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Reviews Categories | Antenna Analyzers | Rigexpert AA-600 antenna analyzer Help


Reviews Summary for Rigexpert AA-600 antenna analyzer
Rigexpert AA-600 antenna analyzer Reviews: 11 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $850
Description: Portable handheld analyzer will cover HF through 600Mhz, will integrate with computer and also do time-domain testing.
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.rigexpert.com/index?s=aa1000
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AE7G Rating: 5/5 Aug 27, 2014 16:06 Send this review to a friend
Continues excellent after one year  Time owned: months
I am now a year into ownership and I still think this is one of the best pieces of equipment I have owned. It continues to be very easy to use and continues to give me trustworthy results.

The unit comes with a convenient nylon carry bag that has a neck strap. Since the unit is compact and light, I have found the bag very convenient for transporting and field use.

I think it is no big deal that the batteries can't charge in the unit. Small battery chargers are everywhere and most of us have them. With this setup you don't have to keep track of a separate charger. Batteries last a long time and replacements can easily be found in an emergency.

The carry bag has convenient pockets for the computer cable and for connector adapter. You will need to carry an adapter for PL259 testing. About my only complaint is that the pocket for the adapter is not secure so there is a danger the adapter might get dropped during a project. I keep the adapter attached to the unit, which means I can't completely close the bag flap. This is of course really picky.

While perhaps the case itself might benefit from rubber padding, it does appear to be made of impact resistant materials. Even if the case were rubberized you still would not want to drop sensitive electronic equipment. I simply don't see this as a problem. I would much rather have the nylon carry bag than rubber padding for the case.
 
NW1S Rating: 5/5 Jun 20, 2014 15:21 Send this review to a friend
Fabulous!  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Best $600 I've spent on test equipment in 30 years! Developed three 2m/70cm antennas with this rig. Beats my buddy's rackmount Network Analyzer. Developing my high-power selectable-ratio baluns for 160m-6m has been PURE JOY! Tuning my two homebrew HF loop antennas on my roof is TOO EASY! I've combined EZNEC and RigExpert's AntScope on my little Samsung NetBook so I can work out glitches while sitting on the roof. Beats running up and down the ladder! Checked TDR on a roll of RG-8 that sat outside to find and cut out the waterlogged sections. What else can I do with this jewel?
 
KM4ASH Rating: 5/5 Jun 14, 2014 22:22 Send this review to a friend
No Regrets  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
In aviation I have used many a type of test equipment designed for McDonnell-Douglas and Boeing products - this one, in effectiveness, design and function - rivals some of the more intuitively designed devices I have worked with.

The statements on poor nature of the battery door I do not find so. I do not find the battery door troublesome - it is of a different color than the body - so maybe it was re-designed.

I agree with wishing for a protective case/cover similar to a fluke meter style. The nylon, clear front case which comes with the device is poor of design and effectiveness.

The batteries seem good enough. The battery charger is ok except for the plug, as others stated, it is of european power standard, with a slide-on US adapter - this adapter did not lock in place and would literally drop off of the plug. Problem solved by cutting plug off and replacing with a standard US style available at any electrical supply.

Durability? Yes, could be improved. A Flukemeter style cover would go a good way towards such improvement.

Overall? Good design. Wise purchase.

Craig - KM4ASH
 
WA7KGX Rating: 4/5 Mar 20, 2014 04:07 Send this review to a friend
Interesting device  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Except for the battery related issues, this is a great device. Ham Radio Outlet is selling the 600 MHz unit at a modest discount.

Mine came with Varta NiMh batteries, a Konnoc charger, a cord with a 220 volt European plug, and an adapter for US wall sockets. The charger runs on 110 to 240 vac. Unfortunately, the supplied power cord doesn't quite fit the battery charger. The adapter does fit the power cord, but it does not fit tightly and you will soon lose it. Not a show stopper for me as I had a spare cord laying around that fits the charger and my wall sockets nicely.

I wouldn't worry about the physical durability of the device. Worry instead about zapping the RF section with wayward RF.

You have to read the manual to find some of the subtle things you can do with this device.

When attached to a computer it appears as another serial port. It has a simple protocol that can be used to record SWR scans with many points, way way more than the default 80. I did one scan with 1000 points.

The signal level used is lower than with some other analyzers. This may cause problems in urban areas with lots of strong TV, FM, and other signals floating around.

The unit is pricey, but several hams or a club could share one as it would not be needed constantly.
 
KE5JL Rating: 5/5 Feb 21, 2014 13:53 Send this review to a friend
First use, solved a major problem.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Since I virtually agree with previous reviews - including battery compartment weaknesses - so I'll skip the technical goodies.

My first adventure with the AA-600 was to try to tune my home made, inductively shortened dipole. SWR readings were all over the place. Major disappointment... My AA-600 however was telling me something important but I wasn't listening!

