A bench power supply with old school analog meters is a great addition especially if the current limiting works well. Digital meters are kinda out of it in that you are trapped by the sampling rate of the digital meter
Analog meter?... Sure, they have their place learning institutes love them (stops people blowing the fuses in digital ones) but I can't see how you think that they're better than a digital one, even a $2 one off of ebay.Cons of an Analog.You can't accurately read an analog display (it varies just from the Angle) .The coil (to drive the deflection) will also have some influence and will take some power
I almost started an argument it seems
2.5 Analog Versus Digital Meters.There are some who might say that the analog meter is on its way out, but they would be wrong. As mentioned earlier, the analog meter is almost immune to EMI (electromagnetic interference). In addition to this it is very good for showing changes in electrical quantities.There are many cases in which an adjustment must be made for maximum or minimum current or voltage. While it is possible to use a digital readout for such an adjustment, an analog meter makes it much easier.Suppose you are adjusting a control for a minimum current. When using an analog meter you do not actually read the scale of the meter. You watch the pointer moving to the left as you turn the control. When the pointer starts moving to the right, you reverse direction on the control and bring the pointer back to its left-most position. It is a matter of eye-hand coordination.On the other, hand if you are using a digital readout to make the same adjustment, you do have to read the number on the display. As you make the adjustment you continuously read the number and do a comparison to the previous one. It's no longer a matter of eye-hand coordination; now the mind must remember a number and do calculations of sorts: "Is this number larger than or smaller than the other one?" This remembering and calculating takes more time and requires more mental effort than does eye-hand coordination."But wait a minute" I hear some of you saying. "What about bar graph displays?" Bar graph displays usually have ten elements which gives only 10% resolution. In tuning the output circuit of a radio transmitter the capacitor is adjusted for minimum amplifier current. This setting gives maximum power output and maximum efficiency of the amplifier. If a bar graph were used for this purpose the amplifier current would have to change by 10% of full-scale before any change could be detected by the operator. If a transmitter's output stage is operated 10% "off the dip" the output could be down by as much as 30% and the output amplifier could even be damaged.This is but one example; there are many others in the field of electronics. It can be argued that there is no reason why a bar graph must be limited to ten elements. There is a reason, money. To match the resolution of an analog meter a bar graph would have to have at least 50 elements and 100 would be preferred. At the present state of the art, a 50 or 100 element bar graph readout is so costly as to be unfeasible. And don't forget that matter of EMI. Analog meter readouts will be with us for many years to come.In service work there are many service adjustments which require making an adjustment for zero, minimum or maximum voltage or current. That is one of the strongest arguments for keeping a VOM on the service bench.Back to top.
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