Over on YouTube Kevin Loughin has reviewed the miniVNA Pro Vector Network Analyzer (VNA). A VNA is a tool that can be used to measure antenna or coax parameters such as SWR, impedance, loss as well as characterize filters. It is a very useful tool to have if you are building antennas, filters or RF circuits. The RTL-SDR with a noise source can somewhat be used as a network analyzer, but a fully functional VNA will be a lot more accurate and easier to use. The miniVNA costs US$490 and is significantly cheaper compared to desktop based VNAs.
In the video Kevin explains what a VNA is and that the miniVNA Pro is, shows how to calibrate the unit, shows some measurements on his roof mounted dipole, measures a home made filter, and then demonstrates portable operation of the device on an Android phone. The miniVNA Pro has a built in battery so it can be used portably in the field together with an Android phone and bluetooth.
We ourselves have the miniVNA tiny which operates in frequency from 1 MHz all the way up to 3 GHz, whereas the miniVNA Pro operates from 0.1 MHz to 200 MHz. However the tiny does not have portable operation. The miniVNA tiny is excellent for building things like ADS-B and Inmarsat antennas.