What are some of the standard ways to measure hardness? Hardness can be measured in a number of ways, and often you will want to choose a particular measurement tool or scale based on the type of hardness you need to assess. We will review a few of the more commonly used tests. The Brinell Hardness Test applies a hard metal ball to the material being tested from a vertical angle, using a known amount of force, for a specified amount of time. The degree of hardness is determined from the pressure diameter and the force applied. The Vickers Hardness Test uses a pyramid-shaped diamond indenter to make an indentation on the test material. Hardness is then measured using the diagonals of the resulting indentation. The Rockwell Hardness Test uses a diamond cone or steel ball to make an indentation on the material being tested. A number is then calculated using the resulting depth.