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[Articles Home]  [Add Article]  

Watts are Watts

jeff (N3JBH) on November 18, 2005
View comments about this article!


Watts Are Watts -- Or Are They?

Well hello my friends here at eHam. By now your maybe getting some what tired of me here, but I have had the most pleasurable QSO the other night on 6 meters... The grand topic was running power, RF power if you will.

And during this session of long and enjoying rag chewing. I made a comment. -- That running high power alone accomplishes littlie if any at all. Example let's say we run 5 watts RF into a well-tuned dipole. We would most likely get a decent signal out of this antenna. That being said lets run 1000 watts in to that trusty old heath kit cantenna.

Okay, now how well did our signal get out and travel?

Not nearly as far did it? I see many folks saying hey I am going put an amp online with my station. I just bet I will have a killer signal then. Oh really now what kind of antenna are you using? Oh a small loaded antenna because you can't have antenna out side due to CC&Rs. I see ‘yeppers your going have a killer signal all right. Well at least I can honestly say your antenna should stay nice and toasty.

Now I am not going to get into all them fancy scientific terms meanings and all the technically inclined stuff here. Not to say it is not important as it really is. But there other sites that are best suited for this. Such as Tom, W8JI's website: www.w8ji.com

And cebiks web site to name a couple.

What I am offering here is what I personally deem as logic. And that is what do we do with all them watts of power. Sure we got them now lets use them. Well before we do we need a platform for them to prepare for the journey out into the great atmosphere we call airwaves. And here folks are the area we need to really consider, the platform if you will. -- That my friend is what we shall call the antenna. This my friends is the golden egg in radio signal's if you have the proper antenna you can do more with your watts then you can with a poor antenna.

What we call ERP stands for effective radiated power. Is what we see as what are power is really doing. ERP can make small wattage stations sound like some serious power stations.

Let's offer this example -- 100 watts fed into dipole will never do better then 100 watts erp measured by using that Dbd method now for the Dbi crowd ok we can say 146.01

If that makes you happy but I will stick to decibels referenced to a dipole (Dbd) from here on out. So now let's revisit this again with 100 watts being fed into antenna that has say 8 Db gain. Now we have. -- 631 watts of effective radiated power. That's a 531 watt increase and we never used and ad on amp yet.

Now for comparison sake 1500 watts into a dipole is? Well 1500 watts at best. And if we add the 8Dbd gain antenna we have? 9464 watts ERP, that's a gain of 7964 watts!

Okay, that's all fine and dandy but whets look at one other theory an antenna with negative gain. We will take the 1500 watts of power and feed it into a system that has a negative 2 Dbd gain and we have 946 watts ERP. We lost almost half our power we tried to gain. Well now we have .63 watts. -- Heck we are losing ground fast here too folks.

So in conclusion of this article I must ask: Do you really need that huge power hungry amp? Or do you really need a much better antenna? And while we ponder the evidence presented here we must keep in mind we only been talking transmitted power. In all honesty, all that power will never amount to a hill a of beans if you cant hear that station answering you. So just be using the logic I presented here you'll see not only will you have a better signal on transmit but you also have a much better received signal as well.

That being said your station should be much more improved than by just adding that big ole amp. Well I now like to take this time to say thank you all for reading yet another one of my soapbox tales here on eHam. God bless and happy DXing -- Jeff/n3jbh

Member Comments:
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Watts are Watts  
by W9PMZ on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
" In all honesty, all that power will never amount to a hill a of beans if you cant hear that station answering you."

Watt about the inverse of this statement, where you have a comprimise antenna, you can hear the station but you don't have enough ERP to overcome the SNR?

Remember the Part 97 is all about enough power to maintain effective communications.

If you want a real exercise in big ERP numbers, look at the ERP of stations that are involved in EME communication.

By the way, I'm not sure that there was a point to this post, is there?

73,

Carl - W9PMZ

 
Watts are Watts  
by W4LGH on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Probably really isn't any real reason for this post, but... More power DOES radiate more signal. Is all this power necessary to carry on a conversation, probably not. The first real gain in power to signal ratio from 100W is to 600watts. This is about a 12db gain and equal to about 2 S-units on an average S-Meter. To get this 2 S-unit increase again, one would need to run ilegally @ about 3600 watts. All of this is a moot point as people are gonna do what they are gonna do, and everyone has their own ideas as to how effective their power really is. Another factor that no one ever considers is BAND conditions.

Wanna really start some postings... let's talk about using an antenna tuner in the shack using un-balanced feed lines (ie: coax) There are those who will argue with their last breath that they are tuning their antenna. However if your antenna has a 3:1 SWR, it will continue to have a 3:1 SWR no matter how good of tuner you have in the shake. And let's not forget the LOSS in the tuner...some 11% for good ones to 30 or 40% for the cheaper ones!

So fire up that 1500watts amp, thru a tuner to a 3:1 swr antenna, tune your tuner to you see NO reflected power and call CQ! Hope you live up north, then you can enjoy the ADDED HEAT in your shack!

73 Alan
w4lgh@w4lgh.com
www.w4lgh.com
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by NI0C on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
A PA won't do a thing for receiving, but it will boost your signal strength, and will often make the difference between reliable communications and your signal left buried in the noise, especially on the low bands.

Of course, additional money spent on an amplifier is ususally better spent on a better antenna system; however there are situations where further improvements to one's antenna system can only be made by changing one's QTH-- often impractical for any number of reasons.

My recent activity has alternated between using my KX1 at 4 watts and my 100-800 watt station. For instance, just last night I worked VK9CG running 800 watts, and received a 559 report. A few hours later, I worked CM5IA at 4 watts, and received a 439. These were both on 40 meters, using the same antenna. In both cases, I was running an appropriate power level for the contact sought. Is a PA necessary? Sometimes it is, if you want to make the contact.

72/73,
Chuck NI0C
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by KX8N on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"Example let's say we run 5 watts RF into a well-tuned dipole. We would most likely get a decent signal out of this antenna. That being said lets run 1000 watts in to that trusty old heath kit cantenna. "


What kind of comparison is THAT supposed to be. If you want to compare power, compare 5 watts going into a dipole to 1,000 watts going into the same dipole. Know what? You are going to have more radiated signal no matter how you look at it.

As far as the guy in the shack with a hidden, compromise antenna, let HIM worry about that. You worry about your own antenna. I lived in a place where I had to hide my antenna, and sometimes that's just what you've got to do. I don't know who you know who has a hidden antenna in their hoiuse, and is using an amp, but I guarantee there aren't many of them, because the RFI would be so bad they couldn't operate.

Sometimes we need to quit worrying about what the other guy is doing and worry about ourselves.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K5DVW on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I will agree on one thing, many hams expect miracles from horrible antenna systems. You see HF dipoles 15 feet off the ground, verticals without sufficient radials, or massive losses in mismatched coax (but flat VSWR due to a tuner). I believe that most HF contacts are made with very little power actually being radiated!

Besides that, all things being equal, I've found a modest amplifier can and does make the most dramatic difference on CW. I can list tons of contacts on CW that were just barely made with 100 watts but 100% copy with 600 watts. Some folks use amplifiers to make up for ugly antennas. That's just life in the fast lane.

Another thing...I'm saying this in the spirit of self improvement and not a personal attack, but you might want to work on your grammar and spelling. Semi-technical posts seem to make more of a bold statement when the author at least pays attention to those 'little' details.
 
Watts are Watts  
by AI2IA on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
It looks like the comments have turned into "linear power amplifier versus antenna." Well if that is the case then I would like to add this:

I have been making and using wire antennas for quite awhile. They are fun and easy to make, and they are hard to see, if you put them up with a little thought. The one drawback to overcome is to get the antenna wire orientation such that you put the lobes where you want them, but they are good antennas and will treat your transceiver very well and last a long time too, as well as hold up against wind. Do I really need a PA for rag chewning? No, I don't.

Even with a PA, there is no need to crank it up all the way. Is it nice to have? Sure! There honestly are times and conditions when you want to get through and maintain that contact. So, go ahead and put that PA in your shack, but realize that nobody really uses them all the time.
 
Watts are Watts  
by N0IU on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Jeff (N3JBH) wrote, "So in conclusion of this article I must ask: Do you really need that huge power hungry amp? Or do you really need a much better antenna?"

Why can't you have both an amplifier AND an efficient antenna? Those two things are not mutually exclusive. You make it sound like the only reason hams use amplifiers is to compensate for crappy antennas! That's almost like saying that men buy sports cars to compensate for shortcomings in other areas!

73!
NØIU
(I don't have an amplifier, but I do have a 1991 Corvette!)



 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by KE3HO on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>> The first real gain in power to signal ratio from 100W is to 600watts. This is about a 12db gain and equal to about 2 S-units on an average S-Meter. <<

Actually, 100W to 600W is about 7.8dB, which is just over 1 S-unit. But your point is well taken. I have to laugh when I hear a guy say, "I'm running 1kW to a G5RV". I know that not everyone can put up a 6 element beam on a 100' tower (myself included), but I really wish hams would do more with their antennas and at least use the best antenna that they can manage. Putting up a wire dummy load and running QRO is not the answer.

