[Top] [All Lists]

Re: Topband: 8 circle: DXE vs Hi-Z

Subject: Re: Topband: 8 circle: DXE vs Hi-Z
From: "Joel Harrison" <>
Date: Tue, 16 Dec 2014 08:35:43 -0600
List-post: <">>
Greetings Bob & Reflector folks,

Please allow me to provide a bit of my experience since I run both a broad
side/end fire passive 8 vertical array (350 ft diameter) with a DXE
controller AND a HiZ 8 vertical array spaced for 160 meters (220 ft

To your specific question about controllers both will perform very well
but there are differences in the arrays that need to be considered, so
please allow me a bit of bandwidth here to explain.

I installed my BSEF array about five years ago when there was practically
no avalable information about the array and no commercially available
controllers. I built the array and a controller and published my work in a
paper on my website that later was published in QEX.

Since that time, I have gained a great deal of experience with the array
both mechanically and eletrically and as a result of my published work
others have built arrays (w3LPL for one) had have shared their valuable
experience publically as well. As a result, I rebuilt my BSEF 8 vertical
array this  year with a different mounting scheme like W3LPL uses and also
moved to a better controller that Mike, W9RE first made boards available
for and now that DX Engineering sells, which I now use for control of the
BSEF array.

Over this time Lee's HiZ arrays have become quite popular and are
excellent performers. What I have noticed is there is considerable
confusion among the masses about the differences in these arrays and to be
quite blunt many folks equate living in an excellent geographical location
for 160 meters propagation to amazing performance of a specific RX array
which is an error. I am obsessed with 160 meter RX antennas and achieving
peak performance from my rural location in central Arkansas, an area that
is not enhanced by coastal propagation, etc. So I set out last year with a
personal mission to evaluate both 8 vertical array systems, the passive
BSEF array an the HiZ. I am not in the amateur radio business, I'm just a
ham with a desire to have the best 160 meter RX system possible for my
geographical area.

So, both systems are operational here. There is significant sepeation
between the two arrays (>800 ft) and both are a significant distance from
the transmit antenna. Both have their own level of complexity with
installation and from personal experience I can tell you they each take
about the same amount of time to construct and install.

I have already recorded several real on the air comparisons of patterns,
noise floors (taking in to account one is active and one is passive)and
several signal comparisons of DX stations (actual signal level about noise
floor, not S meter readings). I plan to publish these results in early
spring at the end of the 160 meter DX season for north america.

I would be more than pleased to discuss any specific questions you may
have about these arrays off line a bit more in detail if you would like
but again the short answer to your question is both will be excellent

73 Joel W5ZN

> I'm new to 160 and am planning to add an 8-circle. I would like to buy
> commercial preamps and the controller. I would greatly appreciate any
> advice on the choice of preamp/controller vendor.
> I live in a rural area and have a 4-direction 3-ele vertical array for
> 160 with a 20+ dB f/b. So I'm looking for a beamwidth improvement on
> receive.  Here are a couple questions:
> - Are the functions of the control network the same or similar between
> DXE and Hi-Z? (so I could use either one?)
> - DXE wants a 320' diameter and Hi-Z wants 200' for optimum performance.
> It's hard to tell what DXE performance is because it does not disclose
> RDF, beam width or F/B. And neither vendor supplies EZNEC files so I can
> see the effect of varying the layout. So I'm not sure how to decide what
> array size is best for me. It would be wonderful if someone has a model
> for these two systems.
> - If I use DXE, is it a no-brainer to use 24' verticals instead of the
> shorter supplied whips?
> - are there any best practices for weatherproofing the Hi-Z components?
> - are there any build-quality differences between the two that I should
> consider? I live in MT, so it is a harsh environment.
> Thanks!
> Bob, N7IP
> _________________
> Topband Reflector Archives -

Topband Reflector Archives -

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>