What is the Best 2 meter and 440 antenna

Status
Not open for further replies.

ScanMaine

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 24, 2013
Messages
1,590
Location
Lewiston Maine
If you was just getting into ham radios like me what is the best 2 meter and 440 ham antennas. Looking for base antennas. I'm gonna permount antennas on my truck but not sure what im gonna by there at the step yet as well
 

n5ims

Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2004
Messages
3,863
"Best" has so many meanings. Please define what you mean by it. Is it "Best" as in least visible so my HOA will never notice it? Is it "Best" as in largest, most visible and in-your-face so everyone can see it? Is it "Best" as in the most flashy, expensive, and showy antenna so I have to mortgage my yacht to afford it?

It would also be nice if you indicated if you wanted an Omni-directional antenna or a beam. This is important, especially if you say "Best" for you is longest range.
 

ScanMaine

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 24, 2013
Messages
1,590
Location
Lewiston Maine
Well here in Maine we have alot of 2 meter. Im satisfied with trying to talk as far as I can with a IC V-8000 radio. Im just looking for ideas. I don't even have the first idea where to look on the internet
 

ScanMaine

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 24, 2013
Messages
1,590
Location
Lewiston Maine
Bigger is better and the Diamond X700HNA is the biggest dual band omni with the Comet GP-9 or Diamond X510 in second place. I would get an X700HNA to test but they are a little pricy at $350.
prcguy

Any favorite stores or Links to find this stuff
 

prcguy

Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2006
Messages
10,995
Location
So Cal - Richardson, TX - Tewksbury, MA

ScanMaine

Active Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Apr 24, 2013
Messages
1,590
Location
Lewiston Maine

ko6jw_2

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
May 18, 2008
Messages
1,143
Location
Santa Ynez, CA
The best antenna is the one you just made a contact with.

Seriously, if you are not on a budget, Diamond and Comet make excellent 2m/440 antennas in several gain configurations.

You could build your own.

Arrow antenna makes a 2m/440 j-pole, which at $49.95 is a bargain and an excellent antenna. I've had one for several years. Use it to work local repeaters - so gain is not a consideration.
 

khooke

Member
Joined
Feb 19, 2013
Messages
54
Location
Davis, CA
I just made the 2m GP from the plans on Hamuniverse. Only a few bucks for copper wire, a SO239 chasis mount connector, 4 nuts and bolts... only took half hour or so to assemble it. Has low SWR and gets me to all the local repeaters fine.

I'd be inclined to try something cheaper first before you drop $400 on one of the other recommendations. I'm sure they're great antennas but if $7 gets you the contacts you need then $400 seems, excessive?
 

KW4HKY

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 7, 2011
Messages
79
Location
Hickory, NC
The best antenna is the one you just made a contact with.

Seriously, if you are not on a budget, Diamond and Comet make excellent 2m/440 antennas in several gain configurations.

You could build your own.

Arrow antenna makes a 2m/440 j-pole, which at $49.95 is a bargain and an excellent antenna. I've had one for several years. Use it to work local repeaters - so gain is not a consideration.
Great advice
 

rapidcharger

Member
Joined
Jun 13, 2012
Messages
2,382
Location
The land of broken calculators.
There are some folks on our network of remote bases and echolink simplex nodes using recently deployed Diamond X510's and their performance (when properly installed) is out of this world. I would definitely recommend one of those although I'd have trouble justifying the extra $200 for an X700. I've no personal experience with the 700 though. I have a Diamond v2000 and it does well, then again I'm 225' higher than everything else so I could probably just use a coat hanger.

I have some other Diamond antennas too and I really like them.
 

Kd9bku

Member
Joined
Jul 28, 2014
Messages
18
Location
Noblesville, indiana
Im new also but just to tell you my experience.. I purchased a ANLI A-100 on Amazon and mounted it in my garage due to HOA.
It hits local repeaters just fine, some a lot further away than i thought too.. It was around $60
 

iconbadgta

Member
Joined
May 22, 2014
Messages
17
Location
Cumberland, Ky

Attachments

KF5YDR

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jul 24, 2014
Messages
176
What the heck is going on with that antenna schematic? A 4" piece of wire soldered to an 18" piece of wire? Why? Why are those extra solder joints there? What is the capacitor doing in the left hand radiator, and what value is it? Why are the conductor and braid connected together?
 