73 - Jim
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by N3JBH on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
folks i never claimed you could not have both a good antenna and run a amp. or any other combination here. what i was trying to show was that an effective antenna can do more for you then running and amp. also i stated that using a better antenna design would have the added benefeit of proballby increasing your abilty to hear the other person.

so please folk's dont take what i said here and try to change it to the fact i am anti amp or something. this isnt true at all. i was merly suggesting that your antenna may be the best place to start when it comes to getting a stronger signal. in my eye's atleast the amp is just icing on the cake. but the antenna is where the work is done. thanks jeff/n3jbh (sometimes qro) on the upper bands.
 
Watts are Watts  
by K3GI on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I own nothing to boost my signal beyond what my antennas and barefoot radios give me. This does not stop me from having a good time. Someday maybe. Amplifiers do have a place in amateur radio.

I think the point of the article was that too many people use amplifiers with little or no thought about first improving their antenna system to get better ERP. That was a vailid point.

Not many amateur radio licensees are trained rhetoricians. Thus many posts on sites such as e-ham do not have the best rhetoric. Generally, I can wade through the post and discern what it was about. Yes, better rhetoric would help, but not many of us have training in this area.
 
Watts are Watts  
by NA4IT on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"There is no substitute for a resonant antenna."

quoted from WA4PNI
 
Watts are Watts  
by KK0DJ on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Not sure if most of you caught the fact that W9PMZ humorously misused the term 'watt' when he said "Watt about the inverse..." I found this pretty amusing. Having been a Ham for over 25 years, I have had QRO to QRP and had fun with all of it. The FCC rule of use only enough power... is a good one. IMHO I think all of us should only use what is needed for a comfy QSO. Yes, QRP is not enough in some instances, but there is someone somewhere you can QSO with with 5 watts or less in any conditions. I have tried it and that works! Of course, cracking a pileup without QRO takes patience, skill and experience, but that can be done too. I've cracked pileups that way and with QRO.. it's MUCH more fun to do it with 100 watts or less. Let's have fun with our hobby while we practce so serve our neighbors in times of need.
KK0DJ Dennis
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W4PA on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>Now for comparison sake 1500 watts into a dipole is? >Well 1500 watts at best. And if we add the 8Dbd gain >antenna we have? 9464 watts ERP, that's a gain of 7964 >watts!

>So in conclusion of this article I must ask: Do you >really need that huge power hungry amp? Or do you >really >need a much better antenna?

It's not antenna OR amplifier, it's antenna AND amplifier. It has to be both. And you're leaving off that people skimp on feedline and waste all that precious wattage . . .

I need 1500 watts, and I need somewhere around 17 dBi of forward gain via a resonant antenna system (like stacked long boom 6 element 15 meter beams) fed with 3" hardline to deliver it to assure I'm heard in Hong Kong with Q5 copy ahead of anyone else in North America while contesting.
 
Watts are Watts  
by N0IU on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Isn't this a no brainer? We all probably know people who have more money than brains, but I can't imagine that too many hams would think of spending hundreds or even thousands of dollars on an amplifier without trying to figure out how to improve their antenna system first!
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K0BG on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I'll add my two cents worth with a couple of amateur conundrums I'll never understand.

First, that guy you're talking about with the big amp (let's get real! Some are much bigger than the law allows), uses it all of the time regardless of band conditions. That very same guy, uses a Hamstick mounted on a trunk lip mount and brags about how many countries he's worked mobile. I suspect the difference in ERP is in excess of 40 dB.

The other is the guy (most likely the same one) who just can't not use his speech processor, all of the time! Injury is always added by too much compression, and two much microphone gain.

The only non profane term I can think to use for these unabashed operators is scofflaw.

Alan, KØBG
www.k0bg.com
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K8MHZ on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"I will agree on one thing, many hams expect miracles from horrible antenna systems. You see HF dipoles 15 feet off the ground,"

I wanted to get on the air as soon as I got my HF rig. I did not have a lot to work with. I opted for the best orientation for my lot, an inverted V with the center up about 15 feet. The legs are so low that one of them actually is flat on the roof of the garage. I did spend a great deal of time tuning the antenna. I kept putting it up, taking it down, changing the length and putting it back up until it was as perfect as I could get. I was flat in part of the SSB band that I expected to use the most.

I really did not expect much performance out of the antenna. It was made from some scrap THHN that we had left over from a job site and connected to the rig with some coax pulled from an old antenna install.

To my surprise I could hear the entire country! (40 meter, BTW) Even more surprising was the fact that they could hear me as well. With my homebrew dipole and my barefoot 735 I can pretty much work all I can hear.

The only reason I would need an amp is to hope to contact the big QRO DX stations as now it is a competition with other amateur stations. I have been surprised to make contacts with 500 plus watt stations that give me a signal report only about 2 units lower than I am recieving theirs.

I think my success was due to taking the time to build an antenna that worked....it resonated where it was supposed to.

I don't think there is a need for a PA unless you hear many stations that can't hear you. And then only after a serious look at your antenna.

Now, I do think that stations that are used as net control points or have similar roles in which the need to be heard by many is warranted. I do appreciate a strong net control station, especially after trying to work with moderately powered ones.

It is really gain we try to attain. If the gain is from the amp, we have to make sure that our equipment can handle it. We chance more RF in the shack and more RFI everywhere. If the gain is from the antenna we circumvent all that.

Back to tuning....while I was tuning the antenna, I heard a station that was very strong. I wanted to make the contact, so I tried it with an SWR of worse than 3:1. I made the contact and asked them to stick around while I tuned the antenna. My first contact was strong, but after I got down from the roof and hit a flat match I called again. I was asked if I turned on an amp as my signal jumped up by a few S units.

From that point on I was convinced that resonance was the key, even for an antenna made from left overs.

Sure, there are times we need amps. But I do think they are somewhat over used, and antenna effeciency is under used.

My favorite is ads for tuners that will 'tune any dipole over 135 feet long to work on any band'.

73,

Mark K8MHZ
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by AA4PB on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Resonance of the antenna itself has nothing to do with the efficiency of the antenna or its ability to radiate a signal. Some antenna designs match the feed line impedance better and therefore accept more power at resonance (a coax fed dipole for example). However, a dipole cut to 1/2 wavelength on 80M can be matched with a tuner directly at the feed point or coupled with low loss feedline like open wire and it will work on any band 80M thru 10M just as efficiently as a single band dipole cut for any of those bands. On the higher bands will become more directional off the ends and may actually radiate more signal in those directions that a 1/2 wave dipole would.

 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W9OY on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The one who shows skill when you run your crummy little 100W is the the guy (or gal) with whom you are talking. It is he (or she) that is copying your dismal little signal through the QRM and QRN who is doing the work, not you blabbing merrily about how your bravely slaying the QRO dragon with your crummy signal.

The one who shows skill when you "break" a pile up with your crummy little 100W or 5W is the DX station.

The one who shows skill for your crummy little county hunter mobile signal is the recieving station, and if you think "bang bang", .22, "rifle shot" constitutes a conversation you're nuts.

73 W9OY

 
RX Gain doesn't matter  
by W8JI on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
One VERY important point. There is a common misconception more gain means better receiving. That isn't true unless receiver sensitivity limits noise floor, and that almost never happens below microwave bands.

Receiving ability is set by the directional response of the antenna and how the pattern favors the direction of signal compared to the direction or directions of noise.

A 10dBd gain antenna can be no better than a 0dBd gain antenna for receiving, and a -30dBd gain antenna can be significantly better than a zero dBd gain antenna.

Also transmitting gain does no good (and can actually hurt) when the gain isn't in the right position to align with the path. A multi-lobe and multi-null antenna with gain (like a large loop) can cause more problems than it cures when compared to the smooth broad lobe of a dipole, because desired stations can fall into a deep null as well as on a peak.

For lower bands the best choice is an amplifier along with a special receiving antenna FIRST. Only after we have done all we reasonably can with a modest amp and receiving antenna will transmitting antenna work become the next step. On higher bands it is another story.

For example a good Inverted L on 160 and a KW amp, along with a Beverage antenna for receiving, would gain you at least 10dB for transmitting and receiving with an outlay of a few thousand dollars or less.

On ten meters, it would generally be more cost effective to just buy a cheap Yagi antenna and cheap rotor and mast for a thousand bucks and forget the amp.

The results depend heavily on the band and where you are at to start with. A good 20 meter Yagi is expensive, and so on 20 a cheap lossy yagi with a good pattern but poor gain and a small amp are probably the way to go. On 40 meters and down, the amp means more and you can use a cheap negative gain receiving antenna like a Beverage to increasde the receiving.

