This post was updated on .
I currently know of 4 main groups of electromagnetic radiation:
1) Magnetic fields
2) Electric fields
3) Dirty power | Dirty Electricity (DE) | Dirty air | harmonics | EMI
4) Radio frequencies (RF) (RFR) | microwaves |
Next you must know that all budget meters have weaknesses,
so do research and read my notes !
My best advice for a very very low budget:
1) Sony ICF-P26 (cheap 20$ radio for Dirty Electricity in the air)
2) Receptacle Tester (cheap 10$ tool for finding faulty wiring)
(missing meters: magnetic, RF, electric, EMI)
My best advice for a low budget:
1) RF meter (like a Cornet or Acousticom 2, etc, also read the next parts to choose)
2) Sony ICF-P26 (Dirty Electricity in the air)
3) Receptacle Tester (finding faulty wiring)
(missing meters: magnetic, electric, EMI)
My best advice for an average budget:
1) RF meter (like a Cornet or Acousticom 2, etc, also read the next parts to decide)
2) Gigahertz ME3830B or a higher model (magnetic, electric)
3) a Sony ICF-P26 (+ optional: Tecsun PL-310ET) (Dirty Electricity in the air)
4) EMI meter (like the Greenwave EMI Meter or Line EMI Meter) (Dirty Electricity/harmonics on the electric lines)
5) Receptacle Tester (finding faulty wiring)
Optional: 6) Esmog Spion (0Hz - 3GHz) (electric, RF, dirty electricity in the air)
My best advice for a deluxe budget or if you wanna measure like a professional:
Buy an Esmog Spion with light module (the light module is for detecting light flicker).
Instead of a ME3830B: buy a Gigahertz ME3851A (or higher) or a Spectran NF-5030 (or higher).
A Spectran NF-5030 (or higher) also covers the range that cheap radio's measure (but radio's are very cheap and very useful, so buy them anyway).
Instead of a Acousticom 2 buy a Spectran for RF measurements and analysis. You can also buy Gigahertz RF meters instead.
Buy a meter that measures magnetic in 3 axes (it's easier and faster to measure).
Optional: Fluke multimeter like used on the Youtube channel "Total EMF Solutions".
Optional: a clamp meter for measuring low Amps on the ground wire(s).
Optional: a battery powered oscilloscope (EMI analysis).
-----------End part 1--------------------------
Especially EHS people should try to work towards buying the average budget list, starting from the lower lists. it is more important to cover all 4 kinds of radiation than only 1 kind.
Professionals say that only some of the expensive RF meters (like a Spectran) can measure the total amount of frequencies. As far as i understand, they say cheaper RF meters give a peak value, but don't give an idea of the total amount of frequencies. Someone gave this example: Let's say you have an area (A) with 99 sources emitting 0.5mW/m2, and 1 source emits 2mW/m2. The value on the meter will be 2mW/m2.
But another area (B) has only 1 source of 2mW/m2. Which area is worse ? Both could appear the same though.
Either way, the available meters we can buy are not perfect since they do not have something to measure the biological effects for example, however even budget meters can be very useful and give a good idea, especially important for EHS people, but a able professional who has better meters (with frequency analysis) could reveal more. Inform yourself well, about what meters/tools a Pro has before you let them come, since their are all kinds of "Professionals". Some building biologists (not all) can also measure things like ley lines, water veins, etc, but it could be better to hire someone else for this who is more specialized in this (if you believe in such things).
So tuff choice, especially when money is in short supply.
There are all kinds of meters and i don't have the money to test them all, and don't have the money to buy expensive professional meters, and i'm still learning every day. So if you are able, also do your own research before buying so you don't need to blame me for your choices Either way, whatever you buy from my recommendations should be very useful.
There are also DC fields (most of the common meters used, only measure AC) but i do not have experience with this (yet).
If you wanna buy a Gigahertz ME meter for electric fields because you don't want to mess with cables with a multimeter, well i'm sorry but you need to measure electric with cable as well on the Gigahertz ME's because it is needed.
Also, the ME3830B is at the edge of being accurate enough for measuring electric fields, if you measure grounded (with cable).
