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Reviews For: MFJ-945-E

Category: Antenna Tuners/Matching Networks

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Review Summary For : MFJ-945-E
Reviews: 57MSRP: 109.95
160 through 6 M 300 watt metered compact mobile antenna tuner
Product is in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
AB9PM Rating: 2019-04-20
MFJ surprise! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Cons: Tuner controls affected swr as indicated on the rig, but meter pegged full scale indicating high swr on every antenna regardless of actual swr.

Useless..... Returned .....

owned less than 24 hours...

Pros: Fed Ex was a day early on my receiving the tuner!
KG7OR Rating: 2018-05-08
Does the job, but flimsy construction Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I rate the MFJ-945E at three and a half stars, which this system shows as four. It's four-star in performance, but only two or three in physical quality. I had one in my pickup 20 years ago, so I bought another one to use portable with my new Yaesu FT-891. The old tuner worked fine, equal to the larger MFJ-949E, so I expected the same thing this time. I wasn't disappointed; the '945E does everything that you'd expect from a tuner in its class (small, mobile/portable, low to medium power, manual adjust).

But it has the frequent "Mighty Fine Junk" problem: cheap materials and sloppy construction. The case consists of four sections held together by small machine screws, one of which was flopping around loose in the plastic bag. After reinstalling that and tightening the other hardware, the four pieces still don't fit together well, and there's no fix.

Despite that, the '945E does what it's supposed to do; it's just cheaply made. If you don't mind manual tuning and don't plan to knock it around a lot, it's probably okay for the price.
AA4WA Rating: 2018-01-08
Works good Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
After reading some of the past reviews, I was a little concern with the QA of the product, but after opening it up and checking everything out before I put it on the air, the insides looked good. Because the caps are floating above rf ground, I thought I might have to put insulated shaft couplers between the caps and the knobs, but after taking the knobs off, I see they use teflon shafts so I did not experience hand capacitance effect as has been stated on earlier reviews. I think the tuner is going to be just fine.
NU6I Rating: 2017-10-04
works! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I received it today and did hear a rattling noise inside. Open it but couldn't find where it is coming from.
Construction is surprisingly well done.
Put it back together and tried.
First impression is that I don't hear a large increase in noise level while turning the caps and inductor
(compared to my Zm2 and 4SQRP tuners). However, I was able to tune my random wire and
counterpoise through an home made 9:1 balun to a 1 to 1 SWR on 40 and 20m.
Works very well, it is not too big and it is a keeper.
AA4AJ Rating: 2017-07-30
Works Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
No issues. Works just as it should.
K4NBC Rating: 2016-07-02
Just got this tuner Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Well, just got this tuner used, so far so good.. its doing what is supposed to be doing. I only needed for 30m and 15m where the internal tuner of the radio can not tune the dipole antenna, but very handy mfj tuner.
N4UE Rating: 2016-06-04
Internal issues Time Owned: more than 12 months.
The reason for the 4 instead of a lower rating is because I've had this tuner for 15 years and just now found issues with it. It has been in storage and not abused.
I have other, larger MFJ tuners in the shack. I bought this one to use in my RV. It worked well, but I never used it extensively. I recently put up a 40-6M OCF dipole out at the farm.
After I got the antenna up, I 'tuned' it with my Comet CAA500mk2. I noticed some scraping noises on the 'Transmitter' cap rotation, with the SWR going nuts.
When I got home I disassembled it and the problem was the cap's rotor was touching the stator at one point. Looking closely, the reason was that the buss wires from both caps were too short. The wire was pulled to just touch the cap then soldered. If the wire was 1/4" longer and the end was formed into a loop to go over the cap's terminal, it would have been fine.
This would NOT have increased the length of the wire from the cap to the other end. There was so much tension on the wire, it distorted the cap.
One last comment on the caps. The spacing on the caps is SO small it's probably going to arc over at a lot less than 300 watts. Also, due to the small gap, it will try your patience trying to get the spacing so it won't short.

IK1WGZ Rating: 2016-03-26
Great! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Do what it claims on ad and more, works flawlessly, no issues at all.
NY7Q Rating: 2015-08-21
works okay for 100w Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Mine has worked for 9 or 10 years just fine. I always pop the top on a MFJ tuner when I buy it new and check for loose/missing connections/solders.
works for me
MM0HRL Rating: 2015-08-21
Getting this was a mistake Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I got this purely for mobile/portable use - it was bought used/as new, so my comments should be read with that in mind. It's possible that mine had been interfered with, but I doubt it from its pristine appearance - it looked brand new in terms of use/abuse/being opened up etc.

However after one or two experiences of internal noises + finding it hard to tune an antenna I'd formerly had no trouble matching with my 949e I took a look inside. And found the antenna-capacitor had one vane very slightly distorted and so was brush- shorting at one position of its rotation. Not hard to fix, which I did. That particular problem went away.

However - I also have used for some time a 949E in the home shack and have found it a reliable and capable unit, only with some design features I think degrade its use in the real world. But it does match antennas with little trouble.

As a trial for the smaller tuner I tried the 945e on my main home antenna - the one formerly matched easily with the 949e - I found several bands only matched with considerable difficulty with its best SWR results less good than the larger model provided.

Getting only nominally-different results isn't an issue - this isn't after all lab-grade kit, it's pretty basic stuff made to a price - however it should do its job reasonably well. My example doesn't do that.

I wish I'd never got this tuner, most likely will pass it on as its results are difficult to have any confidence in. I'm using an antenna analyser to check these things, so not relying on the inbuilt meter. I also wondered if there could be RF leakage via the plastic side-plates. Thus far no evidence of this has been noted but I'd far rather they were made of metal and grounded well to the chassis.

This is a cheap matcher and it looks and feels like it. Which I would readily forgive if it functioned better.