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Pixel RF PRO-1A

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  • Andy Ikin
    Hello Folks, I have just received a recent review comparing the above product to the Wellbrook ALA1530, it can be found at:
    Message 1 of 9 , May 16, 2011
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      Hello Folks,

      I have just received a recent review comparing the above product to
      the Wellbrook ALA1530, it can be found at:

      http://www.wellbrook.uk.com/reviews/ALA1530-vs-RFPRO-1AReview.pdf

      The review has a link to some MP3 recordings of the s/n comparisons from
      the LW band up to the 13m broadcast Band

      73

      Andrew G8LUG


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • feinstei@frontier.com
      My experience with the Wellbrook was unfortunate due to the fact that there is no North American distributor for this product. I spent over $80.00 sending
      Message 2 of 9 , May 16, 2011
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        My experience with the Wellbrook was unfortunate due to the fact that there is no North American distributor for this product. I spent over $80.00 sending various parts of a Wellbrook antenna back and forth to Great Britain due to the fact that I had zero signal with the sample(s) that I had connected to a TenTec RX-350 shortwave receiver.

        Either the electronics were somehow damaged in transit (this was right after 9/11, so maybe they x-rayed the suspicious looking loop???), the antenna was defective from manufacture, or the antenna was desensitized from close proximity to some powerful broadcast FM antennas located within a block of my residence. Unfortunately, since everything on the Wellbrook that I received was potted in putty, there was no way that I could self-repair any suspected defective parts and was stuck sending the various insundry parts of the antenna back to Great Britain for a replacement and refund. While the problems with the Wellbrook could certainly have stemmed from the proximity to the broadcast FM antennas (at 10 Mile and Greenfield in a northern suburb of Detroit for those familiar with the area), I am forever soured on ordering from overseas due to the logistics of overseas shipping. I must say that Andy treated me quite fairly and did refund my money, but the postage expenses made this a losing proposition for both sides. A North American dealership or distributor would have made all of these logistical difficulties less traumatic.

        For North American users, my story might be a factor in determining which loop to buy.
      • John
        Guy Atkins received nothing with the PRO-1A on the 25mb? Wow. Gotta wonder about that. Mine has worked quite well, thus far. Of course, I only had the
        Message 3 of 9 , May 16, 2011
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          Guy Atkins received nothing with the PRO-1A on the 25mb? Wow. Gotta wonder about that. Mine has worked quite well, thus far. Of course, I only had the comparison of the Wellbrook and Pixel loops provided by Pixel and eham reviews to go by - and the Pixel generally did better. Most folks still don't use SDR's, either - in my case, I have used it mainly on my Palstar R30A - and Lowe HF-150. I even hooked up my old much-modified JRC NRD525 - and it was impressive there, too. It's greatest attribute, to me, is it's ability to null both the high tension line noise and the house reradiated digital hash from switching wall warts, PC's, HD-TV's, and even satelite rcvr's. It came complete - except for the RG-6 quad and f-connectors - even with an F-female to PL259 adapter.

          As an aside, BNC connectors were never meant for outside 'in the weather' use - they are faster on/off interconnect cable connectors, mainly used with test equipment. Of course, even at 30 MHz, 100 ft of RG-58 has measured loss - RG-6 Quad is much lower in loss. RG-58C/U is even lossier - but more flexible - RG-8X would be better for a long outdoor run, if you cannot use RG-6 quad.

          John

          --- In loopantennas@yahoogroups.com, "Andy Ikin" <andrew.ikin@...> wrote:
          >
          > Hello Folks,
          >
          > I have just received a recent review comparing the above product to
          > the Wellbrook ALA1530, it can be found at:
          >
          > http://www.wellbrook.uk.com/reviews/ALA1530-vs-RFPRO-1AReview.pdf
          >
          > The review has a link to some MP3 recordings of the s/n comparisons from
          > the LW band up to the 13m broadcast Band
          >
          > 73
          >
          > Andrew G8LUG
          >
          >
          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          >
        • Jack Smith
          One comment on RG-6 versus RG-58... Most RG-6 has a thin copper layer on top of a steel center conductor. Above a few MHz, the loss is about the same as for a
          Message 4 of 9 , May 16, 2011
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            One comment on RG-6 versus RG-58...

