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Reviews Categories | Antenna Tuners | Terramar Match-All Help


Reviews Summary for Terramar Match-All
Reviews: 2 Average rating: 1.0/5 MSRP: $99
Description: Automatic Antenna Tuner
Product is not in production.
More info: http://
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WV2M Rating: 0/5 Aug 30, 2014 07:40 Send this review to a friend
Dummy Load Perforrmance  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought one of these in the early 90s. From what I recall it presented a perfect 1:1 match on any HF frequency I operated at. However, received signals were very week and I don't recall making any contacts. I tried to investigate the device circuitry by opening the device but found that it was totally sealed in epoxy and it was impossible to open. I was convinced at the time that the device was a scam and nothing more than a dummy load.

Here is some tip off language from the instructions that sent my scam radar bleeping uncontrollably:

"Don't be fooled by an apparent reduction in "S" meter levels when installing a Match All. Being a grounded instrument, large amounts of atmospheric noises are eliminated and HF radio becomes a joy to your ears rather than a crackling, hissing monster"

"We regret the seemingly small amount of technical information provided to you....In order to provide a high quality instrument at an affordable price, we decided to present only necessary, basic information."
 
AA7BI Rating: 2/5 Jun 12, 2012 21:52 Send this review to a friend
An Enigmatic Device  Time owned: more than 12 months
Bought this around 1994 as advertised in QST (if memory serves me). Here is the text of the ad:

"Match All Amateur Automatic Antenna Matcher is a solid-state, non-resonant, broadbanded, constant impedance, induction coupled, traveling wave-type antenna matching device using the latest Maxcom technology adapted to the amateur bands.

"Match All does not depend on resonant lengths of radiating wire or elements to attain proper tuning and radiating results. Also unnecessary are activating RF input signals, control leads or DC voltages to instantly match virtually any antenna configuration on all high frequency amateur bands including WARC and MARS.

"Do not be fooled by an apparent reduction in "S" meter levels when installing a Match All. Being grounded instruments, large amounts of atmospheric noises are eliminated and HF radio becomes a joy to your ears rather than a crackling.

"Match All works best as a dipole or grounded longwire; however, marine, avionics and automotive mobile uses can also be accommodated. Simply call our technical support people at 305-523-3123 for prompt, intelligent information.

"Probably the most important aspect of installing your new Match All is to use a new coax feedline and fully-soldered connectors. The matching instrument must see 50 ohms at the coax input, and dirty, corroded connectors or aged coax will not allow the Match All to work properly. After connecting the feedline to the matcher (without grease or sealants), you must apply the provided Coax-Seal as directed on the envelope. These simple precautions will ensure many years of faultless operation.

"We regret the seemingly small amount of technical information provided to you. The fact is the Match All instrument is inherently simple to install in nearly all antenna installations and, once installed, will never need adjustments, tune-ups or maintenance. In order to provide a high quality instrument at an affordable price, we decided to present only necessary, basic information. At the same time, we remain ready and able to answer questions unique to your particular installation whenever you need it."

MANY hams have claimed the Match-All was nothing more than a dummy load with wires and that the device (which connects to the antenna site) contained no matching circuit at all. Since then I have attached mine to an antenna analyser to see what was really afoot. Injecting a random frequency shows an immediate mismatch. Transmitting about a 1/2 watt one can see the SWR quickly go from high down to nearly 1:1. That being the case, it stands to reason there must be circuit activity or some kind of latching taking place in the device at that moment. Go to another frequency with the analyser and you'll see another mismatch. Transmit at that frequency and within milliseconds the match will be made.

Alas, it simply hasn't worked that well for me. I placed it at 15' with 150' of wire and could receive quite well, but no one ever replied to my calls. I believe this same configuration as an end-fed with a manual tuner would have yielded better results. People who bought these needed a quick and dirty match under adverse or emergency conditions, which is always a trade-off. Perhaps this is why the product's sales ended so abruptly.

I'm going to experiment more with this enigmatic device, but find the results discouraging thus far. The higher and clearer the antenna is with the Match-All, the better it works....but by then, one may just as well install a real antenna. Interestingly enough, it matches the high end of the AM broadcast band, and in some configurations, the 6m band.

Can't recommend buying it unless it's at a flea-market price and you'd like to unravel a true mystery in the history of ham radio....

73 de AA7BI/VE5



 


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