Best XLR Cable Tester Reviews And Buying Guide in 2021

Are you looking for the best XLR cable tester but don’t know where to start? Check out this article to find out the best products available!

by itsaboutmusic | Updated: June 1, 2021

First, before looking for the best XLR cable tester, you should know what an XLR tester is? XLR and DMX audio cable testers are the two groups of cable testers. Users use XLR for recording and DMX for illumination.

Cable inspectors check the electrical links in a signal cable to ensure proper connection at both ends. If a link has damages, an audio cable tester can pinpoint the location of the issue. Diagnosing these problems will save you a lot of time and money in the long term.

There are 3 essential factors you need to consider when buying an XLR cable tester:

  • Durability: Is the cable made from flimsy or durable materials?
  • Warranty: Does the cable come with a great warranty policy?
  • Size: Is the cable bulky or portable?

In the buying guide below, we'll go through these aspects in detail. Now, check out our 11 top-rated testers in 2021!

In-depth Reviews Of Top 10 Best XLR Cable Tester

Let’s check out our list of the top 10 best XLF cable testers.

Mackie Cable Tester MTEST-1

Mackie Cable Tester, 6-way switch Battery-Powered Connector Test

Editor's Rating:

  • Durability: 9/10
  • Warranty: 7/10
  • Size: 8/10

Best Overall: Sturdy Build

Mackie is a well-known audio company with a wide range of high-quality instruments for music studios and performers. As a result, it is reasonable to expect excellent XLR cable testers from this brand.

This system is very long-lasting. It might not be as attractive as other cable testers, but it would undoubtedly remain undamaged if dropped.

This 6-way switch cable tester is of an excellent standard and is reasonably priced. You can get an accurate and high-functioning tester for many common connector types at a reasonable price.

This cable tester is for live music, but it is also applicable for studio music. As this battery-powered Mackie MTEST-1 is energy-efficient, you’ll benefit from longer battery life.

Aside from XLR cables, the Mackie cable tester can troubleshoot some other cables. This may also be a benefit if you use different cables in your studio. Overall, this is one of the most effective XLR cable testers available!

With this effective audio kit, you can test most standard XLR cables. Mackie provides a 1-year warranty inclusive of all defects, which is not long compared to some other products in this review, but still good enough!

Problems With This Product:

This cable tester's style might not be to everyone's taste. Also, you cannot check cables with four pins or more with this product.

Advice From Experts And Users:

Built to last, it's durable, strong, and comes with all the connections you'll ever need to evaluate. We suggest the product to every music fan or professional - excellent build quality!

SoundTools XLR Sniffer

SoundTools XLR Sniffer,Sender Microphone Cable Remote End Cable Tester

Editor's Rating:

  • Durability: 8/10
  • Warranty: 10/10
  • Size: 10/10

Best Overall: Compact Size

The Sound Tool is the next XLR cable tester we highly recommend. Thanks to a compact size, it is a portable audio solution for those who need to evaluate their machinery fast.

Sound Tool is smaller and quicker than most of its competitors. Whether you want to leave your studio space uncluttered or don't have any capacity for additional equipment, this is the perfect tool.

We also suggest this to someone who travels often. It won't be difficult to take this cable tester to a concert.

The Sound Tool XLR Sniffer can seem tiny, but it is capable of testing most XLR cables. The unit is capable of giving correct analysis for long cables over a hundred feet in length.

If you only have XLR cables, you can't go wrong with the Sound Tool. However, if you have other cable types that need to be checked or want anything with a little more flexibility, this might not be the best option.

The XLR Sniffer continuity checker users enjoy a lifetime Happy Human Warranty. It guarantees that you can replace your device at any moment, wherever, for any cause, for the rest of your life.

You will return it for a complete refund if you aren't satisfied during the first year.

Problems With This Product:

Sound Tool, once again, shifts toward XLR cables, so you can’t check other cables with this system. This is not a concern for the majority of users, but bear this in mind anyway.

