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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF: Yagi, Quad, Rotary dipole, LPDA | OptiBeam OB12-4W (high performance fourbander 40-20-17-15m) Help


Reviews Summary for OptiBeam OB12-4W (high performance fourbander 40-20-17-15m)
OptiBeam OB12-4W (high performance fourbander 40-20-17-15m) Reviews: 4 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $2,800
Description: Extremely efficient trapless Yagi for the unique coverage of the bands 40, 20, 17 and 15m.
2el on 40 / 3el on 20 / 3el on 17 / 4el on 15.
A specialty in particular for the sun spots down cycle.
In combination with the OB6-2W an unbeatable 6 band system!!!
Lossfree shortened 40m elements by software designed high Q air coils.
40m elements decoupled from other bands by the "OptiBeam decoupling stub technique".
Broadband single 50 Ohm coax cable feed system by the "OptiBeam direct coupled driver feed system"
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.optibeam.de
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K3LB Rating: 5/5 Oct 12, 2011 08:04 Send this review to a friend
The OB12-4W is a truly outstanding antenna  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The OB12-4W is a truly outstanding antenna. I purchased it through Array Solutions and Bob was great to work with. Immediately upon opening the shipping boxes, I saw what exceptional quality had been designed and built into the antenna. Optibeam spares nothing in order to provide the highest quality materials and workmanship.

The antenna is large but was easy to assemble. The boom and elements are well marked. All necessary tools and hardware are provided.

After mounting the antenna on top of my 100 foot Rohn 45 tower, I began to experience a whole new world of DX. I had been a "wire antenna guy" for over 50 years; this is my first beam. The difference is amazing. After three months of using the OB12-4W, I have complete confidence when I call a DX station that he will answer me. I recently worked the T32C DXpedition on all four bands (40m,20m,17m,15m), all on the first call.

The OB12-4W has exceeded my expectations; I strongly recommend it for DXers and contesters.

... Larry K3LB

 
IZ5DKJ Rating: 5/5 Mar 22, 2008 09:13 Send this review to a friend
Small Size- Big Signals!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Thank to Tom DF2BO i have on my
18m tower a new OptiBeam OB12-4W.
Why this kind of antenna?
Simple...
- Medium size
- 2 el on 40m
- Easy to setup
- No traps
- Great Optibeam "service"
The performance and the SWR curves are perfect.

For more info and some photo see at :
http://www.ir3ip.net/iz5dkj/

Thanks To Optibeam!
73 Simone IZ5DKJ
 
K2YU Rating: 5/5 Apr 23, 2005 09:08 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Performance - Excellent Value!  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
OptiBeam's OB12-4W and OB6-2W

The time had come for my first tower and a set of big Yagis. Having moved to Colorado and looked for land on which to build my house, I had one very important criteria - no covenant restrictions on antennas and room for a multi-band HF antenna setup. I ended up in the mountains of central Colorado at an altitude of 8,350 ft. (2,545 meters). Being located on top of a large ridge with a 360 degree unobstructed view is a wonderful operating location. This however posed specific problems as to which antennas I would choose to install. Being in such an open location with winds of 60 mph (97 kph) or greater, hard driving snow and temperatures below -20f (-29c) in the winter and severe thunderstorms and hail in the summer are not uncommon. I would need antennas that were designed and built with the strength and durability to last in such an environment. I also needed someone who would help talk me through my first installation of this type.

In the past, because of space limitations, I had always operated using HF verticals and shortened dipoles so I was un-biased in the selection of my beams. The search began. I spent many hours on the Internet, reading reviews and product specifications. I wanted something that would cover most of the HF bands. I came across an ad in QST for Array Solutions based in Texas. After several detailed conversations with Jay Terleski of Array Solutions outlining my needs he suggested I take a look OptiBeam's new OB6B+ antenna system designed to cover 40, 20, 17, 15, 12, and 10 meters. It consisted of two antennas, the OB12-4W (for 40/20/17/15 meters) and the OB6-2W (for 10/12 meters), stacked 16 feet apart and two feed lines to cover 6 bands. Quite an engineering feat - if it would really work!