There is not one set universal answer to the "best" investment, but we should all remember that gain matter on transmitting ONLY if the gain is in the right spot nearly all the time. On HF receiving, it is pattern that matters....not gain. A very good transmitting antenna can absolutely stink for receiving.

73 Tom
 
Watts are Watts  
by KB7LYM on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Well I think it was a honest article but... very difficult to sift through all those watts,power and Antennas. A little bit here a little less power , a little more etc. A much faster way is from a now departed friend's ( to much power ) technical logs. I myself do not use it due to feebling hands.Here it is.You might find it handy



ENGINEERING MANAGER
Subject: Instructions for high power and Antennas

I want to thank you for taking this information and applying it to get top
performance out of your Antenna. It is the Trichotometric Indicator
on the Power supply. We advice you to reach with help from our Engineering
Department the following; We have experienced a particular difficulty with
transmissions of the pandemonium electronical support pins.
The difficulty you have with Power setting is caused by the old style transformer
locking nuts.
Since the old style hex-nut, due to its design had to be screwed off to be
screwed on, the only way to tighten it was to loosen it.
Our maintenance people inspected its inherent design feature which proved
that it must be fully screwed on before it can be screwed off, would solve
the problem of becoming looser when it is tightened in that it must be loosened
to tighten it and therefore should become a logical replacement of the older
nuts which had to be fully screwed off in order to screw them on
and consequently become tighter as they were loosened instead of looser as
they were tightened.
A further problem of less alarming proportions need to be instituted to
acquaint your Engineer. With the complexities involved in loosely tightening as
opposed to tightly loosening. Some of our Electronical engineers are actually
not clear on this point. Upon adoption of the suggested modification of the
Trichotometric indicator of our experts in the Power supply invention center we
turned it over to our Research center for fabrication.
The machinist experienced some difficulty
in lay-out of the reticular bracket becomes part of the width at the other
End ,it is difficult to determine whether the thickness is wider than the width
or the width is thicker then the thickness.
When the bracket is laid down flat it is actually standing on edge and therefore
must be stood up to lay it down.
Therefore all horizontal holes must be drilled vertically and all vertical
holes horizontally, except when the bracket is in the horizontal plane, which
can only be achieved by mounting it vertically.
We will send more detailed instructions of how to install the
indicator. Our mechanics had considerable difficulty in establishing the
correct torque between ambihelical hex-nut and the indicator Power support.
Since that he had to turn the nuts to the left in order to make them go to the right.
Once this difficulty was overcome, assembly is easy but in reverse.
The new modification instead of requiring loosening to tightened, performs this
function automatically,that as the Antenna shakes apart during high power it will it gradually tighten up.
 
Watts are Watts  
by NE0P on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Reply by N0IU "I can't imagine that too many hams would think of spending hundreds or even thousands of dollars on an amplifier without trying to figure out how to improve their antenna system first"

Then you should come and see my local club, where dipoles and loops rule.


 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WB2WIK on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
More power helps in many ways.

Of course it pays to invest in good antennas first, but once you're maxed out for your property, amplifiers are the next logical investment.

I have a 7 element six meter beam at sixty feet, and on my small suburban lot I can't do much more than this and still have antennas for other bands. Using that beam, I can queue up key directions and call CQ for an hour at 10W output power and raise absolutely nobody. Then, click on the kilowatt, call one CQ, and get three answers, 60 seconds later.

HF propagation has been so bad at times recently that there isn't nearly the apparent activity we're all used to hearing a year or two ago. Last early evening around 0100 UTC I heard about a dozen signals on the entire 20 meter band. Admittedly, these near "blackouts" don't last that long, but they're annoying if you're trying to use the band. Heard a weak KL7 working a weak KH6, both about 4-5 dB above the noise level at my place. I listened to find they were both "barefoot." Bully for them. If they had both been running kilowatts, I'd have heard them well enough to break into their QSO and make a 3-way of it, but I didn't feel it worthwhile since I could barely hear them.

The rule is "the minimum required..." and often times 1500W is way less than the minimum. Those are good times to do something else, like read a book or go chase the XYL around...

WB2WIK/6
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WILLY on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

N3JBH-

Just curious -

Is that an SB-200 in the picture? at:
http://www.qrz.com/callsign.html?sourceid=Mozilla-search&callsign=n3jbh

What band(s) do you use it on, and into what kind of antenna?


At http://rustytower.com/n3jbh/ , it says you have a Collins 30L-1. What band(s) do you like to use it on, and into what kind of antenna?


Above, you said, "jeff/n3jbh (sometimes qro) on the upper bands."
What frequencies?

73
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by KB9CRY on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I've got super antennas and a super amp also. So my signal is also really super. So what are you trying to say with this article? Yes, putting your money into the antennas first make most sense. Phil
 
Watts are Watts  
by AB7E on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Uhhh ... just how many bucks do you think it would take to have an antenna capable of 8db gain over a dipole, especially on more than one band? And how physically large would such an array on a decent tower have to be? And how much would it cost?

I lived for 25 years next to neighbors who didn't appreciate heaps of aluminum at the top of a tower blocking their view of the sunset. I would have loved to put up a good multiband yagi on a 75 foot tower but the neighbors just wouldn't go for it. They didn't complain, however, about a couple of slender ground plane verticals mounted on my roof and loss-wise they were pretty efficient antennas, even fed through a homebrew tuner.

Trouble is, the ERP of such an antenna is rather low if you want to play around in a few contests or work some serious DX through a pileup. An ancient Henry 2K-4 amplifier changed all that for me. It absolutely made the difference between working DX or not, and made participating in contests more than just a waste of time. It didn't put me on the Honor Roll but I worked 5BDXCC in a few years with only the amp and the groundplane antennas. I could have done it in less than two years if 10m and 80m weren't on opposite ends of the sunspot cycle, and I wasn't retired at the time.

The Henry cost me $600 and the verticals almost nothing. Used Ameritrons and Heathkits go for the same price or less. Contrary to the preachy blather, a modest used amplifier and simple antennas are often the most cost effective, least obtrusive way to put out a decent signal for many hams.
 
Watts are Watts  
by N6TZ on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

Watts ARE Watts Alright !!!
I like good antennas, and I like POWER !!
Gotta Have Both !!!
FULL KILOWATTS !!
As our Governor says "What are you - one of those girlie men?"

Hal, N6TZ

 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by N3ZKP on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Yes, sometimes the amp IS necessary.

I find this discussion interesting in that it was started by an long-time Technician Class licensee, without Element 1, who has NO HF transmit authority but focuses regularly on amplifier issues.

73,

Lon - N3ZKP
Baltimore, Maryland
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by RobertKoernerExAE7G on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Nice breezy article.
Refreshing to have an article not complaining about something.

The only puzzling part is this <This my friends is the golden egg in radio signal's..>

Fortunately, as a Novice, my xmitting input power was restricted. If I wanted a better signal, I had to find a better antenna.

When I became a General, I did not have the option of using gain antennas, so I went with an SB220.

73
Bob
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W9WHE-II on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
More "politically correct" nonsence.

If you add a 1kw amp to your 100 watt HF radio, you add 10 db. Whether you have a shortened dipole or you have a 4 element yagi, YOU STILL GAIN 10DB! On the other end, 10 db a lot of signal.

I have a fan dipole laying flat on my roof. Do you really think I could have confirmed 256 without an amp? I don't think so.

So, go ahead, buy that amp and IGNORE those politically correct weenies. They just don't want you to have bigger signal!

W9WHE



 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WA9SVD on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Watts the point? It's not the actual amount of power, but the amount of "radiated" power that is the issue.
Too many hams have a "QROnly" attitude; they HAVE to own and USE an amplifier, whether necessary or not.
I can't count the gazillion times I've heard QSO's with 5x9 or 599 reports, and a ham thinks "I better kick in the amp." That's not good enough?
And of course, a modest amount of power (say 100 Watts) into a decent or even good antenna system IS going to outperform a kw signal into an attic random length wire.
The real problem is the ham that already has a good antenna, (or even just a strong signal report) thinking the "more power the better."

Sure it's a matter of ERP. And no one is going to make EME contacts (or Aurora, or other weak signal activities) with 5 Watts. And the received signals from EME are weak, despite high power and high gain antennas. But THAT is a situation that justifies high power, high antenna gain, and the resulting high ERP. EME is never going to be a "40 over" type of communication.
There's nothing wrong with using power if you have it; it's a matter of knowing when to use it(and more importantly, when NOT to use it) that is at issue.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by N6AJR on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hmmmm I work them bare foot, and if they can't hear me I thrun on the amp. now they come back. I have a fairly good antenna setup, a 3 ele steppir, a ma5b, a gap voyager, a couple of wires, and others, and several amps, , I can usually hear them, and if necessary I use power to work them..
 
Watts are Watts  
by N5UV on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Power is power, either you got it or you don't. Sure, you start with improvements to the ant., but there comes a point where you need wattage if you want to compete in contests. I'm slowly on my way there.