            Most RG-6 has a thin copper layer on top of a steel center conductor.
            Above a few MHz, the loss is about the same as for a solid copper
            conductor and less than RG-58. However, below a few MHz, the loss
            increases as the copper isn't thick enough. This can amount to a dB or
            two more loss for RG-6 compared with RG-58 for a typical run at 100 KHz.

            In the overall scheme of things, a dB or two won't be noticed in this
            frequency range, but it's a real effect. If you want the best
            performance with RG-6, look for a cable with solid copper center
            conductor. It will also be a bit easier to handle as it isn't quite as
            stiff.

            A BNC can be used outside, but requires weatherproofing with self-fusing
            tape, coax-seal or the like. BNCs in this regard are no different than
            UHF connectors.

            Jack K8ZOA



            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Stephan Schaa
            Hi John! ... about that. No, I think he ment: he received no Channel better with the Pixel Loops - or the other way raound: the Ala was better with every
            Message 5 of 9 , May 16, 2011
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              Hi John!


              > Guy Atkins received nothing with the PRO-1A on the 25mb? Wow. Gotta wonder
              about that.

              No, I think he ment: he received no Channel better with the Pixel Loops - or
              the other way raound: the Ala was better with every station he received.

              The mp3's are quite impressing, I wonder what makes the two loops working so
              different at some frequencies?!


              73, Stephan
            • thinkdx
              Hi John, You are not reading the charts correctly. The 25mb portion indicates that the RF PRO-1A was never the best antenna on the frequencies checked for that
              Message 6 of 9 , May 16, 2011
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                Hi John,

                You are not reading the charts correctly. The 25mb portion indicates that the RF PRO-1A was never the best antenna on the frequencies checked for that band. See the legend (caption) below each of the column charts.

                It was the same findings on the 41, 31, and 13mb also... The RF PRO-1A never provided a better S/N than the ALA1530 on those bands. Please re-read the review to understand the metrics I used to evaluate the loops.

                In the XLS file of captured S/N data (within the ZIP file you can download), you can see the S/N values of all of the signals measured on all bands, for both of the antennas. They show that the RF PRO-1A received the same stations as the Wellbrook loop for the 25, 41, 31, and 25 meter bands; however, the RF PRO-1A never equalled or surpassed the ALA1530 on these bands.

                73,

                Guy Atkins
                Puyallup, WA


                --- In loopantennas@yahoogroups.com, "John" <JRTOW3RD@...> wrote:
                >
                > Guy Atkins received nothing with the PRO-1A on the 25mb? Wow. Gotta wonder about that. Mine has worked quite well, thus far. Of course, I only had the comparison of the Wellbrook and Pixel loops provided by Pixel and eham reviews to go by - and the Pixel generally did better. Most folks still don't use SDR's, either - in my case, I have used it mainly on my Palstar R30A - and Lowe HF-150. I even hooked up my old much-modified JRC NRD525 - and it was impressive there, too. It's greatest attribute, to me, is it's ability to null both the high tension line noise and the house reradiated digital hash from switching wall warts, PC's, HD-TV's, and even satelite rcvr's. It came complete - except for the RG-6 quad and f-connectors - even with an F-female to PL259 adapter.
                >
                > As an aside, BNC connectors were never meant for outside 'in the weather' use - they are faster on/off interconnect cable connectors, mainly used with test equipment. Of course, even at 30 MHz, 100 ft of RG-58 has measured loss - RG-6 Quad is much lower in loss. RG-58C/U is even lossier - but more flexible - RG-8X would be better for a long outdoor run, if you cannot use RG-6 quad.
                >
                > John
                >
                > --- In loopantennas@yahoogroups.com, "Andy Ikin" <andrew.ikin@> wrote:
                > >
                > > Hello Folks,
                > >
                > > I have just received a recent review comparing the above product to
                > > the Wellbrook ALA1530, it can be found at:
                > >
                > > http://www.wellbrook.uk.com/reviews/ALA1530-vs-RFPRO-1AReview.pdf
                > >
                > > The review has a link to some MP3 recordings of the s/n comparisons from
                > > the LW band up to the 13m broadcast Band
                > >
                > > 73
                > >
                > > Andrew G8LUG
                > >
                > >
                > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                > >
                >
              • Dale Parfitt
                I don t think you understand how to read Guy s tables and graphs. Dale W4OP Guy Atkins received nothing with the PRO-1A on the 25mb? Wow. Gotta wonder about
                Message 7 of 9 , May 16, 2011
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                  I don't think you understand how to read Guy's tables and graphs.