After studying the specifications and SWR curves I decided the combination of the OB12-4W and OB6-2W was what I was looking for. At first I was hesitant because of the overseas origin, cost (this is not an inexpensive system), the time involved in getting the antennas (due to overseas shipment and customs delays), what kind of customer service I would get from overseas, and the availability of replacement parts here in the US. After a number of conversations with Tom, DF2BlueOcean, owner of OptiBeam I became willing to take the chance. The quality and responsiveness that Tom demonstrated left me feeling that, in spite of the obstacles mentioned above, it would be worthwhile, and while somewhat expensive, it would be a good value.

The antennas arrived in two boxes. Upon initial inspection and inventory of the parts, I was impressed. All required parts were present. OptiBeam even supplied some special metric wrenches. The documentation, although a translation from German with a little creativity, was certainly adequate. The quality of the materials was top grade. The way the metal had been cut and drilled was precise and clean and all hardware was stainless steel. I liked the fact that all parts were labeled and the locations on the booms for the elements were clearly marked. When I put the antennas together everything fit. All the holes lined up and all the hardware was present. The design showed a lot of forethought on how these would go together. There is even some flexibility in selecting your desired center frequency on 40 meters. The only problem I had was the incorrect marking on one of the booms for placement of one of the elements. That was quickly taken care of with one email to OptiBeam.

The antennas are mounted on a heavy duty 86 ft. (26 meter) crank-up tower. Again, these being my first set of beams, I didn't really know what to expect. The first thing I did when I powered up the system was to check the SWR levels on all bands. I was very pleasantly surprised to find the SWR range on all bands met or exceeded the published specifications. Upon operation there seems to be good front to back performance. My interest lies in DX work, primarily in the digital modes. I truly believe these antennas will meet my tough expectations. The performance to date has been great. Having now gone through a winter season, I also believe the mechanical design will stand up to the extreme mountain weather conditions. I have every reason to expect that these antennas will outperform and last for many years to come.

As for my concern of support from Germany, I now rest a lot easier. For me, I rate the level of support as important as the performance of the product. Even with a great product, without good support, the overall project could wind up being a dismal failure. Tom and OptiBeam have provided an outstanding level of support with precise answers and quick turnaround. If I had to do this all over again would I go with OptiBeam? The answer is a resounding YES! My experience as been a solid 5.

My only recommendation that could make things easier in the long run would be for OptiBeam to supply a small "survival kit" with their antennas. By this I mean some spare pieces of the metric hardware that is hard or impossible to find here in the US. And, if you do plan to install one of these antennas, have yourself a metric tool kit and metric tape measure. These days this is something every shack should not be without.

I wish you good DX!

73s
Jim, K2YU
k2yu@arrl.net
 
ONL10295 Rating: 5/5 Nov 18, 2004 06:07 Send this review to a friend
One awsome antenna  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I recently joined the “growing” group of happy OPTIBEAM-antenne users. I am the owner of the OB12-4W, the latest model from Tom, DF2BO. It has 12 elements for 4 bands (15-17-20-40) on a 8.1 m boom and needs a single coax line.
After using vertical antennas for the last 3 years, I wanted to upgrade to a yagi, preferably a multiband one due to some limitations on my part concerning availlable space.
While searching the internet, I found some interesting comments about OPTIBEAM antennas.
There seemed to be a variety of different models availlable and they were made in Germany.
My first choice was the OB9-5, but after contacting Tom DF2BO and discussing about my desires he told me about a new model he was developing, the OB10-3W and eventually the OB12-4W.
This new model would not have the normal 5 band coverage (10-12-15-17-20), but since conditions are dropping on the higher bands and I would be getting more gain on 15-17-20 and would get 40M with the OB12-4W, this was something to think about.
I decided to choose for more gain and 2 elements on 40M, so I ordered the OB12-4W.

The OB12-4W was installed 3 weeks ago and I have been trying it out ever since.

What can I say so far.

- the antenna is well constructed using only quality materials
- the antenna is easy to assemble, everything is marked and some parts are pre-assembled
- the manufacturers data about SWR, F/B and F/S are achieved
- the support from Tom and his wife Diane is first class
- on the air signal reports are great (using a Yaesu 1000 MP M-V-no amp)

Am I happy I went for the OB12-4W, you bet !
This antenna sure beats my old GP.

73’s de ON4CMT - Rudy
 


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