of defective testers. Unfortunately, it can not be returned bc I am 2 days too late (I am guessing. Bc I got it 2/28/17 and now trying to return it 3/31/17 and I have no option to return. Annoying!)

Hoping the company will reach out and help me with this return.
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on January 23, 2017
This testing tool, helped identify some areas that I needed to improve in. My wife and I are starting to use grow lights to over winter a clementine and avocado tree, so having a tool that helped show us what we needed to adjust. This was so much more simple than using capsule style testing and provided much more diagnostics.
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on May 13, 2016
the unit i got is really pretty junky. the fertility gauge is worthless. it doesn't tell you what specific nutrient you are deficient. to use the probes - for all tests you have to stick them in all the way to the base of the unit - about 6 inches. so, if you have small pots with plants you're "out of luck'. the scales or gradations are so small they are hard to read. not sure if the moisture meter is accurate. i have a separate moisture meter only unit and, the readings of both (placed in same area of plant pot) do not jive
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on May 2, 2017
This product does not work. I was skeptical that a device could measure Ph, moisture and soil ingredients using three metal probes. As others have also experienced, following Rapitest's instruction carefully yields the same 7.0 or slightly lower or higher reading regarding Ph. When measuring ingredients you are instructed to create muddy soil but do not measure liquids which is loony, and low and behold the 'Too Little' results correspond with the same 7.0 along a separate metric indicating that the device did not measure anything. In other words, the device does not work and therefore their claims are false advertising. I have repackaged the item and will be returning it promptly.
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on May 21, 2014
We have many instruments to measure pH, soil moisture and so many more, the problem is having to train our workers, some are here for only a few weeks of AG training.

Our Aquaponics farm decided to purchase the Luster Leaf 1880 Rapitest Eletronic 4-Way Analyzer from Amazon, it saved the day. No more lending our rather expensive testing gear.

For once, life made simple, it now resides in our raised beds section of our farm. Thanks Amazon
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on August 9, 2016
hard to tell it's accuracy. the thumb/finger test always says dry, the meter says something slightly different. I've not made a comparison of fertilization to tell if that is accurate.
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on June 20, 2015
I almost feel like I should have known better than to think this would actually work... but I read some reviews that said the tester worked if you followed the directions. I followed the directions and tried several tests in several different areas and the pH meter hardly moved from 7. Then I tested the meter in vinegar and it didn't read what it should. I have my suspicions that my soil is acidic, but would like to actually get my soil professionally tested to make sure... I put no confidence in this soil tester.
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on June 7, 2010
For less than 12 bucks (at the time this review was written) you get a compact soil tester that measures pH, fertilizer levels, light and moisture - sounds like the kind of thing that is broken right out of the box or works once and then never again, right? Not in this case - the rapitest unit is relatively sturdy and appears to be made with some regard for quality.

Of course, you should not expect it to survive many nights outside in the rain, nor will you get the kind of results that NASA would require for a zero-g botany experiment, but for a casual gardener with a few temperamental indoor plants this is a perfect little tool. It will give you a rough idea of how your little patch of soil is doing and can assist you in diagnosing why specific plants seem to be struggling. The most useful setting is the pH tester which gives a acidity/alkalinity reading without using testing strips or dyes. The fertility setting is calibrated for a specific set of ppm for N, K and Phosphorous (these are listed in the instructions) - also useful if you know the mineral requirements of your individual plants.

The instructions included with the unit are printed on a single sheet of paper and are easy to follow. Step by step directions for using each setting are given.

On a side note: I'm not going to risk cracking my unit open but my guess is that this device works by measuring the flow of electric current and bases the results on pre-calibrated resistances. This means there is a battery in there somewhere that will eventually conk out.
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