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Questions about tubes and gear that glows. FAQ

In weak defense of the Heath cap checker...

1. It's convenient in that it combines measuring, leakage and reforming capabilities in one unit.
2. It can test for leakage at up to 600VDC. Many common bench supplies don't go that high.
3. Test current is low so probably safer than a bench supply.
4. It uses a bridge circuit for value measurement so less prone to whacked out readings when leakage (effectively, parallel resistance) is present.
5. It measures PF which is related to ESR.
6. It can measure resistance and inductance (using external inductance reference).
7. It's easily and readily maintainable.
8. It permits use of external references for R,C & L.
9. It permits use of external bridge energizing frequencies up to 10KHz.
10. It's abuse tolerant in that all active elements are vacuum tubes.

But for all these advantages and capabilities, $300 is an excessive and surely temporary "fad" price. <<$100 is more like it.

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