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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Mobile & Accessories | Hi-Q-5/160 RT Help

Reviews Summary for Hi-Q-5/160 RT
Hi-Q-5/160 RT Reviews: 23 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $550
Description: This is the LATEST innovation in HF mobile antennas! It is the PATENTED version of the standard Hi-Q Series of HF mobile and base antennas. The loading coil has 9.5" usable travel with approximately 350 uH inductance.

The Hi-Q-5/160 will cover the 10-160 M bands (i.e.: 1.8 MHz to 30 MHz.) and is offered in either a MT (Manually Tunable) or RT (Remotely Tunable - motorized) version.
Product is in production.
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WN7T Rating: 5/5 Nov 9, 2011 22:22 Send this review to a friend
A well built rugged and effective design  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have used this antenna mobile since 2004 to great effect. I have taken first place (mobile mixed mode) a couple of times in my State's QSO party, the Salmon Run. The materials of construction are excellent and the antenna has held up rather well over many thousands of miles of use. I feed my antenna with a W2FMI UNUN with two impedance taps selected remotely with a Kilovac K43R latching vacuum relay.

Recently, I managed to have a slow speed collision with the antenna and my carport roof. The antenna lost the battle, with the stainless mast (a custom 5' long lower mast) bending over about 30 degrees. The Lexan coil housing actually struck the edge of my carport. It was slightly scuffed, but otherwise undamaged!

I removed the 5-160 RT coil from the bent mast and sent it off to Charlie for evaluation. He was quick to respond with the determination that the coil was still in great shape! This is quality service, folks. I have made a new mast for the coil and now the antenna is back in service like the mishap never happened. It is a rugged efficient design.


Paul WN7T
W8JN Rating: 5/5 Sep 23, 2011 21:58 Send this review to a friend
AMAZING  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned my 5-160 for 3 years and am so impressed I ordered a second one to build a 5-160 TAD. You can buy cheaper mobile antennas, however keep in mind the old expression "You don't get what you don't pay for".
The efficiency of this antenna is spectacular. When I tell people on 160 that I am on a mobile antenna running 1.0 kw, they do not believe me. If you buy a cheap pair of pants that don't fit, was it really a good deal? Spend the extra money for a HI-Q antenna. You will never regret it! Charlie and Woody are geniuses.
N5MOA Rating: 5/5 Feb 1, 2011 09:57 Send this review to a friend
No comparison  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had a HI-Q 5/160RT for three years. I bought it second-hand from an op that was getting out of the hobby. I consider myself lucky in that regard, I've only seen 3 used HI-Q antennas for sale in 3 years. I might have missed a few, but there aren't many people letting go of their HI-Q.

There is a reason for that.

Nothing I've used in the past (hamsticks, bug catchers and a tarheel) comes close to the performance of the HI-Q.

The quality of workmanship (second to none) is outstanding. Charlie designed a superbly built antenna that, if you do your part with a proper install, defines "works" as it applies to mobile antenna performance. Nothing will work well with a shoddy install.

Charlie's customer service has been nothing but excellent.

Other than switching taps on my shunt coil to operate on 160m, changing bands is a push of a button easy. I have no problems at all working 160m-10m.

Side by side testing with a friends tarheel was an eye opener, at least for him. He wasn't too happy with the results. With my HI-Q, I was hearing things that the tarheel couldn't pull out of the noise (D2AK, worked with the HI-Q, couldn't hear him on the tarheel), and getting s1-2 better reports on the stuff both antennas could hear. This was with my radio hooked via an antenna switch so we could A/B the antennas.

It also compares very favorably with my dipole for 40m, and my vertical.

I do a little rag chewing while mobile, but most of my mobile operating is chasing dx, either while driving to/from work, or parked in the yard. Very little of the dx chasing is with s-9 signals.

Whether you want to dismiss it as " anecdotal" or not, the fact remains that, from March of '08, with the poor conditions we have had, I have worked 189 dxcc with this antenna. That's more than I worked in the past with all other mobile antennas combined. XX9 on 17m and ZS8 on 40m are two examples from the last 6 months.

If you want the most you can get out of mobile hf, do a proper install, and get yourself a HI-Q.

You WILL be glad you did.