                  Dale W4OP



                  Guy Atkins received nothing with the PRO-1A on the 25mb? Wow. Gotta wonder about that. Mine has worked quite well, thus far. Of course, I only had the comparison of the Wellbrook and Pixel loops provided by Pixel and eham reviews to go by - and the Pixel generally did better. Most folks still don't use SDR's, either - in my case, I have used it mainly on my Palstar R30A - and Lowe HF-150. I even hooked up my old much-modified JRC NRD525 - and it was impressive there, too. It's greatest attribute, to me, is it's ability to null both the high tension line noise and the house reradiated digital hash from switching wall warts, PC's, HD-TV's, and even satelite rcvr's. It came complete - except for the RG-6 quad and f-connectors - even with an F-female to PL259 adapter.

                  As an aside, BNC connectors were never meant for outside 'in the weather' use - they are faster on/off interconnect cable connectors, mainly used with test equipment. Of course, even at 30 MHz, 100 ft of RG-58 has measured loss - RG-6 Quad is much lower in loss. RG-58C/U is even lossier - but more flexible - RG-8X would be better for a long outdoor run, if you cannot use RG-6 quad.

                  John

                  --- In loopantennas@yahoogroups.com, "Andy Ikin" <andrew.ikin@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Hello Folks,
                  >
                  > I have just received a recent review comparing the above product to
                  > the Wellbrook ALA1530, it can be found at:
                  >
                  > http://www.wellbrook.uk.com/reviews/ALA1530-vs-RFPRO-1AReview.pdf
                  >
                  > The review has a link to some MP3 recordings of the s/n comparisons from
                  > the LW band up to the 13m broadcast Band
                  >
                  > 73
                  >
                  > Andrew G8LUG
                  >
                  >
                  > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  >




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                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • John
                  ... Hello Guy, It s been a while since my last R burg trip. Well, you were right - my cursory view of your charts was too brief. But - to look at your 25mb
                  Message 8 of 9 , May 17, 2011
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                    --- In loopantennas@yahoogroups.com, "thinkdx" <dx@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Hi John,
                    >
                    > You are not reading the charts correctly. The 25mb portion indicates that the RF PRO-1A was never the best antenna on the frequencies checked for that band. See the legend (caption) below each of the column charts.


                    Hello Guy,

                    It's been a while since my last R'burg trip. Well, you were right - my cursory view of your charts was too brief. But - to look at your 25mb data - the Pixel antenna never had a better s/n ratio than the W-B on 17 compared signals. Further, the sum of all s/n for the antennas appears to be 290 for the W-B and 210 for the Pixel. You state that is a ratio - which would give the W-B a 290/210 s/n ratio improvement over the Pixel - that's a net +2.8 db cumulative s/n improvement for 17 signals - in general listening, how is that ever heard? I wonder how your selective use of your SDR's 'AVE' function - to help settle it's readings - may have influenced your results.

