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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Portable (not mobile) | MFJ 1622 Apartment Antenna Help


Reviews Summary for MFJ 1622 Apartment Antenna
MFJ 1622 Apartment Antenna Reviews: 19 Average rating: 4.1/5 MSRP: $99.95
Description: This Apartment Antenna lets you operate 40 through 10 Meters on HF and 6 and 2 Meters on VHF with a single antenna! Its universal mount/clamp lets you easily attach it to window frames, balconies, and railings. It also works great indoors mounted to a desk, table, or bookshelf. It's not a five element yagi, but you'll work your share of exciting DX! <br> <br>
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.mfjenterprises.com/products.php?prodid=MFJ-1622
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KC5BYE Rating: 4/5 Oct 21, 2007 09:57 Send this review to a friend
MFJ 1622  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have just installed this antenna. Not much set up to it and was on the air in no time at all. Tuned it to 20 meters digi bands and, with the help of a SWR analyzer, was up and running quickly. First try was able to work New Mexico from New Orleans on RTTY. This is not going to be any earth shattering ham radio experience but when the situation is tight you can get on the air. I am in a condo with the antenna hidden on a second floor side rail of a balcony. Not the most optimum set up but out of site. This antenna is small enough to be easily hidden (coil, 5ft whip and mounting bracket), put up and down fast and clamped to just about anything. For the low cost it fits the need if you have no other option.
 
KD4ACG Rating: 4/5 Jul 13, 2007 16:23 Send this review to a friend
Surprisingly good performance in a small package.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Ok, I'm not telling you to take down the beam and put this in its place. But if you're like me, and you live in an apartment complex or other close quarters, this antenna will do a fine job of getting you on the air.

I purchased this antenna to go along with the Yaesu FT-857 and other assorted goodies at the '07 Hamvention. I do use a tuner, but have measured the SWR direct, and it will get to a low SWR if used properly.

Setup is easy. I just clamp it over the top of my balcony railing, tie it down for safety, tap the coil, extend the whip, set the counterpoise (all of which takes only about 60 seconds), and I'm on the air. The coil and whip can mount into the base in five different positions. I have my coil/whip at a 45-degree angle off the balcony. Despite being on the south side of the house, it does extend far enough from the building to get a reasonably unobstructed view of the northern sky.

Most of my operation has been on 20 meters, and 18 countries have been logged from this antenna during that time. I've used voice, PSK, MFSK16, RTTY, and SSTV. The biggest DX has been an MFSK16 contact to New Zealand. Got a nice signal report from ZL, too!

I haven't been able to form a good opinion about 40 meter operation, since the band can be quite noisy in this part of the country during the summer months. The antenna will go to a low SWR on 80m, but it doesn't do much there. As packaged, it's not designed for 80 meters anyway. On the other end of the spectrum, it seems like a good performer on 6 meters, with my longest contact to date going just over 1000 miles. Just waiting for a bigger opening.

Counterpoise matters, even if using a tuner. I took the 33 feet of counterpoise and cut it at certain intervals, then attached quick-connect terminals to each piece. By doing so, I can adjust the length of the counterpoise just by adding/removing sections.

As mentioned in earlier reviews, I do see potential problems with the clip used to tap-in to the coil. It must be carefully placed so as not to tough adjacent turns on the coil, and will likely break over time. Fortunately, the design of the antenna looks simple enough for the average user to maintain, using parts readily available in almost any electronics shop or hardware store.

Bottom line: If you're in restricted/confined space, but still want to enjoy the HF bands, and have about a hundred bucks in the bank account, grab one of these antennas. It's worth the money.
 
EA5CEC Rating: 5/5 Jun 23, 2006 08:25 Send this review to a friend
Works great!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This antenna works very well when you set it up as specified. The most of time I use it only for 40mts band (I own a magnetic loop for 30 - 10meters bands). I works all Europe with 50w in CW and no problem with Spanish SSB QSO (50 or 100W from Kenwood TS50s). The assembly is fast and easy, so yes, it is a good apartment antenna. And it is a good all time antena if you have few meters for antenna.
 