73, Tom
W4KA Rating: 5/5 Mar 24, 2010 15:14 Send this review to a friend
Work DX Mobile  Time owned: more than 12 months
I purchased my Hi-Q antenna in 2006. I mounted it on the bed of my 2004 Silverado 3/4 pickup. Short ground strap 4" long at the base of the antenna. Drove to Texas from S.C. and worked 5 Europeans on 80m SSB with the lowest rst being 56. I have worked Asia, S.A., Africa, Eu with no trouble and get good reports. They always ask what kind of antenna I have. I use an antenna matcher MFJ 910 on 80m only, and use the Ameritron SDC 102 controller and get a 1 to 1 match. This antenna has performed flawless with no maintenance until my daughter destroyed my top hat at Burger King. Repaired quickly and back to DX. The combination of the HI-Q, MFJ 910, Ameritron SDC 102, and a good ground you will be very pleased with this antenna. A quick note on Chevy pickups. Weld a piece of battery braid from the frame to the tail-pipe, this gets rid of RF on 40m. I added straps from the bed to the frame and bed to the cab. It is a nice ride when you only have to punch in a memory to change bands. The antenna is well made and very tough. If you have ever driven I-20 through Al.,MS., La. etc.. you know how rough it is in places. I keep my coil cleaned and sprayed with rain-x. Best mobile I have ever had and almost 0 maintenance.
KU5Q Rating: 5/5 Jan 19, 2010 12:04 Send this review to a friend
Very well made.  Time owned: more than 12 months
Over 30 years involvment in aviation electronics maintenance, service, and certification & test(systems and component level) temper my appreciation for these antennas. It is an understatement that most all antennas are compromises in performance and serviceability. Certain folks will debate eternally (splitting hairs with an axe) about miniscule aspects that can, and cannot be measured to a psychotic extent, also to such an extent that they overlook the important, and the obvious( well does the system work *IN USE* AND *AS INSTALLED*, AS IN *PROPERLY INSTALLED*?!?!).

My 5/160's have performed flawlessly both fixed and mobile, and of course a proper installation optimzes the installations performance. I prefer the HI-Q's sealed design for obvious reasons, and have become absolutely entertained over the raging debate about the metal endcaps. Numerous HI-Q users/customers young/old experienced in mobile HF antenna installation will confirm these are quality articles, and when properly
installed perform well, and are dependable. This is exclusive of the self appointed experts/amateur scientists/HF Mobile Cults
who have, and continue to attempt to detract from the truth.

I highly recommend that if you are interested in the HI-Q antennas, and you are inexperienced in electronics/HF mobile XCVR/Antenna systems installations, that you seek out those that you can trust that have one properly installed and check it out.

Beware that *ANY* HF Mobile antenna system poorly installed will perform poorly. The so called antenna shoot-outs are really installation shootouts. Look at some of the shoddy installs haphazrdly cobbled together with cheap "erector set looking bracketry", sloppy exposed wiring with cheap Home Depot wire splices that look like a drunk crimped them with
vice-grip pliers, exposed matching coils that look like someone sat on them after they wound them, the list goes on....and if you know/realize anything at all you will wonder how they work at all. I've seen some of these in person, and many were performing so bad that you wondered what the installer was thinking (not thinking?) when they did the install.

As far as complaints about HI-Q Customer support. I have none. However, I did not ask (or expect) Charlie to hold my hand with the install of any of my HI-Q antennas. The commercial experience and skills made the installation easy enough.

As far as a reasonable structural/mechanical/electrical compromise in overall performance and serviceability, I'm well pleased with my HI-Q antennas for rugged mobile use. The *ROLEX* of HF-MOBILE antennas.
K5OAI Rating: 5/5 Nov 1, 2009 12:31 Send this review to a friend
Hi-Q 5/160 ARRL 2008 160m QRP contest winner  Time owned: more than 12 months
It took 5 years of negotiations with my landlord to get permission for any antenna on the 2nd floor roof of my apartment building. We installed the Hi-Q 5/160 on July 12, 2008 and it has worked flawlessly ever since.

Details of the installation are as follows, one foot above the 5/160 coil I have a EB-8 tophat and a 102" whip, so it's all of about 13.5 feet tall. For the ground plane there are sixteen radials each 13 feet long, with a wire connecting the outer ends of the radials. There is also one radial each for 160m, 80m, 60m, 40m, and 30m thrown in there for grins, all laying on the tar and gravel roof at 20 feet.

The Hi-Q 5/160 is an excellent antenna and the proof just came in my mail October 27, 2009. I received 1st place in the 2008 ARRL 160m contest, running Class A, QRP, for the WTX section. The devil is in the details they say, so here are a few:
Out of 1280 entries I placed 1121st.
Out of 77 class A (QRP) entries I placed 65th.
My score was 1,428, 45 QSO's, 17 sections.
Longest contact was with W4MYA, 1345.56 miles away which turns out to be 20700.97 miles per watt.

