10 Best Automatic Antenna Tuners Reviews In 2021

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With the best automatic antenna tuner at home, you’re able to match the antenna feeder and reduce the SWR with ease.

The devices reviewed here are precise, long-lasting and reliable too! Offering you FAST results in seconds. The best part? They do this automatically!

10 Best Automatic Antenna Tuners Reviews In 2021

 NAME

 SHOP

  • ICOM AH4 13
CHECK ON AMAZON
  • MFJ MFJ-945E
SEE ON AMAZON
  •  ICOM AT-130
SEE ON AMAZON
  •  ICOM AH4 13 Auto Tuner – Best Overall

Quick Features

  • Automatic Digital Control Tuning
  • Has a weather-proof design
  • Features frequency memory
  • Has an automatic digital control tuning
  • Wide Tuning Range

Setup is easy and quick. Instructions in the manual is easy and simple to follow.

This unit can tune 80-6 meters effortlessly, offering an improved system for faster tuning.

Interferences doesn’t affect this tuner and it handles the weather forces well too. So, either in the rain, snow, heat, or humidity, this works well.

To get it connected, simply plug it into the control table, & control the AH4 into the transmitter’s RF1 output, and that’s it.

Now, pay attention to the gasket as you indicate. Handle it with care since it can be a bit tricky to keep it in place if you’re mounting it vertically.

This tuner boasts of a perfect interface with ICOM rigs, making it important for ICOM users.

Yes, the tuner is able to do far more than that. It performs well with dipoles and loops as well.

With no doubt, this unit is the best high-power antenna tuner!

What We Liked

Works with loops and dipoles

Using this unit is easy, even kids will understand it

Perfect interface for ICOM rigs

Perfect for random wire length antenna

What We Didn’t Like

The delicate gasket is difficult to secure

  • MF J-945E Antenna Tuner – Best Manual Antenna Tuner

Quick Features

  • Has manual tuning controls
  • It has a 8x2x6-Inch Size with a 8-60MHz Range
  • Antenna, Transceiver inputs
  • Cross-Needle Meter

This device is small and compact. It uses only 300 watts, and features a front panel bearing plenty of functions to use.

For example, there are 3 knobs that lets you control the inductance, transmitter, and antenna.

Close to the center is a display with meters that offers accurate readings too.

The meters illuminate when connected to a 12Vdc.

The unit design is basic and simple. You will find a SO-239 inputs for both transceivers and antenna.

The frequency picked varies from 1.8 – 60 MHz, with 6 thru 160 meters capacity.

You should use this tuner for Ham Radio, HF, and CB.

As expected, this comes with a cross-needle meter.

It’s a useful power meter function within 300W and 30W scales.

Completely understanding this tuner sure might take a bit of time, but once mastered, it’s totally worth it.

For the money, there’s no alternative as good as this one.

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Because of its portable design, this turner can be fixed at a location or used as a mobile tuner.

Since it covers all HF brands and 6m bands, the unit meets your expectations in terms of tuning.

For the value it provides & the price, the MFJ-945E is the best manual antenna tuner.

What We Liked

Plenty of the functions in a compact unit

It is perfect for a fixated or mobile turner

High-frequency coverage

Super accurate meters

What We Didn’t Like

The manual instructions aren’t that clear

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  • ICOM AT-130 Automatic SSB Antenna Tuner – Most Resistant

Quick Features

Automatic Tuning

Has a low power tune-up

Waterproof enclosure

Has a preset tuning function

This tuner can match SSB transceivers to a long wire antenna with less insertion loss.

As you tune, this item produces low output power. That’s one advantage I love.

Also, the device has a preset tuning function that supports faster tuning later on.

Easy to install; you only connect the control cables and short-time internal settings, the unit is ready to work.

It doesn’t require maintenance once you buy. The manual it comes with is simple to read and follow.

The manual lacks some information you about certain things. However, for its price, its totally worth it.

For M-700 SSB Radio, you can’t beat the price. It has a quick tuning system that takes about 2 seconds to pick new frequencies.

This unit also comes with a memory to save frequencies, and it takes less than a second to tune those.

What We Liked

Memory for faster tuning

Excellent for a balanced antenna

Finds frequencies in seconds

Detailed guidelines for different applications

What We Didn’t Like

It doesn’t have instructions on non-ICOM rigs

  • LDG Electronics IT-100 Antenna Tuner – Easiest to Use

Quick Features

8-54.0 MHz Coverage

2,000 Memories

14-Inch ICOM Radio Interface

Tuner Button / Push Button

At 1.5 pounds and a 6.5 by 6.5 and 1.25-inch size, this unit is lightweight and compact too.

