Top 9 Best Radiation Detectors for 2020

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best radiation detector

The best radiation detector does more than tell you that radiation is present. It can detect nuclear environments, show where radiation comes from, and more.

If you want to be prepared for any situation you end up in, knowing how to use the best radiation detector is crucial. The top radiation detection device can help you make sure that your home is safe. It comes in handy if you end up in a situation where a disaster occurs, and you want to know what kind of environment you are in. The good news is that there are many radiation detectors you can find on the market.

The problem is that because there are so many items claiming they are the “best,” it can be difficult to search through all the options. That’s why we have scoured the Internet and are bringing you reviews of the top detectors available this year. We will also offer you information, so you are able to look for these items on your own and ensure they meet your needs.

We’ll share suggestions for the best detectors, talk about what makes them special, and then answer some common questions that come up. When we’re done, you’ll be ready to make a purchase so you can keep yourself and the people around you safe. First, take a look at our comparison table to get an idea of your options.

Best Radiation Detector Meters

 NameType of Radiation DetectedItem Weight 
GQ GMC300EPlus Fulfill Digital NuclearGQ GMC300EPlus Fulfill Digital Nuclear Radiation DetectorBeta, gamma, and x-ray6.1 OuncesCHECK LATEST PRICE
Geiger Counter Terra-P,Geiger Counter Terra-P Dosimeter Radiometer Radiation Detector MSK-05 IP30Beta, gamma, and x-ray3.5 OuncesCHECK LATEST PRICE
EMF Meter, Advanced GQAdvanced GQ EMF-390 Multi-Field Electromagnetic Radiation 3-in-1 EMF ELF RF MeterEMF, ELF, RF for electronics and other items5.3 OuncesCHECK LATEST PRICE
Cambridge Labs Rechargeable EMF MeterCambridge Labs Rechargeable EMF MeterEMF6.6 OuncesCHECK LATEST PRICE
GQ GMC-500Plus Nuclear RadiationGQ GMC-500Plus Nuclear Radiation DetectorBeta, gamma, and x-ray1.76 OuncesCHECK LATEST PRICE
Meterk EMF Meter ElectromagneticMeterk EMF Meter Electromagnetic Field Radiation DetectorEMF, ELF, RF for electronics and other items5.4 OuncesCHECK LATEST PRICE
SOEKS 112 Compact Digital GeigerSOEKS 112 Compact Digital Geiger CounterBeta, gamma, and x-ray0.96 OuncesCHECK LATEST PRICE
Corentium Home Radon DetectorAirthings 223 Corentium Home Radon DetectorRadon3.52 OuncesCHECK LATEST PRICE
Advanced GQ EMF-380 V2 Multi-FieldAdvanced GQ EMF-380 V2 Multi-Field Electromagnetic Radiation 3-in-1 EMF ELF MeterEMF, ELF, RF for electronics and other items9.6 OuncesCHECK LATEST PRICE

GQ GMC300EPlus Fulfill Digital Nuclear Radiation Detector

GQ GMC300EPlus Fulfill Digital Nuclear

This new version of the GQ GMS300EPlus is now available and is known as one of the best options on the market. It can be used anywhere and offers a lightweight and portable design. The detector handles all radiation detection and includes automatic data recording if you need to go over it at some other moment. It monitors radiation at all times and logs the data by the second into the memory so you can play it back later.

When you choose this product, it includes a variable display mode with the option to utilize a large font. You can switch between modes as you like to get good data and view changes as they happen. The text-mode gives you information on a specific screen, while menu mode works well for configuring the device. You would go into graphic mode to see how radiation changes over time.

While in working mode, you can carry the item around easily. It’s hand-held and lightweight for that purpose. You can connect it to your computer to read the data or monitor things from a distance. The detector has free software to collect and analyze data, along with the ability to log that data in real-time.