Here's the unbelievable part, that makes me say the Hi-Q 5/160 is an Excellent antenna! If you take my Elecraft K2's 5 watts output, times the Hi-Q's 1.3% efficiency on 160m, we end up with an approximate effective radiated power of about 65 milliwatts. Try to beat that performance on 160m with any other 13.5 foot tall antenna at 20 feet with a minimal radial system.

Would I buy another Hi-Q antenna from Charlie? Lets put it this way, I'm saving my bucks up now, so I can upgrade to his new Hi-Q-6/160 RT/MC-3-H Looks like the efficiency is up to 6%, that would give me 300mw ERP from my K2's 5w, that's an over 6db increase from my 65mw ERP.
W3RXO Rating: 5/5 May 3, 2009 21:42 Send this review to a friend
Wow!!!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I cannot say enough good about this antenna. I bought mine a couple of weeks ago, and have been taking my time getting it set up, on my diesel truck. I custom made a mounting post, to mount it between the cab and trailer (I pull a tanker, so I have adequate clearances) and after I resolved the typical grounding issues, the antenna started performing flawlessly.
My first day on the air, I made contacts in Chile, Italy and all over the 48 contiguous states. Everyone told me I had a great signal, and a few even wanted to be sure I WAS actually mobile. I am running it with an IC-7000, and as of yet, no external amplification, though I am getting an SGC SmartCube, for those pile ups. I cannot give Charlie enough accolades, on his antenna. If you are considering m obile HF, THIS IS THE ANTENNA YOU WANT.
KD4POJ Rating: 5/5 Apr 24, 2009 15:25 Send this review to a friend
OUTSTANDING ANTENNA  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I have used cheap mobile HF antennas for several years and of course got what I paid for. I now have the Hi-Q-5/160 RT All SS with the large eggbeater cap hat and all I can say is WOW! I hear more stations, can work more stations from 10m-160m and have more enjoyable QSOs than I ever did with any other mobile HF antenna.

While on the pricy side, you will not be disappointed in the performance. You want a great signal mobile on the Top Band you need this antenna. My first QSO was with another mobile in New London, ON and got 57 with my little 100 watt signal. I had others tell me they thought I was a fixed station when they first heard me. Later that night, I worked nearly 25 states in a matter of an hour and had some great reports on how well I was getting out with 100 watt mobile signal.

I was first introduced to this antenna by a long time friend and avid user of Hi-Q antennas, Gene KG4NBL. After working Gene in nearly 40 states, I had no doubt that this was the antenna I needed to be mobile with. Gene was right; HI-Q will out perform any screwdriver there on that Top Band.

I have now 35 states confirmed on 160m and nearly all 50 on 40 and 75m. I have to say it again, this is one great antenna.

As for Hi-Q customer service, Charlie is great. I got fast service and answerers to all my questions by phone and by email. Thanks Charlie for the great support and a great antenna!

I will be looking forward to many years on the air with this antenna and hope to also get another antenna for Portable operations.

Mobile North Dakota
W8JN Rating: 5/5 Apr 20, 2009 21:20 Send this review to a friend
Follow Up  Time owned: more than 12 months
I decided to get a little aggressive and I am running my Acom 2000a at 1.5 kw into the 5-160 mobile being used as a base. Zero reflected power and no "hot spots" in the shack. Charlie is a genius!!!
KB3MMX Rating: 5/5 Aug 12, 2008 16:33 Send this review to a friend
BIG SIGNAL AND RX !!!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I'll second all the previous reviews, this is BAR NONE that best remote tunable mobile antenna money can buy !!
If you want to be a Mobile BIG GUN on multiple bands, you NEED one of these !!
I am constantly floored by all the "You're Mobile ?!?! " comments I get with this thing !!
I commonly have to BEEP BEEP the horn so guys really believe I'm mobile...LOL !! ....And this is with a Barefoot Kenwood TS-480 !!
This antenna has also been demonstrated for many people in my vehicle as to how great the RX is and once again, every person has commented "wow, this thing really recieves well !"

Also, I love rapidly busting through DX pileups with this antenna and not stroking as a mobile(not getting priority), that really get's me grinning when I beat out base stations !!

What more can I say, these are incredible mobile antennas, worth every penny !!

Enjoy !!


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