I don't have this ME model, so i don't know for sure if it is good enough, but i think it is. If you are very sensitive to electric fields: you can also buy a good multimeter to measure body voltage. Be careful, a too cheap multimeter won't work either. The multimeter should be able to measure accurately down to at least 10mV, to 1mV is even better but getting the bedroom down to 10mV should be already really good.
Most multimeter's of about 80 - 100$ should be suitable to measure this (but read the specs!).
-----------End part 2--------------------------
What about the new Trifield-TF2 instead of a Gigahertz ME3830B ? The Trfield-TF2 should have a better magnetic mode because it's easier with it's 3 axes + it has a weighted option, including for the electric mode! But the Gigahertz measures to 1nT compared to 10nT for the TF2. And i prefer the electric mode on the Gigahertz ME3830B because the TF2 does not have a way to measure with a cable, and it is unknown to me how the TF2 electric mode performs.
The Trifield-TF2 should be better than the CornetED88TPlus in magnetic mode and only slightly in electric mode, but the Cornet should be better in RF mode, which is more important for most people. i heard the RF mode on TF2 is not so good.
Not all radio's are equally fit to what we need, so buy what we recommend to be good ones. The reason why simple radio's are useful is because these can tune in to specific frequencies (The Esmog Spion measures it all at once).
I have no experience with Spectran meters, on paper they look good, in real life i don't know. There are mixed opinions about them. They say that some Spectran models are known to measure "ghost" frequencies (frequencies that are not really there). You can buy Gigahertz RF meters instead, but they don't have spectrum analysis like a Spectran has. I also heared Spectrans make more dirty electricty.
I also have no experience with the Acousticom 2, however i heard and seen a lot of good things about this one. The Acousticom 2 should be a slightly better RF detector than the Cornet ED88TPlus overall. The Acousticom 2 has less features, but it has low RF detection and audio from demodulation, and i heard it finds a bit more than the Cornet ED88T does. I do not know how good the Acousticom 2 is at measuring smart meters though since the website says the Acousticom 2 can have issues with catching very short RF pulses. So if you are mainly concerned about smart meters, on a budget a Cornet ED88TPlus could be better suited for this since it should be faster. The sampling rate of the Acousticom 2 is not found on the website.
The LED's colors/level system on the Acousticom 2 is better than the ED88T, especially for EHS people, and the meter measures pretty low levels, slightly lower than the more expensive Acoustimeter.
The reason why i recommend buying the Esmog Spion is because It is a unique meter compared to other meters. It has excellent audio from demodulation (for both modes!), and in electric mode it found dirty electric pulsing spreading from my boiler. No other meter i have found this (except radio's, but the Spion was much better in this case).
The Spion also measures RF below 100MHZ. Most RF meters don't do this, so the Spion can pick up things that other RF meters miss.
So i guess if you are living close by an AM/FM radio tower, you could be in big trouble without an Esmog Spion. I have not seen videos about this, because like i said very few RF meters can measure below 100MHz.
And at a AM/FM tower you could mistakingly think that your Cornet or acousticom 2 measures it, but in reality it could be RF coming from other sources in that area.
However it is also possible if you have all other meters from the average budget recommendation, and then buy the Esmog Spion, that you don't find something new.
But in some cases you will, like i did, and if you have really bad EHS i wouldn't take any chances and close the gap (if you can afford it).
Also, does the Spion really measure the claimed 0Hz - 3GHz ? My manual says it does, so it should. But still i would like to see someone confirm with tests with a frequency generator or something .
(You can't be too careful, i advice you to not trust anything until proven.)
I highly recommend to also measure with ground cable on the Esmog Spion to measure electric fields, because i currently think grounded electric measurements are more useful. When you use your body as ground reference (as advised in the manual) it makes less sense to me (similar to the Gigahertz ME meters).
The LED's on the Esmog Spion are indicators, and are not accurate enough to compare to Building Biology Guidelines, also the LED's are theoretically not glowing in levels lower than 0.0100mW/m² =10µW/m² but it's excellent sound function should be a very good indicator, even when measuring low levels.
If you are on a low budget and it is just too much money, you could skip on the Esmog Spion and you could be lucky and be ok with the other meters on the average budget list,
since the other meters cover the most important and most used parts of the frequency spectrum.