                    I see Wellbrook uses your article on their site. Price-wise, the 1530, available in models from $320-$400, and poly or Al tubes, plus s/h from the UK, can easily cost more than the Pixel. Additionally, repair/replacement parts - like the encapsulted preamp - will be pricey. I got a 'deal' from Pixel - they threw in s/h! I immediately had buyer's remorse - I had designed, built, and used balanced loops - remotely tuned and broadband - for many years - and I am 'frugal'. I had just spent $400 - on an 'appliance' antenna! Then it arrived - and I quickly had it up and going - and could 'hear' something other than powerline arcs and house-generated RFI. I'm still happy with it.

                    Take care.

                    John
                  • thinkdx
                    Hi John, I didn t realize it was John *Tow* I was replying to! Whoa... it s been a long time since we last visited at that DXers GTG. My previous trip there
                    Message 9 of 9 , May 17, 2011
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                      Hi John,

                      I didn't realize it was John *Tow* I was replying to! Whoa... it's been a long time since we last visited at that DXers' GTG. My previous trip there was three years ago.

                      Regarding the ratio you mentioned between the columns or charts, there is no ratio or relationship between them. The left hand pairs of columns for each meter band are simply the total of the number of times an antenna gave the best signal (ie, best signal to noise ratio as measured by Perseus). In the case of the 25mb comparisons that you first pointed out, every signal was better on the ALA1530.

                      The right hand column also has no ratio going on; it is just the sum total of all S/N readings for each loop, per band. So, the only ratios used in my review are the signal-to-noise ratios of the individual signal receptions with each antenna.

                      If you haven't yet downloaded and looked at the XLS file of data I provided in the link at the end of the review, that will help show the actual S/N results in detail.

                      Personally, I think it's a good thing when specialty manufacturers pot or encapsulate their devices when they contain unique designs that represent tons of design effort. Kiwa Electronics does this also, and I think it's a good way to frustrate or prevent reverse engineering. The designers deserve to take this approach to help maintain their businesses' profitability. Practically speaking, it can also help avoid shock or thermal damage to the components.

                      73,

                      Guy


                      --- In loopantennas@yahoogroups.com, "John" <JRTOW3RD@...> wrote:
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > --- In loopantennas@yahoogroups.com, "thinkdx" <dx@> wrote:
                      > >
                      > > Hi John,
                      > >
                      > > You are not reading the charts correctly. The 25mb portion indicates that the RF PRO-1A was never the best antenna on the frequencies checked for that band. See the legend (caption) below each of the column charts.
                      >
                      >
                      > Hello Guy,
                      >
                      > It's been a while since my last R'burg trip. Well, you were right - my cursory view of your charts was too brief. But - to look at your 25mb data - the Pixel antenna never had a better s/n ratio than the W-B on 17 compared signals. Further, the sum of all s/n for the antennas appears to be 290 for the W-B and 210 for the Pixel. You state that is a ratio - which would give the W-B a 290/210 s/n ratio improvement over the Pixel - that's a net +2.8 db cumulative s/n improvement for 17 signals - in general listening, how is that ever heard? I wonder how your selective use of your SDR's 'AVE' function - to help settle it's readings - may have influenced your results.
                      >
                      > I see Wellbrook uses your article on their site. Price-wise, the 1530, available in models from $320-$400, and poly or Al tubes, plus s/h from the UK, can easily cost more than the Pixel. Additionally, repair/replacement parts - like the encapsulted preamp - will be pricey. I got a 'deal' from Pixel - they threw in s/h! I immediately had buyer's remorse - I had designed, built, and used balanced loops - remotely tuned and broadband - for many years - and I am 'frugal'. I had just spent $400 - on an 'appliance' antenna! Then it arrived - and I quickly had it up and going - and could 'hear' something other than powerline arcs and house-generated RFI. I'm still happy with it.
                      >
                      > Take care.
                      >
                      > John
                      >
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