Pros

  • Updated nuclear radiation detectors come with a high-contrast LCD module, and a front LED indicator and audio data port
  • Software allows equipment to connect to a computer for downloading radiation history data
  • Device features large font, text, and graphics mode for better visualization of radiation changes

Cons

  • Some have experienced detector dying after six months or so

Geiger Counter Terra-P Dosimeter Radiometer Radiation Detector MSK-05 IP30

Geiger Counter Terra-P,

With the Terra-P Geiger counters, you can expect plastic nuclear radiation detectors that would work well at home, at work, or in school. The item is made of a bright yellow material that is easy to see, even in low light or other imperfect environments. It’s lightweight at just over five ounces so you can transport wherever needed without an issue.

This item is of good quality and able to measure gamma background level, accumulated dose, and beta contamination estimates. It can check the radiation safety of all sorts of items, like clothing, household items, cars, wild berries and mushrooms, and construction materials. While you carry it around, you can have peace of mind knowing that it has a shockproof housing for durability.

This item is very simple to start using, and you can get everything done using only two buttons. The buttons are labeled threshold and mode, and turning on the product simply requires pressing and holding the mode button for a single second. It will automatically go into gamma radiation measurement mode for convenience.

Pros

  • Detector device is simple to utilize with two easy control buttons on the dosimeter
  • Equipment complies with educational requirements and is recommended by the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine as one of the best visual aids
  • Dosimeter equipment can be used well in a home, at work, on cars, clothing, and more

Cons

  • Geiger counters may be created out of low-quality plastic that will not last through extended periods

Advanced GQ EMF-390 Multi-Field Electromagnetic Radiation 3-in-1 EMF ELF RF Meter

EMF Meter, Advanced GQ

The GQ EMF-390 is one of the best options for testing, detecting, and scientific applications in a single device. It can do well looking for available items like cell phones, power lines, cell towers, and others. It has integrated features like three-axis electromagnetic fields, radiofrequency, electric field, and an RF spectrum power analyzer. Rather than looking for nuclear radiation over a certain period, It identifies common forms of EMF/RF in the world.

When you get this item, you will have flash memory for storage, which is good for logging data every second with a timestamp. If you need to, you can also download the data onto your computer using the included free software. Those who like can utilize the GQ RF browser to watch RF radiation on a screen. It shows high-speed RF signal like cell phone transmission in bytes and through a power spectral histogram.

When you choose this item for radiation, it offers a selection of sensors to ensure the best accuracy and the largest scale and range measurements. It has an open communication protocol so you can send commands to the unit from a remote location. It has a USB port so you can communicate with the device and recharge the included lithium-ion battery inside.

Pros

  • Detector device equipment can be used to identify EMF/RP from power lines, cell towers, Wi-Fi/cell phones, and microwaves
  • Radiation detectors offer a USB port for charging and communication to other devices
  • Includes multiple sensors to ensure the highest accuracy and the best range and scale while in using

Cons

  • Some have experienced new items not working as properly as one would expect

Cambridge Labs Rechargeable EMF Meter

Cambridge Labs Rechargeable EMF Meter

This EMF meter comes at a good price and a lightweight design that allows it to be used in any location. One of the ways it can be used is in dual screen mode, which shows both magnetic field radiation and electric field radiation on a single small device. If you desire a great level of visual clarity, this device offers large digits and data of up to three decimal points. It comes in three colors so you can choose the hue you would most like to carry with you.

This unit works well and offers precision data that can let you know when the EMF field is measuring higher than it should be. This can save you from entering an area where you might not be as safe as you expected. It’s also been designed for a wide variety of users and can be picked up by a beginner or an advanced user.

When you purchase this item, it does come with a USB cable for easy charging. The device itself has a low power indicator, can provide audible alarms, and self-calibrates with the touch of a button. There is also an LCD screen and LED indicators to make use simple. It can be used in one hand for convenience.

