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Klein Tools IR1 vs SOVARCATE HS980E Digital Infrared Thermometer Side-by-Side Comparison

If you’re on the fence about whether to pick the Klein Tools IR1 or the Sovarcate HS980E, check out this side-by-side comparison!

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Klein Tools IR1 Infrared Thermometer

SOVARCATE HS980E Digital

Klein Tools IR1 vs SOVARCATE HS980E Digital Infrared Thermometer

Overall Verdict

Our benchmark rates the Klein Tools IR1 with a total performance score of 7.9, significantly higher than the Sovarcate HS980E, which scored 7.1.

However, despite the Klein Tools IR1 being well-built, it can't compete with the Sovarcate HS980E in terms of design. The HS980E earns an impressive near-perfect score of 9.8 out of 10, while the Klein Tools IR1 only achieves 8.3. The Sovarcate HS980E boasts a rugged design, a colored LCD screen, and a bright 13-point laser emitter.

Another aspect to consider is usability, where once again, the Sovarcate HS980E outshines the Klein Tools IR1 with a score of 8.3. Unfortunately, the Klein Tools IR1 falls behind with a score of 4.5 due to its restrictive design. The IR1's battery compartment and sole control button are hidden behind a screwed-in panel, making it less user-friendly.

The Klein Tools IR1 also lacks extra measurement modes, whereas the Sovarcate HS980E offers three.

If measurement accuracy is your top priority, then the Klein Tools IR1 is suitable. However, the Sovarcate HS980E is better if you value versatility and user-friendliness.

Ranking by
OverallScore Performance70% Design20% Usability10% ScoreOverall 70%Performance 20%Design 10%UsabilitySOVARCATE HS980E Di...Klein Tools IR1 Inf...7.87.19.88.37.67.98.34.5
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Pros & Cons

  • Rugged, industrial-grade design
  • Quality IR sensor provides decently accurate readings
  • Bright laser emitter
  • Bright backlit LCD display panel
  • Fairly accurate and reliable temperature readings.
  • Rugged, industrial design
  • Extremely bright laser emitter
  • Color LCD VA screen panel
  • Comes with a good selection of measurement modes
  • Very loud speakers
  • Doesn’t come with any extra measurement mode
  • The measurement unit switch and battery are hidden behind a screwed-in door
  • Measurement accuracy can be better.

Key Specs

Dimensions
L4 x W1.77 x H5.9 inches
L3.74 x W1.77 x H6.3 inches
Weight
6.8 ounces
5.5 ounces
Display type
Backlit LCD panel
LCD VA panel
Measurement modes
0
3
Audio cues
No
Yes
Temperature range
-4 to 752°F (-20 to 400°C)
-58 to 1,122°F (-50 to 600°C)

Where to Buy

Price at publication
$31.58
$19.19

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Analysis and Test Results

Performance

Overall Performance Scoring
7.9
7.1

Cold Test with Ice

6.7
7.0
Klein Tools IR1 Infrared Thermometer Cold Test with Ice Video
The Klein Tools IR1 measuring an ice bath from a distance of 12 inches, with the screen showing 29.1°F.
The Klein Tools IR1 measuring an ice bath from a distance of 16 inches, with the screen displaying 30.9°F.
The Sovarcate HS980E from 12 inches away from the ice bath displays a temperature of 34.2°F on the screen.
The Sovarcate HS980E measuring from a distance of 12 inches from the ice surface, producing a reading of 34.2°F.
The Sovarcate HS980E from 12 inches away from the ice bath displays a temperature of 34.2°F on the screen.
The Sovarcate HS980E from 16 inches away from the ice bath displays a temperature of 35.1°F on the screen.
Ice Temperature
32°F
32°F
Temperature at 12”
29.1°F
34.2°F
Temperature at 16”
30.9°F
35.1°F

Hot Test with Cooking Oil

8.7
7.2
Klein Tools IR1 Infrared Thermometer Hot Test with Cooking Oil Video
The Klein Tools IR1 is being used by a reviewer to measure the temperature of a hot pan of oil from 12 inches away. The screen shows 361.8°F.
A reviewer is using the Klein Tools IR1 IR thermometer to measure the temperature of a hot pan of oil from 16 inches away. The screen displays 367°F.
The Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer measuring the temperature of cooking oil from 12 inches. The screen reads 36.5°F.
The Sovarcate HS980E measuring the boiling oil from a distance of 12 inches. The reading is 36.5°F.
The Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer measuring the temperature of cooking oil from 12 inches. The screen reads 36.5°F.
The Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer measuring the temperature of cooking oil from 16 inches. The screen reads 37°F.
Oil Temperature
361°F
361°F
Temperature at 12”
361.8°F
370°F
Temperature at 16”
367°F
365°F

Design

Overall Design Scoring
8.3
9.8

In the Box

The Klein Tools IR1 is lying on its side in the center. To the left is the plastic packaging, to the right is the battery, the canvas holster, and user manual.
The Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer is in the center. The shipping box is to the left, and the right are the batteries and the user manual.

