Recently I got this LCR meter from ebay for about £74 ($114 USD) to replace my cheap LC meter which I reviewed before, this includes the main three accessories so it can be had a little cheaper than this.
The DE-5000 has a lot of useful functions for its price:
- Measurement of Inductance, Capacitance, DC and AC Resistance
- Measurement of Dissipation Factor, Quality, ESR and Theta.
- Series and parallel measurement
- Pass / Fail component testing
- Selectable test frequency (100Hz, 120Hz, 1kHz, 10kHz, 100kHz)
- Self calibration
- Relative and hold measurement
- PC communication (with optional IR to USB adaptor)
- Large LCD screen with backlight
The main reason I got this meter was for the additional measurements it can perform, these are D (Dissipation Factor), Q (Quality), ESR (Equivalent Series Resistance) and Theta (Phase Angle), these measurements are extremely useful in a variety of situations such as evaluating component life and quality.
The build quality of the DE-5000 is pretty good, the case itself is nothing special but it does have some very high quality input jacks which is nice to see, it feels fairly robust but you'd not want to throw it around like a Fluke.
One thing to note is there is no input protection so you never want to connect it to something that is powered or a charged capacitor, I don't find this particularly surprising given its intended usage but it's something to be aware of.
The DE-5000 has a variety of accessories available.
- TL-21: Alligator test leads
- TL-22: SMD Tweezers
- TL-23: Guard Line
- IR to USB adaptor
The alligator test leads and SMD tweezers are very well made, it's clear a lot of effort has been put in to reduce parasitic effect, these attach directly over the input jacks and both include a guard jack on top.
The guard line is simply an uninsulated banana plug with an alligator clip on one end, which may not sound like much but you really notice the quality with the banana jack which is clearly machined rather than cheap rolled metal sheet.
I don't have the IR to USB adaptor but it should be possible to make something yourself if you really wanted to.
The DE-5000 has rather good accuracy specifications.
- AC Resistance: Min 0.3%+2, Max 2%+3
- DC Resistance: Min 0.2%+2, Max 2%+3
- Capacitance: Min 0.3%+2, Max 3%+5
- Inductance: Min 0.3%+2, Max 2.5%+5
- AC Resistance range: 0.001 Ohm to 200 MOhm
- DC Resistance range: 0.01 Ohm to 200 MOhm
- Capacitance range: 0.01pF to 20mF (20,000uF)
- Inductance range: 1nH to 2000H
There is nothing really bad about the DE-5000 but there are a few minor annoyances.
- Beeper cannot be disabled in software, it's not terrible but it can be annoying for some.
- Display contrast is ok but it could be a bit better in my opinion.
- Uses a 9V battery.
- Calibration process is stupidly slow.
- The tilting bale and case can slip on some surfaces.
- IR to USB is a bit pointless.
- The test voltage may forward bias some semiconductors such as Schottky diodes.
The DE-5000 is an excellent LCR meter for both hobbyists and professionals, it offers great accuracy and a bunch of other useful features, the selectable test frequency alone makes this many times better than others available and the price is fantastic.
If you repair stuff often I highly recommend getting one, being able to properly measure the performance of capacitors and inductors is super useful.