- Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) Community

Call Search

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Friends Remembered
Survey Question

DX Cluster Spots

Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement

Reviews Categories | Antennas: VHF/UHF+ Omnidirectional: verticals, mobile, etc | MFJ-1538 Pulsar QuadrupleThreat 2M/6M/220/440 Base/Repeater Ante Help

Reviews Summary for MFJ-1538 Pulsar QuadrupleThreat 2M/6M/220/440 Base/Repeater Ante
MFJ-1538 Pulsar QuadrupleThreat 2M/6M/220/440 Base/Repeater Ante Reviews: 17 Average rating: 1.7/5 MSRP: $119.95
Description: Pulsar QuadrupleThreat 2M/6M/220/440 Base/Repeater Antenna
Product is in production.
More info:
Email Subscription
You are not subscribed to this review.

My Subscriptions
Subscriptions Help

You can write your own review of the MFJ-1538 Pulsar QuadrupleThreat 2M/6M/220/440 Base/Repeater Ante.

<— Page 2 of 2

K4JC Rating: 1/5 Apr 4, 2006 19:12 Send this review to a friend
Junk  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought this antenna at Dayton '03. Like other posters, this antenna worked OK on 2 meters, but a plain ol' 5/8-wave would have probably done the same job. Very poor performance on 6, 220 and 440, and on 6 it had a high SWR until I cut the (single) 6-meter radial (not easy to do.) I thought this antenna would be a good way to do away with the "porcupine" on my roof...guess I was wrong. Spend the few extra bucks and buy some quality antennas like Comets or Diamonds instead of this dog.
N3TTN Rating: 1/5 Dec 10, 2005 21:45 Send this review to a friend
disappointing  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have owned and used a number of MFJ products over the years and they generally perform well, but unfortunately the Pulsar 1538 does not make the grade. I have had two 1538's and they both had high SWR's, the first one was pretty good on 2 meters at 1.5 to 1, but had a SWR of 3 to 1 on 70 cm. I can't say how it performed on 6 meters or 220 because I did not have radios for those bands at the time. I donated this one to my repeater group in hopes they might be able to get some use out of it for 2 meters, or maybe 6 meters/220. The second one I purchased recently strictly to use for 6 meters and 220 mhz., but it had high SWR's (2 to 1 and 3.1 to 1 respectively) on both bands. Needless to say, this one is going back to MFJ for a refund. The other reviews tend to support the idea that this antenna leaves a lot to be desired, which is a shame because no other manufacturer that I am aware of offers a vertical that includes both 6 meters and 220 mhz. I would not recommend this antenna to anyone unless you want risk toasting the finals in your radio, and the only reason I gave it a 1 out of 5 is because the first one did work OK on 2 meters, other than that I would have given it a zero.
W5NM Rating: 1/5 Nov 8, 2005 14:17 Send this review to a friend
Poor Quality, Poor Performance  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I was dismally disappointed in the quality and
peformance of this antenna. I wish I had read all
the reviews before I jumped off and bought this
thing. The length of the chromed section on my
antenna is even shorter than the MFJ web page
shows and they use a thin wall aluminum tube to
attach the mount and antenna. (in order to gain
length for connection to a mast) Also 1 and 1/2" mast is the smallest you can attach it to with out something to bush it up. I failed to
remove the inside of the antenna which is secured
with only one set screw, to see if any of the
joints were cracked. I had already put the antenna up in the air on top of a 40 ft mast
fed with 1/2" hardline, when listening to a receiver connected to the antenna, I noticed the
signal level coming and going like a bad connection blowing in the wind, (exactly).
Had to take the antenna down and resolder all the
joints inside. Very poor for a New Antenna.
The swr is fine on all bands on transmit and
doesn't seem to change with the bad connection
but reception is poor. Had a 2 meter ringo ranger
up on the same mast fed with hard line and its 2m received signal was about double what this antenna is. Also this antenna is NOT a DC ground.
If you check it with an ohm meter, you will find
this to be true. Therefore it will be a very noisy antenna. I suppose if you want a multi-band
antenna, you have to sacrifice something.
I will check the reviews next time and I probably
won't be buying any more MFJ antennas.
I truly appreciate the great service that MFJ does for amateur radio, by providing items that
can't be found elsewhere at any price, However...
Their product quality remains a real problem.
KB1LMO Rating: 2/5 Jan 4, 2005 21:52 Send this review to a friend
Update after fixing  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Got the solder joints fixed and all appears well now.

