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Reviews Categories | Antenna Tuners/Matching Networks | MFJ-956 LW/MW/SW PRESELECTOR/TUNER Help

Reviews Summary for MFJ-956 LW/MW/SW PRESELECTOR/TUNER
MFJ-956 LW/MW/SW PRESELECTOR/TUNER Reviews: 11 Average rating: 4.1/5 MSRP: $49
Description: Preselector for LW/MW/SW receiving. Reduces spurious responses in a receiver's front-end.
Product is in production.
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DXTUNER Rating: 5/5 Jul 29, 2014 19:11 Send this review to a friend
An essential accessory. Use as needed.  Time owned: more than 12 months
It's small, inexpensive and, when needed, makes a world of difference in Dx reception. What do I mean by "when needed"? Well, hot receivers like the Icom IC-R75 and Drake R-8 do not benefit from this. But if you've got something with 'iffy' reception then the MFJ-956 can transform that radio. It'll make the difference between hearing a weak signal and not hearing it at all. For example, I used it on a Realistic DX-440 portable. Without the MFJ tuner the radio was literally useless for true Dx'ing. But when I hooked up the MFJ-956 I suddenly had a 'communications receiver'. I couldn't have dealt with the DX-440 radio otherwise. Period.

Another good application is when you have VHF/UHF radio or scanner upconverted to shortwave. The MFJ-956 will boost you into 'real' shortwave reception ala a dedicated HF receiver. Situations like this is where the MFJ tuner makes a night vs. day difference. Also, I've successfully used it to boost VHF and UHF reception too. I don't know how or why it does, it isn't advertised for it, but it must do some kind of impedance matching there.

So it's essential to have around, just as having adapters, connectors and coax jumpers are. Just like band aids are essential to a first aid kit. As essential as having a spare tire in your trunk. Well, I think you get the idea by now.
KJ6JJK Rating: 4/5 Nov 22, 2013 10:29 Send this review to a friend
Favorite Receive only tuner  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is my favorite receive only tuner.
Best on Long and Medium waves as stated previously.
If not interested in LW, & MW, I would suggest MFJ-16010, as it can be used to transmit with low power.
I would have given 5 stars, but this unit seems a little expensive considering how basic it is.
BTW, Ive used this model on and off for 20 years, maybe a little more.
AUSSIE Rating: 5/5 May 13, 2012 02:05 Send this review to a friend
Excellent  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I use my MFJ-956 with my Wellbrook-ALA1530L Active Loop which does an excellent job in nulling out interference it helps due to the high gain of the loop in which i dont have to use the attenuator on my Icom-R71A..
KD7RDZI2 Rating: 3/5 Jun 22, 2009 10:22 Send this review to a friend
great up to 7Mhz, poor beyond  Time owned: more than 12 months
This preselector/tuner is made by just selectable inductors and an air variable capacitor. Albeit the very simple design, it is very effective as a prelector on LW, MW and SW up to 7Mhz. Beyond, using wideband non resonant antennas, if there are intermodulations say at 14Mhz because of large signals at 6 and 7 9 13Mhz, the filter is unable to help much. I were a MFJ I would put a high pass filter instead of the bypass and greatly improve reception from 14 to 30Mhz.
M1MBZ Rating: 5/5 Oct 21, 2007 10:58 Send this review to a friend
Simple little device, essential for MW listening.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I use mine from 500KHz up to 21MHz, it is noticeably effective at MF frequencies between 500kHz and 3000kHz, I use mine in line with a sangean ats909 and it really helps improve the S/N ratio.
K1FPV Rating: 4/5 Apr 7, 2006 13:13 Send this review to a friend
OK for the Price.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have been using mine for over 3 years now. Yes, it is a series tuned circuit but with 2 BC stations less than a mile from my old location, it was necessary. At my new QTH I have 2 BC stations within about 2 miles. It worked but I had trouble tuning it over the entire sections of each band. Turns out that there was a mis-wire on the PC board....yup...on the PC board. Go figure!
With the re-wired unit, it tunes well, does a nice job of rejecting hash and interference from strong stations nearby but does have some attenuation especially on lower frequencies. It is a tradeoff. I will take the slight attenuation to the interference any day. I am giving it a 4, but if I could, I would give it a 3½ .
N1KPR Rating: 4/5 Mar 21, 2006 11:18 Send this review to a friend
Does what it should - could be better.  Time owned: more than 12 months
Of all the signal preconditioning devices available, this one gives the best performance for the cost (it's a good value).
Since it's a series-tuned resonant filter, it is affected by the input (antenna) impedance and output (receiver) load. With about 50 Ohms on both sides, the dial calibration is close. As the loads swing away from 50 Ohms, the bandpass peak can shift significantly.
For a few more dollars, MFJ could have added internal transformers to isolate the filter circuitry and increase the "Q" (sharpness/efficiency) of the circuit, IE: an internal impedance of 12 Ohms (4:1) would sharpen the peak skirts of the bandpass function. They also could have chosen higher "Q" coils (100+). Additionally, a bypass switch to allow for "C" or "L" only, would be a cute touch to offer a "lengthen" or "shorten" function.
And while I'm making a wish list, an adjustable signal attenuator (5k Ohm pot) pot would be welcomed.
Oh, and don't forget a 500k Ohm bleeder resistor at the antenna port.
All-in-all, the thing works nicely as it is, for the casual SWLer, and offers a good platform for modifying and experimenting. Obviously, you could do better, but be prepared to spend several times the cash.
I have a modified version that impresses the guys I loan it to, and I have some hints on how to modify yours at my site:
WN8Y Rating: 2/5 Apr 1, 2005 16:43 Send this review to a friend
So bad i returned I returned for a refund.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The MFJ-956 was the only tuner I could find for
below 535 khz.(LW).So I took a chance.
It attenuated all signals. So it did not serve my
purpose. I have other MFJ products and have had
mostly good performance from all, 1274 TNC, 812
SWR/Watt meter,clocks, mic/tnc switch,antennas.
MFJ has a good customer service. Refund no problem.
W6OJ Rating: 5/5 Sep 2, 2004 02:31 Send this review to a friend
Very Effective Tuner  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I use this little gem even though I have other tuners costing 10 times as much. I do BCB DXing and use a Drake R8B with my two amateur antennas, a multi-band DX-EE and my Force 12 Flagpole. The 956 really helps match all the AM signals with the R8B. I even use the R8B, in conjunction with the 956, to monitor 80 thru 10 meters rather than fire up my Yaesu FT-920 to check the bands or just read the mail. It is also great for SWL.

There's really nothing high tech or exotic about the tuner except that it is inexpensive, simple to operate and has a tiny footprint.

I use it everyday and think it's a neat addition to my shack.
K2JN Rating: 4/5 May 18, 2004 16:53 Send this review to a friend
Simple workhorse.  Time owned: more than 12 months
Inexpensive passive pre-selector that does the job. I use the MFJ-956 with my Lowe HF-150 to improve selectivity and reduce interference.
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