Advice From Experts And Users: 

This is what you need, whether you work in live recording or sound engineering. Oftentimes, stages are wired with several sub-snakes. As a result, swapping or patching instruments in a particular area is a hit-or-miss proposition.

With this product, you can also trace all of the snakes and determine if the line is bad or if the cable plugging in is better. You will save a lot of time.

Pyle Pro PCT-10/PCT-40

12-Plug Pro Audio Cable Tester - 12-in-1 Line Finder

Editor's Rating:

  • Durability: 9/10
  • Warranty: 7/10
  • Size: 7/10

Best Overall: Quick Result

The following 6-Way Switch tester is for you if you want a cable tester with more testing capabilities and speedy performance.

Pyle Pro PCT is a high-performing cable tester that provides instant cable diagnostics. This one also comes with an internal battery. You can also test several cables at the same time, which isn't something that other gadgets can deliver.

The PCT-10 allows you to connect up to eight cables at once. The PCT-40, on the other hand, allows a quick check with up to twelve cables simultaneously. If you have a large number of cables to check, the Pyle Pro PCT-10 is a good choice.

Pyle Pro isn't just functional; it's also visually pleasing. The metal casing can prevent it from dents or damages. Furthermore, several LED indicators let you check cable continuity issues with ease.

This unit is a real bargain considering the accessible price and impressive features. The warranty for this product is 1-year.

Problems With This Product:

For those that are unfamiliar with cable testers, it can be challenging to use. With a weight of 1.97 pounds, it also appears bulkier than many other models available.

Advice From Experts And Users: 

If you work in the audio industry and need a device to quickly inspect your cables, the PCT40 unit should suffice. The machine is slightly larger than a standard multimeter and still can easily fit inside your toolbox or duffle bag while you're out in the field.

Behringer Cable Tester CT200

BEHRINGER CT200 Microprocessor-Controlled 8-in-1 Cable Tester Black

Editor's Rating:

  • Durability: 9/10
  • Warranty: 8/10
  • Size: 9/10

Best Overall: Flexibility

The Behringer CT200 is marginally more expensive than regular products, but it has a higher degree of functionality.

The unit is one of the most flexible testing machines out there, allowing you to monitor a variety of cables. If your studio uses standard cables, there’s no need to purchase a different kind of tester.

There are also various modes for checking the cables, which can be helpful if you want to reliably spot cable problems. The Behringer CT200 is slightly pricey, but it is well worth it for its attractive look, impressive performance, and robust construction.

Like the other items we've discussed, it is long-lasting. It provides consumers with a great deal of versatility and precision, also with many additional features.

Problems With This Product:

A digital tester of this cost may be out of reach for many who want to test sometimes. The advanced cable checking unit might be redundant for those that only need a standard checking model.

Advice From Experts And Users:

This nominee is ideal for a convenient continuity cable test for connection status check, ground connection status, switch wire tracker, type jack, faulty mic lines.

The handy tool performs well thanks to the convenient operation, short and simple tests, and various testing methods.

Read the directions thoroughly as they cover all steps on how to reset after attaching cables to avoid false readings when the cables are inserted.

Hosa CBT-500 Cable Tester

Hosa CBT500 Audio Cable Tester

Editor's Rating:

  • Durability: 9/10
  • Warranty: 8/10
  • Size: 8/10

Best Overall: High Performance

The Hosa has more advanced functionality than the Behringer, but it comes with a higher price. Professionals, on the other hand, might prefer this higher-quality unit.

The Hosa CBT-500 will quickly determine what is wrong with your studio cables with high precision. This system will also accept every kind of cable. As a result, it isn't just for XLR testing. Of course, not everybody would need a cable tester of this caliber.

However, because of its high efficiency and capabilities, this is a tester that many professionals can’t live without!

Problems With This Product:

For most people, the cost of this system will be prohibitive. Also, another problem is that many cables cannot be wired in at the same time.

