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Author Topic: Expert Amps  (Read 7115 times)
KB4MNG
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Posts: 265




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« on: January 15, 2016, 02:48:32 AM »

I see a lot of controversy on the forums about the US distributor of Expert Amps. How is the company as a whole. Will they be considered a good company/product if they get support in the US.

I talked to a ham the other day that owned an Expert amp. He could not say enough good things about it. They are expensive but look nice and weigh something like 20 lbs with many watts out.

I would be scared that they would end up like Tokyo High Power. A very nice amp with no company support.
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VK3BL
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Posts: 1311


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« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2016, 02:57:17 AM »

I see a lot of controversy on the forums about the US distributor of Expert Amps. How is the company as a whole. Will they be considered a good company/product if they get support in the US.

I talked to a ham the other day that owned an Expert amp. He could not say enough good things about it. They are expensive but look nice and weigh something like 20 lbs with many watts out.

I would be scared that they would end up like Tokyo High Power. A very nice amp with no company support.

They look pretty, have lots of features etc.

BUT, at very least the Expert FA-1.3K is severely overrated for output.  The IMD performance is worse than -30dB unless its kept at low power setting, which is ~500watts if I recall correctly.

Basically, I wouldn't be running one at its rated output and admitting it to anyone on air.  No point having a $5000 amp if you can't brag...
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J.D. Mitchell - VK3BL / XU7AGA - http://vk3bl.wordpress.com
KF5NAJ
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Posts: 14




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« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2016, 07:41:07 AM »

Expert Amp still has ads in QST are they the two Bimbos Sisters taking deposits and not delivering.
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KD0PO
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Posts: 706




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« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2016, 08:16:35 AM »

there are two distributors in USA, both in the Houston area.

http://www.expertlinears.com/

is Bob Hardie and he is a great person to work with.

He has been to the factory several times and can fix any problem that arises with a rapid turn around.

The other dealer is a disaster IMO....

I love my 2K-FA. Best amp I've ever owned.

Ray
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K7JQ
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Posts: 949




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« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2016, 03:03:33 PM »

The other dealer (two sisters) are now out of business. I believe they closed it down a month or two ago.
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KK5DR
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Posts: 631


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« Reply #5 on: January 15, 2016, 04:58:52 PM »

The Expet amps use an unregulated DC ps, which, due to wide voltage variation, contributes to IMD.
All solid state amps require very stiffly regulated DC to reach best IMD for the given PA design.
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W1QJ
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Posts: 2599




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« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2016, 07:46:31 AM »

Expert Amp still has ads in QST are they the two Bimbos Sisters taking deposits and not delivering.

This USED to be true but not any longer.  The two bimbo sisters are out of business and gone.  Bob Hardie is the only one left now and that is because the strong survive.  Bob is a great guy and he used to be part of the other group that is gone.  So you can see who lasted the test of time.  I have to assume since he is the only one now, that his chances of surviving is much better without competition.  These amps are also popular in Europe because they are made in Italy.
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ZS5WC
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« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2016, 08:32:44 AM »

 :)Great Amplifiers-can only recommend it!.
I don't run Max. power out, I run it below the gain compression point, I run ALC.
This amp is powerful enough so you don't need to run it flatout.
To all the naysayers out there-you obviously don't own an  Expert amp.
At -36dB below PEP (AT max. power out), it is clean-even cleaner than most HF rigs out there today.
Buy the 2K-FA, run it 1Kw+ and I'm sure the signal would cleaner than most amps out there.

73!.
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VK4SX
Member

Posts: 47




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« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2016, 03:53:56 AM »

I would be scared that they would end up like Tokyo High Power. A very nice amp with no company support.

Nothing like THP, way way better business structure,  way way better product,
the proof is in the pudding,

2016 guys, time to open your minds, I have been using an SPE 1.3 KFA, since JAN 2015, what a wonderful bit of kit, the

sorry fellas lost the bulk of my post, will re visit another day,
« Last Edit: January 17, 2016, 04:45:54 AM by VK4SX » Logged
ZS5WC
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Posts: 631


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« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2016, 12:04:02 PM »

 :)Interesting TRX and Amplifier IMD3 comparison here:
(Tested by ARRL)
http://www.remeeus.eu/hamradio/pa1hr/productreview.pdf
Hey the Expert 1K-fa TX IMD is a respectable -42dB below PEP 3rd order!.

The ACOM 600 / 1200 might also be worth a look.

73!.
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W4PGM
Member

Posts: 21




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« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2016, 02:48:04 PM »

I'll second how good Bob is at  Customer Service. I was having an issue with CW when I went from a Flex-5000 to the Flex - 6300.   One call to Bob and he knew off the top of his head the issue.   I had been running the amp in Quite Mode and the amp needed to be in Normal Mode for CW.

Bob was traveling and still answered the phone.   His after sale support is excellent.

