*PRODUCT REVIEW* Messi & Paoloni Coaxial Cable

Personally, when it comes to choosing a long-term feedline solution for your home station, I believe it’s smarter to go with something that’s ‘higher quality’ rather than ‘cost effective’.

If it means waiting longer until you can afford to buy a good stretch of coax then so be it, but jumping in early for a ‘quick fix’ and settling for second (or third) best, in my opinion, is fraught with danger.

For me, you can normally gauge ‘quality’ through a product’s cost AND by a product’s Supplier and that has many important ramifications for those OM wanting to add a ‘length’ to their station.

With coaxial cable, like most things in the radio comms hobby, the old adage, “You get what you pay for”, rings true and with a home station — i.e. your ‘DX sanctuary’ — it’s too big a risk to take to choose a shortcut.

As far as ham DXcessories go, coaxial cable is even more predisposed to harm than most, and cheaper cable even more so as you might expect.

You want something that’s long-lasting; something you can count on to deliver the best results.

Inexpensive cable, generally, is less flexible (i.e. it doesn’t handle bending well); it’s less sturdy, leaks more loss, handles less power, is more susceptible to water and heat damage, and picks up more RFI from the operating environment.

Essentially, it’s bad, bad news!

It goes without saying that the poorer the quality of the coaxial cable, the more likely it is to be prone to destruction and experience tells me (too many times unfortunately) that compromising on quality and/or performance for the sake of saving a few bucks will most probably come back to bite you on the ass.

Skimping on plugs/connectors when you’ve got great cable, too, is ill-advised as these dxcessories are an equally important part of the feedline; from transceiver to antenna; to eagerly sought after DX; and poor quality plugs can render a high quality length of coaxial cable useless.

Firstly, low-priced connectors deteriorate in a very short amount of time from regular use.

The connect itself can be dislodged from the cable and oxidation can be caused by harsh WX environments.

In Australia, and other island DXstinations, coastal environments and UV exposure are well known ‘connector-killers’.

My advice is to not ‘pinch’ on connectors, particularly for your home station which demands the best money can buy.

With this philosophy in mind, I took to the ‘information superhighway’ (i.e. the internet) to pursue an appropriate feedline solution for a new antenna going up on top of my Nally Tower in the coming weeks.

In my eyes, investing a significant amount of cash on an antenna for the tower could be insulted by adding dxcessories that don’t meet that standard.

That wasn’t an avenue I was willing to go down.

One product made by Italian gurus ‘Messi & Paoloni’, and available in Australia through RF Solutions in Queensland, stood out for all the logics I mentioned above.

Product reviews from tens of Ham operators and Freeband DXers confirm that HYPERFLEX 10 is the best in its class and that’s big tick for me — i.e. When OM have already used the product and can vouch for its quality.

At $7.30 per meter you’d expect that, but again “You get what you pay for…” right.

HYPERFLEX 10.3 mm coaxial cable has the same dimensions of RG-213/U but it’s much more elastic and performant.

It’s also ideal matching with rotator operated antennas, obtained by means of a sophisticated full copper stranded inner conductor (19 wires instead of 7).

It has an improved dielectric with outstanding attenuations up to 10 Ghz, ideal for “MOON BOUNCING” lovers, even better than some solid core cables of the competition.

105 dB (SA) and improved sturdiness is reached by adding 24 more wires to the braid, for a total of 168 wires, (78% coverage + 100% foil).

This leads to a dramatic reduction of background noise — which to me — is very appealing.

Furthermore, the braiders used are 24 spools, instead of 16 spools, giving 50% more crossovers.

At 11.1 kg per 100m rather than 13kg like most RG-213, HYPERFLEX 10 coax is incredibly lightweight which reduces stress of the ‘hanging and swinging’ stretch of the cable in rotor operated antennas.

Last but not least, HYPERFLEX 10 coax boasts excellent power handling and while I always stick to the legal peak envelope power (PEP) supplied to my antenna transmission, increased power handling gives you peace of mind.

At the very least, it assures you that your cable won’t melt if you ever do earn higher operating privileges.

The plugs I purchased to fit the cable are also high quality Messi and Paoloni products.

2 x UHF Male Connector (UHF-SPE-10) plugs were ordered at $7.00 AUD each.

These are a new compression design with double seal that ensures a better protection against infiltration of water, humidity and condensation.

They’re also said to provide dramatic suppression of background noise.