I am currently using a DX Commander Classic Multi-Band (40m-10m), 3/4 wave, ground–mounted vertical with 19 3.6m radials and one 3m radial (It just happened to work out that way). And I'm absolutely loving this antenna. Granted its my first HF antenna, but it seems to be performing very well. So far I have worked stations coast–to–coast, Hawaii, Canada, European Russia and even Australia on 100W. (The first contact to Australia was using only 25W)
The antenna was designed, developed, sold, packaged, and shipped by Callum McCormick (M0MCX) and his family, out of their shop/warehouse in the UK. Shipping was fast, I had mine about a week after ordering it, and I think I had ordered it on a Wednesday and it arrived either Tuesday or Wednesday of the following week. Other people here in the U.S. have reported getting it in just a few days, it all depends on what day you order it on.
The antenna comes in a kit form with all of the nuts, bolts, screws, and other assorted hardware, as well as a 10m telescoping, fiberglass pole, ground/radial plate, transmitting element plate, spreaders, elastic (shock) cord, clips and a spool of wire. The instructions are not included in the box, but can be downloaded from his web site.
The customer service is second to none. I mean that sincerly. Here's an example. Callum contacted me, via email, very apologetically stating that he thought there might have been some parts left out of a few orders, one of which was mine. I took a cell phone pic of the contents I had received and emailed it to him. Callum verified that I had indeed received all of the parts. He could easily have just waited for me, and the others, to attempt to assemble the antenna and complain about the missing parts, but instead, he took the initiative and contacted his customers about the possible issue. This is something that very, very few people would do in this day and age, and is something that has guaranteed him at least one loyal customer. Now, I'm not a huge spender, but I will be purchasing a few items from him in the future, rather than going with someone else.
The Classic was very easy to assemble, using the instructions from the web site, and required no adjustments on my end. I'm seeing VSWR of less than 1.6:1 on all of the bands (40m-10m), meaning I do not need a tuner to use this antenna.
The fact that it is a vertical antenna means that it is suseptible to a high level of noise from man–made sources. Depending on your location, this may or may not be an issue for you. But if it is, there are options you can use to counteract the noise, chokes, loop–on–the–ground, etc. However this may also be a good trade–off for people in more urban environments as the antenna has a very small footprint for one that covers the 40m band.
The antenna consists of 6 wires cut to specific lengths, which can be found in the instructions, spread around the telescoping, fiberglass pole, which serves as the main support structure for the entire assembly. The wires are cut for resonance on 40m, 30m, 20m, 17m, 12m and 10m with 15m being delivered as a bonus from the 40m element. As an added bonus the antenna also delvers 2m and 70cm, without a tuner. I get VSWR of less than 1.9:1 on 70cm and 1.2:1 on 2m. All of this from one antenna system and for a price of around $220US. Talk about getting bang for your buck.
The bonus of getting 2m and 70cm means that I can set–up my VHF/UHF station without needing to wait until I get a dual–band antenna for that purpose. Granted, I have to switch the antenna between the two radio setups, but it is easily doable and gives me greater operating range in case of an emergency.
Callum also has a very active YouTube channel with a lot of great content about antennas, and some good drumming as a bonus, as well as a Discord server that is very active and full of very helpful people, so help and answers to technical questions is just a few clicks away.
The DX Commander line of antennas has several other models to choose from. I plan to purchase the Expidition for portable and field day use. And the Classic also has an option for 80m, at a slightly higher price. If you are looking for an affordable, well–performing anenna system at a low price point, please, check out the DX Commander series of antennas. You won't be disappointed.
|Last Updated:||27 Sep 2022 1400 GMT|
|80m – 40m||Poor||Fair|
|30m – 20m||Fair||Fair|
|17m – 15m||Fair||Fair|
|12m – 10m||Fair||Poor|
|Aurora - Northern Hemi||Band Closed|
|North America||Band Closed|
|Europe — 6m||Band Closed|
|Europe — 4m||Band Closed|
More detailed solar information can be found here.
Solar Data Provided By: N0NBH