The 5 Best Soldering Stations [Ranked]
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A soldering station is a piece of equipment built to make the soldering process simple and effective for home or professional use (Source).
Soldering is typically employed to connect 2 bits of metal to produce a joint, though plastic materials could be soldered too (Source).
Soldering irons supply their users a regulated supply of heat that you can use to manage the materials employed in the soldering process to achieve a cleanly soldered joint (Source).
Our Top Pick: The Hakko Solderer
Soldering is a straightforward enough process that high school kids learn it in shop class. As well, professional tinkerers love these devices and employ them for a variety of technical purposes.
Let's take a look at 5 of our favorite soldering stations.
The 5 Best Soldering Stations
This Hakko soldering station has a temperature range of 392 to 896 degrees Fahrenheit and is controlled by a digital calibration system for easy adjustment. It also features a ceramic heating element to ensure fast heating and quick thermal recovery. For comfort and ease of use, it has padded slender iron handles with ergonomic design.
- Preset temperatures so you don’t have to calibrate the temperature each time.
- Displays temperature in Fahrenheit and Celsius for easy conversion
- Low temperature alarm for process control and protection from cold solder joints
- The display temperature displayed is not always exactly accurate.
Hakko Digital Soldering Video Review
The Aoyue 9378 is one of the more robust solder stations, including a digital thermostat control for Fahrenheit and Celsius readouts and a programmable sleep function for increased tip life. It is a versatile piece of soldering equipment as it comes with over 10 tip sizes and two programmable temperature presets. Moreover, it gives you total control of the temperature as it has a red LED display that shows the current temperature and the temperature while heating up.
- Fitted with a vibration sensor to detect movement while in use
- Quick to heat up
- The iron is not as thin as many users want it
- The wire is not very flexible
The Aoyue 9378 Video Review
This 60-watt Tekpower soldering station is lightweight option with a cool grip rubber handle for comfort. It has a copper tip that is plated with nickel iron for longer life. The tip has a temperature range of up to 860 degrees Fahrenheit with an especially quick heating time and fast heating recovery.
- One of the cheapest in the market
- Easily gets a bit too hot and the handle begins to melt if continuously left on the soldering stand
- Some users reported that the tip could disintegrate after several uses and could slow down your work
- There were reports of smoke coming up between the tip and the barrel
The X-Tronic Model is one of the soldering stations that includes some useful extras, including a stand, a Samsung microcomputer processor, a magnifying gooseneck fluorescent lamp, 10 soldering tips, an extra heating element and tweezers. It is suitable for a variety of soldering purposes as its temperature range reaches up to 480 degrees and the temperature can easily be selected with a flip of a switch.
- Allows for quick temperature correction for maintaining constant temperature stability
- With self-test function for detecting over-temps, overloads and short circuits
- Not able to maintain its heat components on large surfaces
- Good when new but some users reported that after prolonged use replacement parts were necessary
The X-Tronic Soldering Station Video Review
This 45-watt Kendal soldering station features an LED digital display that shows temperature precision. It has a temperature range of up to 480 degrees Celsius that can be easily controlled by a computer system. When you buy this item, it comes with one spare heating element and five iron tips.
- Small and compact for portability
- Heats up rapidly and stays at assigned temperature
- Can be used to repair sensitive components without damaging the boards
- The iron holder is flimsy and not a snug-fit
- When a high temperature is used, some users reported that their units tended to malfunction
What are customers saying?
- Users who employ their soldiering stations for wiring and circuitry projects sometimes have to replace the tips when and if they melt.
- That said, those who purchased the Weller 40-watt station claim that they have not had to replace the tip because it is of higher quality than many other models.
- Another reviewer also writes that using their Weller soldering station they're able to use different soldering irons with it, as long as they do not exceed the recommended wattage rating.
- Another Weller station fan claims the unit will heat up within five minutes using medium settings, and 1-2 minutes when the settings are set at their max.
- Many users prefer there to be temperature marking increments on the dial to exactly ensure the temperature of the soldering.
- In terms of noise, users write that soldering stations are generally only noisy when the fan of the hot air gun is blowing.
- It's sometimes preferred to purchase a carrying case to keep all of the units components in one space.
- Another handy feature that many users appreciate is the ability to swap out the tips without having to use a screwdriver.
- For international users using 220V, many soldering stations can only be used with 110V circuits.
- Most of these soldering kits will include instruction manuals, solder suction, an iron stand, a sponge as well as the solder iron itself.