Kestrel Drop – wireless environmental data logger (review)

If you need to know the current temperature, let alone the humidity, heat index, dew point and more the Kestrel Drop may be what you need.

When this device turned up at Gadget Guy, it went on the back burner because nothing screams exciting like “Wireless Environmental Data Logger” – let’s play with Star Wars BB-9E droids instead.

Upon opening this device and following the simple set-up steps – insert the battery, download the app (for iOS or Android) and go I became a little more intrigued.

Yes, the air conditioning was working – 22.4°, humidity was high at 64.9%, and the heat stress index was 23°, so I needed to drink lots of water. The heat stress index is interesting as it is a combination of temperature and humidity.

Who uses it?

I started researching environmental data logging and found Kestrel featured well there. It has four models of the Drop ranging from temperature only to eight measurements priced from $169 to $319.


Then I found it is used for transportation (conditions in containers), agriculture (measuring growing conditions), firefighting (hotspot identification), facilities management (it is too hot or cold in here?), medical, pharmaceutical, storage (temperature/humidity), livestock monitoring, hunters and hikers, military, consumers (weather station) and many others. Politically incorrect cigar smokers use them in humidors!

The D3 test unit did almost everything
• Temperature
• Humidity
• Heat index
• Dewpoint temperature
• Wet bulb temperature
• Density Altitude
• Station pressure
• Moisture content
• Humidity ratio
• Relative air density

Performance

It uses Bluetooth and will function up to 30 metres from a smartphone. It is always on (unless you remove the battery) and on average the button 2302 battery lasts six months. It is 24 x 46 mm x 60 mm and 34g. It is IP-67 and Mil-STD-810G rated.

The app

Kestrel LiNK is the free app that powers the DROP loggers. You can view real-time readings from any DROP logger within wireless range (up to 30 metres) via Bluetooth low energy.

Each phone can have up to 8 DROP loggers at the same time and store data logs from more.

Min/Max/Average readings are displayed, and the data log is viewable as a scrolling graph with detailed data for each logged point. The app also allows adjustment of the logging interval and other settings as well as real-time threshold alerts.

Readings can be updated as frequently as every 2 seconds and logging time and date are automatically updated whenever connected to your smart device. You can also send and share real-time and logged environmental data via email, Facebook or Twitter.

Pros

• Good app
• Different models and price points – one size does not fit all
• The more I used it, the more useful it was
• Time proven and from a reputable company

Cons

• None really – you could say its expensive, needs an off switch etc., but that is what a data logger is/does.

Rating

Overall: 4.6 out of 5
Features: 4 out of – Depends on how much you spend
Value f0r money: 4 out of 5 – No real reference point as this is a scientific instrument
Performance: 5 out of 5 – does everything it claims
Ease of use: 5 out of 5 – dead simple
Design: 5 out 5 – key tag may not be stylish but its very functional

Price

D1 – $169
D2 – $249
D3 – $319

Buy online from Kestrel or instrument stores https://kestrelmeters.com.au/apps/store-locator Australia wide.