Which cable is best for my ham radio shack? HF 2m/440

Posted by A.J. Farmer on

Bruce asks:
The situation: 
1. HF: 35 feet to the hole in the wall of the house, then add 5 more to the radio.
2. 2m/440: 41 feet to the hole in the wall, and 5 more to the radio.

Which is best RG-213/U or LL400?  The LL400 you have appears less loss than 213 and is slightly less, which surprised me. Also it seems that against everything I have read online that 400 is very stiff, it has a better bending radius than the 213 you carry. So your recommendation?

I prefer putting on the pl-259 myself. So to seal the connections, your recommendations?

Hi Bruce,

​I'm happy to help answer your questions.

​Regarding pricing, the price is based upon raw material cost, not performance of the cable.  The RG-213/U has more raw copper content than the LL400 so that is what makes it more expensive.

​RG-213/U is bare stranded copper for both the center conductor and shield.  It is a single shielded cable.  It has a very hard dielectric which makes it easier to put connectors on and is also more durable for high power situations.  With the stranded center conductor, you can have the cable in motion, such as with an antenna on a rotor, or for jumpers in your shack.

​LL400 has a solid copper clad aluminum center conductor which makes it a bit stiffer, but it's not unreasonably stiff.  Most people don't have an issue with it.  It also can't be used for an antenna that is in motion.  It also really isn't recommended for patch cables between your gear in the shack assuming you'll be moving your gear around on a regular basis, and also you'll notice the stiffness for shorter lengths.  Think about taking a paperclip and bending it back and forth over and over, it will eventually break, that's what would happen with an LL400 center conductor if you move the cable around a lot, so you want to have this cable installed in a fixed manner.  LL400 is double shielded and it has a foam dielectric which is more difficult to solder because it will melt if you apply too much heat for too long.  The aluminum in the center conductor also makes soldering a connector on LL400 more of a challenge.

​We don't offer RG-58 as generally speaking it's a very low performance cable.  Most of the RG-58 on the market has very thin shielding and a very low copper content.

​For ease of connector DIY installation and durability, for the lengths of cables you are talking about, I would go with the RG-213/U.  


​We're also happy to make the assemblies for you if you like:

For sealing the connectors from the elements, you'll want to use COAX-SEAL:

Please let me know if you have any other questions!

-A.J. with JEFA Tech

Share this post

← Older Post Newer Post →