AK9R

Lead Wiki Manager
Super Moderator
Joined
Jul 18, 2004
Messages
6,818
Location
Central Indiana
The antenna shown in post #15 is made from a piece of 300 ohm twinlead that is 31" long (12.5 + 17.5 + 1). What you are seeing as a "capacitor" is a break in the twinlead. The remaining 12.5 inches of twinlead is only there for mechanical strength.

J-pole antennas typically have the two elements shorted together at the bottom. The antenna is "tuned" by adjusting the distance between the "short" at the bottom of the antenna and the feed point.

I can't explain the separate 4.75" and 18" sections.

BTW, J-pole antennas are end-fed half-wave antennas. While the impedance in the middle of a half-wave antenna is close to 50 ohms, the impedance at the ends is not. So, the classic J-pole is an end-fed half-wave with a quarter-wave transformer at the feed point. The two parallel elements form the transformer while the single element above the transformer is the radiating element.

That said, Ed Fong's antenna is not a classic J-pole, though it is similar.
 

dksac2

Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2012
Messages
327
Location
Idaho
I just got done running a net for a very large bicycle race. involved hitting 3 repeaters and simplex.
One that I get into easily, the other two with some steam. I use a Diamond X-300 2/70 antenna with the base at 45'. Because of other traffic, I put another antenna up, basically a j pole made of 450 ohm twin lead that works on 2/70 at 40', both antennas had very good SWR.
What amazed me was there was little difference between the two, with the cheap wire antenna sometimes better.
I live in a valley with mountains all around and the X-300 though it may get more distance, has a lower radiation angle, making it not always the best choice. It has 6.5 and 9 DBi gain, the j pole no real gain.
You need to look at the area you are in. If it's flat, a gain antenna may be the best, if hilly, a quarter wave antenna might just do the job even better.
Rather than spend a bunch of $$$ on a high priced vertical, you might be better off with a 1/4 wave antenna and add a beam for the harder to reach places.
I've had a 510 and it didn't do much better than the X-300.
Let your location be a guide, sometimes a no gain antenna like a 1/4 wave will be superior to a gain antenna if you have mountains or other obstructions all around. If your a flat lander, a gain vertical would most likely be the best, but no antenna will work it's best unless you get some height on it. A 45' base is not as high as I would like. 60' would be far better, but I can't get one that high.
Be sure to feed it with LMR-400 and try to keep the run as short as possible. The losses at UHF frequency's in coax can be quite a lot.
Don't think you are really getting the gain advertised by any manufacturer either, all rate their antennas at DBi, not DBd, which is a much more real world figure.
Try an ARROW 146/440 MHz antenna first, at $40.00, they work excellent. If you need more distance, a duel band beam will reach out far better than any vertical made.

73's John KF7VXA
 

KK4VRE

Member
Joined
Sep 14, 2014
Messages
7
Location
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Please remember that the antenna is just 1 part of the radiator system (everything outbound beyond the connection on the back of your radio). Every link in the system is important. To get the greatest radiator, start by where you will deploy it; the higher the better. What is the terrain like in your area? If you live in a valley surrounded by mountains then stay away from high-gain antennas. If you live in flatlands, find a very high gain antenna. Use the lowest-loss coaxial cable you can afford; as an example, a very good transmission line at reasonable cost would be LMR-400. Unless you are talking point-to-point consistantly, stay away from directional antennas (unless you have purchased a rotator and have plenty of patience). Don't forget to ground the mast/tower/radio properly. Don't forget to have at least a SWR meter (so you may protect your radio by knowing where the energy is going) if not a full-blown SWR/PWR/antenna tuner.

Personally, I do well with a MFJ-945E antenna tuner, 70' of TimesMicrowave LMR-400 coax, and a ANLI A-100 2m/70cm antenna (less than 4' long) mounted at 50' AGL. The 'cheapest' part of this system is the antenna itself, at $80 total delivered.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top