Advice From Experts And Users:

We highly recommend this high-performing cable tester for professionals. You should buy this one if you can afford it and have many types of cables to test.

Whirlwind QBox Mic/Line Tester

Whirlwind Qbox Audio Line Tester

Editor's Rating:

  • Durability: 9/10
  • Warranty: 7/10
  • Size: 7/10

Best Overall: Detect Small Problem

Whirlwind Cable Tester is another high-end piece of equipment with a high price tag. Again, not everybody would need equipment of this caliber, but if you work in the music business, you shouldn’t miss it.

It does a wonderful job when you need to pin-point what’s going wrong with your cables.

This unit can measure the cable on several levels. While less costly equipment will alert you to general problems, this tester zeroes in on the problem and clarifies it.

You'll quickly figure out if and why your cables aren’t running! You can also check their sound and balance.

Problems With This Product:

One downside is of course the high price, making this tester not accessible to everyone. Also, because this is a device dedicated for professional use, some people might find it complicated to operate it.

Advice From Experts And Users:

We recommend this equipment to any audio mixer working on fields. It will help you greatly with tracking audio on snakes or figuring out your signal flow.

Pyle Pro PCT-60 Cable Tester

PYLE-PRO Plug 13 in 1 Pro Audio Tester Music Instrument

Editor's Rating:

  • Durability: 8/10
  • Warranty: 8/10
  • Size: 7/10

Best Overall: Great Deal

The PCT-60 is made by the same company that produces the Pyle Pro PCT-10/PCT-40. As a result, you realize you'll get a decent deal on this device.

If you have a ton of machinery to analyze, this is an excellent choice. It also gives you a lot of tools and research strategies to choose from. The Pyle Pro PCT-60 is operated by a high-capacity battery that comes with the package at a reasonable price.

LED light signals will tell you where cables are not functioning properly. It even checks the integrity of your pins and the cable's consistency.

Problems With This Product:

Unlike the other models we discussed, the Pyle Pro PCT-60 is a larger device. As a result, it would be more difficult to transport from place to place.

Advice From Experts And Users:

The Pyle Pro PCT-60 is particularly useful for DJs and big studios thanks to its high-capacity battery. Also, it can analyze a large amount of equipment, which not many cable checkers can do.

Behringer Cable Tester CT100

Behringer CT100 Professional 6-in-1 Instrument Cable Tester

Editor's Rating:

  • Durability: 9/10
  • Warranty: 8/10
  • Size: 9/10

Best Overall: Easy Operation

The Behringer CT100 is an older model that has much of the same characteristics as the newer CT200. It is very easy to operate with three testing modes.

This handy device will help you effectively decide which cords are having problems. The sporadic row of LED lights aid in the diagnosis of intermittent issues, implying a loose soldering link or faulty wiring.

With this Behringer kit, you may also test a variety of cable styles. The LEDs indicate which of your cables is defective and the causes.

Problems With This Product:

The CT100, on the other hand, has fewer cable outlets. It has six cylinders, while the latest models have eight. Additionally, this device is not as powerful and fast as some other models.

Yet, we wouldn't suggest there's a significant gap in capability. It simply depends on whether you like using the most up-to-date studio technology.

Advice From Experts And Users:

For users with simple needs for audio checking, this reasonable device works best. You will have no difficulty in using it because the LED lights and the tester itself are very straightforward.

dbx Advanced Cable Tester (CT-3)

dbx CT3 Advanced Cable Tester (CT-3)

Editor's Rating:

  • Durability: 10/10
  • Warranty: 8/10
  • Size: 7/10

Best Overall: Ability to test cable at both ends

The dbx CT-3 is a full-featured cable tester that can find faults on a wide variety of cable styles. Surprisingly, you can check a cable on both ends when it's split in the rafters!