It’s a great antenna tuner with frequency coverage from 1.8-54.0 MHz.

This turner is versatile and has quick tuning. It is compatible with AH-4 or AH-3 ICOM models and has a built-in frequency sensor that provides precise readings.

There are two methods of controlling this device:

  • Using the ICOM Tuner button after establishing the connection.
  • Using the turner push-button on the turner

The ICOM interface cable is easy and can be put to work right out of the box.

This turner is an automatic device, so there’s no need to do much to make it work.

Pushing the button is what you need to do, and then allow the tuner do the rest.

It can reduce power, match the antenna to the gig, and restore original power.

Lastly, the 2,000 location memories provide instant frequency tuning.

This tuner is only able to run 30-35 Watts on digital mode so you may not like it. It doesn’t take anything away from the performance of this device though.

What We Liked

It comes pre-assembled, ready to use out of the box

It doesn’t require an additional power supply

Small, compact, and lightweight

Operating the tuner is a breeze

What We Didn’t Like

30 Watts limits on digital

  • ICOM AT-140 SSB Antenna Tuner – Best Memory Capacity

Quick Features

Full Automatic Tuning

Has a super Capacitor

Comes with a ASA Case & Rubber Gasket

Wide HF Marine Band Coverage

45 Memories

Super Capacitor

Being weather-proof means, you can set this tuner near the antenna or deck. It is durable and resistant too.

Housed in a resistant ASA case with rubber gaskets, this tuner is durable and resistant.

In either case, the installation is simple: connect the control antenna cable, and that’s it! There is no need to open the cover.

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The ICOM AT-140 matches any frequency on every HF marine band.

For instance, it can match a 23 feet long wire antenna over 1.6-30MHz.

Doing that is hassle-free, as the unit comes with an automatic tuning system.

Push the tune button, and the tuner adapts fast to the minimum SWR of any frequency.

This tuner also allows HF operation in locations with limited space for the antenna.

While active, the device has 45 memories to remember the most-used frequencies.

For later use, re-tuning those frequencies takes only a few seconds.

Lastly, the supercapacitor has a memory backup; so even if you rarely use it, the memory of your last settings still remains in place for many days after.

The manual instruction is great, but it does lack some basic information. For instance, the instructions aren’t clear if you’re using the tuner for anything other than an ICOM HF set.

What We Liked

Effective memory backup

Fantastic rugged build

Easy installation is a no-brainer

Ideal for ICOM radios

What We Didn’t Like

Lacks extended, detailed instructions

  • MFJ-969 Deluxe HF Antenna Tuner – Most Versatile

Quick Features

Built-in 4:1 Balun

Aluminum Cabinet

Cross-Needle Wattmeter

AirCore Roller Inductor

This antenna tuner covers 6 thru 160 meters of HF bands within 1.7 MHz-55MHz frequencies.

It comes with enclosed in an aluminum cabinet, with enough strength to put up with 300 watts.

The tuner is compatible with SWL receiving antennas, random wires, and more.

The tuner comes with an 8-position antenna switch for easy readings.

Other worthy features are the 50 Ohm dummy load and the heavy-duty 4:1 balun.

They’re all protected with a durable and resistant aluminum cabinet.

The accuracy of this unit provides precise forward power and SWR too.

The panel has a large screen and these measurements are simple to read and understand.

The operating tuner isn’t as great as more expensive as those at the top but it is fine enough. Turning the inductor knob with one finger is tricky.

Of course, this issue may not be that important if you don’t change bands often.”

What We Liked

Perfect calibration

The high-frequency range covered

Offers true and accurate readings

Compatible with almost any antenna

Perfect calibration

What We Didn’t Like

Turning the inductor knob

  • Palstar HF-AUTO Automatic Antenna Tuner – Most Powerful

Quick Features

LCD screen

8-54 MHz Coverage

1,800 Watts Capacity

High-speed processor

With a 1,800 Watts power rating, this tuner is among the most powerful. It covers 160-6 Meters and a frequency range of 1.8-54 MHz.

The tuning element uses a high-speed processor and it has a large LCD screen with a lit background and 4 lines of clear print to show RF power readings.

For beginners, this tuning may take sometime to find a proper match. However, once it picks up frequencies, the tuner does a good job memorizing them.

