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Reviews Categories | Antenna Tuners | Dentron MT-3000 Help

Reviews Summary for Dentron MT-3000
Dentron MT-3000 Reviews: 33 Average rating: 4.7/5 MSRP: $279.95
Description: Dentron MT-3000
Product is not in production.
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K8IA Rating: 1/5 Jan 16, 2005 08:37 Send this review to a friend
Get something more modern!  Time owned: more than 12 months
This thing may have been an adequate tuner when it was built 25-30 yrs ago, but with todays power levels and more emphasis on 160m it is now a sorry piece of crap.

I mainly use (or try to use) this tuner on 160. Its losses there are major. With 1500w into tuner and tuner into a 2:1 load it showed almost 400 watts of loss! Thats significant heat folks!

I have rebuilt/realigned the main selector switch 4 times now the past yr, all mechanical problems. In addition, I had to replace some of the components on the metering board.

As soon as I get a new tuner, this one will be scrapped for parts. There still are two decent variable caps in there. Its scrap value is the reason I give it a "1" rating.
WV4I Rating: 5/5 Mar 17, 2004 07:14 Send this review to a friend
Quality Construction  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
After several recommendations and having upgraded to an AL-1500 legal limit output amplifier, I bought one of these. First thing was to remove both covers and inspect. All heavy duty components, e.g. switches, hex wrench screws, quality backing plates, SO-239 connectors, ceramic insulators, etc., and not surprisingly no signs of damage. If you've opened other tuners, you know what I mean.
This tuner brings me back to a tapped inductor vs roller type. While some roller inductor tuners may work fine at lower power levels and/or minor mis matches, this is frequently where trouble starts, arcing, etc.. My initial impression is that the MT-3000A tuning range is much broader even at 1.5KW continuous output, 40m/80m, than any tuner I've ever owned. Why? Because I'm not at max or min capacitance, and even on 80m, only half the available inductance is needed...160m next. I'm (fine) tuning an HF6V vertical w/out the 160m add on. Fed directly, this antenna has about 125kc 2:1 SWR BW on 40m, and abt 35kc on 80m. Mine is optimized for 40m CW and 75m SSB.
To be fair, the meters, Fwd and Ref, really are relative power readings given their small size, readability. And, the wattmeter select buttons do loosen with age. And perhaps more than one coax bypass selection might be nice.
But, if you're QRO, and want to finish the quest for the ultimate transmatch, buy one of these. Mine was $270, and cosmetically not real great, at least until it got a good cleaning. Have seen mint looking units go for $350 on Ebay.
Remmeber, life is too short for QRP, sorry guys, hi.
N9QZD Rating: 5/5 Mar 14, 2004 04:17 Send this review to a friend
Well made  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is a well constructed Tuner. Match just about anything.
W7KID Rating: 5/5 Mar 9, 2004 01:51 Send this review to a friend
Awesome Tuner, Best I've Owned  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is actually the 2nd MT3000A I've owned. Shouldn't have gotten rid of the first one. I can't complain about one single thing on either one I owned. I think especially if you keep things relative and compare this tuner to what is currently available you're NOT going to get a better tuner for the money. I've also owned a couple Heathkit 2060 tuners, and I prefer the switched inductor on the MT3000A over the roller inductor. I can tune anything flat that I throw at it, a 5BTV (just to get the extra bandwidth), a 70ft loaded dipole that I can load up 10-160, and a 375 foot long wire that I put up in a double loop configuration that I can also tune flat 10-160. I've also owned numerous MFJ tuners, 962, 989, etc. and there's no comparison.

73, Ken
K8JS Rating: 3/5 Feb 22, 2004 00:59 Send this review to a friend
Basically Is OK, but not the best Tuner Out There  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought mine NEW back in the 1970's and had it for several years.
At the time I ran Yaesu FT-101 & a Heath SB-220 though it, all bands, from 160 thru 10.
Early-on, after the warranty expired, those unique push button switches became "flakey" to operate and from then-on required me to be VERY careful when operating them, else the exposed rectangular button covers would pop out and land on the operating desk.
The horizonatally mounted coil developed a slight downward "sway back" shape because after awhile the SB-220's RF power overheated it and softened the clear plastic coil formers. (This gross overheating was cured by removing the grounded coil bracket that contacted the chassis, then I steel-wooled the bracket and chassis contact area, then bolted them back together again.)
I also ran balanced feedline antennas at that time, and discovered that the built-in balun was badly UN-balanced at it's "balanced" port for 10 thru 20 meters.
To help remedy that problem I had to replace it with a physically larger, and much superior "Super Balun" from Palomar that barely physically fit within the tuner's chassis.
So - with correcting the coil's grounded end making a better contact to the chassis, replacing the unit's inferior balun, and gingerly operating those flakey rectangular switched, I was able to continue to use that otherwise very nice tuner for several more years. ---John, K8JS
W7KKK Rating: 5/5 Dec 12, 2003 13:16 Send this review to a friend
Heavy Duty  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I picked this unit up used and paid a good price for it only to find out that it had been damaged by dropping, and worked on by someone that was pretty bad, to say the least.
I fixed it, and it is one of the best tuners I have had. Tunes almost anything very quickly. Hard to find, but worth the effort.
KC2KU Rating: 5/5 Aug 27, 2003 13:48 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Tuner!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have used at least six of the most popular tuners and this is by far the best. I even bought a second which I was talked into selling. Dumb, dumb. Really, of everything out there, you cannot do better, especially for the price.
W6PJJ Rating: 5/5 Apr 11, 2003 15:05 Send this review to a friend
High Quality, High Power Capability, Brute Force Tuner  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I own 2 Dentron MT-3000A tuners and believe these are the best commercially tuners built. I have in my 35 years of building, operating and purchasing ham gear not seen another tuner like this one. I have owned numerous tuners and still have them but non of them compair to the MT-3000A.The MT-3000's are industrial strength tuners and are built out of very high quality components. I have run full power through these units to most any antenna resonant or not and never an arc over. If you want a tuner built like a Tank then I recommend the Dentron MT-3000A
K4HX Rating: 5/5 Oct 7, 2002 06:06 Send this review to a friend
Solid, reliable  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned one of these for over 5 years, using it with an Alpha 76CA, Drake L4-B, Johnson Thunderbolt, and a Heath SB-200. Even at the legal limit of power from the big Alpha "3-holer," the MT-3000-A performed smoothly and without arcing over a wide range of SWR and bands. I have never noticed any heating of internal components at all. All controls are heavy duty in feel, and work as expected. The internal construction appears to be well engineered, and the use of quality materials is evident. I wonder why Dentron went out of business, building equipment like this?

If you're buying your first used tuner, take the time to learn how a tuner is properly operated, then question the seller to determine whether the unit you are interested in was abused. The MT-3000-A is heavy enough to take a lot of inexperienced ham's abuse without damage, in my opinion. This is aparently not true with cheaper-built rigs like some of the MFJ "high power" models.
W1TE Rating: 5/5 May 27, 2002 05:23 Send this review to a friend
Probably the best switched inductor tuner  Time owned: more than 12 months
One was purchased used for use with a Force 12 C4SXL on 17 & 12 meters. Mechanically the unit appears to be well built. After a couple years of operation at the 1 KW power level there has not been any indication of sparking or overheating. The antenna switching abilities are very useful. Antenna 1 can bypass the tuner or use the tuner, Antennas 2 & 3 must use the tuner. The only problem (which appears to be commom) is the power pushbotton indicator fails, but the switch continues to operate fine. The next one I see at a reasonable price will be added to my station.
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