Do I need an Antenna Analyzer? How do I choose?

10Jan17

Do I need an antenna analyzer? If I do, how do I choose which one to get?

This is a question many new (and experienced) amateurs face today. There are many styles and types of antenna analyzers available, and it’s not easy to sort them all out, even for experienced Hams.

Antenna Analyzers have been around in one form or another for a couple of decades, but only recently have essentially “lab grade” hand-held devices become available at reasonable prices.

RigExpert has been producing digital hand-held antenna analyzers for around 10 years beginning with the AA-200 model. The AA-200 introduced a digital display, USB interface, and storage of measurements in on-board memory. Newer RigExpert models offer even more features at a reduced cost. The model number indicates the highest frequency the analyzer is designed for; in the case of the AA-200: 200 MHz.

So, what should you do if you are dabbling with HF and want to build some dipoles, or other simple HF antennas?

Rig Expert offers two very economical choices for first time analyzer buyers: the AA-30 and the AA-54.

Rig Expert AA-30 and RigExpert AA-54

Both of these are economical, and offer coverage for HF, and the AA-54 even adds 6 meters!

The AA-54 costs $100 more, is it worth it?

The short answer is: Yes!

The RigExpert AA-54 adds some very useful features and capabilities including the “Multi-SWR” feature, and the ability to store / name 10 different SWR measurements for downloading to your computer.

Rig Expert has several other models ranging up to 1.4 GHz. Some of them use full color displays and more unique features. See them all at DX Engineering’s Rig Expert Antenna Analyzer Page!

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