The most significant difference between an analog multimeter and the digital multimeter is that the analog multimeter comprises of a scale and a deflection pointer which actually indicates the value to be measured on the scale, while, in digital multimeters, a digital display like LCD directly displays the value.
Routine electrical measurements are usually made with a multimeter. These versatile instruments contain a sensing device, auxiliary circuitry, and switches that allow measuring voltage, current, and resistance in several ranges.
Most modern multimeters have an electronic sensing device with a digital display. But prior to the development of integrated-circuit electronics, the sensing device was electromechanical with an analog display. Analog meters have the advantage of lower cost, and analog displays are still widely used for single-function panel meters and inexpensive multimeters.
The most important differences between Analog Multimeter and Digital Multimeter are discussed in this article on the basis of certain factors such as accuracy, reading, calibration, cost, ADC requirement, construction, supply source, input signals, and noise.The following table keys out the main Differences between Analog and Digital Multimeter.
Difference between Analog and Digital Multimeter
Characteristics Analog Multimeter Digital Multimeter
Accuracy Prone to error because of wrong pointer based reading Measures with great accuracy
Reading Provides reading on a scale against pointer Provides reading in numeric form appeared on a LCD
Calibration Calibration is done manually They are calibrated automatically before taking any measurement
Cost Less costly as they offer very few features Expensive as they offer wide range of features
Range Have to set a range of measurement manually Mostly, they have auto-ranging feature but costlier than their counter-parts
Measuring parameters Usually it measures current, voltage, and resistance Measures current, voltage, resistance, capacitance, and inductance as well
ADC Requirement Does not require analog-to-digital converter (ADC) to display reading Requires ADC in order to display the reading on LCD
AC Frequency Highest AC Frequency which can be measured is lower Highest AC Frequency which can be measured is higher than its counter-part
Construction Construction is easy and simple Complicated construction because of several electronic and logic components involvement
Power supply Is not required Is required in these types of meters
Size Bigger in size Very small like hand-held devices
Noise Suffer less from electric noise Suffer more from electric noise
Input signals Displays only one input signal value It is able to accept multiple inputs and has adjustable displays which allow user to choose between the input signals.