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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Mobile & Accessories | OPEK HVT-400 Help

Reviews Summary for OPEK HVT-400
OPEK HVT-400 Reviews: 54 Average rating: 3.7/5 MSRP: $60.00
Description: HF/VHF 8-band mobile antenna. 120 watt maxiumum power handling. Freq: 80/40/20/15/10/6/2 meter & "air band". Use jumper lead to change freq./band. PL-259 mount. Retractable telescopic whip for best TX/RX.
Product is in production.
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K5TTE Rating: 4/5 May 27, 2012 01:13 Send this review to a friend
Get a tripod,use counterpoise  Time owned: more than 12 months
My initial disappointment with this compromise antenna kept
me from giving a thumbs-up on eHam reviews.

But I was persistent and didn't want to have my cash go to waste. I reapplied my efforts to make this thing work, with the goal of NOT having to use an ATU or other LC network:
I was determined to use only 50 ohm coax between my rig and the antenna. So I started then with a stable portable tripod, modified for mobile antennas. I then experimented with various lengths of counterpoises, starting with the usual quarter-wave length wire, and trying others.

What I learned:
1- My best matches were on 40 and 20. I can't explain why.
2-Whatever counterpoise length you use, you must move it
around----high or low, stretched out or not, with varying
positions in relation to the coax.
3-Keep moving the coax around as well.
4-Realize that when you get a really good match ( close to
1.2 to 1) you must leave the whole situation undisturbed.
Moving any part of this arrangement can make the SWR
take off wildly. So don't move a thing!
4- For me, I must use an antenna analyzer continuously.
You need to know immediately if your whip length or
counterpoise orientation or coax position (stretched out?
or somewhat coiled? ) alters the match.
5- Of course it may be easier to simply add a Transmatch to
this situation and get a quicker match. But for me, I was
determined to "go bare" no matter what.
6- Messing around with this tweaking may seem more
trouble than it's worth for a ham who just wants to get
" on the air" quickly. But for me it's just fun. I now know
that in a portable situation you gotta mess around with
wires a bit and allow for the extra time
7- The same method was used for my MFJ apartment
antenna, which I also like a lot. Both antennas bring
QSOs with my QRP rigs.
VE3VDX Rating: 5/5 May 23, 2012 12:28 Send this review to a friend
Works great!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
As I returnee to our beloved hobby after 8 years of silence I decided to try mobile. HVT400B has been purchased at local hamfest few years ago, but collected the dust in the basement. As I was set for a Dayton trip this year I thought I might just throw the radio and the antenna in the car and at least hear what was going on the bands. It took me about an hour to complete the installation, however no adjustments to antenna has been made, I just did whatever was described in the chart. My mobile radio is a tiny SGC 2020 which I set for 10W output in order not to burn the finals in case of high SWR. Well, I wish I could ground the radio properly as the alternator noise was certainly present. I used the cigarette lighter plug for power. As I hit the road I could only hear US stations but the fun began later on when I heard A71AM, JY4CI and 9K2UU just like local stations!!
Without much hope I called Barrak 9K2UU and was surprised when he returned my call with 57 report.
He could not believe I ran 10W at the time!!! I happened to work a number of stations after that including VE6,IK4,CS8 in Azores, S58 in Slovenia and CO6 in Cuba. I am very impressed with this little performer!! Will play with length adjustments and see how it works! 73!!
K3DOS Rating: 4/5 May 6, 2012 14:17 Send this review to a friend
A Convenient Mobile Antenna   Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had this antenna for a couple of years and wasn't impressed with its bench test results, so I didn't bother to try it on the car. Instead I went the Hamstick route and have been lugging around a gun case full of the little buggers. They work OK, but what a hassle! As a last resort I tried the Opek on the car this morning. It took almost an hour to tune, but after trimming I found that it works fine on 6/10/12/15/20 meters and most of 40 meters just by changing jumper positions. That's plenty good enough for me! Other bands require length adjustments, but I seldom work them mobile anyway. I just wish I'd tried it on the car sooner.
WN3R Rating: 4/5 May 6, 2012 11:02 Send this review to a friend
Brand New  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Just got it yesterday and working hard to get it tuned up. The setup is for SOTA. I have it mounted on a 4' tripod and use one counterpoise of varying lengths. So far with 1.3:1 or better SWR, I got it to tune on 40, 30, 20, 17, and 12 meters. I had to make a couple of stingers as the one supplied was too long. In the case of 30m, I had to remove the telescoping section as well as it was too long. Email me if you want the cutting chart. I have not yet transmitted with it. It is still on the analyzer. I'm not interested in 80m as the counterpoise is too long.
W8DCB Rating: 5/5 Feb 11, 2012 07:10 Send this review to a friend
HOLY COW!!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I got an FT-857D and wanted to start doing some mobile work. So I picked up the HVT-600 and installed it on my truck, tuned it to 17m and had a 58 report from SD. Later tuned it to 20m and had a QSO with a station in the Azores and recieved a 5/5 report while I was mobile.
For the price, you cant beat it.
Price $79.95 at Universal
Easy to use and adjust
seems to be pretty sturdy.