Pros

  • Detector device equipment offers nuclear radiation monitoring in a small, lightweight package
  • Radiation detectors are sensitive to low frequencies to help determine the amount of radiation available in a space
  • Also includes dual readings to measure magnetic field radiation and electric field radiation all in one

Cons

  • Tops out at 300 so measuring EMFs may not be the best for data on microwaves and cell towers

GQ GMC-500Plus Nuclear Radiation Detector

GQ GMC-500Plus Nuclear Radiation

As one of the best available detectors for radiation, this meter has a ready to use main unit that can be carried around when you would like to detect nearby radiation. It can also be put in use as an accumulative dosimeter when needed. The item comes with compatibility with computers so you can monitor radiation whenever you like from any location. You just need to hang the unit somewhere and watch the details from another device.

This product is made well and offers readings in just seconds after you turn it on. It offers real-time, accurate data in CPM, uSv/h, and mR/h on a single screen. This detector has real-time recording so you can save what’s happening and go over it again later. It has options to make the text and graphics larger, comes with a real-time clock, and has both visual and audible alerts when levels are too elevated.

Those who want advanced features have many, including independent calibration factors, bar and line graphs, and data logging. The data you log can then be submitted to any server in the world on an automatic basis. There is also an iPhone app available to make monitoring and detecting even easier than usual.

Pros

  • Detector device offers nuclear radiation monitoring in one of the most lightweight and portable packages
  • Radiation detectors offer a system that can detect x-ray, beta, and gamma radiation over a certain period
  • Easy to use equipment detects and visualizes radiation in real-time and can record for later analysis

Cons

  • Some people who have used the item have experienced broken components on delivery

Meterk EMF Meter Electromagnetic Field Radiation Detector

Meterk EMF Meter Electromagnetic

These radiation detectors from Meterk could be considered one of the best if you would need to test electromagnetic radiation indoors and out. It can help you get readings quickly and shows the radiation value on the screen clearly and brightly after it has been processed. It does come with a good audio alarm, but this can be turned off if you prefer to go without one.

This item has the option to switch between Fahrenheit and Celsius temperatures, and you can save power since it turns off after 10 minutes of not being used. To get to the maximum measurement mode, you only need to long-press on the Mode button. A short press will freeze the readings until you would like to start up detection again.

This is mainly made to be used around the home with radiation reading of things like a refrigerator, television, induction cooker, or a rice cooker. It operates using three AAA batteries, so there’s no need to worry about recharging it on a regular basis. The bright buttons make it simple to use in situations with low light.

Pros

  • Detector equipment is designed for personal use testing nuclear magnetic fields in the home or office
  • Device includes sound and light alarms that go off when radiation levels grow too high
  • Able to hold data to be used later and can be viewed through a large, clear LCD display

Cons

  • Works well for magnetic detection but would not be as useful when detecting higher ranges

SOEKS 112 Compact Digital Geiger Counter

SOEKS 112 Compact Digital Geiger

When you want the best equipment possible, this item from SOEKS could be one the one you need. This is a personal dosimeter that is compact and small enough to keep on you at all times to detect radiation levels in the area or in specific objects. It can be used to help find levels in jewelry, clothes, food, water, and other items. It works well with detecting gamma, beta, and x-rays and can do it in seconds.

Dosimeters like this one would offer accurate information quickly. They are accurate and sensitive courtesy of the large military-grade SBM20-1 Geiger Muller tube inside of it. You can get information by simply pressing a button. It comes with both audio and visual information turned on, but you can choose to turn them off if they are not needed.

There is a long battery life with this device of 100 hours or more. It comes with two LR44 batteries to keep it ready for use for extended periods of time. It has a large detection range from 0.01 to 999 uSv/h.

Pros

  • Personal Geiger counters are compact and lightweight for personal use and powerful enough to detect nuclear radiation levels in many objects
  • Detector device features detection in nearly no time of gamma, beta, and x-rays
  • Sensitive radiation detectors can be used for 100 hours with two LR44 batteries for immediate use

Cons

  • Geiger counters have a small screen that some may find hard to read when utilized

Airthings 223 Corentium Home Radon Detector

Corentium Home Radon Detector

This product from Airthings is a home radon detector that is the best you would find on the market. The manufacturer is also doing good things with the purchase as any of the items sold will result in a $1 donation to the American Lung Association. That means you get one product, and also get to help others at the same time.

