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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Mobile & Accessories | Yaesu ATAS-120 Help

Reviews Summary for Yaesu ATAS-120
Yaesu ATAS-120 Reviews: 99 Average rating: 3.6/5 MSRP: $325
Description: Motorized Mobile Screwdriver Antenna 40m-70cm. Updated version of ATAS-100. Band change control with Yaesu radios FT-100, FT-897, & FT-847.
Product is in production.
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K3AXR Rating: 5/5 May 31, 2010 14:27 Send this review to a friend
Seems like a great antenna  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I must admit that I just got this antenna along with an FT857D. i got this antenna since it essentially made for this rig. I'm not using it on 2 and 70cm, I have another antenna for that, so I'm using it on 40-6. So far I love it. My first contact was with a station in Spain on 20 meters. He was an S9 and he gave me an S8. It tunes great and this combvined with the 857 is performing beautifully. I'm a little concerned about some of the reviews I'vce read about the tuner mechanism crapping out after a few months, although I see other reviews pointing to the importance of a good ground, which I have. So far I am really enjoying my HF-mobile experience and frankly find the rig and antenna performance to be unbelievable.
K7BVO Rating: 2/5 Mar 2, 2010 09:50 Send this review to a friend
Quit tuning after 4 months  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I read most of the reviews, here and elsewhere.

I decided to get this because it was plug 'n' play with my FT857D and not knowing how much I would use HF from the car. I carefully made sure I had adequate RF grounding which seemed to be the common issue with this antenna. Antenna worked great for a little over 3 months and then quit tuning. Motor churnes away but mast does not move. I have many good contacts both in country and elsewhere. Performance when it worked was not an issue.

A call to Yaesu was made and they were so matter of fact about it quitting this early in it's life it was scary! Almost like it would have been unusual for it to make it out of the warranty period.

When it is returned from repair it will be put up for sale and I will look at other options.
AB5ZJ Rating: 5/5 Jan 6, 2010 07:37 Send this review to a friend
Great little antenna that acts like a BIG one  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I've had this antenna now for 7 months and have operated it flawlessly - rain or shine with my FT-857.
I've worked, all over the U.S. and Canada from Texas, and also worked Many places in Europe, South America. I've herd Japan stations when the propagation came up a little during December 2009, but the pile up was so great I did not have time to contact.

This antenna has pleasantly surprised me over and over again on 40m, 20m, 15, 10, and on 2m and 440. I use a diplexer on the xceiver so I don't have to manually switch the antenna, or mount another antenna on my 2007 Tundra truck.

Things to re-iterate from previous posts;
1. it MUST have a good ground to the vehile chassis. Improper grounding caused all sorts of erratic behavior, especially when it rained.
2. the antenna connections MUST be tight.
3. Be patient waiting for it to tune. In some cases it took almost 2 minutes to find low swr.
4. If possible, use this antenna connected to a Yeasu product that has the built-in tune function, as it eliminates another box to clutter the vehicle cabin.
5. As with virtually all mobile setups, you will have to eliminate altinator noise from the receiver. (see Ham Radio book on this, or google it.)My radio now is very quiet from internally generated vehicle noises.
KE4EX Rating: 5/5 Sep 5, 2009 08:05 Send this review to a friend
Worth the money, looks good !  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Want an antenna that dose not look like your hauling around a 55 gallon drum? This is it.
Want an antenna that will not blow a hole in you wallet? This is it. Want an antenna that works, as it was design to do? This is it. On and on and on. Mounted on the Gull wing tool box of my 2000 F150. As most hams know the F1250 is a somewhat noisy electrical system. Well here is a fast run down which might help. Ran # 12 wire from the battery with a torrid coil and fuse on both ends. Nothing passes under the truck body.
My coax is super RG8X double shield. Used #6 wire for grounding the BOX to the BED and BED to the frame. Run my FT 857D with only the NB on.
Not the ANL while that works great it will muffle the audio somewhat. I run a 4-inch external speaker, which I have removed, the standard wire replacing it with mini coax plus added a torrid coil.