The little set screw for the whip has stripped out already, but ni biggie.
Have to stop the car and get out to change bands.

Not much else to say yet. Great antenna, Great price. Good DX!
VK2CKK Rating: 5/5 Oct 4, 2011 22:42 Send this review to a friend
Great Travel Antenna  Time owned: more than 12 months
Cant understand why this antenna does not get 5/5. $ value nothing comes near. Have used in mobile operations local and abroad in VK. Gives good results. Have had "good signal for a mobile station" reports running 100W.
You do have to make sure you set up correctly, once you have mark the whip and the job is done. Have only used on 15m, 20m, & 40m. Works fine with my MFJ mag mount. Dismantle and it fits nicely into your luggage. Have had no issues. Cant go wrong for a $50 spend.
ZL1PO Rating: 4/5 Aug 21, 2011 15:08 Send this review to a friend
A compromise antenna  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned one of these for some years now and only recently made good use of it.Then I bought another two for my other vehicle/portable ops.Mostly used on 80m i.e. 3615,3825 and 3850.
I have not tried tuning it for VHF,UHF.
It is importand for multiple band operation to spend some time pre tuning and logging the total whip length for each band of operation.Use this as a referance for each time you make adjustments to change band of operation.Ensure the grub screws are firmly tightened and seal off with some clear nail polish or the like.
Make up and keep close by a spare jumper wire.
Only install and remove by turning the knurled base section.

A few words of warning:
I am not sure if someone else has already mentioned the following.
Install a inulated disc washer inside the PL259 base connection of the HVT-400 antenna.
The HVT-400 antenna does not have a insulated disc washer inside the PL259.
The HVT-400 PL259 connection has a larger than normal amount of metal exposed around the centre pin in the form of a metal washer.
On some SO239 antenna mounts the top of the threaded section tapers in towards the centre pin.
If the HVT-400 is mated to one of these mounts and bottoms out on installation the centre pin may go to ground!

Over all a value for money antenna.

The low price.
More appealing to the eye than as some other antennas.
Low wind loading.
Easly to install,tune and remove.

Easily damaged and or detuned.
No insulator disc inside the PL259 base.

AL7QL Rating: 5/5 Jun 28, 2011 10:59 Send this review to a friend
A great little antenna for the price.  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I have owned the OPEK HVT-400 for a while and intended to use it exclusively for field days or emergency communications. However, we just relocated from AK to NM and I set the antenna up in my ham shack to test my Flex 1500. I did not expect to receive a lot of stations but the radio's waterfall lit up like a Christmas Tree. I monitored stations in CA, AZ, NM, OK and KY. A great highly portable antenna that will be used in my ECOM jumpkit.
N4HAL Rating: 4/5 Jun 25, 2011 12:56 Send this review to a friend
Worth the $$  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
After some home brew and ham stick antennas, decided to give one of these a try. Tuned it up on 40m and got a SWR of 1.3 over a fairly broad range. Went to 20m with only a plug change and it gave a resulting swr of 2.3. Not bad without a tuner or retuning. As I mostly work 20 and 40 m,am pleased so far. Now we'll have to see how it holds up. For my installation performs better than a hamstick for each band.
KG6UTS Rating: 4/5 Jun 15, 2011 15:22 Send this review to a friend
Good after teaking  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought a similar HVT-600 used for portable ops rather than vehicle mobile. There are two different length adjustment charts on the web so just used those as starting places. The antenna gets mounted on a 10ft piece of 1" conduit with a counterpoise/radial. It seems the antenna is sensitive to the radial configuration so tweaking is needed as the installation changes. I adjust for an OK swr near my operating freq the fine tune with a small mfj tuner. Operating barefoot/portable with an FT857D in central Baja Ca I got 58-59 signal reports from NC, FL, etc on 20 and 17 meters. There will be more experimenting on other bands but so far it does what I need.

Loreto BCS
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