This is the first digital radon detector that comes with battery operation. There’s no need to use up an outlet on the product since it is ready to go without annoying cords. It lets you monitor for things like radon without stress. If the levels are too elevated, you can make changes immediately to avoid issues. You can also look at the on-screen readings to keep up with what’s happening at all times.

At any time you like, you can generate a radon report and self-inspection with this product. Unlike a typical radon gas test kit, you’ll have no lab fees and results of radon levels within 24 hours of time. The on-screen results show short and long-term readings so you can get an overview of what’s going on in your home.

Pros

  • Detector equipment helps detect nuclear radon gas found in the air around people at all times
  • Device has quick readings and can show radon levels upon use within the first 24 hours
  • Radiation detectors, when used well, can be placed in the home and utilized for two years with new batteries

Cons

  • Some have experienced issues with receiving errors as soon as the item is received

Advanced GQ EMF-380 V2 Multi-Field Electromagnetic Radiation 3-in-1 EMF ELF Meter

Advanced GQ EMF-380 V2 Multi-Field

What makes this personal EMF and ELF meter one of the best is that it offers an all-in-one display so you can see readings from every sensor all at once. It has a lightweight and compact design that can help you when you are detecting in various environments. It also offers safety suggestions that can assist you to get out of a dangerous area quickly when needed.

This device has a traditional analog-style display that works well when you are in a hurry. It shows the current time when you need accurate information and the front LED has a visual alarm when high readings are triggered. Advanced users would be able to enjoy features like an RF spectrum analyzer and a graph that shows when more than one signal is detected in the same place.

This item has an RF browser that uses high sensitivity sensors and can show power distribution in real-time. It can be utilized to detect ELF, EMF, EF, and RF signals from electronic devices and other items. It can also do much more once you start digging into all the features it holds.

Pros

  • Detector device offers monitoring and allows you to see readings from all the sensors
  • Equipment features a compact design and system that makes it easy to be utilized for testing and measurement
  • New radiation detectors offer safety suggestions so you can move away from nuclear radiation immediately

Cons

  • Does not come with instructions so it may be hard to start utilizing

A Buyer’s Guide to Radiation Detectors

Before you start sifting through listings to find the best device to detect nuclear and radioactive environments, knowing the most important features is crucial. You want equipment that has a high reliability when you need it the most. The best device will handle every aspect of radiation detection without missing one.

Method Utilized for Detection

One of the things you want to make sure is that you understand how radiation is detected. There are several different ways that a device can detect nuclear radiation. For instance, your equipment might use a standard Geiger-Muller tube, or it might use a pancake tube that handles the same thing at the same time but that has a slightly different shape.

If your device uses a tube, it’s important to know that the tube type is relevant for what you need it for. As an example, the device with a pancake tube is going to be better at detecting gamma and beta radiation, but it will not be as reliable for alpha radiation as another one might be.

What You Will Utilize the Device For

Before you choose to purchase one of these items, you should be aware of what you want to use it for. Consider the reasons you want an item like this one, whether that be for hobbyist or professional reasons. If you want it for informational purposes, consider that while making a decision about which detector is right for you. Some items are made for people who are just curious about their surroundings, while there are also items for those who have professional needs.

Display Option for Nuclear Detection

Another one of the things to consider is the display on the item. The top options, no matter where you shop, are going to feature a bright, clear display that you can easily read. This is going to make life easier when you need to take a look at the item in low light situations. If you want to ensure you have an item that offers the best data efficiency, it should be easy to see.

Other Important Specifications

While the items above are some of the most important, that doesn’t mean they are all you should consider. Below, we’ll offer insight into other features that may work well for your needs.

  • Automatic data recording – You can look back at the data to see what has happened in the past.
  • USB connectivity – Allows you the ability to charge the device and/or put your data on a computer or other device.
  • Alpha, gamma, beta, and x-ray detection – If you want the largest number of detection options, your device should detect, x-ray, gamma, alpha, and beta rays.
  • Audible ticking alarm – This offers you an audible ticking alert if the radiation in the area is higher than it should be.
  • Front LED indicator – An LED indicator can give you information about the device and whether it is operating properly.
  • LCD module – A large screen with additional information can be helpful when using the item on a regular basis.
  • Sensors or temperature and other things – The more sensors the item offers, the more it is going to be capable of doing for you.
  • Lightweight, compact design – Those who plan to utilize the item in various situations will want it to be lightweight and easy to transport.

