Antenna Tuner Recommendations
Hello everyone, I am looking to get an antenna tuner so that when I go into the field with a simple wire antenna, I can tune it up without worrying if it is too long, or too short. I know several people have them, but not sure what the thoughts are for something portable, and reasonably priced.
A few questions.
1. Price range?
2. Automatic or manual? If automatic do you have a radio you plan to use with it?
3. Power level? (QRP, 100w or full legal?
4. New, used, or kit?
5. I’m gathering you are thinking portable rather than base.
1. $200 or so
2. Prefer automatic, but not sure about manual. Never used a manual one, so not sure how to even do it, but willing to learn if it keeps the price lower.
3. I doubt I'll need full legal power limit, so maybe up to about 300 watts or so.
4. All the above...LOL I would prefer new, since I hate inheriting someone else's problems, but may be a way to keep the price cheaper.
5. Yes, was thinking more on the portable side for remote working. I want to get a portable rig in the future and use some kind of wire antenna, but don't want to have to put 5 different antennas for a short time of operating, like a weekend or even a hike.
Thanks for the response and I'll be interested in hearing what you think, or others.
The 300W power level is really going to up your price point. There are a number of options in the 100W range for SSB (30W Digital) that will hit your price point in an automatic, portable tuner.
Are you sure that is the power level you want to go with?
For my mobile setup, I purchased a LDG Z-100 as part of a existing setup. It is an older version of https://ldgelectronics.com/index.php/products/zero-power/z-100-plus/
For my base station, I rebuilt an old, damaged, manual MFJ-941D from parts and schematics. It is rated at 300W, but ran $35 to me (and about 8 hours of soldering fun). Tuning isn't hard, but requires attention.
As the old saying goes, "speed costs, how fast do you want to go?"
Thanks Ed, that helps a lot. I guess I'll probably stick with the 100w range, since this will be used mostly for portable, and I doubt I'll be bringing an amp on my travels (for now). I was hoping to get what others have used/tried and what their pros and cons are.
Thanks again for the help and let me know if you think of anything else.
I agree with Ed. You cannot go wrong with an LDG. Good tuners (up to 10:1). Frankly, they'll tune a paperclip. Most of their portable versions have built in battery trays were you can drop a few AA batteries for portable use. Or, if you don't want to run an extra power connector in the shack, you can go that route as well.
If you plan on going above 100W, I'd recommend the AT-600PROII. I run that in the shack and it does great.
Good luck and 73!