Here are my SWR readings:
1.1:1 52.5250mHz@50w
1.28:1 146.2500mHz@70w
1.7:1 446.000@35w

Much better, but I'm not revising my rating up.
This came with some problems, even if they were the kind Hams are not supposed to have problems diagnosing and fixing.

Once it was fixed the SWR exceeded my expectations, though I found the bandwidth in the usable bands to be rather narrow. Repeater use will be fine though, with a max of 1.9:1 @ 145.230, right on my favorite repeater no less.

Works great after fixing, lame that I even had to open the case.

KB1LMO Rating: 2/5 Jan 4, 2005 09:24 Send this review to a friend
Check it for bad solder joints!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I recieved this product about 6 months ago.
My first antenna shipment was poorly packed and arrived with a very high SWR on 144 and 220, over 4:1! The radom had also cracked lengthwise about 6 inches due to flex during shipment.
I contacted MFJ about this and they shipped out another verticle section sans hardware but this arrived broken into 3 completely seperate pieces!
I seems that when they packed it instead of putting the PVC sections over the antenna like a road case they just tossed 2 4 foot sections int the box with it! I am with N3LPU on the shipping costs to return, and being a Ham I decided to deal with this myself at this point.
I gave up, pulled this one off the tower and let it sit for a while until this morning.
This morning I disassembled the antenna and what to my wondering eyes should appear but a 2 section antenna and bad solder joints here (don't know why I should be suprised after reading about all the MFJ QA problems).
I am in the process of repairing the radom and soldering this up now and will post an update after some use.
I like the engineering this company does, but they really need to find somebody who can solder and shipping personal who care about what they are sending out.

Repeat with me:
If it's MFJ, check the solder.
If it's MFJ, check the solder.
If it's MFJ, check the solder.

73's and better luck with your next antenna!

NC3Z Rating: 0/5 Oct 17, 2004 11:10 Send this review to a friend
N3JPU  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Just a follow-up on the performance of the 1538. At 55' it's performance was less than a 1/4 wave 10' off the ground. I have now replaced it with a Nevada Discone.

Using the same hardline and using a WJ-8618 receiver with a digital signal level meter that reads out in dBm I have come up with these receive results:
140-160Mhz the Discone was 10-15dB better
220Mhz about 15dB
400+ MHz 10 to over 20dB

Now I know some of this is outside the ham bands but even there the discone was at least 10dB better.

50Mhz they were about even.

For TX I had low SWR on 2M/220/440 MHz where the MFJ was extremely high. On 50Mhz neither have a SWR lower than 3:1
NC3Z Rating: 0/5 Jul 18, 2004 17:19 Send this review to a friend
Poor quality, poor performance  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I was hoping a US manufacturer of ham gear would be of decent quality. I have bought several MFJ products over the years and have always been disappointed.

I decided to try one more time in the hope that they improved quality. The idea of a quad band antenna was what I was looking for.

Before buying I contacted MFJ to make sure it would fit a 2" mast, which they replied it would.

Well when I finally received the antenna (beware it is considered a oversized shipment and cost $30 for UPS ground as it's 8' long) I discovered that about 1.5" was it. So much for product support knowing their equipment.

I fashioned an adapter and installed it. Next problem was that I could not get a good SWR on any band. It resonated several MHZ high. The performance was also poor on all 4 bands in comparison to smaller antennas much lower to the ground. I use Heliax so feedline losses were low.

The chrome plating looks very cheap and I will have to see how it holds up. But since the SWR is so high I have relegated the antenna for use for receive only on my Watkins Johnson 8618.

I would have returned this for MFJ's no matter what guarantee but I would have been out another $30 to ship it back!
<— Page 2 of 2

If you have any questions, problems, or suggestions about Reviews, please email your Reviews Manager.