KB1MPX Rating: 5/5 Jun 13, 2006 06:38 Send this review to a friend
Works great!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have been on HF for 1 month now from our 3rd floor apt. I am running a Kenwood TS-570D and the MFJ 1622 antenna. I have worked 5 countries, and 7 states in my limited time on air. I have used SSB, CW, and PSK31. Most of my reports have been 59! This antenna really does work well when you set it up as specified. I simply followed the directions, and used the antenna tuner in my rig.
 
K5RIX Rating: 4/5 Mar 4, 2006 23:42 Send this review to a friend
Gets out OK  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
For what it is, the 1622 works fine. A finer clip is needed to tap the coil without having to depress adjacent windings. It's good to cut the rf ground wire (aka counterpoise) to a comfy length inside your building and install a single banana jack and then make a set of wires, each with a single banana plug, that will add up to a quarter wave on each band of operation. The Quarter wave rf ground wire is the key to success with this antenna. Also, I found that simply dragging the pigtail up and down the coil for maximum receiver noise gives a pretty good indication of where to hook on. I'm currently located on the sixth floor in Yokosuka, Japan very near Tokyo Bay (>200M) and this little antenna works pretty well for me. I'm considering painting it flat medium gray for stealth purposes.

Under current (March 2006) band conditions I can pretty much hear the world on 20, and a lot of stuff on 30. Remarkably, this antenna with 50 watts works all around Japan daytime on 40. If I had room for ANYTHING else, I wouldn't use this antenna. But with the correct rf ground "counterpoise" it beats the heck out of VHF FM. Pretty good.
 
WI7B Rating: 5/5 Oct 10, 2005 16:56 Send this review to a friend
Great for the price  Time owned: 6 to 12 months

Generally, I'm not a fan of all things MFJ, but with modifications this antenna is great for those of us with condo/apartment antenna restrictions. I added the 12 foot whip to mine and now have no problem tuning up on 80m with it. To the east of my antenna is a taller roof, but the other compass points are unobstructed.

Longest distance QSO on 80 is New Hampshire. Longest distance on 20m is Ukraine. On 20m and 40m, easy contacts to Japan, Alaska, Mexico, and Costa Rica. Even French Guiana.

For the price and convinence, can't beat it.
 
JOHAN Rating: 4/5 Sep 14, 2003 07:42 Send this review to a friend
MFJ 1622 antenne correction  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Two days ago i added a review to this antenna. I gave it 2/5 and well it wasn't working very good. I now solved the problem. I made a good 1/4 (unfolded/not coiled but nicely stretched) wavelength counterpoise wire and the thing is now working good. It frequency range is about 6.2 to 30 Mhz SW. On my own build outside antenne i have some strange noises every 100 khz but further it works excelent in the 40 meter band. With the MFJ 1622 (mounted as window antenne i did not have the time yet to mount it outside) all that QRN is gone! And believe me or not but the receiveing signals with the MFJ are 1 S-point higher indoors then my outdoors antenna. I give this antenne a 4/5 now.. I haven't worked any stations with it yet. I did not try that yet by the way but i suspect that even from indoor operation i will be able to make some qso's. I am a little bit afraid of causing TVI so I am a little bit causious before trying.

VE6BUD: Coiling the coax is needed for RF choke it won't bother transmission that bad, its just a cheap way to prevent RF feedback into your equipment. So just try it. Also that virtual grounding isn't good i suppose because that is for high impedance wire aerials and not for 50 ohm coax antenne's, or you must have your virtual ground next to the antenne. Just get rid of of that stuff make a good quarterwave counterpoise wire and don't coil that up. I bet the antenna will perform much better. I am suprised by this thing. Perhaps i place it outside.. dunno i am busy with building a short dipole too..
 