As a side bar, when did people suddenly forget their grammar on the internet? It's a pet-peeve of mine, I find it really hard to follow typographical errors. Makes it harder to know when someone is being cheeky or just plain lazy.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by KD4AC on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I understand what many are saying here. I know of a certain amateur radio operator that hangs out on 3840 KHz and feels that you need to run "full power" all the time. Usually, he comes in about +20dB. However, on one of the rare occasions that he wasn't running "full power" his signal was a lowly +10dB to S-9. Could I still hear him? Absolutely. One time I decided to join the QSO in progress. He told me I had an S-7 signal but because I wasn't running "full power" he wasn't interested in talking with me.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WN3R on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I believe most hams are smart enough to want to create a balanced station. One where both stations can complete the contact with some reliability. Casual QSO's can easily be had with any antenna or low power setup. It's fun and I liken it to "day sailing" - it's easy to sail with the wind. However, it's a whole lot more difficult if you have to be at a certain place at a certain time and the wind is not cooperating.

Operating with a specific purpose such as contesting or award hunting in a limited amount of time requires improving both station performance and operator skills.

So it seems to me this is a discussion by people in two camps - the day sailors and the cruisers. Most would say one is more fun. Sailors who stay on their lake or bay certainly can get by with less equipment and skills than the weekend racer or the cruiser who is going around the world. Ham radio is no different.

It's a hobby that's universally enjoyable. Something for everyone and everyone is different. Now why do we feel the need to impose our thoughts and beliefs on others? I say, live and let live.

As for me, I tried QRP and relly enjoyed it. Now I'm going QRO to hunt those awards and win some contests. I'm spending a bundle on gear, power and antennas to enter a phase of ham radio that I've been missing for the past 48 years by living in the city with limited antennas, limited time and limited funds.

Ham Heaven is under construction.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K8MHZ on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"The one who shows skill when you run your crummy little 100W is the the guy (or gal) with whom you are talking"

So why should we get an amp and deprive them of their skill?
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by ON4WIX on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
WA9SVD:
There's nothing wrong with using power if you have it; it's a matter of knowing when to use it(and more importantly, when NOT to use it) that is at issue.

Amen! Vy wise words indeed

73 de ON4WIX
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K2WH on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Life is too short for QRP. Power is power. More power means more signal. Not sure what the post is supposed to support or prove, but its pretty useless information.

Sorry to the poster, but my amp has proven itself over and over, if they can't hear you on 100 watts, they usually hear you on 1.5kw. Fact of life.

Whats this post for?

K2WH
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K2WH on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
And another thing.......... Many times I hear people complaining that so and so is running too much power and my GOD, his signal is S9+60. Wonder why he needs to run an amplifier. And so on............

Unless you know the person personally, or he told you so or you hear it in the background, there is no way you can tell if someone is running and amp. Propagation is a wonderful thing and can make a small signal sound very loud and strong.

So, before you condemn someone for running "Power", (I hate that term), hold your tongue because odds are, you are incorrect. Stong signal <> Amplfier.

K2WH
 
Watts are Watts  
by GILLIAM_LINEBERRY_EX_N4VOX on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
tune around on 80 meters at night and you will find 3 or 4 hams who are on that frequency everynight. They are close enough that they do not need an amplifier, but the pump up the power splattering all over the band and bad mouth no code people that are going to ruin the band. I will never understand why amplifiers were every allowed.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by N3JBH on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
" by WILLY on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

N3JBH-

Just curious -

Is that an SB-200 in the picture? at:
http://www.qrz.com/callsign.html?sourceid=Mozilla-search&callsign=n3jbh

What band(s) do you use it on, and into what kind of antenna?


At http://rustytower.com/n3jbh/ , it says you have a Collins 30L-1. What band(s) do you like to use it on, and into what kind of antenna?


Above, you said, "jeff/n3jbh (sometimes qro) on the upper bands."
What frequencies? "

hello willy well first the collins amp you seen was not used by me. however you are correct it is in my shack well was. and secondly the sb-200 is converted by me to run on 6 meters. and yes they do work there. even though i need a new choke for it at this time.

for antenna's on 6 meters i use a few differant anteena's willy. i have a hy-gain beam. and a par omni angle a0-50 along with a double bazooka. and 6 wave length long wire. so ok i admit i dont have a zillion yagis up and stacked in phase but i do have a selcetion of anteena's to pic from. and also i dont run qro very often either but thanks for asking.

and hey any one have 28.uh choke replacement for the sb-200 thats etc to there needs i sure could use it. jeff/n3jbh
 
Watts are Watts  
by TG9AKH on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Last week I tried running 1kW into a dummy load. The dummy load's FAN seemed to produce more RF noise than my 1kW amp (I can turn the fan on and off to test for its RF noise levels).

I figured out that a FAN would be a much better RF radiator than my dummy load, so I tried to use the FAN as an antenna (fortunately, I use a good antenna tuner so impedance wasnt' an issue). I ran 1kW RF into the dummy load's FAN, which withstood current for about 2 seconds before blowing up. And I mean seriously BLOWING UP.

I now plan to build a giant fan on my rooftop, which will hopefully last longer than a couple of seconds when used as an antenna. I am now tearing apart my old Yaesu antenna rotator and transforming it into a giant fan. Wish me luck, although I know I don't need it, as this whole idea is pretty safe and will transform 1kW into ERP of about 10kW.

Also, I have asked for a new dummy load for Christmas, as the old one is totally messed up.

And yes, my friends, there are dumb antennas out there, for human stupidity is seemingly unlimited. When coupled with legal-limit amplifiers, the risks to human life an property are also unlimited.

;/)
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by NA5XX on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
NE0P says "I can't imagine that too many hams would think of spending hundreds or even thousands of dollars on an amplifier without trying to figure out how to improve their antenna system first!"

True, but many Hams seem to turn on the amp before they turn on the radio.

Why use QRO when QRP will work? Too many Hams have an "I got it so I am going to use it." attitude. Seems like part 97 rules say "don't use it if you dont need it".

KD5ALU
 
Watts are Watts  
by N0AH on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Antenna for ideal locations. Some say lets keep the amps out for an even playing field. But having room for a 100 foot tower and two acres for a 4 SQR kills that argument comparing it to an apartment dweller. As for avoiding the tech stuff, I enjoyed the tech stuff you put in. As for going to other's websites, do you really want to get your information from a paid MFJ engineer? You would have better luck going to www.bozobrains.org. All things being equal, I think we all should have multiband verticals and no amps. That is as close to an even playing ground as you'll find. But shutter the thought as band gods (hogs) will do anything to rule their self induced kingdoms. Amps being their main stay like corn to hogs-
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by NL7W on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
W4LGH:

How is it that going from 100 watts to 600 watts equals 12 dB of gain? I find it is rougly +7.8 dB of gain using the simple equation of (x)dB = 10 log output/input or 7.78dB = 10 log 600/100.

What did you use?

As far as amplifiers are concerned, they make a HUGE difference most of the time - especially from Alaska during this part of the sunspot cycle!

Nuff said...

73.

NL7W
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WA9SVD on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
by K2WH on November 18, 2005 Mail this to a friend! Life is too short for QRP. Power is power. More power means more signal. Not sure what the post is supposed to support or prove, but its pretty useless information.

Sorry to the poster, but my amp has proven itself over and over, if they can't hear you on 100 watts, they usually hear you on 1.5kw. Fact of life.

Whats this post for?

K2WH
==========

No offense, but the point some of us are trying to make is that some hams routinely use an amp when it is NOT necessary. And if you are listening to a QSO and the operators are already giving each other "20 dB over S9" (whatever that really means) why do you hear them say (or watch their signal increase) they have to "kick in the amp?" If you are listening, you CAN tell if they turn on their amp.
I have nothing against amps; If I had one, I'd probably use it on occasion. But not as a "minimum daily requirement." If the conditions require the use of an amp, that's fine. But some hams don't know when NOT to use one, when 100 watts (or even ten watts) would suffice. And if a report is "40 over," then turning off the amp will not affect the QSO one bit; that would mean your signal would be 20-30 over without the amp, anyway!
 
Watts are Watts  
by WPE9JRL on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
No one really wants to be a Mud Duck.

Get in on the Superbowl and have some fun.

 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W9PMZ on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
This is really degenerating into the "code - nocode" arguement; "amp - noamp". Next thing we will hear is that all of those amps are causing global warming.

Good grief Charlie Brown..........
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by AH6RR on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The antenna is the most inportant part of your station. As for WPE9JRL?(funny call) you are corect you dont want to be a mud duck and on the other hand you dont want to be a aligator either. I run a amp but only when needed...
Be a better operator and get the best antenna up that you can FIRST than add the amp.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by RobertKoernerExAE7G on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
My favorite moments have been on 20 meters when someone with a S9 plus 20 signal tells me to turn my amp off because I am <splattering him>.

Sorry OM.
If you can wait, I can turn it on for you.