For later use, the tuning is fast! The device works excellently, without any issues at all.

The manual is proper & detailed too. The unit is also easy to set up.

The knob is really sensitive and can turn even with the slightest touch.

This unit is big, meaning more scape is necessary for its installation.

After setting it up, the tuner operates super quiet and smooth. There are three inputs available, offering a flexible system as well.

In general, this Palstar automatic antenna tuner is one of the most reliable out there.

What We Liked

It really is simple to operate

Large and sturdy build

Has an improved interface for easier readings

Quiet and smooth performance

Large and sturdy build

What We Didn’t Like

The knob turns off with the slightest touch

  • LDG Electronics Z-817 Automatic Antenna Tuner – Smallest Tuner

Quick Features

Advanced memory

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Interface-powered system

Automatic operation

Lightweight & Portable

Spotting a modern design makes this turner appeal to all audiences. It connects with transceivers using a CAT port, offering complete control of the tuning cycle.

Also, it comes with a CAT cable that lets the integrated and interface-powered tuner. That means that installing and using this tuner is hassle-free.

This unit comes with an automatic system, and only needs you to press a button to begin the tuning cycle.

Here, the tuner can use its advanced memory to remember your favorite frequencies.

With 2,000 memory locations, no longer will you have to worry about losing frequencies.

The LDG Z-817 tuner has coverage from 1.8 to 54.0 MHz. It runs on four 1.5V AA batteries, with a capacity between 0.1 and 20 Watts.

Since it has latching relays, the device puts out an ultra-low-power performance.

Finally, the tuner’s compact and small design allows it to fit well in most locations.

What We Liked

Features a Compact design

Powered by batteries

Channels frequencies fast

No extra cables needed

What We Didn’t Like

May need to press the tune button twice

How Do I Choose An Antenna Tuners

You should pick one that gives the best range:

  • Target Frequency Covered

The frequency range of a tuner determines the capabilities. It’s also a clear sign of the turner’s limitations.

The MFJ-945E work within a 1.8-60MHz range. That’s one of the highest turners we reviewed here today.

So, check to make sure the turner of your choice covers the distance you want it to.

Most tuners on the market covers HF bands from 160 meters to 10 meters. Other options cover 80 meters to 10 meters.

Lesser tuners have coverage from 6 meters, too.

  • Automatic or Manual

Turners come in two range: manual and automatic.

Manual operates by hand while automatic are more intuitive and require less involvement.

There’s no doubt that the best automatic antenna tuner makes everything easier. Still, manual antenna tuners are capable as well.

So, which one do you prefer, and why?

  • Memory

Only Automatic antenna tuners have memories. They can save settings of frequencies tuned.

The memories often save up to 2,000 frequencies, meaning there’s no need to channel them once again later on.

  • Housing

Antenna housing can be either metal or aluminum case.

Aluminum case has a higher resistance and will hold even under worse conditions.

  • Low Power Operation

The tuner can achieve better performance by producing low power output.

During tuning, a low power tune-up will do less interference with other stations.

Frequency readings are faster, and the results improve by a lot.

  • Ease of installation and Use

Ensure the turner of your choice has easy to follow instructions and is easy to use too. Otherwise, installation and use of the device may be a nightmare.

Does an Antenna Tuner Help Transmission?

Yes, it does. An antenna turner increases the power transferred from the transmitter to the transmission line and therefore increases the power radiated from the antenna.

Do I really Need An Antenna Tuner?

It depends. If you want an increase power transfer from the transmitter to the transmission line then you do need an antenna tuner.

Do You Need A Balun If You Have An Antenna Tuner?

It depends. If your antenna tuner has a coax fed dipole then you don’t need a balun at all. But if it doesn’t come with it, then you will need it.

When Should I Use An Antenna Balun?

RF baluns are used with many antennas and their feeders to transform a balanced feed or line to an unbalanced one.

Does SWR meter go before or after antenna tuner?

The SWR bridge should go between the radio and the turner, and the tuner adjusted to provide a low SWR to the transmitter.

Author: Howard S. Baldwin

My name is Howard S. Baldwin. I am a work-at-home dad to three lovely girls, Jane + Hannah + Beauty. I have been blogging for the last 3 years. I worked for other Home and Lifetsyle blogs, did hundreds of product reviews and buyers’ guides. Prior to that, I was a staff accountant at a big accounting firm. Needless to say, researching and numbers are my passion. My goal is to be an informative source for any topic that relates to DIY life and homemaking.

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