Sunday, August 21, 2016

Low cost 2.7GHz antenna analyser

Since starting to receive ADS-B signals on 1090MHz I was wondering how well my home made antenna was tuned to that frequency.

I spotted an analyser for AU$236 that covers up to 2.7GHz on Aliexpress here and it seemed worth a try. Here it is with a simple dipole that is reasonably tuned to 1090MHz.

It's advertised as "Antenna Analyzer N1201SA SWR standing-wave meter Talent instrument Impedance tester 140M~2.7GHz" and I'm very happy with it.

The unit contains a re-chargeable battery and is simply re-charged with a USB cable. The knob at the top makes it easy to tune the lower and upper range frequencies.

Output level is -18dBm and it seems on frequency as far as my UHF transceiver is concerned.

There are two modes, one with figures displayed and the other which draws a graph as you see above.

If you need to work in the GHz range, I recommend this little analyser. It turned out my home built antenna for 1090 was a little low and resonant at 1083.3 - not too far off.


Superkuh said...

Hi Peter, thanks for the post on the N1201SA. Your blog is pretty much the only page on the web I could find which had both decent photos and writing in native english. How are the menus and configuration for this device? I'd like to get one but I'm a bit worried about them being obscured behind Chinese characters.

I know it's only a single port device but would it be possible to also test filters with the use of a directional coupler or something? Prior to finding out about the N1201SA I had been thinking of a PocketVNA ($430) which is a much more capable two port device but the price tag is a bit beyond my range.

Peter Marks said...

Hi Superkuh,

Menus and use of the device are quite easy to figure out. There isn't Chinese characters visible in normal use.

As you say it's a single port analyser so a MiniVNA or similar would be better for filters.

It's also great that this device charges from USB and the battery life is good. I recommend it.