You must also know that there might come out new RF meters for the very high frequencies of 5G, so this could temporary become more important than buying a Esmog Spion
so you might wanna safe some money for this as well, although it is unknown when and if such meters will come soon.
My advice: don't spend a fortune on meters (unless you can),
so you can still spend on solutions and healing.
You must print the Building Biology Guidelines SBM-2015 (=most recent) to compare with what your meters show you.
There are no Guidelines yet for Dirty Electricity, but Magda Havas advised to stay below 25GS units on a Stetzerizer for EHS people. On the other Dirty Electricity meters i would try to get it at least below 50mV for EHS people until we know more.
-----------End part 3--------------------------
How low does a meter have to measure ?
It is best to have meters that are able to measure down to the lowest category in the Building Biology Guidelines because some EHS people react to very low numbers.
This can be expensive to achieve though, current budget meters are almost there. You will have to decide if you want/need better.
At this date (2018) and with the most recent Building Biology Guidelines (SBM 2015):
a meter that measures RF down to: 0.1µW/m² (=0.0001mWm²)
a meter that measures AC magnetic down to: 20nT (=0.2mG)
a meter that measures AC electric with ground potential (with ground cable) down to: 1V/m
or a meter that measures AC electric potential free (no ground cable) down to: 0.3V/m
or a multimeter/voltmeter that measures AC electric with ground potential down to: 10mV
What frequencies are there to measure ?
Low frequencies: Magnetic and Electric fields: 50Hz to around 1kHz
Intermediate frequencies: Dirty Power: from around 1kHz to around 1MHz
High frequencies: RF: usually current budget RF meters measure from 100 or 200MHz up to 8GHz or higher.
How fast should my RF meter measure ?
If you want to catch the very fast signals from certain devices like for example smart meters, which some people are very affected by, you need to have a RF meter with a high sampling rate. If you can't find the sampling rate of a RF meter in the specifications, it's probably best to not buy it. A sampling rate of 10000 is probably pretty good. But i need to learn more about this.
Do you need a meter with numbers or is one with LED's fine ?
It doesn't really matter much, since most people won't need numbers, unless you want to collect data or something. Knowing if you have low are high radiation is mostly the point, you have to categorize numbers anyway. LED's make it is easy and quick to measure and evaluate an area. But the LED's on the meter must be calibrated well, so that they are useful for EHS people, preferably calibrated to Building Biology Guidelines.
What about precision/accuracy/error-rate ?
I'm not experienced enough to know what number you need for this, but the lower the number the higher the accuracy. Compare some different meters and brands and you will notice the differences. Better accuracy makes comparing to Building Biology Guidelines more useful.
(There are many many more things to discuss about meters, but these were some of the more important things.)
---Meter evaluation example---
Measures RF from 100MHz to 8GHz (normal)
Lowest point it can measure RF: 0.5µW/m² = 0,0005mW/m² (just not low enough: 0.1µW/m² is required, but not bad for a budget meter)
Sampling rate (for RF): 10,000/sec (good)
Electric lowest measuring point: 10v/m (very bad: because you need 0.3V/m potential free)
Magnetic lowest measuring point: 0.1mG (good)
Error rate: RF: +/-3.5dBm magnetic: 20%, electric: 25% (the magnetic and electric accuracy looks bad. RF i don't know).
The specifications for the Cornet ED88TPlus are very transparent, i know because i have an ED88T. Unfortunately the provided specifications for many budget meters are not always this transparent and even so it doesn't mean the numbers these companies provide are true.
Specs are sometimes presented in a way that flaws are hidden or in a way that it is not clear how the meter really measures. Flaws are not always obvious in practice, unless you compare a lot between budget meters and high quality meters. Also, a meter can have for example a wide range, but this does not mean it is good at measuring everything in that range. It is complicated, even if you know something about this. Watching many Youtube reviews sometimes helps, but currently not many people seem to know what is important to show in a review.
-----------end part 4--------------------------------
This post was updated on .
This is a list i made a couple of months ago (posted on Facebook),
Making this was very time consuming and difficult, because giving advice can easily be done wrong.
i won't be updating this, so keep in mind that new meters come out and knowledge about EHS hopefully evolves and comes more clear.
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