The Zircon MS 540 is a fairly simple looking device, but it’s priced a little higher than many of Zircon’s simple models – so what is it that sets this stud finder apart from the others?
It works on several different surfaces
Many stud finders are limited in terms of what surfaces you can use them on, but this stud finder works on different types of walls, ceilings and floors. This makes it the ideal stud finder for almost any DIY job.
It can detect studs, metal and live wires
This is a good stud finder if you’re after a device that you can use independently of other devices. You’ll be able to detect studs and joists of course, but you can also scan for ferrous and non ferrous metals, as well as live wires. So you can be sure there won’t be any nasty surprises behind your surface.
One thing to note though is that wires can only be detected up to 2 inches deep, and may not be detected if they are shielded in metal conduit.
It’s a slightly cheaper version of the MS 740
Whilst these features aren’t necessary to successful scanning, and the MS 540 works perfectly well without them, they would make scanning easier, which is why this device isn’t priced quite so highly as the MS 740.
It works best if you scan a couple of times
As with most stud finders, you can be more confident in the readings of this Zircon if you scan an area more than once, starting from a different point. This can rule out any errors that might have occurred during the first scan, like starting over a stud.
Because this device doesn’t have ACT (auto correcting technology) scanning more than once is definitely advisable – you don’t want to miss anything.
It uses classic Zircon technology
To identify detections, the MS 540 uses the same Spotlite technology and backlit display screen that we’ve seen on many other Zircon devices, so those familiar with Zircon won’t have to spend long becoming accustomed to using this device.
It requires a steady hand
This Zircon model is fairly sensitive, and a shaky hand can impact the accuracy of your results.
For reliable readings, you need to make sure you move the device slowly across surfaces, otherwise you might find the screen telling you there’s an ‘error’ as it struggles to detect hidden materials when moved quickly.
To avoid errors like these, and make your life easier, make sure you read the manual, as following the instructions clearly can produce better and more accurate results. Once you’ve mastered how to use this device, you shouldn’t encounter any difficulties with the results.
MS 540 review summary
This is a good device if you’re hoping for a reasonably priced stud finder, metal detector and live wire finder. It’s one of the better all in one devices out there, but requires a bit of time to master using it.
If you don’t mind not having ACT or an integrated marking system (that you can mark out your detections with), then this is the device for you, but if those are features that you’d rather pay a little more for, check out the Zircon MS 740, a slightly more high tech device. Check prices here.