MA887 Digital Seawater Refractometer - Milwaukee

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  • Milwaukee Digital Refractometer

MA887 Digital Seawater Refractometer - Milwaukee

93% Recommend this to a friend (81 of 87)

SKU: 205463
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Quick Overview

The new Milwaukee MA887 Seawater Digital Refractometer encompasses 3 different types of user selected scales for the measurement of seawater providing for a much more precise evaluation. Each scale is temperature compensated.

Milwaukee Digital Seawater Refractometer Manual


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Product Questions

The spec says that the accuracy is +/- 0.002. That is not very good considering my range of interest is between 1.022 and 1.028. Comments?
Question by: Boz on Apr 15, 2016 3:54:00 PM
No answers yet. Be the first to answer the question!
A question on the accuracy..obviously if it's off by .002 that could be detrimental to a reef aquarium in the long run depending on the nominal salinity value. Most reefs are between 1.024-1.026. However a lot of people seem to like this product. What's BRS experience with this? Do you double confirm samples?
Question by: Marc on Dec 24, 2016 10:29:00 AM
Great question! There are many of us here that use this meter. We consistently match the same salinity level each time we make a batch, so regardless of the variance our tanks are consistent to the meter. Minor fluctuations within that variance, coupled with the dilution of water volume in each tank, reduce the percentage of salinity swings. :-)
Answer by: Randy (Admin) on Dec 26, 2016 4:00:00 PM
Hi, Does the case come with the Milwaukee refractometer or is it a separate purchase?
Question by: Tony on Feb 18, 2016 11:09:00 AM
Great question!
This will not come with the case. Feel free to let us know if you have any further questions!
Answer by: Connor (Admin) on Mar 2, 2016 6:33:00 PM
Do you sell the case that is recommended for it?
Question by: Sam on Oct 4, 2013 4:57:00 AM
Hi Sam,
We sure do. I believe this is the case that you are looking for.
Answer by: Bulk Reef Supply on Oct 4, 2013 4:57:00 AM

Full Details

The new Milwaukee MA887 Seawater Digital Refractometer encompasses 3 different types of user selected scales for the measurement of seawater providing for a much more precise evaluation. Each scale is temperature compensated.

  1. PSU - The newest type scale standard – Letters stand for Practical Salinity Units and is fast become the universal standard for seawater measurement
  2. PPT - The old standard of Parts Per Thousand of saturated salt. This is the oldest of the 3 seawater measurements scales
  3. S.G. - The current standard of Specific Gravity hydrometers and refractometers.

The Milwaukee Instruments MA887 digital refractometer is easy to calibrate and easy to read and provides highest accuracy possible for the measurement of seawater 3 specific scales. This is the type of accuracy demanded by today’s professionals and Milwaukee Instruments delivers.


Milwaukee Digital Seawater Refractometer Specifications:




PSU: 0-50 1 +/- 2
PPT: 0-150 1 +/- 2
S.G.: 1.000 - 1.114 0.001 +/- 0.002
Temp: 0-80C / 32-176F 0.1 C/F +/- 2 0.3 C/ +/- 5F
Calibration: Automatic



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  • Excellent refractometer! By Richard on 4/7/2017

    This is an excellent refractometer! I've used traditional handheld refractometers for years with mixed results. Repeatability has always been their weakness as far as I am concerned. Taking three consecutive readings of the same water sample in rapid succession using traditional refractometers will seldom yield three identical readings. Which reading should you trust? Or, perhaps you should average them. Not good enough for me when a better option exists. I've been using the Milwaukee Digital Refractometer for the past 8 months and have been amazed at the repeatability of readings from one sample to the next. Identical almost every time. I suspect that part of the reason is the amber LED light source emits consistent light characteristics whether day or night, in normal bright conditions or dim. Since refractometers measure the refraction of light when passed through a medium (in this case salt water) it is critical that the light source be consistent in order to achieve reliability and repeatability. I rely upon this refractometer completely and use it weekly to mix fresh salt water and also to verify the accuracy of the conductivity (salinity) probe readings reported by my Neptune APEX Controller. Whenever the readings between the Milwaukee and the APEX differ, I know it's time to recalibrate my Neptune conductivity probe and the readings match again. My traditional handheld refractometer has now been moth-balled and consigned to the 'misc. aquarium equipment' storage box.
  • so far so good By regal on 2/6/2017

    Although i am not a chemist so far it seems to work great i have been following instructions and it seems to be performing great,a lot easier then old method and seems to be more accurate way of testing.
  • It's not easier By Keith on 12/30/2016

    I find my normal refractometer easier and quicker to use. Plus I trust it more.
  • Wate Of Money By Mark on 12/19/2016

    Nothing beats the accuracy of a plain old refractometer. These Milwaukees are great if you are ok with the .002+- variance. That is too much potential variance in my opinion. I have had this thing for over a year now and have calibrated it many times and I get different readings. My $35 refractometer is spot on every single time. I calibrate my units before I use it every time to be sure, only takes a few seconds to do. The Milwaukee just doesnt have the reliability that a refractometer does.
  • what was i waiting for By Swany on 12/14/2016

    14 years without one... like a tank without a controller don't buy salt without this tool.. don't forget the case worth every penny too :<{)
  • Get it By shornik on 11/19/2016

    I can't believe I've been mixing water for 2+ years without this. Not that my salinity was way out of whack but this is just so easy to use. Now if only they made a Nitrate tester......
  • Love it but don't trust it yet By Kevin on 9/14/2016

    I got this because I have a hard time seeing where exactly the blue line is on the standard units. So I love the digital reading but I haven't had long enough use to speak to the reliability over time.
  • Must be consistent, then there are no issues! By Rob on 7/10/2016

    Even though this meter is digital, you must follow a consistent process to test your water. For instance, if you have a difference in temp between your calibration fluid and the test water, AND YOU DONT WAIT FOR THE METER TO ADJUST THE TEMP, you will have inaccurate readings. Also, the calibration solution is not accurate. I believe mine to be 1.024 - I use my RO water to calibrate and then test tank water and it has been very consistent. I like this because it is much easier for me to read and any variance I feel is far less with this meter than me reading a fine line refractometer.
  • Tolerance of .002 By Seth on 6/8/2016

    If your happy mixing you water to 1.025 and finding out that it can be plus or minus 0.002 then this is the unit for you.

    If you actually care to know exactly what your water is at buy the standard refractometer and calibration solution and check your calibration often.

    Don't even think about contacting Milwaukee for service unless your unit is out of 0.002 variance. They will give you some long excuse how not every unit is make perfect and it's within specs sorry. I will be selling this piece of junk.

  • It was good at first but... By Tom on 5/11/2016

    I had this product for almost 5 months now and for the few months it worked well. Then after that I've been getting inaccurate readings from the unit. It kept saying that my salinity in my tank is 1.024 when its really at 1.026. I tried calibrating it with steamed distilled water and the calibration solution that came with the kit but it was still giving inaccurate reading. The calibration solution is at 1.025 and it reads 1.024.
  • GREATproduct By Mike on 4/7/2016

    Very accurate and very easy to use.
  • works great and calibration is simple By rblarmer on 4/7/2016

    just go this three weeks ago so longevity not known but definitely easy to use and calibration is simple. Only negative thus far is power on/off button ok but a little quirky thought I had a bad battery and put new battery in and still would not power up so pushed a little firmer and came on, not the way a great quality switch works.