Hantek 3-in-1 Instrument Reviewed

What kid doesn’t want a Swiss Army knife? Maybe that was the idea behind Hantek’s 3-in-1 instrument that [Rui Santos] reviewed in a recent blog post. You can also watch the video version, below. The instrument is a combination oscilloscope, multimeter, and signal generator. The device is pretty inexpensive and comes in 40 MHz and 70 MHz versions. You can also get versions that drop the function generator if you want to save a little bit more.

The multimeter does 4000 counts and has the usual scales along with capacitance measurements. Rechargeable batteries make it portable, and the signal generator is capable up to 25 MHz. The scope is dual channel, but the sampling drops in half (125 megasamples per second) when using both channels.

The 2.8 inch color screen isn’t as big as your bench scope, but it’s good for a portable device. The review also mentions that there are few buttons so many operations require a lot of menu navigation, but — again — that’s a function of being small. Overall, [Rui] seemed to like the meter well enough. We’ve spent more on a good digital meter, so if this can do that function plus also give you a reasonable scope and signal generator, it seems like a fair deal.

This reminded us of a very polished version of the EM125 we took a look at a few years ago, although that didn’t have a color screen, a second channel, or a signal generator. Of course, signal generators are cheap enough if you want to keep it separate.

21 thoughts on “Hantek 3-in-1 Instrument Reviewed

  1. One thing I always look for in a digital scope is screen update rate (especially the portable kind). I scanned through the whole video but never saw a live updating display so for all I know this one updates 2-3 times /second like many others. When trying to diagnose a noisy signal or intermittent problem, slow display updates are infuriatingly frustrating.

      1. Menu navigation might not be a big deal to some folks who just need an X-in-1 device for kit portability. How often do you use it? Would you say it’s okay for light duty stuff?

  2. I’ve never had any luck with x in 1 tools in general. In my experience, rather than fulfilling any one role properly, they tend to “almost” work for each function, but end up missing a tiny detail that ends making the tool unusable except as a gadget.

    1. “I’ve never had any luck with x in 1 tools in general.”

      But, I carry my SwAK* daily, and usually have a LeatherMan Core strapped on to my belt as well.
      The Phillips head in the LeatherMan “is bettery than nothing” but having the needlenose pliers, a wood saw,
      various knife blades, nail file, hacksaw blade may save me a trip to get a better tool.

      The question that often arises in my mind is, am I better off using the tool I have, or taking the time to get a better tool? Using a tool on a multi-tool generally takes longer to accomplish the task, so it needs to be decided if the delay in getting the better tool (and putting it away afterward) takes less time than using the tool at hand.

      *Swiss Army Knife

      1. IMO, there’s a certain amount of getting used to less than perfect tools… and for probably reasons deep in the psyche you’ll forgive a single purpose tool for being less than perfect before the multipurpose tool. Or maybe you’ll be ferreting through the toolbox half an hour for the perfect tool. Ergo, you’ve gotta force yourself a little more to persevere a little longer with the multi-tool a few times until it’s like a third hand. If things get really gnarly you can go for the toolbox, but tackling things there and then in a minute or two saves a lot of time over scheduling a full half hour on the todo list.

      1. I am very wary to buy anything from Banggood these days, had a high rate of product failures and an inordinate amount of trouble getting them to refund items that self destruct within 12 months of receipt. Now my policy is to buy from local ebay vendors and if they will not carry a product, and accept PayPal then I should be suspicious of its quality as they have solid legal obligations when it comes to consumer rights. i.e. They don’t stock duds because they will have to pay to have them fixed or replaced. As for this new Hantek, well I’ll assume that its newness is the cause of it not being stocked locally (Australia), for now.

        1. “I am very wary to buy anything from Banggood these days,”

          a dashcam that falls out of its holder and has a diagonal line across the screen.
          LED “glasses” that arrived with the battery lead broken.
          Customer feedback that complains about defective merchandise they received, but that comment has a 5-Star rating for the product.
          “Customer Service” which is a couple of emails, the first says “We’ll get back to you in 24 hours”
          and the second that doesn’t really accomplish anything.
          (Oh, and when a customer complains in the Reviews section of a product, their response is “Contact Customer Service.)

  3. It would have been nice if it has an X-Y mode. Seems like desktop software has it, but using a PC defeats the point of having its own screen. Wonder if there will be a firmware update that adds X-Y mode.

  4. from the moment i glanced at the photo, i had the same reservation as with my old handheld oscope. i didn’t even care about the specs, i replaced it with one of the cheap siglent desk scopes and it makes all the difference in usability: knobs. knob for scale, knob for offset. having just push buttons — especially too-few pushbuttons that are overly modal — is such a detriment.

    1. thats the cool point – the signal generator keeps running in “background”. not the best way to do curve tracing, but maybe the software for pc is up to that. linux here so i dont really know. 2d82

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