Attenuater anyone?
Cascaded SSB filters?
Passband tuning?
Turn your directional antenna?

Operate your station, not mine?

Bob
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WILLY on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
N3JBH
" well first the collins amp you seen was not used by me."

You forgot to say who it was used by.



"however you are correct it is in my shack well was. "

I just read what is on your website:

"THE SHACK CONSIST OF THE FOLLOWING.
DRAKE MN-2000
COLLINS 30-L-1
.... "




"and secondly the sb-200 is converted by me to run on 6 meters. and yes they do work there."

With 572B tubes? That's interesting.
Tell us - - what do you get, power out, out of it?

A couple hundred watts maybe? That doesn't seem worth it, compared to the 100 or so watts many rigs produce without an amp.




Btw, on your website you list some other equipment in your shack:
DRAKE MN-2000
COLLINS 30-L-1
TEN TEC JUPITER (538)
TENTEC OMNI D SERIES B
KENWOOD TS-820-S
YAESU FT-847
YAESU FC-20
TEN TEC CENTURY KEYER

Congratulations! That's some nice HF rigs and tuners too.

I suppose that with 10M being closed for world wide comms that you use them a lot in the CW sub-bands.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by N3JBH on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
well willy let me know your call sign and i be glad to contact you and talk to you about anything you need know. that pertains to my station. but i dont see where this is the place to continue this topic at all.

but i do have a question for you willy what is your call sign. and why dont you use it? what are you hiding from.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WILLY on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
by N3JBH on November 19, 2005

"well willy let me know your call sign and i be glad to contact you and talk to you"

Gee thanks.
But that's ok - you can talk to me here, and everybody can follow along and jump in if they like.


"about anything you need know. that pertains to my station. but i dont see where this is the place to continue this topic at all."

Sure it is.
YOU started the article. I just looked at YOUR webpages and commented about YOUR amps, and now your HF gear, and YOUR converted SB 200.


"
but i do have a question for you willy what is your call sign. and why dont you use it? "

If I wanted to use it, I would ... that should be obvious. So, the simple answer is: I don't want to.
:)


" what are you hiding from."

Whatever makes you think I am? Do you often jump to wild conclusions?




Btw,

" well first the collins amp you seen was not used by me."

You forgot to say who it was used by, again.

and you forgot to tell us how much power out you get from your converted SB-200.









 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W4VR on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
A good transmit/receive antenna and 1 kilowatt is the recipe for a good station. Using anything less is anti-competitive.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by AE1X on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"Probably really isn't any real reason for this post, but... More power DOES radiate more signal. Is all this power necessary to carry on a conversation, probably not. The first real gain in power to signal ratio from 100W is to 600watts. This is about a 12db gain and equal to about 2 S-units on an average S-Meter. "

Alan,

This errorneous. It's not a 12dB increase from 100 to 600W. 12dB would 1584W not 600W. The actual gain is:

10*log(6)= 7.8dB

This is just over 1 S unit.

Ken

 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WB2WIK on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
On CW (or PSK31) I have almost never used an amplifier in 40 years of hamming, unless I'm competing in a contest and trying to win. It's just not necessary about 99% of the time, the modes do the work.

On phone, I use amplifiers routinely. The less efficient the mode, the more they're needed.

I justify the use of amplifiers in many ways, but my favorite one is this:

"I think my electric company doesn't make enough money, so I'm trying to help them increase revenue."

That usually works.

WB2WIK/6
 
Watts are Watts  
by KK7WN on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Gee W4VR I didn't know that Amateur radio was or should be about competition. I thought it was about sharing expertise and interests.I know that artificial competitive situations are created but I thought that the objective was improving expertise, etc. and not winning per se. Bob KK7WN
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K2WH on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Post by: WA9SVD

"No offense, but the point some of us are trying to make is that some hams routinely use an amp when it is NOT necessary. And if you are listening to a QSO and the operators are already giving each other "20 dB over S9" (whatever that really means) why do you hear them say (or watch their signal increase) they have to "kick in the amp?" If you are listening, you CAN tell if they turn on their amp.
I have nothing against amps; If I had one, I'd probably use it on occasion. But not as a "minimum daily requirement." If the conditions require the use of an amp, that's fine. But some hams don't know when NOT to use one, when 100 watts (or even ten watts) would suffice. And if a report is "40 over," then turning off the amp will not affect the QSO one bit; that would mean your signal would be 20-30 over without the amp, anyway!"

No offense taken however, how do you determine when an amp is not necessary when you are not part of the conversation?

20db of S9 simply means I could be 40db over S9. So why not.

K2WH
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by KB3LXY on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
...agreed !
Working pile ups power helps for sure....Or To me it seems the lower the frequencys, at least with present sun spots...there seems to be more signal absorbtion...and put that with a higher noise level (75-80-160 meters) the amp begins to make more sense.

I have done a few on air experiments on 17-20 meters. when conditions are decent...100-200 watts does fine for me. I only have a medium level amp anyway...so at full power I am at 600-700 watts pep. The difference between the 600 and 200 is not great...antenna...and audio is the deal maker or breaker with my modest station...IMHO
JohnB
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by KB3LXY on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
...agreed !
Working pile ups power helps for sure....Or To me it seems the lower the frequencys, at least with present sun spots...there seems to be more signal absorbtion...and put that with a higher noise level (75-80-160 meters) the amp begins to make more sense.

I have done a few on air experiments on 17-20 meters. when conditions are decent...100-200 watts does fine for me. I only have a medium level amp anyway...so at full power I am at 600-700 watts pep. The difference between the 600 and 200 is not great...antenna...and audio is the deal maker or breaker with my modest station...IMHO
JohnB
 
Watts are Watts  
by WA6BFH on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

I thought the premise here was for VHF communication?

It is obvious in all cases that good and efficient high gain antennas are needed for VHF/UHF “weak signal work”, but often, more times than not power will be needed as well!

The question is then, how much power? Sometimes 100 Watts will be enough, sometimes less. In the cases though that 100 Watts is not sufficient, do we need 200, 400, 800? If you have 800 Watts available, that means you can use 400, 200, or less.

If you have less than 100 Watts, there are many contacts you will simply miss in your life!
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W8JII on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
To Willy---------------------- eHam.net is a community web site for amateur (ham) radio operators around the world..............."Willy" is not a call sign ergo one can assume Willy may not be a ham. If Willy is not a ham he really doesn't belong here at all.
I agree with the other gentleman Willy. What are you hiding from if you are a ham? It's hard to take one seriously if he wants to remain anonymous.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by VE7ALQ on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
As an antenna-restricted tenant in an apartment building, I was inticed to this building by my new Landlord promising that I could erect an antenna (ButterNut HF6V) on the roof, and drill holes, etc. to bring in the Belden 213 coax feedline into my apartment on the ground floor. The antenna could do with more radials, but there is an issue getting access to the roof. As a consequence of my inefficient antenna, I have gone modestly QRO with a Yaesu FL2100z amplifier with 600 watts output, so that my Icom IC-706mkiiG will be heard on CW in the 7040 kHz hailing frequency and the 10,109 kHz hailing frequency. Because of RFI concerns with the large number of expensive(!) stereos my neighbours possess, I only operate the linear between midnight and 8:00 AM or so, the rest of the time running barefoot (100 watts). Please read ftp://ftp.yehudi.ca/ham-radio/efficiency.txt to see why the ButterNut HF6V leaves a lot to be desired on the lower bands. I'd be happy with 10% efficiency on 160 meters (I have the top-band-resonator kit installed) Be that as it may, on 160 meters and 80 meters it's like tuning my linear into a dummy load. 40 meters gets out (note 7040 kHz hailing frequency) and I do QSY to 30 meters (10,109 kz hailing frequency) whenever "Contesting" QRM pollutes up 40 meters for most users.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K6AER on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Sorry to get in late on this posting but using an amplifier in SSB operations with poor band condition has made the hobby much better for everyone. Many hams now live in antenna restricted areas with Suburban congestion and RFI interference. Very few hams live in low noise free environments. When running a 100 watts and communicating with city hams on HF, I hear them complain that my S9 signal; is only two S units above their noise floor. On the other hand their signal is 8 S units above my noise floor out here in the country. Turning on the amp helps them enjoy the contact.

Call CQ with out an amp an you will almost never have a mobile answer your call. Turn on the amp and call CQ and you will be flooded with mobiles coming back to you CQ.

Amplifiers are not power hungry. At 1500 watts output with 60% efficiency and 18% modulation index your bad boy amplifier is using only 450 watts on transmit. Your floor heater is using three times as much wattage.

Don’t have room for your dream station and antenna system…move. It is that simple.

Now for a simple truth.

