A multimeter is a device which is used to measure several electrical quantities such as current, voltage, resistance, inductance, capacitance, and electrical frequency.
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.|