Next day after taking the balun out of the system I was getting great SWR readings. The light bulb went off and I opened the balun case to find a broken solder joint. A quick repair and now I have a nicely tuned short dipole in my cramped attic, thanks to the AA-600.

I have never tried other analyzers but have a hard time imagining one easier to use and interpret.
 
KC0KW Rating: 5/5 Jan 24, 2014 12:44 Send this review to a friend
Amazing unit, very accurate  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Wow if you can afford it or do a lot of antenna work this is a wonderful unit. I have checked it with some very expensive lab gear and it is a very precise piece of test gear. For me the best feature is how easy it is to use. I also like the ability to save a file for latter reference. This is a very nice unit and makes analyzing an antenna system easy.
 
JBAR Rating: 5/5 Jan 23, 2014 04:38 Send this review to a friend
First Impressions: A Great Analyzer  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Just got this yesterday. Very intuitive for SWR and impedance. Beyond that, interpreting the results requires knowledge and studying a book like ARRL's "Understanding your Antenna Analyzer" or checking the web.

Love the color LCD. Well worth the under $600 price because it supports HF all the way up to 70cm and beyond. Definitely get rechargeable NiMh batteries because it will drain Alkaline batteries pretty fast. Also, note that the unit comes with N connector and not SO-259.
 
AE7ZL Rating: 5/5 Dec 6, 2013 22:22 Send this review to a friend
Lovin' it  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Got this unit after having a poor experience with a CAA-500. It's great. I am in telecomm and have done commercial radio for thirty years and I regret not having this all that time. It worked great out of the box, intuitive for me at least there is nothing I wanted to do that it hasn't done yet. And it does things so nicely I just might sit down and see how it all works.

The display is very good in bright light and low light levels. The controls are tactile and the response is very fast.

So far I love the TDR and the SWR sweeps. Changing the frequency and range of the sweeps is fast and easy. I havn't even played with the software but I have examined and tuned every antenna I have and I am soliciting to help other hams with their antennas.

I'm just wondering how I'm going to justify getting the AA-1000 to the wife.

 
KA3YAN Rating: 4/5 Nov 10, 2013 06:25 Send this review to a friend
First impression good analyzer  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have moved from an MFJ-259B to the RigExpert AA-600 and my first impression is that the RigExpert AA-600 is in a whole different league then the MFJ analyzer. With the ability to sweep the entire range of the analyzer and show it graphically on both the handheld unit as well as a computer screen is a significant advantage of the AA-600. The implementation is about what I expected. The PC software is a little rough around the edges, but otherwise very functional.

Physically the AA-600 seems a little fragile for the price. The unit is made of hard plastic with no corner protection such as rubber bumpers a non-slip surface coating. The battery compartment door is extremely thin plastic and I am going to investigate buying a spare for when this one breaks. Since battery charging requires removal of the batteries, the battery compartment door is going to get a lot of use. In my opinion, this is going to be the weak point of the entire unit.

This brings me to batteries. At this price, I expected to be able to charge the batteries by plugging in an external charger. While I like the ability to use either NiCd or Alkaline batteries, there should be a way to charge the unit's batteries without removing them. Even the MFJ analyzers can be charged without removing the batteries. With such a delicate battery door, I am most disappointed with this deficiency.

Since the analyzer is not protected from bumps, I would like to see RigExpert come out with an aftermarket rubber case/cover that protects at least the corners from damage from a fall. A rubberized enclosure (ala Fluke DMMs) would've been nice, but a case similar to what is used on a cell phone would be sufficient.

I will update this review in the future based on my experiences with the AA-600.

73,
Brad KA3YAN
 
WA8ALQ Rating: 5/5 Aug 21, 2013 11:37 Send this review to a friend
Great Tool  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I did a lot of comparison shopping before I bought the AA-600 analyzer... It has exceeded my expectations... Its ability to check 440 mhz antennas is very handy. Especially since most mobile antennas that cover 2 meters also cover 440 mhz... I love the SWR graphing feature most of all... I was able to fine tune my dipoles quickly... I even constucted a shortened 75 meter dipole use loading coils I wound myself. What fun! There was no guesswork involved... Just look at the graphs and adjust accordingly... Sure, it cost more than the MFJ's but you get what you pay for... Oh, and it only uses 3 AA rechageable batteries (included) that seem to be lasting forever... My only complaint was that the battery charger came with a European style wallwort. But, I replaced it with a USA style without any problems... My biggest regret is that after being a ham for over 50 years, I didn't get one of these years ago... P.S. I'm using a home brew multiband dipole antenna. The AA-600 easily measures SWR on all 5 bands of interest simultaneously in real time. You can't do that with the other brands of analyzers..
 
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