SteppIR 4 element beam $1900
100 feet of Rohn 25 guyed $2000
250 Feet of 7/8 heliax $450
Yeasu Rotor with control cable $600
Alpha amplifier used $2500
Any decent HF transceiver $1000

The ability to work stations when the band is dead…priceless.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by N1URE on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I like to feed my garage door opener into a linear amp. My goal is to put out 1kw into a tuned array so I can open all the doors in the north east at once. (:->)
 
Watts are Watts  
by KX0R on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The posts here are pretty interesting, in that they reveal plenty about our diverse motives for operating and competing. Some people obviously get a kick out of power and big antennas.

While I have a 300W homebrew CW amp in a rack, and I enjoy running it, my favorite QSO's have been QRP to QRP rag chews. These were fun for both operators, with many running 30 minutes to over an hour. I'm not as impressed by a BIG signal from a high-powered station as by a DECENT signal from a QRP op with a good antenna who can carry on an actual QSO. This concept of doing more with less appeals to many, but it seems to rile a few folks who don't get it.

Some of the best radio fun I've had is with my solo Field Day efforts...QRP at an isolated national forest campsite, battery-powered, with minimal gear, and grandiose wire antennas with lines strung right over the tops of the ponderosas. What's it like to run 5 watts with a Vee Beam with 150 foot legs at a quiet mountain ridge site in the middle of FD QRM? You get almost everyone you can hear with just one or two calls...it is remarkable how well you can hear and get out with an efficient antenna at a good site.

If I've learned one thing worth sharing, it's that what W8JI says about the nulls of multiband systems is correct. Multiband antennas like vees, zepps, and loops have nice performance, but gain in one direction comes only through less radiation at other angles. If you're going to run multiband wires, be sure to use two or more systems with different patterns and orientation so that you can hear and work the stations that are in the nulls of each antenna. This is very apparent when you operate from out here in the middle of the US, where signals are coming in from all directions and angles. If you use two tuners and a switch in the 50-ohm feed you get a feel for it.

One of the nastiest things you can do is to run a big amp just so you can be heard in a direction where your antenna is 20 or 30 db down, just because you don't have another way to put a signal into that nulled direction. All that power goes out everywhere else and just makes a lot of QRM. One of the most cost-effective things you can do is to put up a second antenna at right angles to the first - even a compromise antenna. I use perpendicular vertical-plane loops from a single mast on my rooftop - cheap effective HF system, and survives our high winds. No, I'm not the biggest guy in the pileups, but fortunately for me, that isn't very important.

You do need power to make up for a lossy antenna, lousy band conditions, or if you're trying to work scatter when there's no real reflective path.

One of the best things you can do, if you're serious about this hobby, is to learn how to model antennas with EZNEC. Spend some time and you'll get a real intuitive feel of what works and why. There are so many variables in antennas that words and generalizations often miss the truth. What matters besides gain is wave angle, beamwidth, losses, and where the nulls are.

One thing worth mentioning is that many of the guys with the big amps and the big beams are actually putting out less power in "undesirable" directions - the directions they're not trying to work - than the ops with verticals or dipoles and big amps, who're putting out pretty big signals over a wide range of azimuth and elevation angles, creating a lot of QRM for the rest of us.

I do agree that we should limit our use of high power to when we really need it, in accordance with the law. We also should think twice about whether we really need it or just want it for kicks. We should question our assumptions and be willing to change. Power is no sacred cow in this hobby. Sometimes competition makes it hard to experience the real magic of radio...I think the magic is the main thing.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K2WH on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
K6AER:

"Don’t have room for your dream station and antenna system…move. It is that simple.

Now for a simple truth.

SteppIR 4 element beam $1900
100 feet of Rohn 25 guyed $2000
250 Feet of 7/8 heliax $450
Yeasu Rotor with control cable $600
Alpha amplifier used $2500
Any decent HF transceiver $1000

The ability to work stations when the band is dead…priceless."

You are my idol.
K2WH

 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by NI0C on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
VE7ALQ wrote: "Please read ftp://ftp.yehudi.ca/ham-radio/efficiency.txt to see why the ButterNut HF6V leaves a lot to be desired on the lower bands...Be that as it may, on 160 meters and 80 meters it's like tuning my linear into a dummy load."

I tried to access your site by clicking the link from your profile, but was asked for a password. Earlier in your post you wrote: "The antenna could do with more radials, but there is an issue getting access to the roof."

Many people (including me) have had very good luck with the Butternut antennas. You really need to have a good radial system before you can give it a fair evaluation.

73,

Chuck NI0C
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by VE7ALQ on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
ftp://ftp.yehudi.ca/ham-radio/hf6v.efficiency.txt If
you are coming in via Anonymous FTP, your account is

Anonymous

Please type in your E-mail address as the password
although anything entered will be accepted.

Please note that "Anonymous" is spelt with capital "A"

If you are still having problems, let me know, and I
will email the file "hf6v.efficiency.txt" to you.

I agree that I could have a better radial system on my
ButterNut HF6V. Unfortunately, I am disabled, and
there are logistic problems and landlord problems in
the way of my friends gaining access to the roof.
 
Watts are Watts  
by NE0P on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
K6AER:

"Don’t have room for your dream station and antenna system…move. It is that simple.

Now for a simple truth.

SteppIR 4 element beam $1900
100 feet of Rohn 25 guyed $2000
250 Feet of 7/8 heliax $450
Yeasu Rotor with control cable $600
Alpha amplifier used $2500
Any decent HF transceiver $1000

The ability to work stations when the band is dead…priceless."

If you are working stations, then the band is not dead.

73s John NE0P
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WILLY on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
by W8JII on November 19, 2005

"To Willy---------------------- eHam.net is a community web site for amateur (ham) radio operators around the world..............."Willy" is not a call sign ergo one can assume Willy may not be a ham."

Right. Remember that "may not" is not equal to "is not".

Then again, you may not be a ham either. W8JII is just some stuff typed on the screen.

So what you are saying is that nobody has proved anything.... which we all knew to begin with. :)

Welcome to the internet.


"If Willy is not a ham he really doesn't belong here at all."

Not unreasonable.
So, because we are here, does that prove anything?
:)


"I agree with the other gentleman Willy. What are you hiding from if you are a ham?"

Like I said before - whatever makes you think I am hiding? Do you often jump to wild conclusions?


"It's hard to take one seriously if he wants to remain anonymous. "

That is completely up to you.
For myself, since this is the internet - I just read what someone writes, try not to read into it something that is not there, take it for what it is worth, and go from there.
Along those lines, your post doesn't have anything to do with the original poster's topic of using amps. I suggest we drop it, at least for this thread. :)
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W4VR on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
KK7WN: A contestor is precisely not what you describe? W4VR
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WA9SVD on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
by NE0P on November 20, 2005
K6AER:

"Don�t have room for your dream station and antenna system�move. It is that simple."
========

Of course it's THAT simple.

IF Amateur Radio is your one, undying, and ONLY passion in life. And have enough extra cash to make it possible.

On the other hand, if you somehow have a spouse (or significant other,) children, employment, etc. to consider, that MAY not be an alternative. After all, this is supposed to be a HOBBY, with Public Service thrown in. If Amateur Radio were an employment option (READ: INCOME!) then moving to an area where the land use is entirely at your disposal may be an option, but that's not available to most of us; we have to make Amateur Radio fit into the other aspects of our lives, and those of our families, and rightly so! A hobby or diversion, however you wish to define Amateur Radio should not be an all-consuming factor in our lives. And although the FCC defines Amateur Radio as a potential emergency communication service, it is STILL a volunteer service; regardless how you view it, no one is forced into Amateur Service, or Emergency Communications; that is still an individual choice. (Moral and ethical issues aside.)
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W8JII on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
To Willy----------Consider it dropped masked one, whatever you are!
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WA9SVD on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
by K2WH on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend! Post by: WA9SVD

"No offense, but the point some of us are trying to make is that some hams routinely use an amp when it is NOT necessary. And if you are listening to a QSO and the operators are already giving each other "20 dB over S9" (whatever that really means) why do you hear them say (or watch their signal increase) they have to "kick in the amp?" If you are listening, you CAN tell if they turn on their amp.
I have nothing against amps; If I had one, I'd probably use it on occasion. But not as a "minimum daily requirement." If the conditions require the use of an amp, that's fine. But some hams don't know when NOT to use one, when 100 watts (or even ten watts) would suffice. And if a report is "40 over," then turning off the amp will not affect the QSO one bit; that would mean your signal would be 20-30 over without the amp, anyway!"

No offense taken however, how do you determine when an amp is not necessary when you are not part of the conversation?