Dimensions

The Klein Tools IR1 standing upright on its handle on a slate grey concrete table.
The dimensions of the Sovarcate HS980E. The length is marked as 3.74 inches, the width is 1.77 inches, and the height is 6.3 inches.
Weight
6.8 oz (193 g)
5.5 oz (156 g)
Length
4.0" (10.2 cm)
3.7" (9.5 cm)
Width
1.8" (4.5 cm)
1.8" (4.5 cm)
Height
5.9" (15.0 cm)
6.3" (16.0 cm)

Build Quality

9.0
9.5
Klein Tools IR1 Infrared Thermometer Build Quality Video
The Klein Tools IR1 showcasing its side profile, laid horizontally on a slate grey concrete tabletop.
The Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer on its side on a slate grey concrete table top.

Laser Emitter

9.0
10
The red laser dot of the Klein Tools IR1 infrared thermometer gun’s laser emitter in a dark room.
The red laser dot of the Klein Tools IR1 infrared thermometer gun’s laser emitter in a dark room.
The black-gloved hand of a reviewer holding and using the Klein Tools IR1 IR thermometer in scan mode. A red laser dot can be seen in the background.
The 13-dot laser pattern of the Sovarcate HS980E on the wall of a dark room.
The 13-dot laser pattern of the Sovarcate HS980E on the wall of a dark room.
The bright red laser emitter and the IR sensor on the Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer.
Laser Pattern
Single-dot
13-dot
Brightness
Good
Good

Display Panel

6.0
10
A close-up of the backlit LCD panel at the back of the Klein Tools IR1 thermometer. The screen is displaying “84.9°F.”
The LCD panel has a backlight, but you can’t manually turn it off.
The LCD VA display panel of the Sovarcate HS980E. The screen currently reads 26.8°C, and the EMS setting is 0.95.
Display Type
Backlit LCD
LCD VA panel
Backlight
Yes
Yes
Display Size
1.18
1.37

Battery Compartment

The screwed-in battery compartment of the Klein Tools IR1 thermometer is opened, revealing the receptacle for the 9V battery and a switch.
When the battery compartment is opened, other than the receptacle for the battery, you’ll also find a hidden switch to change the measurement unit of the thermometer.
The screwed-in battery compartment of the Klein Tools IR1 thermometer is opened, revealing the receptacle for the 9V battery and a switch.
The 9V battery cell that comes with the Klein Tools IR1 laying on a concrete grey table. The thermometer itself is next to it. The battery compartment is opened.
The Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer with its battery compartment opened and one of the AAA batteries slotted in. A spare battery is to the left.
Battery Type
9V
AAA

Usability

Overall Usability Scoring
4.5
8.3

Handling

9.0
9.0
The black-gloved hand of a reviewer holding the Klein Tools IR1 IR thermometer.
The black-gloved hand of a reviewer holding the Klein Tools IR1 IR thermometer.
A close-up view of the handle of the Klein Tools IR1, focusing on the textured handgrip portion.
The ridged patterning on the handle of the Klein Tools IR1 IR thermometer
The gloved hand of a reviewer holding onto the grip of the Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer.
The gloved hand of a reviewer holding onto the grip of the Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer.
The textured grip of the Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer from the side.
The backside of the textured grip of the Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer.

Measurement Modes

0.0
6.0
Emissivity
No
0.10-1.00
Average Mode
No
No
Min Mode
No
No
Max Mode
No
Yes
Calibration
No
No
Alarm Mode
No
Yes

Audio Cues

0.0
10
The control panel and the speaker holes of the Sovarcate HS980E IR thermometer.

Behind the Comparison

Headshot of Matthew Lee
Matthew LeeReviewer

Matthew Lee is a writer and editor for HealthyKitchen101. With over 8 years working for various outlets and agencies, specializing in tech review and other subjects of note, such as current affairs.

Headshot of Lap Vo
Lap VoTest Lead

Lap is Head of the Research, Testing, and Review Team (RTR Team) at HealthyKitchen101.com, where he directs and supervises the testing of kitchen gadgets and appliances.

Headshot of Nguyen Ntk
Nguyen NtkVisual Specialist

Nguyen Ntk is a graphic designer, photographer, and videographer whose philosophy centers around respecting and celebrating the beauty of reality. Through his lenses, Nguyen strives to capture the true essence of objects and events, showcasing and highlighting authentic features without distortion or exaggeration.

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