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My only experience is with a http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00LNSEZH2?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_search_detailpage

This was as off as it could be. (did things like ran full scale on acid test liquid). So I returned it as it clearly didn't work but I knew I was gambling when I bought it.

The company offered me a "free" one after I gave them a bad review. I of course refused and let the bad review stand. I suspect they have bought off many of their bad reviews this way.

 

So it is possible they will just send you new ones until you get one that works. Me, I'd prefer to just get a good one and so will be watching this thread for advice. I'd love one that doesn't have to be calibrated in sample liquids each time.

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Cheap ones $($20-$50+) are unreliable and must be re-calibrated almost every use. Expensive ones work well but must be maintained and stored properly. I like Hanna pens but are at least twice ($80+) as much as the cheap ones. Replacing probes depends how well you take care of your pen. I store my pens using proper solution for that pen and also clean with cleaning solution once a month and re-calibrated. Proper maintenance is a must for PH pens. I have gone several years before needing to replace a probe in the past.

 

One last thing, make sure the pen is waterproof if you go the expensive route. Most Hanna's are.

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Thx for the feedback Vpier and Crackhead Johny, I have tried a couple of brands myself with not much luck as far as product performance goes. So I ordered the

SAM-1™ Smart Aqua Meter

Will be getting it tomorrow and will upload some pictures and lets see how this ones performs! I like the simplicity and the digital data you can store and track for example a tank ph in the past and current readings.

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  • 4 weeks later...

It would be nice to have a probe that measured everything and then piped it wirelessly to what ever device you have listening.

Good idea CJ.

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For a pH pen to be more accurate, it needs calibration pretty frequent. And the buffer solution after you open it, it won't last for more than a week. This is what I learned from a sales rep from Hanna Instrument. 

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I bought one on E-bay for a measly 10. bucks!

I have backed it up with a API test kit time after time and shows to be pretty darn accurate. When using these meters, one needs to stir up the water being tested especially if it's " new water change water" as the current will give it a much better reading with even distribution. I also give the meter a stir in the water which gets it to "settle" and "HOLD" it's reading. Mine does not have the "hold/store" feature. 

I don't calbrate it as there's no need to as it claims, I just rinse it  well in 7.0Ph R.O. water and let air dry after each use before putting the storage cap back on.

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If you have executive shrimps and you want to be sure in your measurements buy this one.

 

http://www.marinedepot.com/ps_viewitem.aspx?idproduct=AM1111&child=AM1111&utm_source=adwordsfroogle&utm_medium=cse&utm_campaign=adwordsfroogle&utm_content=AM1111&gclid=CjwKEAiAi4a2BRCu_eXo3O_k3hUSJABmN9N1OzI8UfYEGw1DdMhVe5V9evrsg2juT9uFZGkQr382xxoCcS3w_wcB

 

I have used more than 10 PH pens from $6 to $120 each. all dyed in 6 months to a year.Plus  they need calibrations every 1-2 months.

Now I have 4 American Marine Pinpoint pH Monitors for 3 years already not problem at all. you have to replace the probes ones every 1.5-2 years max.

if you keep the probe in the water 24/7 you might need to check the calibration every 6 months or so.

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I've found the cheapo ones on Amazon are useful and give a more intelligible/accurate reading than liquid tests, but the thing is that over time it takes longer and longer to get it to an accurate reading. And you must move it through the water the entire time as you wait for it to settle on a reading. This can easily take 5 minutes especially at an extreme pH.

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