20db of S9 simply means I could be 40db over S9. So why not.
==========

Again, no personal offense meant, but WHY? If your signal at a particular receiving station is already "20 dB over," why is there a need to be "40 dB over?" The FCC rules not withstanding, (use the minimum amount of power necessary, or words to that effect) using more power than necessary can cause interference to other operators. If the propogation and band conditions warrant use of an amp, I have no quarrel. But many amateurs use an amp when it's really not necessary.
And NO, I don't mean just those that sound "loud" at my operating location. I mean those that admit using an amp, or those that are already receiving a spectacular signal report, but choose to use the amp anyway. If you are listening, you hear such admissions, whether or not you are a part of the actual conversation. And NO, I don't assume some one is using an amp just because they have a really big signal. Sometimes they are using a transceiver "barefoot," and even then they could turn back the power. I try to do the same when in contact with aother station, even with a barefoot transceiver. Sometimes it's amazing how well another station can hear a signal (even without strain) in the lower power area. Not necessarily in the milliwatt or even the QRP range, but well below the KW range!
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W4LGH on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
The 12db was not a gain factor, but the average S meter is calibrated around 6db per S unit, so 2 S-units would be 12 db on the receive side. Anyone doing the "simple" math knows that 12db of gain in power would be around 1600 watts and over the legal limit. "Simple" math is such fun isn't it??

I own and use an amp, never saw the need for one until
I played with one and it was FUN! Ham radio is FUN and its supposed to be...Hams seem to forget this from time to time...Its a HOBBY, and HOBBIES are supposed to be FUN...SO have FUN with it...whatever aspect of the HOBBY that floats your boat, rag chews, contests, special events, digital modes, Nets..etc...
Just HAVE FUN! If it isn't FUN then why do it? Certainly not for the money.

73 all..Have a Great Holiday Season, and above all, Have fun playing Ham Radio!!

de W4LGH - Alan
http://www.w4lgh.com

 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WA6BFH on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

"S" units on more typical Japanese radios are closer to 3 dB per unit!
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by KB3LXY on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
...long thread ! Willy....

Maybe I missed it? But what is in your shack??
73
JohnB
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by W4CNG on November 20, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I'll take higher power (Watts) and lower gain in the antenna, a resonant antenna at that. In the Broadcast World, most of the Top Ranked FM/TV Stations use a bigger transmitter Final and smaller gain antenna to get the signal out. If you have more gain in the antenna and less power in the transmitter, you likely will not cover all the folks you want to because of beamwidth issues (especially at UHF Frequencies). In the world of HF radio you also have to deal with Mother Nature and Propogation. I'll take the Power first, cause if you cannot radiate it, no amount of gain will make up for lack of power. Most times 20KW ERP with a 2KW final just does not measure up to 20KW ERP using a 10KW final and a 3DB gain antenna, Tx line losses excluded.
Steve W4CNG
 
Watts are Watts  
by KE4ZHN on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Life is too short for qrp. If the band is flat sometimes even 1.5kw isnt enough. Other times 100 watts is plenty.
Funny thing about HF operation, if you try and run minimum power there always seems to be some idiot who decides its ok to fire up 1 kc or less away from your qso and pretend they dont hear you. If you run your amp you get accused of running too much power...go figure.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WA4DOU on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
FM and TV broadcasts are directed to an omnidirectional audience and high gain antennas have very narrow beamwidths which cause signal strength to vary as the narrow beamwidth signals are moved about with wind driven tower movement. No comparison or applicability to amateur radio. I'll take a high gain antenna any day over high power.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K4JSR on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
This all goes to to show that loading a transnitter
into a reactive antenna leads to an APPARENT POWER
STRUGGLE!!!
Take that, Mr. Katz!!
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K4JSR on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Transnitters are not sexually ambiguous radio devices!
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WILLY on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
by KB3LXY on November 20, 2005
"...long thread ! Willy....

Maybe I missed it? "

No, you didn't miss it.


"But what is in your shack?? "

??
The topic was (roughly) amplifiers and their use. I'll try to stay within that:

I don't have any amplifiers that I'm not licensed to use.

I don't have any amplifiers that I keep around just for supposedly somebody else to use.

I don't have any fine old classic multi-band amplifiers that use tubes designed for use below 30MHz, drastically altered to attempt to get them to perform at frequencies they were not designed for - supposedly.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WB2WIK on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
>RE: Watts are Watts Reply
by K6AER on November 19, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Don’t have room for your dream station and antenna system…move. It is that simple.<

::Yep. It actually is that simple, for most who aren't destitute. A lot of people finally relocate for any reason and then find, "Wow, I love it here! Why didn't I move twenty years ago?"

Good question, why didn't you? Most people in America, maybe in the world, aren't ideally situated and would probably be happier someplace else. They'll never know, unless they relocate and give it a shot. Being born someplace is no excuse for being there today, unless you're still an infant.

The one that really cracks me up is when somebody says they "don't like" a particular place they've never even visited. That's not liking a food without ever tasting it.

Life's too short for such narrow minded thinking.

WB2WIK/6

 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WA9SVD on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
KE4ZHN on November 21, 2005

Life is too short for qrp. If the band is flat sometimes even 1.5kw isnt enough. Other times 100 watts is plenty.
Funny thing about HF operation, if you try and run minimum power there always seems to be some idiot who decides its ok to fire up 1 kc or less away from your qso and pretend they dont hear you. If you run your amp you get accused of running too much power...go figure.
====
Actually not hard to figure. You were on or near THEIR own private frequency, and they will do what's necessary to make you MOVE.

And the high-power/low gain antenna vs. lower power/high gain antenna debate above seems to make no sense at all. An antenna benefits both receive AND transmit; high power only benefits the other end of a QSO. And it's the strength of the radiated signal that actually matters; not the type of antenna, not the purported antenna gain, and not the amount of power actually being used.
A high gain/moderate power system is better than high power/low gain because the high gain antenna is going to have some sort of directivity. So the radiated signal will hopefully go in the desired direction, not in all directions. (That's a waste!) Unless one is a net control station, many QSO's will be with one othe rstation. So the high gain, directional antenna is a benefit not just in receiving, but in directing the radiated signal toward the desired location. And that is true regardlwss of the power level being run; whether it's 100 mW, 1500 Watts, or anywhere in between.
On the other hand, a low gain antenna will radiate even in directions not of interest during a QSO. So that energy is essentially wasted. But of course, it can interfere with other operators in other directions.

Take an exqmple from the VHF/UHF crowd. Do you think many use 1.5 kW into a vertical or even a dipole? And expect to make as many contacts as someone using a good, high gain directional antenna such as a beam and using even moderate power? And which will allow that station th "hear" more DX? The low gain antenna or the high gain antenna? The principles are the same, whether for VHF or HF.
 
Watts are Watts  
by K6SDW on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
"Do you really need that huge power hungry amp?"


Absolutely!! MO' POWER!!!
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K3UD on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
it seems pretty simple to me.

If I am using an ineffecient antenna like a G5RV on 75 meters and putting 100 watts into it the receiving station might not hear me very well. If I put 1,000 watts into it I will get a 10dB increase at the other fellows receiver and become readable, assuming that the antenna system functions at the same effeciency it does at 100 watts.

73
George
K3UD
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by N3JBH on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Hello willy you ole pain in the arse. hows weather in there in Texas? :)

you asked this willy.
" well first the collins amp you seen was not used by me."
"You forgot to say who it was used by"

Who said any one used it? i said it wasnt used by me is all. what makes you beleave some one may use it?

your next question or querry was this willy.
"and secondly the sb-200 is converted by me to run on 6 meters. and yes they do work there."

"With 572B tubes? That's interesting.
Tell us - - what do you get, power out, out of it?
A couple hundred watts maybe? That doesn't seem worth it, compared to the 100 or so watts many rigs produce without an amp."

well willy it seems you allready answered your own question here now didnt you?

Then you did make this really nice remark.
"Congratulations! That's some nice HF rigs and tuners too.
I suppose that with 10M being closed for world wide comms that you use them a lot in the CW sub-bands."

well willy no i dont use then in the cw sub bands.
agian what makes you beleave that i ever used them? you jumping to conclusion's here? shame shame for a smart person if you are such? i think you never jump to such nonsense to dare think of what i might do with these. even though i am assured you really feel it in your desire to know wont you tiss tiss. you know curiosty is what killed the cat.

Then you made this statment.
"
YOU started the article. I just looked at YOUR webpages and commented about YOUR amps, and now your HF gear, and YOUR converted SB 200" sorry agian Willy i dont have any webpages. the person who has them is listed on them pages feel free to contact him.

Then willy said this. when i asked about his call sign.

