Categories: Protek 608 Digital Multimeter Tags: connectivity electronics hardware rs-232 Posted by: Darian Cabot Comments:10
Protek 608 multimeter overview
The Protek 608 is a 5000 count digital multimeter made by Hung Chang, who have since changed their name to GS Instruments. I’ve owned one of these since about 2009. This multimeter is now discontinued and no longer available new, although they occasionally show up on the second-hand market from forums and eBay. This DMM was also rebadged and sold as the Voltcraft VC 608.
I’ve found it be be an excellent meter and was my go-to until I purchased a Fluke 116 a few years later. The Protek 608 still has many advantages over the Fluke 116, such as dual display and RS-485 data output. You may have seen it briefly in my transistor / component tester review video. I now predominantly use it as a data logging meter using software I’ve developed. The original probes broke on me, so I replaced them with some parrot clips on silicon leads which suits data logging well (clip the leads on, and leave it running).
The down-side to this meter is that it’s power hungry and will drain it’s 9V battery in about a day of constantly being on. Using an expensive lithium battery will run it for a few days, but it’s still quite limiting of long-term monitoring is required. I’m planning to modify my multimeter at some stage to allow for an external power supply to be used, but that in itself is troublesome (isolation and loss of rating, noise and interference, portability).
Protek 608 manual
I scanned in the original manual into a PDF (Download link). This is a more convenient referencing on my PC when developing software for the multimeter.
Plans for the future
Why not use the original software? Well after finally tracking it down I found 2 versions, one for Windows 3.x, 95, and 98, the other for Windows NT and XP. I’m running Windows 8.1 on my work laptop and when I try to run the installer I get this error message:
The original software is clearly obsolete now. Besides, I’d also like to option to use Linux and customise the functionality. So I’ve decided to ‘roll my own’ and develop a software solution in Java for cross-platform compatibility.
Keep a look out for future posts that detail this software development, and how I’ve use it in the field. Once I have a stable version I’ll make the source code available via a git repository.
I also plan to post in future about my external power source modifications, and I have some ideas to develop a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth module. So if you’re interested, watch out for that too! 🙂
[…] This is following on from my previous post introducing the Protek 608 multimeter and my software project. […]
[…] up the original Protek 608 software on an old Dell Inspiron 8100 I found stowed at the office. My previous attempts to run this software failed on Windows 8 and 10, and there’s very little information about […]
I am Buddhika from Sri Lanka. I am using uour Protek 506 Multimeter I want to buy Protek608.Please can you send me prices including shipping chargers.
Hi Buddhika, I’m not a shop and don’t have any for sale. They don’t make the Protek 608 any more, so your best bet is to look for a used one on electronics forums and eBay. Good luck!
I use the old software in windows 7 by instaling in xp service pack 3 campabitle mode works in rs232 com port on the computor
but will not work with the usb to rs232 converter what serial to USB converter do you use
I use an old ATEN UC232A cable.
I have tried cheap eBay cables and had connection issues. I think this is because they may not support the RS-232 handshake signals? Good luck!
hello I found protek 608.but the positive and negative feed ends are broken.I can not find the 9v feeders on the card.please help me. my e-mail [redacted]
Hola Amigo yo compre uno usado que lo habia descalibrado y te pregunto si existe alguna manera de calibracion por soft o recuperar los datos de calibracion anteriores ya que llevarlo a calibrar es mas caro que el aparato en si. Gracias saludos drsde Argentina.
Hola, perdón por la respuesta tardía.
No he calibrado este medidor antes, pero hay instrucciones en el manual. Puede descargar el PDF de arriba – Página 23, sección 6-4.
¡Espero que ayude! [Google translated from English]
Hi Darian. I have 3pcs Protek 608 (2 pcs working well) 1pc was burnt, i bought it for reverse engineering project (sch
will complete soon). I would like to read protek 608 KS57C2016 MCU. Furthermore, i have legacy protek 4000 too which is an benchtop type of protek 608 and i discovered Samsung MCU is S3P72P9 (OTP) is the difference. https://www.gsi-protek.com/4000 dmm is new version without Conductance and low voltage resistance measurement function. I think, in-circuit measurement function (open voltage 0.25V, very low current) very usefull for leakage mosfets, other semicunductors or resistors measure. I know, Yokogawa TY720 is an alternate but missing conductance function. Nonetheless, TY720 more acurate based on specification. I would like to stay with Protek 608 and protek 4000. Could you give help MCU reading? By the way, i found TsDMMViewer which is working under win7, it is support Protek 608 and Protek 506 too. You can download free from Japan site (need google translator to navigation) http://www.ts-software-jp.net/products/tsdmmview.html Legacy Protek 4000 is not supported because MCU is different than Protek 608. Unfortunatelly, i cannot use java source but great respect for your solution. Thank you in advance Master.