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Thread: Antenna analysers?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Shropshire, England, UK.
    Posts
    244

    Default Antenna analysers?

    Now being in a position to play about with strung wire and mast type antennas a bit more I am thinking of buying a decent antenna analyser to see if my work is in the right direction. Don't mind spending a bit of dough on something decent if it it A: works properly and consistently, B: has maker's support and spares, and is relatively easy to use, and C: has a reasonable resale value. I was looking at the VNA Pro units. Anyone any comments on these things please? I do a mixture of HF and VHF at the moment, but have an inkling to look at microwaves one day. I think for now we can ignore microwaves as it's probably a bit specialised, equipment wise to consider right now. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Shropshire, England, UK.
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    244

    Default

    Taking my Intermediate at the end of this month, yes I have already built a Softrock multi band SDR receiver as my project. Time precludes me building anything else right now, so looking for a commercial device, ready built. Thanks for the idea, looks interesting, hope to build more stuff, but right now work calls Cheers Matt

  3. #3

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    I have 2 analyzers that serve different purposes. The MFJ-259 is for quick tests and highly portable use. The Array Solutions AIM 4170C provides much more detailed and accurate information, but requires a laptop and cabling. I use it primarily for multi-band antennas fed with balanced line, especially in determining optimum feed line lengths. Both analyzers are very useful and I'd have a hard time giving up either.

    Jim

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Shropshire, England, UK.
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    Default

    Thanks Matt. I haven't even transmitted yet, despite having a licence for some three weeks. just not had time to be honest, it's damned hard earning a crust in the UK at the moment ;( An analyser linked to a laptop would be fine. I only intend to operate from home and am happy with the encumbrance of leads and laptop.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by M6DFV View Post
    I only intend to operate from home and am happy with the encumbrance of leads and laptop.
    In that case, I don't think anything comes close to the accuracy and versatility of the AIM 4170C (Array Solutions), unless you spend a whole lot more. The ability to save and compare graphs is valuable to me for many purposes. There are several, independent reviews that conclude the same thing.

    Eventually, you may want to add a more portable, self-contained battery operated analyzer, even if you only use it at home. It is a lot faster hook up one of these for a quick antenna check than to connect the AIM to power, connect it to your computer, fire up the program, set up the parameters, and then scan. The MFJ type analyzers are also easier to use working outside, close to your antenna, especially if you are trimming or adjusting the antenna.

    Jim

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