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Laird VHF/UHF/700/800 Mobile - Experiences?

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RadioDitch

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mmckenna

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I haven't used one yet, but I have seen them at the trade shows. The bases are monsters, probably 2 inches in diameter. I would be very nervous about mounting this on top of a vehicle. There would be much damage if it met with a low branch or parking garage. Trunk mount is about the most I'd do.

The price is better than I expected. I haven't seen these for sale before, and when I asked the guy at the show, his reply was that they were in keeping with the higher prices of the radios they connect to. $90 is cheaper than I expected. I was expecting to see these in the $200 range.

I'm interested to hear of any personal experience with these antennas as well. From the specs, looks like unity gain on VHF, 3db gain everywhere else. Unless I had a true try-band mobile radio, I'd think it would be better to stick with at least a dual band VHF/UHF and a dedicated 700/800MHz antenna to reduce combiner losses.
 

RadioDitch

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I haven't used one yet, but I have seen them at the trade shows. The bases are monsters, probably 2 inches in diameter.
Ouch. That's probably gonna rule it out for me then. Gotta look good too. :) Probably just go with my original plan. Thanks man!
 

mmckenna

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I agree. Neat antenna looking at the specs, but when you are holding one in your hand, you start to have second thoughts.
 

N4DES

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I have one on the top of my Explorer and it works really well. I was a little concerned about the VHF performance at first, but it works just as well as a 19" quarter wave in the same location talking to a my repeater 30 miles away. I haven't found a multi-band mobile combiner that does VHF, UHF, and 700/800 that I like to really take advantage of the bandsplits, but I have tried it in all the bands individually and everyone worked fine as compared to a 1/4 wave on each band.

You can't use an L bracket or any other creative aftermarket mount. It has to be an NMO on flat metal (trunk or roof) and yes you need some good steel around it as it isn't really flexable at all.

Laird is supposed to be coming out with a compliment combiner that will match the antenna. I haven't looked lately if one is available, but seperately I give it 9 out of 10 stars for those that need to listen to multi-bands and limited for antenna locations or height.
 

mmckenna

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That is good to hear. Any issues with wind noise, as in noticeably louder than a standard quarter wave?
 

327skidoo

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just bought one a while back not impressed at all my quarter wave uhf does way better not impressed one bit i have been looking for a good dual band antenna for years and havent found one so i thought i would try this one swr reading is goood but performance is not anything to brag about. just my two cents
 

low3oh

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The bases fill with water pretty easily. Looks like the O-ring on the threaded rod at the top of the base is to blame. I've got ~500 deployed right now and have had 5 or so come back already.
 

kk6696

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Not impressed

I bought one when they first came out and have only used it on UHF/VHF. I mounted it right smack in the middle of the roof of my pickup truck and was very unimpressed with the results I was getting, as far as reception and transmission distances, compared to other antennas and even quarter wave whips. I don't use 700/800 Mhz, but I bought this for the shorter length and advertised gain on VHF and UHF. I was very disappointed.

The base on it is quite fat, but that's the tradeoff for having a shorter whip and broadband use, I suppose. I kept mine mounted for a week or so, then ditched it to the pile of other antennas in my garage.

These are just my anecdotal opinions and observations, so take them for what they are worth.
 

SCPD

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I wonder how come Antenna Farm is selling it for so cheap? The list price is 169.95... and most places are selling it for near that... Amazon is like $134.

Are they selling a slightly different version? Seems like AF would be taking a really big loss on those.
 

327skidoo

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again like i said earlier PLEASE save yourself the money this antenna isnt worth five bucks let alone 69.99 i have tried it in VHF and UHF it is an extremly poor performer in the vhf band and also equally as dissapointing in uhf i honestly have better luck with an 18" quarter wave on vhf/uhf bands
 

jparks29

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I installed quite a few of these for a state contract.

Very picky about mounts, and SWR was hard to get nailed down on all bands...

Tried one on an L bracket and it was HORRIBLE, had to fab up some mounting platforms..

 

RodStrong

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I wonder how come Antenna Farm is selling it for so cheap? The list price is 169.95... and most places are selling it for near that... Amazon is like $134.

Are they selling a slightly different version? Seems like AF would be taking a really big loss on those.
He buys his antennas from Tessco and then resells them. I can get them for $96 each under my account, and I'm not a dealer.....just a fairly small customer. Given the amount of volume he purchases from them, he likely gets a much better price, hence the seemingly deep discount.

Laird Technologies WPD136M6C-001 Multi Band Mobile Antenna | TESSCO
 
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