K1NG Rating: 4/5 Mar 7, 2003 11:26 Send this review to a friend
Surprising!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I moved into my third floor condo two weeks before the ARRL SSB DX contest. I have been QRT for five years, since my move from R.I. I bought the 1622 from another ham and mounted it on the balcony railing. After getting it assembled and installed, I fired up the rig and heard alot of noise but few signals, 30-10 meters. I chose a desired freq on each band, allowed for the antenna height above ground and starting on 10 meters, I cut the counterpoise to the desired length for 10 meters, i then mounted a female RCA jack at the far end. Using this as a default length, I determined the needed extention's for bands thru 30m. These were fitted with male RCA plugs, to extend the 10m length for other bands. Next I used an MFJ-269 to determine the best tap point on the loading coil for each band. That done, I waited for the contest day. My TS-570DG was held to 50 watts output, no need to anger neighbors using TV rabbit-ears!! The best VSWR w/o the AT is abt 1.5:1 on 20m and 1.9:1 on 30m. I knew I had a marginal system at best and I approached the contest in this manner. This is a DX contest, and I wanted to work DX! I was shocked! In a total of 10 hours over the weekend ( I worked both days), I logged 47 different countries and 89 band countries, I worked all contenients, and this is the shocker, I worked UA9HF on 20m at 1347z, THEN I BROKE the PILE-up on JT1CO all with 50w and the 1622. My antenna favors south and east/west of the bilding ends. North is thru my condo unit. The counterpoise was on the carpet in my living room. I truly had a blast just DXing, knowing being competitive, was out of the question, or so I thought!!!All this from the western suburbs of chicago. Wondering if this were a fluke, I called 9A9A on 15m tuesday after the 'test and received a 59, "on the meter"! Go Figure!? Probably luck and propagation were perfect that sunday morning, but it really happened. I use a xcvr tuneable pre-amp in between the 1622 and the radio, it really helped on rcv, If you can't hear 'em, you can't work 'em! The antenna doesn't hear well without help, but it really holds it own when the band is crowded, similar results on 30m in mid afternoon. Taking the time to tune this antenna's coil taps with appropriate counterpoise length at a desired frequency seems to have made quite a difference. Being relegated to condo life is not so bad anymore! If any one would like to compare notes drop me an e-mail and we can talk. What a feeling "K1NG ur 59 1KW, JT1CO QRZ...! john.olsen@us.army.mil
 
VE6BUD Rating: 2/5 Apr 12, 2002 13:00 Send this review to a friend
DX? Uh, Barely.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I am not impressed by this antenna at all. I live in a Condo complex where the best one can get away with is a Sattelite Dish. Putting a vertical up on the roof wasn't an option so this seemed like the perfect solution at the time.

When I recieved the antenna, the build quality was excellent with a complete compliment of everything you need to get going. A counterpoise wire, an insane length of coax (Which you are supposed to partially coil up to prevent spurious emissions) and minimal assembly.

Initial assembly and setup was easy, but having to spool a portion of the coax up as per the recommendation in the manual doesn't sound right to me. (I am going to cut the coax to a much more appropriate length and crimp on a new SO-259 when I get a new crimper.) I suspect that the amount of coax that MFJ recommends one should coil up could be hindering the performance of the antenna.

The manual says that you are supposed to coil up or uncoil the counterpoise wire as appropriate depending what band you are using, as well as using a copper clip on a portion of the loading coil to get the best match.

I am using an MFJ Arificial Ground with this antenna instead so I don't have to worry about getting the length of the counterpoise wire perfect. (It is strung out about approx. 20 ft from the antenna across the floor of my condo.)

The best preformance I've seen with this antenna in the 3 months I've used it, is getting some W7 and W6 contacts who were hitting me at about S4-S5 running about 800-1000 watts on 15 meters.

I tried using this antenna on 40 meters during the evening and have had absolutely no luck. I can tune all the way across the band and hear nothing but the occasional carrier.

A local Calgary ham pointed his beam at me, running 100 watts in the middle of 20 meters. He lived less than a ten minute drive away and he was 20 over 9. He should have pegged the meter. Not a good sign.

For 40m and 20m this antenna loads up fine but doesn't preform very well. If you need this antenna for 15 to 2 meters, it'll do in a pinch.
 
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