Tuesday, August 2, 2011

AF1 VS KX1 problem solved......

The setup along with the cheat sheet
After my outing on Saturday with my KX1 and newly built Elecraft AF1 I was frustrated the filtering was just not as sharp and clear as I was lead to believe. I also was  getting what I thought to be RF  into the AF1 from the KX1 and rendering it more or less useless. When I keyed the KX1 my ear buds made my CW just sound like mush . I was unable to know what I was sending,  I put the question out to the Elecraft reflector. There were two common answers to my question, the first was "am I using a counterpoise with the Miracle whip antenna" the other "try if all else fails putting capacitors between the

AF in and out on the AF1" Not having any capacitors at the time I did have a counterpoise that I have used with the Miracle whip in the past. I stopped using it as I was able to get a decent SWR without it.....WRONG.......I really need to take antenna 101 the ARRL used to offer it but no more....that is another blog post....So I clipped on my counterpoise and all was well with the AF1. As well it improves the effeminacy of the Miracle whip I am told as well. So it was off to the back deck counterpoise in hand to give the KX1 and AF1 a workout to see how it preforms against the stock filter in the KX1. I had viewed some Youtube AF1 video's

and they seemed to be doing much better than mine. It's not that I am short of QRN as there are 500KV hydro lines right behind me!! With the counterpoise on I could hear my transmitted CW crystal clear. The AF1 filtering still did not seem to be all that great.  It was only by chance that I noticed the filter on the KX1 was still set at about 300HZ. I backed it off all the way allowing the AF1 to do it's job, seems I was having the two filters in competition with each other. After this was done the AF1 was very very impressive and preformed like the Youtube video's I was watching in the past. At this point unfortunately I have no way of recording the KX1 with and without the AF1 filter so the blog world can hear the difference....those techno wiz bong skills I continue to work on.
Counterpoise alligator clipped
With RF solved able to use roll up which is smaller


  1. Hi Mike, my phone is able to record sound. It should be possible I think. Well a counterpoise is always recommended in any shack I think. I got one behind the antennatuner for every band 160-6m. Even if you use whatever antenna it will do no harm I guess and it solves a lot of RFI problems. 73, Bas

  2. Wow, I'm really surprised at how effective that filter is! Thanks for the video.

  3. Good evening Bas, I don't know what to say other than I have become lazy when it came to the counterpoise. Yes for sure it solved my RFI troubles and it was lesson learned for me.

    Hi John, I too was very surprised by the AF1 when I first heard the results. I can now attest to fact that this unit is amazing.

  4. Good to know that the AF1 works well Mike. I've been considering one as an add-on for my home-built regen. Seems like this might be just what I need.

    Thanks for the post and the great YouTube demo!

  5. Good morning Dave, yes the AF1 is a great add-on. It gives you a much added feature.

  6. Hi Mike, a Miracle Whip without a counterpoise is almost useless. Good you solved the problem. 73 Paul

  7. Good morning Paul, some would say there even with the counterpoise it is still useless......but yes I hope to do much better now that it is being used with a counterpoise.

  8. Mike,

    That MW whip is interesting, must check it out.

    I found this page helpful in understanding the counterpoise (and why it doesn't need to be long). I know you are not using an EFHW antenna, but it might help shed some light on using a CP.



  9. Good morning Casey, thanks for sending the link I was able to take a fast look at it during work last night. It looks very interesting and I will sit down and have a closer look this weekend at it.