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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF: Yagi, Quad, Rotary dipole, LPDA | Ultra Beam Yagi 4 el 6-20m Help


Reviews Summary for Ultra Beam Yagi 4 el 6-20m
Reviews: 2 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $2.550,00 Euro
Description: Ultra Beam Yagi 4 el 6M-20m
Product is in production.
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ON4VP Rating: 5/5 Dec 9, 2012 23:33 Send this review to a friend
Big 5-band performance monobander  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I recently installed this antenna. It replaces my Optibeam OB9/5. The Optibeam performed very well but I was looking for a bit more gain on the top 5 bands.

When it comes to gain you know by physic law that the antenna will be bigger. The first interesting part is that this antenna has 4 elements and therefore is not that overwhelming compared to a 4 element 5-band yagi from another design. Either you have to install multiple antennas or you have to work with interlaced elements so the aerial becomes rather large and the weight increases dramatically.

The Ultrabeam 4 element for 6 to 20 meters only has 4 lightweight elements. The fiber elements only weight 900 grams. Even with a very heavy duty boom of 9,7 meters the antenna only weights 45kg and the wind load is small for this size antenna. A great benefit as it can be turned with a normal size rotator.

Another advantage is the opportunity to work 6 meters. Perhaps it offers not the maximum performance on 50 MHz, the results are fine and the operator has a 5 element yagi to his disposal. I encourage to order the 6 meter add on kit. This passive elements take care of the correct spacing to obtain the best results on 50 MHz.

Installation is very straightforward. The antenna is assembled in a few hours and the materials are good, all stainless steel as are the bolts and nuts. A truss is provided to support the large boom. When installed the antenna looks (and is) very well balanced.

A controller is provided but you need separately order the control cable and CAT interface cable if you like to automatize the antenna adjustments. Thanks to a serial port you can update firmware and use different types of software to interact with the antenna and radio.

Performance wise the antenna shines. After hours of testing both in rx and tx and with the cooperation of other ham operators I can tell that the 4 elements do their job. From 20 to 15 meters this antenna is a real pile up buster. Even without the use of an amplifier I always get trough within a few calls. My reports are very loud. Also the front to back attenuation is above my expectations. 5 S-points is a very nice number and is in the order between 25 and 30 dB. Only on 10 meters the f/B is a bit less (around 4 S-points most of the time). It's also a bit harder to evaluate the real life performance on 10 meters due to ever changing conditions but the antenna easily outperforms my Optibeam that had two elements per band.

My UB 4el 6-20 is mounted at 16 meters above average ground. For 17 and 20 meters a few extra meters height would have been even better but I'm happy I even can put up a medium size tower in this area. Being at 16 meters above ground the factory settings show swr values that are close to being perfect. Only on 6 meters it's a bit off (1,8:1) but on 10 meters factory settings show swr of 1,15 to 1 from the start. On 12 meters I started with 1,2:1 and on 15 meters 1,10:1 was almost perfect. The 17m band gave 1,25:1 and 1,30:1 on 20 meters. With this results most hams would be very happy. Going over the band the antenna segments gave about the same results and swr never exceeded 1,45:1. Very small adjustments (1 or 2 cm) makes it possible to reach values below 1,1:1. So the power that goes in, is radiated to and with real 8+ dBd gain figures this antenna performs very well indeed.

The 180 comes in very handy. With this 4 element model in reverse mode the antenna only uses 3 out of 4 elements. You loose a bit of gain but it is still a full size 3 element monobander when reversed operation is selected. I had the change to work some short and long path dx and I was amazed how easy it is to switch over. Also during a contest this van be a great feature as is the bi-directional heading setting. Less gain but instant coverage of a very large azimuth field.

Did I encounter negative things? First, the antenna seems a bit more sensitive to surrounding objects than my Optibeam was. Noting to be worried but turning my Ultrabeam 360 makes the swr fluctuate some tenths. I never mind. Using this type of antenna gives a bit of electrical noise on the receiver when the elements are shifting. Perhaps one thing that I ran into is that the controller is a bit sensitive to RF. You need to take good care of grounding and shielding. I had to take care of a RF problem on 20 meters making the controller to lock up.

My final thoughts are very promising. For sure I have to wait and see how the motors and electronics stand up against daily use for the years to come. And there is always a risk of damage in a storm or due to lightning. From a mechanical point of view the antenna is well built and materials, motors and fiber elements are fine.

Performance wise I really can recommend this antenna if you have the space and the money to put it up. You will be busting pile ups for sure.

So far I'm very pleased with the decision to replace my smaller Optibeam (I'm still keeping it on stock) with this pile up buster. It's a rather expensive antenna, but as with all things in live you pay for what you get. Pictures on qrz.com.
 
F4DPT Rating: 5/5 Apr 25, 2010 11:46 Send this review to a friend
very nice antenna  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Hello, I use the antenna Ultrabeam 4 elts of 20 in 6 meters, this antenna works very well, the after-sales service is VERY GOOD, Vincenzo listens to his customers on the regulations and the others. The antenna has a very good gain, a very good report AV/AR, I switch on hardly the ampli since the purchase of the antenna
Thank you Vincenzo
73 Arnaud F4DPT
 


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