"If I wanted to use it, I would ... that should be obvious. So, the simple answer is: I don't want to.
:)"

agian i can aswell as most others understand why you not be willing to use it. heck the last sudo name you used here you was busted on.

then i asked what are you hiding from? and you said
"Whatever makes you think I am? Do you often jump to wild conclusions?" nope dan i aint jumping at all.

then you added this i liked this one.
"The topic was (roughly) amplifiers and their use. I'll try to stay within that: your doing great willy stick with it your doing great.

but wait what is this?"I don't have any amplifiers that I'm not licensed to use." so our you licensed to run any at all in the Rf spectrum?

i like this one also"I don't have any amplifiers that I keep around just for supposedly somebody else to use." hmmmmm our you suggesting that i do? oh your jumping for wild conclusions now.

and finally till you respond back agian with some more smart remarks there was this. "I don't have any fine old classic multi-band amplifiers that use tubes designed for use below 30MHz, drastically altered to attempt to get them to perform at frequencies they were not designed for - supposedly." now that one shocked me big time. willy i dont beleave that you said this. DRASTICALLY !!! come on now really i am sure being you have enough smarts to know that this is not a drastict modifcation at all. and please inform us all of the specifcations of the various 572-B tubes and there performance ratings will you please.

as i see it willy your simply world class troll that loves to have fun with this thread. and you seem to really have a desire to be on my thread to do your best to anoying in wich you done a great job of so far. that i congraulate you on very good job. sadly it was because i was one of the 2 guys that blowm your previous cover on here that you fill the need to continue your sill sharades on here. well thats fine. i am just glad that anne can still put up with you. you are still with your partner arnt you? hey have a blast continue your fun and games here. i enjoyed this my self. maybe we can start our own thread for the amussment of others on here. may i suggest maybe w have a troll forum? oh no sorry that leave you a much smaller audiance i should realized this oh well please continue. by by jeff/n3jbh





"
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by KILOWATT on November 21, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Looks to me as though a couple of guys should take a little vacation from radio and attend some night courses in English, Grammar, Spelling and Punctuation. I half expected that last diatribe to end with a big toothless grin and a hardy "10-4 good buddy!"

Obviously the licenses aren't that difficult to attain, huh?
 
Watts are Watts  
by K5MO on November 22, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
This root article in this thread might be worth debating if it was decipherable.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by K0IZ on November 22, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I like 20 M SSB, and enjoy searching for DX, during which I am usually running 800 watts, and sometimes 1500. My station is in Colorado. For those of you in the "east", you may not appreciate how much more difficult it is to work through the "east coast curtain". Easy to hear the DX, harder to be competitive with one more hop. But of course that adds to the challenge.
 
Watts are Watts  
by NT4XT on November 23, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Well i like the message of the article.

Honestly, IF I had an amp, there are times I would have used it on phone.
I think the message is, we're supposed to use only enough power to do the job. And ERP can be achieved by means other than applying more current to our antennas.

For an NCS, enough to do the job may well be Full-On Legal limit, especially on lower bands to a typical Inv Vee, NVIS flat top wire, shortened vertical, or Inverted L.

On higher bands, I believe 400-600W is more than sufficient, even on phone, depending on the antenna, and propagation, obviously. Mostly it depends on propagation, but then, sometimes we just wanna be heard arm chair copy, under less than ideal conditions.

I've heard Step-IRs Buh-Lasting my ears with only 100-200W on phone.
I've heard stations many thousands of miles away 59+ Q5 beaming my way with a 2 to 6 element quad and 400W. 1500 PEP would have been overkill most definitely.
On the low bands where directional arrays are much less prevalent due to obvious practical constraints for most- I suppose an Amp is par for the course on phone, or even trying to work Westward from the East over land.

As for me, I don't have an amp- and given the choice of Base Station Amp or Mobile Set Up, I'd chose /M.

If I could have it all, I certainly would though- and that does not mean I'd make it a habit of using it all, only for the sake of having it all.
If I won the super-mega lotto, a picture of my shack situated on top of a mountain plain, might well include the best amp I could find, maybe weighing several hundred pounds, custom made by someone really into that sort of thing.

But in daily practice, it's likely that amp would be used mostly during testing to be sure it's still there when I deem necessary- while likely I'd do QRP 5-10W depending on mode, coupled to an extravagant very high gain antenna field. Just for grins. And to illustrate the point the writer is making in this article. Because it's fun. Especially if it's really doable (imagine a 3 element 80m monster quad at 40m, whoa!) (uh, for everyone else, there are Amps, LOL).

Because the author of this article has external linear power amps in his shack, does not automatically make him a hippocrit, as several here have attempted to imply.

My .02 dollars for what it's worth, (likely less than that!)

73.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by KB2FCV on November 25, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I've owned a few amps over the years. There have certainly been times where they are nice in a pileup or when you are chasing DX. I also agree that having a good antenna can make a huge difference.

Lately I have been more on the QRP side. I live in a place where high power would definitely be a no-no.. I don't have the antenna or the means to do so. QRP has been the answer. Since I mostly operate CW, you can get away with alot less power than you can with phone. Also, there is alot of fun in building your own equipment, taking it somewhere remote and operating.

I do still own an amp. It's collecting dust at the moment at my parents house, but it is a part of my hallicrafters sx-101/ht32 collection. I really only have it as part of my collection, but I make it a point to use the collection.

It's all a matter of preference. I don't have a problem with people that prefer amps over everything - to each their own. 73, James KB2FCV
 
Watts are Watts  
by K8FLY on November 25, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
wonder how many are runing qrp tonight in cw ss lol
guess if i want a qso id better put more fire in the wire & put in the narrow filtering lol
 
Watts are Watts  
by KT0DD on November 27, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I seem to remember studying about having to do near field RF exposure tests as part of the FCC regs when I was getting licensed. I wonder how many stations that have 1.5KW running into a fan dipole laying on the roof are able to pass these near field RF tests? 73.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by AB6SV on November 27, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
For God's sake, this is only a hobby. Why get so caustic. There are a lot of us who enjoy QRP. If our "crummy little signal" is too difficult for an operator to copy, they can respond to a better signal.
 
Watts are Watts  
by W8QP on November 28, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
You are correct in that you need to hear the station before you can work it. It is also true that money spent on a good tower and antenna is far better than in an amp;however, if you want to work DX SSB I suggest you also buy an amp.
 
Watts are Watts  
by K8RA on November 28, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
If I had to choose between power and a good antenna, the good antenna wins every time. Not only does it help your signal being heard but is just as important on receive to hear the other guy. Anyway 90% of the time 100 watts is plenty. Having said that, it is easy to get a KW amp these days and actually a really fun homebrew project. I would be embarrassed to tell you guys how many amps I have in my station. It is nuts and I have another amp project going in the workshop.

Bottom line, I vote for both. It sure is nice to dump a KW into the antenna when the conditions are poor. But don't turn on the big amp unless you really need it. Too many guys with 20db over 9 want to be 30db over 9 which is rediculous.

My thoughts.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WR8D on December 1, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Someone mentioned cw and a little power and i'll have to agree. I guess it would apply also to a phone contact. With sunspots down good band conditions are harder to come by. A little power, say just a few hundred watts will make the differance in a poor contact verses a good one. I saw this over the thanksgiving holiday. I'd send cq and get no reply. Do the same with 400 watts and have someone come back really fast. Don't get me wrong now, i'm not a power monger. I have the shack to be one but thats just a waste. When the sunspot cycle starts peaking again it will be wonderful to hang a coat rack out the window and work Japan on it. Right now though its just nice to be able to put a little fire up the wire to make ones self be heard just a little better. 73 WR8D
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WR8D on December 1, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I forgot to add, i have fantastic antennas. Sometimes though especially in todays band conditions just a few hundred watts helps and will make the differance on the other end. WR8D
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by N5PVL on December 1, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

I need an amplifier for an experimental digital mode.

To donate your unwanted amplifier, contact:

Charles Brabham, N5PVL

n5pvl@uspacket.org

Thank you.
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by N0IU on December 1, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
I need an amplifier because I just put a new transmission in my 1998 Toyota and I was going to spend that money for an amp!

To donate, contact:
NØIU at n0iu@arrl.net

Thank you

 
Watts are Watts  
by W5NQH on December 3, 2005 Mail this to a friend!
Well just a quick comment, I agree, the upper Bands for lower power is fine , But try 40, 80 and yep 160M and i Know for sure you'll Need an amp at least 500-600 to do very well on 160 !! just got on that band this fall it's fun But tuff copy on the 100w guys w5nqh good day!
 
RE: Watts are Watts  
by WILLY on December 3, 2005 Mail this to a friend!

Check this out: http://www.eham.net/classifieds/detail/188497
Note who posted it.

Then check this out: http://www.eham.net/forums/elmers/84231?page=1
There are only 19 posts in this thread, and it gets interesting around the 5th or 6th, so be sure to read it completely.


Then compare the two webpages - the 'for sale' ad, and the thread about the SB 200 to 6 meter conversion.

It is very interesting. :)

An example would be, "personally i to doubt you ever see 750 watts on 6 meters i never doubted that part. to be honest maybe 500 watts on a good day. "

The above quote was written by the same person that is now selling an SB 200 converted to 6 meters, and advertised as:
"Nice 6 Meter amplifier runs around 650 watts output. "


But - read the thread for yourself. You might even come to believe that trying to convert an SB 200 to 6 meters is not a good idea at all. You might even question if it gets around 300W out, let alone 500W, and "around 650 watts output" ? - we won't even go there. :)

As you read, you might even begin to question the judgement of anyone that would even alter a fine old amp, like the SB 200, in such a manner as to TRY to get it to work on 6 meters.

Then again, you might decide that you'd like to buy an amp from them. :)
 
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