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Author Topic: Antenex and other 'Phantom' Antennas  (Read 1329 times)
K7JGB
Member

Posts: 4




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« Reply #15 on: August 14, 2006, 08:45:10 PM »

Thanks for the clarification on Mean Effective Gain.  I did not purchase the antenna based on looks but rather a different technology than a regular whip antenna which I have several.  I bought it as an experiment to see if it works in the environment in which I operate in.  It seems that everyone that has commented on this antenna, without having any personal experience with it.  I am not saying the phantom is a good or bad antenna.  I need some time to see what it can do.  If it is a poor performer, then I will tell everyone.  As of right now, I feel that no one has any room to talk!  Theorizing can only get one so far!

A good alternative to the Phantom if price is a variable is the Larsen NMO Q-SPEC ($13.20).  This is a mono band whip that is tunable to the desired frequency.  I have one made up for 440 and it works really well; sometimes better than a 5/8 wave in an urban environment.  The Q-SPEC is six inches long for 440 and in my opinion harder to see than the Phantom which is a large diameter.  If you trying to work simplex, neither of these antennas are for you.  However, if you like working repeaters in an urban environment and within a ten to fifteen mile radius of the repeater, than these antennas are what you are looking for (at least the Q-SPEC, I will let you know how the Phantom does).  

Cheers,
Joshua
K7JGB    
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K7AAT
Member

Posts: 413




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« Reply #16 on: August 14, 2006, 09:30:30 PM »

  Joshua said:  "It seems that everyone that has commented on this antenna, without having any personal experience with it. I am not saying the phantom is a good or bad antenna. I need some time to see what it can do. If it is a poor performer, then I will tell everyone. As of right now, I feel that no one has any room to talk! Theorizing can only get one so far! "

   Joshua,  had you read my earlier comment on this subject, you'd have seen that I HAVE used this antenna on 440, and ended up going to a 1/4 wave for improved coverage in my rural area.   However, if you are happy with that unit, so be it.

   Incidently,  that other Q-Spec antenna you mentioned as being 6" long.... that happens to be about 1/4wave at 440, so I wouldn't be surprised it would work better than the Antennex model you're using.  The only thing that those "fat" designs have over whips is increased bandwidth,  which can be nice if you also operate down in the rest of the 440 ham band down to 420MHz.

   Ed  K7AAT

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K7JGB
Member

Posts: 4




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« Reply #17 on: August 14, 2006, 09:52:40 PM »

Edward,
   
  A buddy and I have experimented with the Q-SPEC quarter wave and had
good results like you have.  I did not read your post stating that you
had not so good results with it.  One thing not related to you
regarding eham, is that many people post stuff without have any physical
experience with the product and give false comments or reviews.  This just
makes it harder for people to make an educated decision.  Anyways have a
good one, and I'll keep you posted as to what kind of results I get.  
Maybe high $$$ antennas are not any better than less expensive antennas.
   
  73's,
  Joshua
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KZ1X
Member

Posts: 3228




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« Reply #18 on: August 15, 2006, 05:48:56 PM »

Yes, I have used low-profile 'whipless' antennas for quite some time.  In fact, my daily drive has one on it.  White car, white antenna.  I get "that is a neat antenna" comments on it all the time.  It's a Maxrad, not Antenex, if that matters.

http://www.maxrad.com/models_detail.cgi?id_num=3549&styleid=8

And, I only operate UHF, never 2 meters.  So I can't offer any experience there.

The performance of this model I have is just slightly better than a quarter wave, where it's mounted.  I generally use the Austin 500C when I want/need better performance.
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KC2OZU
Member

Posts: 46




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« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2006, 06:33:26 PM »

Just as a follow-up, I've been looking and asking around in the public service area.

It seems that there are many installers who don't recommend them, and though some organizations in my area have them for VHF (I guess at 100W it isn't that big of a deal), the newest vehicles (within the past year) have a whip for VHF and the Antenex for UHF+.
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K7JGB
Member

Posts: 4




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« Reply #20 on: August 26, 2006, 10:00:50 AM »

I have used this antenna for a week and a half.  I have good results with it.  The only bad thing is that if you are trying to get into backyard repeaters or ground level repeaters, you can only get about five miles away from them.  After six miles or so, it is hard making it into the repeater.  As far has tall building or mountain top repeaters, it works much better than a 5/8 wave.   I was able to get into a repeater (449.650) on Signal Peak seventy miles away on ten watts.  Another repeater I was able to get into with good audio was Mount Lemmon (449.975) this mountain is ninety miles away.  While they Phantoms has a narrower bandwidth than most antennas, if you ask Antenex to tune it to 445.000 for you they will.  That way you can use the antenna for 440.000 to 450.000 and have very low SWR.  Mobile to Mobile simplex is ok.  I was only able to get about three to four miles before the other station was unable to read me.  They were using a ΒΌ NMO Q-SPEC.  So if you like using simplex for long distance get yourself a high gain antenna to keep that signal towards the ground.    

As far as receive goes, Arizona Department of Public Safety (Highway Patrol) 460.000-460.500 range, they come in full scale and loud audio, in the metro area and in the outline areas.  I also monitor Union Pacific Railroad Phoenix Sub road channel 160.785 and it is hard to receive them unless you are close to the yard or the train itself.  Dispatch comes in at about two to three s-units and good audio.  However, RR dispatch is transmitting from mountain tops so most of the time you can hear them.  

The Antenex Phantom is a great performer on UHF.  If you live in the middle of no where and are trying to talk to your buddy simplex fifty miles away, you are going to have bad results like everyone else, that seems the antenna is being used for that!   If you are going to use it for building and mountain top repeaters, I would have to say it is a competitor against a Comet SSB-2NMO and the Q-SPEC.  If you want to know what I will keep on my car for a long time, it will be the Phantom!  If you have any more questions about it or want pictures let me know.  If you want science and theory about the antenna ask the other guys!

Joshua
K7JGB
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AD5TD
Member

Posts: 113




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« Reply #21 on: September 15, 2006, 08:12:40 AM »

I have used the VHF model, it is truly a dummy load.  If, like most city cops, you dont' expect to be more than 2-3 miles from a repeater tower, they will work OK.  I got rid of mine fast.

AD5TD
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