Because it can be divided into two pieces, sender and recipient, you can easily test long, pre-installed cable runs. It accepts MIDI, speaker twist, XLR, and many other types of setup.

It’s possible to test mismatched cable styles, such as XLR to TRS cables, with this tester. The CT-3 is an excellent tool to have in your toolbox if you're measuring a MIDI cable at home or checking the status of cables in a live sound setting.

Problems With This Product:

The only quibble with this product is that it’s pretty heavy due to the robust metal construction. However, the size is not really big - about the size of a book, so it won't be hard to bring along this tool with you to the gig.

Advice From Experts And Users:

This one is suitable for both at-home use and professional settings. However, due to its weight and metal structure, we recommend you use this in a setting that doesn’t require movement.

MFL.Rectangular 13-Plug Cable Tester

MFL.Rectangular 13-Plug Cable Tester Line Finder Black 13-in-1 Cables Checker 8-Way Switch Wire Tracker with LED Indicators

Editor's Rating: 

  • Durability: 9/10
  • Warranty: 7/10
  • Size: 9/10

Best Overall: Good for various types of cables

Nothing will wreak havoc on a live show rather than faulty cables. This device would monitor most types of cables for continuity simply and rapidly.

It has an all-in-one approach for detecting cable longevity problems and can accommodate up to 13 cables at once. The tester is housed in a sturdy, lightweight metal casing, making it an excellent long-term investment to keep your audio system working smoothly.

As something goes wrong or breaks in the link, the LED indicator helps validate each conductor's connection and allows you to restore or fix it. This cable tester has an 8-way switch for choosing connections to be checked and is operated by a battery (not included).

Problems With This Product:

You have to buy a separate battery as the package doesn’t include any battery. Also, we think it would be better if this product has an injection signal at the line and mic levels.

Advice From Experts And Users:

This cable checker is useful and practical since it embraces all types of cable you might use for a recording or live performance. It has several inputs while being small enough not to get in the way as you're using it.

Plug in the cable, turn the knob, and you'll know whether or not the cable can operate.

Buying Guide

Performance should be the top priority when it comes to purchasing cable testers. You won't positively figure out what's wrong with your equipment until you have a high-quality cable tester. As a result, it is advisable to pay for the best XLR cable testers.

Since we discussed some of these products on the list, this shouldn't be challenging on your part to pick out the right one. However, if you want to look at other devices or brands, keep the following requirements in mind.

Durability 

First and foremost, you want to buy a cable tester that lasts. If you don't want a tester that breaks or malfunctions often due to poor design, stay away from flimsy construction.

So read customer feedback to make sure your cable tester of choice can work for years.

Warranty 

It's even preferable to have something with a guarantee. This way, if there’s any technical issues, you can turn to the manufacturer to get your device fixed. Most units come with a one-year warranty while a few have a life-long warranty policy.

Size

It's best to get something portable and compact so you can pass it around your studio or take it with you to the gig.

For example, among our list of products, the SoundTools XLR Sniffer is very compact. You can easily carry it in your pocket or a tool box. We think professionals who often work in fields will appreciate this convenience.

On the other hand, some high-performing testers will be more bulky, like the Pyle Pro PCT-60 Cable Tester. Yet, they do have more options and can handle an assortment of cables.

The bottom line is, you should choose a cable tester with the size that best suits your needs. If you travel a lot, choose a compact one. If you need to test many tools in studios, a bulky but multifunctional model is the way to go.

Conclusion

This wraps up our reviews of the best XLR cable tester. Among these products, our favorite pick is the SoundTools XLR Sniffer, thanks to its compact size and a lifetime warranty policy.

Cables are, in reality, an essential component of sound quality and music in general. Throughout this post, we stressed the value of having your equipment checked. As a result, you should figure out what you should look for to get a suitable XLR cable tester.

However, keep in mind that you want a testing gear that is both robust and efficient. Don't skimp on your studio gear, and make sure you can check your cables in a variety of ways as well.

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