Tuesday, December 10, 2019

The Nano VNA- a handy RF test instrument

Something that's hit amateur radio antenna experimentation by storm in the last 6 months or so is the availability of very small and very cheap vector network analysers. Previously considered expensive test equipment, they are now within reach of (and can be put in) every pocket. 

They are a bit clunky to use and their user interface isn't great (especially if you have fat fingers). And they won't be as accurate as expensive gear. However they open up a world of measurement that amateurs with a non-professional electronics background did not necessarily have. 

Use as an antenna analyser is an example application. You could also try connecting anything that exhibits varying reactance across different frequencies, for instance coil and capacitor combinations. 

Anyway if you've just got one or are about to take the plunge then these video resources could be handy. 

PS: I've now written six books on various aspects of amateur radio. Whether you experiment with antennas, enjoy QRP or are starting out in radio there's a book for you. Find out more here.

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