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Reviews Categories | Antenna Analyzers | AIM UHF 5 kHz to 1 GHz Vector Impedance Analyzer Help


Reviews Summary for AIM UHF 5 kHz to 1 GHz Vector Impedance Analyzer
AIM UHF 5 kHz to 1 GHz Vector Impedance Analyzer Reviews: 7 Average rating: 4.9/5 MSRP: $895.00
Description: The AIM UHF antenna analyzer measures the complex impedance
(magnitude and phase) at each frequency of interest in the
range of 5kHz to 1GHz. A PC is used to calculate all RF
parameters, including R +/-X, Magnitude and Phase, SWR,
Return Loss, TL loss, and more and plot the results in an
easy to read graph and interactive Smith Chart.
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.arraysolutions.com./Products/AIMUHF.htm
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WA4SCA Rating: 4/5 Jun 7, 2014 05:17 Send this review to a friend
A must for accurate analysis  Time owned: more than 12 months
After 50 years as a ham, I am finally indulging in my "bucket list" of tools for the shack. After using other analyzers which were useful but always left nagging accuracy questions above 50 MHz, I acquired this one. It works well for the beginner, and like all sophisticated gear, the more you learn about it the more useful it is. It is easy to go a bit crazy checking cables, connectors, antennas, etc. In the process I have been able to make significant improvements in complicated systems because issues are easy to spot.

I would rate it a 5 on performance, but it is a bit picky in terms of drivers and other issues with Windows. Despite excellent support, it only works with one of my three computers, though a variety of other instruments work with all of them.
 
KD2ADC Rating: 5/5 May 9, 2014 16:42 Send this review to a friend
This is Not Just an Antenna Analyzer!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Back in 2011 I purchased the AIM 4170 from Array Solutions.
As a new Ham I built an OCF dipole, tuned my other antennas and assisted our radio club prepare for field day.
I soon learned this was more than a run of the mill antenna analyzer.
Our club builds kits, antennas and a multitude of other projects.
While building an Ensemble RXTX SDR kit I was having problems with performance in the output section.
The high end of the 20 Meter band would experience 2 to 3 DB loss in output.

After much probing I decided to take apart the output section and test the components.
The coils had the right amount of turns, The cores were the correct type.
I checked them with an inductance meter and all seemed ok.

I then checked them with the AIM.
Using a small fixture on which I did a custom calibration, I nulled the effects of the fixture so the values would be taken at the measurement plane.
Using the custom cal file I ran a scan at the frequency of interest and sure enough, on both cores, the inductance was high.
I removed 1 turn on each, reassembled it, and the output issue was corrected.

You can check capacitors, inductors, do real time tuning of filters using the point data function.
You can do time domain reflectometry, and measure crystal parameters.

I think one of the best features is the ability to save the graphic, scan over the graphic after you make changes and compare the two.
All the data is saved so you can switch back and forth to each graphic to read the data.

I have since purchased the AIM-UHF.

This is an instrument for the serious amateur/experimenter.

KD2ADC

Ed
 
W5RDW Rating: 5/5 Jul 21, 2013 11:32 Send this review to a friend
The best antenna analyzer sold...  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I had the VHF Model for a number of years. When I upgraded to the UHF model sometime ago, it performed great just like the VHF model does! Now I can measure VSWR, etc. in the 900 MHz ham band with accuracy of a lab unit. Plus it really shows you how bad your UHF-N adapters are. I have not found one in my many adapters that is less than 2.0:1 VSWR!
 
K1TKL Rating: 5/5 Jun 29, 2011 18:31 Send this review to a friend
Great unit  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This is a fine unit for analyzing antennas and feed lines as described by other reviewers. I recently had another use for this unit, which saved me time and effort.

I have gophers on the property here, and have had them eat through heavy gauge irrigation piping down in the orchard, but then.... I had an open circuit appear in a run of coax TMR of over 200 feet. Using the AIM I was able to dig down and locate it, within a foot of what the AIM calculated.

It looks like a gopher went thru the conduit and thru part of the coax!

Not the normal use of this instrument, but it sure came in handy to have this capability.
 
KJ4ADN Rating: 5/5 Jun 13, 2011 11:21 Send this review to a friend
very nice  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Sure, who wouldn't want an antenna analyzer that covers 70cm - I only wish it covered 1.2ghz as well!

