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Author Topic: MA5B vs HF5B or similar mini-beams  (Read 2476 times)
KC2SKM
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Posts: 7




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« on: February 17, 2009, 09:10:22 AM »

Hello! family  

Well,my question is ... which are the differences between these 2 antennas or some more that are in the market such as mini-beams. Thank you! for your help and for your time giving to me.
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KA2UUP
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Posts: 388




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« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2009, 09:32:20 AM »

The HF5B is a butterfly type-antenna and the MA5B is more of a tradtional horizontal beam.  I am more familiar with the latter because I have had one for 7 years.

The MA5B works well.  However it is directional for some bands and not others.  The only tuning available is for the 20 meter band.  The other bands are fixed and cannot be tuned.  Also, I don't recall for which bands, but in some cases the antenna is bidirectional and for others directional.

For a budget antenna, it is a good product.
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N0MUD
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« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2009, 09:40:27 AM »

Hi Bill, I have both but as far as in the air I have the Cushcraft MA5B up in the air and being used.  When I bought the HF5B at the time I thought I was buying the MA5B.  Right now the HF5B is on a 20 ft tower and not hooked up to anything.  I will probably sell it locally.  I've always wanted the MA5B so when the opportunity presented itself I bought it brand new.  It is easy to put together.  I put it together inside my home, then took the boom and three elements outside and up on my RV garage roof and it works perfectly. The antenna is on a 30ft tower and I also have a Cushcraft A-3 up on a 60ft Rohn tower.  The difference is the noise level.  The one on the 60ft tower is noisy and the MA5B is quiet.  

Good Luck & 73s....Mike, N0mud
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N3JBH
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« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2009, 11:50:22 AM »

The MA5B is tunable on all its bands not just 20... I use one here for some contacts and like it a lot
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KA2UUP
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Posts: 388




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« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2009, 01:06:39 PM »

Yes, the MA5B is tunable on all bands IF you have an antenna matchbox tuner.  However, the antenna manual only shows one adjustment table for the 20 meter band, not for the 10, 12, 15, or 17 meter bands.
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N8NSN
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« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2009, 01:22:11 PM »

So far all any one has covered were the Cushcraft and the Butternut.  I thought I would offer some more 'mini-beam' options.  Here is a manufacturers web site you may be interested in.

http://www3.sympatico.ca/tgmc/

They have a nice selection of many multi-mini-antennas for a good variety of bands.  

The one I have most experience with from TGM is the current beam for 6,10,15 and 20 meters.  I got it used and it has been up here in my station for three years.  The previous owner upgraded to the 3 element, 5 band version and had this small 2 element up for about 4 years before I acquired it.    He has had all good to say about his upgrade to the three element five band (10,12,15,17,20 meters). Here is the link to the 2 element...

http://www3.sympatico.ca/tgmc/mq-1.html

TGM makes a really sturdy antenna.  Sift through the TGM website and look at the various 3 element minis...  Hope this helps add more to choose from.

Good RF Adventures and 73,

jim  
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N8NSN
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« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2009, 01:59:38 PM »

Sorry to over post... Forgot to mention a couple things.



 

The Butternut HF5B is now made by Bencher.  Here is a link so you can go over the specs.

http://www.bencher.com/ham/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=4&products_id=15





The MA5B is made by Cushcraft.  Here is a link to go over the specs.

http://www.cushcraft.com/comm/support/pdf/MA5B-X7.pdf





The TGM website is following.  Go over the specs.

http://www3.sympatico.ca/tgmc/mq-36sr.html






The main thing I wanted to point out is to Go Over The Specs.  You'll notice that even though the MA5B is a 3 element antenna... it only uses either one or two elements on each band.  To me that kind of stings.

The Bencher (Butternut HF5B) has the best specs for the mini-beam lineup.  More bandwidth, better Front to Back Ratio and a little better gain (considering a 2 element).  

The TGM 3 element beams are 3 elements on all 5(6) bands so the forward gain is a bit better.  The FtB is good as well.  But, they are rather expensive.

Happy Hunting,

jim
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K3JVB
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« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2009, 02:35:02 PM »

Hi

A few hundred more, and you can have the Hex-5 band.
9 foot turning radius, Good swr on all bands. Front to back is close. The Hex does have a little less gain.

But I can say first hand, it works. I have 200 plus countries, with a modest station

Added bonus...it can be mounted on a push up mast, as it weighs 19 pounds.
73
John
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W7KPQ
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Posts: 69




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« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2009, 03:28:46 PM »

Well some food-for-thought but you might want to consider a 2-element SteppIR.  Not sure what you have for room but the boom length is only 57 inches and element length is 36 feet.  It'll work 20-6 meters without having to use a tuner and it's directional on all bands with good front-to-back and good gain.  The 180 degree feature is terrific.  

Richard
W7KPQ
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N6AJR
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Posts: 9915




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« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2009, 05:10:04 PM »

First choise  ( but more money ) is a 2 or 3 element steppir, fantastic antenna.

second choice is the Ma5b, a great little antenna for such a small package, I actually ran one on a guyed push up mast at 30 feet for some period of time.  works pretty well for its size.
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