420 Magazine Background

Opinions for reliable PH meter?

Stunned

Well-Known Member
I'm having real reservations about the PH meter I got....
I don't trust it at all
It does EC, PH, and temp made by somebody called ATC which I got on Amazon
Seems to read wildly and recently when I calibrated it, it reads high but only on the high side
Like reads 4 in the low solution but 7.19 or more in the high solution
It cost about 75.00CAD, I know it's a POS but really... do I have to spend hundreds to get a reliable PH reading?
 

cnile

Active Member
I'm having real reservations about the PH meter I got....
I don't trust it at all
It does EC, PH, and temp made by somebody called ATC which I got on Amazon
Seems to read wildly and recently when I calibrated it, it reads high but only on the high side
Like reads 4 in the low solution but 7.19 or more in the high solution
It cost about 75.00CAD, I know it's a POS but really... do I have to spend hundreds to get a reliable PH reading?
Bluelab with solutions 7 and 4 and kcl. No more worries
 

MickFoster

Well-Known Member
Never needs calibration, no need for calibration solutions, no need for storage solution. And it's never wrong.
81DoDUCChBL_SL1500_.jpg
 

KostasFour20

Well-Known Member
I use a cheap yellow ATC pen i got at the local hydro store. It came with the cal solution and a screwdriver for calibrating it. I also bought another inexpensive pen and GE 4.0 and 7.0 cal solutions. I cross checkbthe two meters from time to time and have adjusted them a couple of times in 4 months with no issues. I think a lot of people abuse them by submerging them too much as they are not waterproof or they don't rinse them and or store them dry.

I disagree with the accuracy of the drops in the water. The lighting effects the color you see and the drops can vary depending on how much you squeeze. You also must use the precise amount of sample. Dragging out a beaker or syringe, swirling solution around and then checking it only to adjust it and repeat until you get it right where you want is a PITA.

As for the blue labs. Buy once cry once.
 

cnile

Active Member
kinda where I am right now
The cheap little hobby as I promised my wife gets more expensive with each passing week!
Use cheap one from shop if available and save up. I know what you mean. You can get away with it just remember it's cheap and crappy. Mr personally I can't keep a smart phone for a year so...
 

Old Salt

Member of the Year: 2019 - Member of the Month: Apr, Nov 2019
I got an ATC as well, but this one. I am pleased with it.

I calibrate at 4.0 once a month, then at 7.0 prior to each use with GroTek buffers. I set the meter in a shot glass of 7.0 buffer while I mix my nutes. I adjust the meter and the pH, then set it back in the shot glass while I clean up. I put the meter away without rinsing it, and discard the buffer in the shot glass. The next time I need the meter it's off by no more than 0.04, usually it's bang on, or off by 0.01. These meters do take a minute or so to settle down.
 

Troy01

Well-Known Member
true and 225 bucks later
love for someone to come back with a fifty dollar option lol

I just bought a BlueLabs on Ebay for $48. If not in a rush you might check for a gently used one.
 

cnile

Active Member
I got an ATC as well, but this one. I am pleased with it.

I calibrate at 4.0 once a month, then at 7.0 prior to each use with GroTek buffers. I set the meter in a shot glass of 7.0 buffer while I mix my nutes. I adjust the meter and the pH, then set it back in the shot glass while I clean up. I put the meter away without rinsing it, and discard the buffer in the shot glass. The next time I need the meter it's off by no more than 0.04, usually it's bang on, or off by 0.01. These meters do take a minute or so to settle down.
Your using solution each time to cal it? Sounds expensive and wasteful to me, not to mention the extra work.
 

Weaselcracker

Nug of the Year: 2016 - Member of the Month: Sept 2015, Nov 2016 - Nug of the Month: Oct 2016 - Plant of the Month: May 2016 - Photo of the Month: Nov 2020
Took me years of wishing before I bit the bullet and scraped up enough money for a bluelab combo meter. $350 (cad) was a lot to pay for me. During those years I spent more on 'cheap' $80 ph pens which broke frequently. When they went screwy, as they always did, I messed up whole rooms full of plants. That happened multiple times. Hindsight is 20-20
 

Old Salt

Member of the Year: 2019 - Member of the Month: Apr, Nov 2019
My first one was a HM Digital PH 200. It lasted six months. Replacement sensors cost three times that of the ATC, which has lasted longer. I'd spend more for a higher quality device - if it were cost effective over the long run.
 

Old Salt

Member of the Year: 2019 - Member of the Month: Apr, Nov 2019
Your using solution each time to cal it? Sounds expensive and wasteful to me, not to mention the extra work.

It's not really expensive or wasteful. Fifteen dollars buys a six month supply of the calibration solutions, as I use it once or twice a week. I can trust the readings, as it's always calibrated before use. I grow in coco, so I don't need to check a reservoir daily.
 

Old Salt

Member of the Year: 2019 - Member of the Month: Apr, Nov 2019
Took me years of wishing before before I bit the bullet and scraped up enough money for a bluelab combo meter. $350 (cad) was a lot to pay for me. During those years I spent more on 'cheap' $80 ph pens which broke frequently. When they went screwy, as they always did, I messed up whole rooms full of plants. That happened multiple times. Hindsight is 20-20

The good news is that prices have come down. You can get them for $193.66 CAD from Amazon. The care kit will run you another $44.28 CAD. Calibration and storage solutions are basically on par with that for other pH meters.

The bad news is that the probes are only guaranteed for six months, and cost $70 CAD to replace. Worse still is that bluelab does not publish accuracy information, and the meter only has a resolution of one decimal place.

With money being extremely tight, Ill stick with the el-cheapos, and keep a spare on hand. If I could afford it, I'd replace the probe on my HM Digital pH-200.
 

Weaselcracker

Nug of the Year: 2016 - Member of the Month: Sept 2015, Nov 2016 - Nug of the Month: Oct 2016 - Plant of the Month: May 2016 - Photo of the Month: Nov 2020
I've used the same Bluelab probe for three years. Switched to my spare one at one point - but they give identical reading so I put it away again for a rainy day.

It wasn't the differences in cost money-wise that were the main issue. But messing around with unreliable meters that would go loopy - and then having roomfuls of plants get burned, was very stressful and totally lost its charm for me.
 
Top Bottom