I've owned the AIM 4170B for a couple of years and loved it. However, my son has been building 2m/70cm antennas for quite some time, and that nudged me towards the AIMUHF. I mentioned it to a local club, and as it worked out, I sold the AIM 4170 with all the "mods" for a decent price... and promptly ordered the AIMUHF. It's a little bit faster, but the SOFTWARE really makes these units shine.

The latest software package (free) now supports a nifty TDR function - yes, you can "look down the cable" for faults/shorts/breaks - in a nice graphical display.

Once upon a time, I was graphing everything on paper, using an MFJ analyzer - it took a long time (by comparison) to figure out what a little bit of tweeking to the antenna actually did. With the AIMUHF analyzer I simply overlay one scan over the other, even calling up old scans, from days or weeks before.

Today, I'm building mobile antennas with big resonators, the kind of mobile antennas that HEAR better than off-the-shelf "sticks" and expensive "screwdrivers" that can't resonate in the band and still have a decent SWR match. I could not do this without days of calculating, graphing, adjusting, graphing, etc., the OLD WAY. The AIMUHF reduces the build time of a new antenna to 1/10 and allows you to fine tune in minutes for a super performer mobile antenna.

After building the super 40m mobile, I had forgotten that the materials I heat shrunk over the coil would effect by "Q" or effeciency as much as they did! The pretty White Plastic really SUCKED, while the Black Heat Shrink barely narrowed my bandwidth.... hmmmm... I could SEE the difference, plotting Q, Theta, SWR, Return Loss - overlaying it over the original scan.

Saving graphs and recalling them later (with all your comments) - to overlay a fresh antenna scan is invaluable to checking and modifying an antenna for changing conditions. That super-duper 65' 80m vertical sure looked good the sunny day you installed it. Same with that ladder line feed - you can see it's very effecient, until the snow or rain, or wind & dust starts to throw everything you thought you had out-the-window. No more of that, "gee... it use to be pretty good", guess work.

So, here I am on my lunch break with my laptop. I can pull up any antenna scan, and see all kinds of interesting stuff - hmm... not enough capacitance, need more inductance, resonates way out of band, bandwidth is so wide my "Q" is horrible, etc., and the AIMUHF is at home.

For those that say, "it's not as portable as a hand held unit". A simple mod, adding a 6-pack of AAA batteries (9-volt also works) inside the case, and you won't need to ever plug it in again. It took over a year to burn through a set of LiIon batteries, heavily used!

These AIM units can make you friends, and cost you friendships. For the guys that want the best performance - you'll be thanked. The other guys that think they've got it perfect... well, these units can be a bit of embarrassment - for them.

I can't say it enough, how FAST this makes antenna building & troubleshooting, compared to the old meter with the digital display, knob & needle. And it does a whole lot more than just check antennas, coils & cables.

KJ4ADN - Bill
 
AD5X Rating: 5/5 Jan 28, 2011 11:53 Send this review to a friend
Can't do without it!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I've has an AIM4170C for quite awhile. But I've needed capabilities above 180 MHz, and the AIMuhf is the answer. I've made comparisons of several loads using a Rohde & Schwartz ZVB4 VNA, and the AIMuhf reads the same as the R&S. If you have 220-, 440- or 903-MHz test requirements, this is the VNA for you. The AIMuhf software is the same as the regular AIM software. The software automatically determines which instrument is being used. And keep checking the W5BIG website. Bob keeps making the AIM software better and better.

Phil - AD5X
 
ZS6YI Rating: 5/5 Jan 28, 2011 09:45 Send this review to a friend
Fantastic!!!!!!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Once again OM Bob W5BIG has excelled in bringing a fantastic test instrument to the market at an affordable price.
I received my unit yesterday and put it through its paces comparing measurements against the older AIM 4170 Analyser and also a LG SA 930 Spectrum Analyser with SWR bridge.
I did not fully understand one small measurement issue. I fired an email off to Bob and within a couple of minutes received a detailed explanation from both Bob and Jay clearing up my query.
This is without doubt an asset in any Amateur Radio Operators shack or laboratory. It works like a charm with ease of operation coupled with super accuracy!
Iím sure the sales figures will adequately compensate the efforts that has obviously been spent developing this marvellous bit of kit.

Well done!
73
Gary ZS6YI
 


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