Of course, you should also consider whether the detector for radiation is easy to utilize, has a solid quality build, and is large enough to be useful for your needs.

geiger counter

Frequently Asked Questions About Radiation Detectors

Now that we’ve talked about your options for the best device to check radiation levels, you may have a few questions. This type of nuclear detector device can be utilized to measure the number of particles in the area around you that comes from radioactive equipment or items.

Below, we’ll talk about important things like whether your smartphone can detect nuclear activity and what the best device is to determine whether levels are too high.

Can a smartphone detect radiation?

It might seem crazy to believe that smartphones can be utilized as radiation detectors, but the United States government has proven this is a reality. Smartphones are created in a way where they can not only detect gamma rays but also the energy spectrum of radiation. It can calculate the radiation dose and determine where the radiation exposure is coming from.

There are also now apps for both Apple and Android devices that utilize the onboard silicon-based complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) to monitor radiation levels in the area around you. Readouts can be made in roentgens per hour, (R/hr), rem per hour (rem/hr), millirem per hour (mrem/hr), and milliroentgens per hour (mR/hr).

What instrument do you utilize to detect radiation?

Radiation is not something you can detect through the human sense. Instead, there are several instruments utilized to detect and measure radiation. The most common radiation detectors include:

  • Geiger counters – Geiger counters include a gas-filled tube that makes an electrical pulse when radiation interacts with the gas. The pulses result in an audible click that you can hear and often feature a readout in mR/Hr, rem/hr, or R/hr.
  • MicroR meter – This is a solid crystal of sodium iodide that pulses light when interacting with radiation. The light is turned into an electrical signal, which creates a reading on an instrument meter. These radiation detectors can be utilized as a handheld or large stationary option for radiation detection.
  • Portable multichannel analyzer – It uses a crystal as above but with a small multichannel analyzer electronics package and is becoming more affordable. These radiation detectors are an option for automatically identifying and displaying the radioactive items present.

Some of the other radiation detectors available include neutral REM meters, ionization chambers, and radon detectors.

What is the difference between a Geiger counter and a radiation detector?

A Geiger counter an item among many that can offer radiation safety through the detection of radiation. It offers information on whether there is radiation nearby but does not tell you where the radiation is coming from or its dose rate. Personal radiation detectors are worn on people and can show you where the radiation is coming from, which makes it easier to determine a nuclear threat and handle the situation.

Essentially, radiation detectors do what the counter does but also has other features. Many include a larger number of detection options for gamma, alpha, beta, and x-ray. This kind of device may also come with things like extension poles or rechargeable batteries. They often monitor dose rate, nuclear peak values, and stay. These are safe for people to utilize even in explosive environments that require special equipment.

How can I check my radiation level?

Having access to radiation detectors makes the process of determining how much radiation is in your home a cinch. It reveals the exact amount of radiation nearby and can create a beep or other noise if the number is too high. Depending on the radiation detectors you utilize, you also may be capable of determining important information, including where the radiation is coming from. The best dosimeter device can also provide information about hidden and unidentifiable sources of nuclear radiation.

If the levels are low or standard, there is very little to worry about. If you find that the numbers are too high, a device like a reliable ventilation system can help prevent the problem. Protective material or shielding can also be useful when your radiation detectors note that the level of radiation is high.

Wrapping Up

When you need the best radiation detector possible, you want to be sure you search for items that help in your specific situation. While nobody wants to be in a situation with radiation, the right device can keep you safe if you are. The best radiation detection device will also show you where radiation is coming from and what level of radiation it is.

Try one of the devices we showcase above to get the best results. If the perfect device isn’t listed, you now know how to find the item you want. Good luck out there!

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