Paul W4PGM  2K-FA






http://www.expertlinears.com/

is Bob Hardie and he is a great person to work with.

He has been to the factory several times and can fix any problem that arises with a rapid turn around.

The other dealer is a disaster IMO....

I love my 2K-FA. Best amp I've ever owned.

Ray
« Last Edit: January 17, 2016, 05:21:40 PM by W4PGM » Logged
VK3BL
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Posts: 1311


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« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2016, 05:12:33 PM »

:)Interesting TRX and Amplifier IMD3 comparison here:
(Tested by ARRL)
http://www.remeeus.eu/hamradio/pa1hr/productreview.pdf
Hey the Expert 1K-fa TX IMD is a respectable -42dB below PEP 3rd order!.

The ACOM 600 / 1200 might also be worth a look.

73!.

The Expert 1K-FA & 2K-FA are different animals, using different finals.  The amp that people tend to object to is the Expert 1.3K-FA, which uses a single LDMOS device, and SPE claims more power output from than the datasheets do.

To some degree the Expert 1.3K-FA is marketed wrong.  It is a small, portable amp, and it really is best suited to DXPeditions and the like where weight is more important than signal cleanliness. 
« Last Edit: January 17, 2016, 05:16:12 PM by VK3HXT » Logged

J.D. Mitchell - VK3BL / XU7AGA - http://vk3bl.wordpress.com
VK4BG
Member

Posts: 1




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« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2016, 10:04:59 PM »

The FCC report on the SPE 1.3K shows the IMD3 to be better than -30db on all bands...up to -34db on 80M. Not stellar, but certainly as good as a whole lot of other offerings, both tube and Solid State. This was at 1kW RF out.

I'd be happy to own one.

The W6PQL Amp I have homebrewed, using the NXP Device ( essentially the same as the Freescale device ) measures about the same (-32db IMD3 on my gear ).

Maybe I'm not driving it hard enough  Grin

73
Glenn
VK4BG

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VK3BL
Member

Posts: 1311


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« Reply #13 on: January 18, 2016, 05:14:58 AM »

The FCC report on the SPE 1.3K shows the IMD3 to be better than -30db on all bands...up to -34db on 80M. Not stellar, but certainly as good as a whole lot of other offerings, both tube and Solid State. This was at 1kW RF out.

I'd be happy to own one.

The W6PQL Amp I have homebrewed, using the NXP Device ( essentially the same as the Freescale device ) measures about the same (-32db IMD3 on my gear ).

Maybe I'm not driving it hard enough  Grin

73
Glenn
VK4BG



Key words being at 1Kw... not the claimed 1350++ on the brochure!

I agree Glenn, for legitimate VK use (400 Watts PEP) its one nice bit of kit, but for the price... well... no wonder you home brewed!

I've actually got 4x BLF188XRS sitting here, and have been eyeing off the W6PQL package.  It looks really good!

Ps, if you need a cheap spare final, get in contact and i'll do you a deal!
« Last Edit: January 18, 2016, 05:23:10 AM by VK3HXT » Logged

J.D. Mitchell - VK3BL / XU7AGA - http://vk3bl.wordpress.com
AF4K
Member

Posts: 8


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« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2017, 05:30:35 PM »

Dear KB4MNG - they offer excellent and prompt customer support, and are very reputable agents in the USA.
I met Bob Hardie in person at the Orlando Hamfest and he is a part of the reason
that I selected the SPE Expert 1.3K-FA.

I do not for one minute believe the unsupported claims and criticisms by VK3BL. The FCC does not type-accept equipment
that spews out all the spurs that he claims. Perhaps he tested one with a poor antenna or didn't know how to set things up.

My Expert amp performs flawlessly, and exceeds all my expectations. I have owned many linear amplifiers from a wide variety of companies (ACOM, TENTEC, Ameritron, etc. etc.) and NONE of them is as reliable, cool, light weight and easy to use.
No failures, no noise, no nonsense.  Other amplifiers always failed after a while.  This one has VERY good protection.
Want the best? Switch to the SPE.

Your mileage may vary but I will be VERY skeptical if you slam this amp.

Sincerely - Bry AF4K


I see a lot of controversy on the forums about the US distributor of Expert Amps. How is the company as a whole. Will they be considered a good company/product if they get support in the US.

I talked to a ham the other day that owned an Expert amp. He could not say enough good things about it. They are expensive but look nice and weigh something like 20 lbs with many watts out.

I would be scared that they would end up like Tokyo High Power. A very nice amp with no company support.

They look pretty, have lots of features etc.

BUT, at very least the Expert FA-1.3K is severely overrated for output.  The IMD performance is worse than -30dB unless its kept at low power setting, which is ~500watts if I recall correctly.

Basically, I wouldn't be running one at its rated output and admitting it to anyone on air.  No point having a $5000 amp if you can't brag...
Logged
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