This MiniTec multimeter by Extech is a compact, manual ranging meter that is ideal for the home and lower energy jobs. The Extech MN24-Kit includes a socket tester and voltage detector, while the meter itself is equipped with a dedicated battery tester. This is a well priced unit that tucks away nicely inside tool bags.
- Measures AC/DC voltage to 600V
- Measures DC amperage to 10A
- 2000-count display
- Battery tester
- Continuity/diode checks
- AC EF detection to 600V
- Outlet wiring config tests
- 9V battery
- Non-contact voltage detector
- Socket tester
- Extech MN24 Manual (pdf)
In-depth Review of the Extech MN24
The multimeter part of the package – the MN24 – is a basic meter for general purpose electrical tasks. It is a manual ranging multimeter, so is about as basic as it gets, with the user needing to select individual ranges.
It is ideal for testing voltage, measuring resistance in a circuit (albeit with a narrow range), and checking for continuity. In addition, you can also test DC amperage, from milliamps up to 10A (in bursts). The battery tester on the Extech MN24-Kit is a nice addition, providing more accurate results than using the voltage tester alone.
Although you can’t test for AC amperage directly with this multimeter, you can use the included voltage detector to do so.
Can pick up AC voltage between 100V and 600V, 50/60Hz circuits. This works against cords, cable runs and socket outlets, although the detection range is a little short. On detection of voltage, the unit flashes an LED and sets off a beeper. Slips nicely into top pockets.
You can detect several fault conditions with this outlet tester via LEDs – just plug it in. Faults: open ground, open neutral, open hot, hot/ground reversed, and hot/neutral reversed. It will also show the correct wiring.
Everything comes in a useful little storage that holds the meter and extra items.
|DC voltage||200mV / 600V||±(0.5%+2)||0.1mV-1V|
|AC voltage (50/60Hz)||200V / 600V||±(1.2%+10)||0.1-1V|
|DC current||2000µA / 10A||±(1.0%+2) @ 2000µA-20mA||1µA-10mA|
|Resistance||200Ω / 2000kΩ||±(0.8%+2) @ 200Ω-2000kΩ||0.1Ω-1kΩ|
|Battery tester||1.5V / 9V||±(1.0%+2)||10mV|
The Extech MN24-Kit has so-so build quality. Not the best you’ll get from an Extech and it is built in China, but you can’t expect too much for $20. The meter comes enclosed in a rubber boot and has standard jack input sockets. The socket tester and voltage stick are fairly well built, but wouldn’t take much abuse.
Interface: The display is a 2000-count (3 1/2-digit) unit with a measure rate of around twice per second. The display is not backlit. The dial is 360-degree – being manual ranging – and values are clearly displayed.
Function: A low battery alert will display on-screen if the meter battery runs low. The battery tester has three ranges for good, weak, and change.
9V: GOOD: >8.2V, WEAK: 7.2V-8.2V, CHANGE: <7.2V
1.5V: GOOD >1.35V, WEAK 1.22V-1.35V, CHANGE: <1.22V
There have been reports of the MN24 shutting itself off, but most people are happy with it.
The fuses for the Extech MN24 are 200mA for the low current input and 10A for the high current. Note that the maximum stated DC amperage measured (10A) is for bursts of a maximum of 30 seconds only. The meter doesn’t have the quality components to sustain more than this and it will eventually overheat.
It is rated 600V at category II, so is only good for testing appliances and not the actual mains current at the socket or circuit breaker end. For that, you’d need to use the voltage stick. Maximum to-ground measurement allowed is 500V.
Pros and Cons
- Three-in-one kit
- Measures DC amperage
- Battery tester
- Good price
- Build quality quite low
- Slim measurement ranges
- No AC amps
- Manual only
The review of the Extech MN24-Kit has a pretty useful electrical test kit for the home owner. Ideal for testing and installing to DIY level, it will suit hobbyists especially, but electricians won’t have the range, ratings and sturdiness needed for the field. Note that the MN24 is sold as a kit only.
A good alternative is the slightly pricier PK-110 from Amprobe.