Let the fun begin; I was happy with the results. I decided to get the laptop and program some popular frequencies into the memory blocks. While sitting in my yard programming I get this wild idea, HEY, get the Signal link and yep you guessed it, began working PSK 31, knocked out Maine, Texas and France, on PSK..
Am I pleased? YOU BET I Am.
VK4HG Rating: 4/5 Jul 12, 2009 04:04 Send this review to a friend
Better than expected  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have the ATAS120A on my 4X4 roof rack. It looks good and appears well built. Mounted on a custom made the bracket from 75 X 75 X 7mm mild steel angle. No flex with this material. Antenna is light but I estimated the wind resistance is significant up there. The SO239 base is earthed to the coax braid, bracket, roof rack and body. Lots of earth with my big Nissan Patrol. The unit on occasion will ‘hunt’ for low SWR, but a manual tune up works just fine. My fourbie also has a Terlin Outbacker (centre load) mounted on the spare. I use a coax switch for antenna selection. Early tests, skip distance 1000km on 40 and 10 meters put the ATAS directly on par with the Terlin. Some nice stateside DX on 20M was better on the Terlin by +1 S point (Solar flux = 68 SSN=0). Not sue why, guess the Terlin is directional mounted on the vehicle rear. My early impressions are better than the eham posts and better than I expected for the price. The ATAS was purchased for convenient monitoring of band openings while the Terlin is a for working the DX. I hope to post a mode comprehensive report after a few months with the ATAS. So far, so good.
W4HH Rating: 2/5 Jul 11, 2009 16:32 Send this review to a friend
Great when it works  Time owned: more than 12 months
I just wasted two hours trying to make my second ATAS-120 tune. The first one crapped out after 12 months of working fine then it stopped tuning. Tried everything I knew and that was suggested to me -- reworked grounding -- new coax -- re-initialized -- took it apart, cleaned, lubed, put back together -- didn't tune.

Bought a new one that worked fine right out of the box. 18 months later, it has crapped out -- erratic, won't tune, HSWR warning on my FT-857. Went through the same routine -- re-worked all ground connections -- replaced coax -- re-initialized.

I quit. Don't work much HF mobile anyway, so, the FT-857 will be used as an expensive 2-meter mobile rig -- I'm NOT shelling out another $300.00.
KJ4KPV Rating: 5/5 Apr 20, 2009 11:19 Send this review to a friend
I love it.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've been impressed with it so far. It took a second to figure out how to tune it via the FT-857D, but that was my fault for not reading the manual correctly. It does take a few seconds for it to adjust to the proper SWR, but that's very minor.

The ATAS-120A needs a good ground. I went the lengths to buy 1/2in and full inch rolls of braided straps and connected the hood-chassis, trunk-chassis, exhaust-chassis, engine-chassis, grounded the K400C mount to the trunk, all using self-tapped screws and star washers. Once I've grounded just about everything, the noise was reduced by a lot. Now I need to attach capacitors to the alternator to reduce/eliminate the whine.

Because of the proper grounding, I've picked up 40m and 80m clear, and picked up CW on 160m... which this antenna was not made to do, but I was able to get it.

I've read some of the comments and I believe that some of them did not take the time to properly ground their vehicle.

Couple of notes.
1.) It needs a good ground. If you do not properly ground your vehicle, then don't complain about the noise problems.
2.) It is highly recommended that you read It discusses the problems, solutions and is probably one of the best websites on information concerning mobile rigs, antennas, etc.

Overall, I love it.
VE7WIL Rating: 1/5 Apr 14, 2009 03:51 Send this review to a friend
My 120 won't tune on most bands  Time owned: more than 12 months
In about 2001 I bought a new Yaesu FT-100 D and only used it for VHF. In 2004 I picked up new the ATAS 120. The unfortunate thing was that I couldn't find a mount for my car so it sat and did nothing. I decided a few weeks ago to mount it to a 4 foot ground rod to get it on HF. When I hit tune on any of the bands except 15 meters it will not tune. Yes it moves up and down but the SWR is crap on all but 15 meters. Has anyone else had this trouble and can anyone make any suggestions because I would really like to get on 40, 20 and 6 meters with it. If I had to do it over again I sure wouldn't buy this antenna but seeing as I have it I do want it to work so any help would be appreciated.
N6PG Rating: 5/5 Feb 23, 2009 00:05 Send this review to a friend
Its worked great for me  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've been out of radio for many years. I bought a Yaesu 857 on craigslist, and it came with the ATAS-120. I was looking at other antennas, and I wasn't too optimistic with some things I have read. When I hooked it up, it tuned and I was on the air. From San Diego I have gotten Japan, Russia, and Argentina. I think it is a great setup. It doesn't do 80 meters, but it isn't a huge antenna on the car either.
K6UW Rating: 2/5 Jan 18, 2009 16:38 Send this review to a friend
Cannot recommend  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
After less than a year, the 120 quit tuning. I got the Sidekick and it works great. Easy to tune and very well built.
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