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Author Topic: Station Setup  (Read 5028 times)
N8EUI
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Posts: 146




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« on: February 04, 2013, 06:18:38 AM »

Hello everyone,
I've added some additional equipment to my station.  I'm also rearranging my station setup and I have a question:  Given my transceiver, amp, wattmeter, spectrum analyzer and antenna tuner, in what order do I patch them in?

Thanks,
Tom, N8EUI
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WD4ELG
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Posts: 876




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« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2013, 07:37:36 PM »

Not sure why noone has responded yet.

I will give it a shot.

1. You want the wattmeter as close to the antenna as possible to measure what is really getting to the radiator.  So it goes furthest from the transceiver.
2. You want to see what's coming directly out of your transmitter before going into the amp, so you want it closest to the transceiver.
3. The amplifier needs to see a balanced load when it looks towards the radiator, so it comes BEFORE the tuner.

So, from shack to antenna, left to right:

Transceiver, analyzer, amp, tuner, wattmeter.  Hope this helps.
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W8JX
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« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2013, 07:56:41 PM »

Not sure why noone has responded yet.

I will give it a shot.

1. You want the wattmeter as close to the antenna as possible to measure what is really getting to the radiator.  So it goes furthest from the transceiver.
2. You want to see what's coming directly out of your transmitter before going into the amp, so you want it closest to the transceiver.
3. The amplifier needs to see a balanced load when it looks towards the radiator, so it comes BEFORE the tuner.

So, from shack to antenna, left to right:

Transceiver, analyzer, amp, tuner, wattmeter.  Hope this helps.

Watt meter needs to be after amp but before tuner. Placing it after after tuner well give varying results depending on SWR/impendance of load after tuner.
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WD4ELG
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« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2013, 08:23:23 PM »

Whoops.  Yep.  TUNER as close to antenna as possible!  The last thing in the chain.

Thanks, W8JX.
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KB1NXE
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« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2013, 06:19:00 AM »

Is that a true spectrum analyzer?  Or is it a scope to view your modulated signal?  Different animals.

Depending on the scope (if that is what it is) you may have connections for both sides of the amp.  That is, rig > scope > amp > scope > watt meter > tuner.
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W8JX
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« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2013, 08:47:52 AM »

I would place spectrum analyzer after amp but before tuner. Biggest concern is splatter from a over driven amp.
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KB2FCV
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« Reply #6 on: February 05, 2013, 09:01:45 AM »

Not sure where the spectrum analyzer would go but as for the others:
rig-amp-wattmeter-tuner-antenna

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WD4ELG
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« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2013, 12:50:16 PM »

Good point on the spectrum analyzer, I was presuming it was restricted to lower power and not suitable for placing after the amp.  But the concern about overdriving the amp is a good one, so if it is possible, put it after the amp and before the tuner.
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N8EUI
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« Reply #8 on: February 06, 2013, 06:34:13 AM »

Wow, great information everybody.  The spectrum analyzer is a Yaesu YO-301.  I purchased it at an estate sale a few weeks ago.

Thanks,
Tom, N8EUI
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #9 on: February 06, 2013, 01:42:50 PM »

The YO-301 isn't really a spectrum analyzer.  It's a "monitor scope" that matches the old Yaesu FT-301 transceiver, although for monitoring your own transmitted signal envelope it would work with any kind of transmitter.

But it's not doing any "spectrum analyzing," it's just serving as an oscilloscope with an RF pickup.

It will display images of received signals when connected to a compatible receiver, which has nothing to do with transmitting through it.  When used as a receiving IF monitor, it's not much of a "spectrum analyzer," as it can only view signals that make it through the receiver's filtering, so it's a rather "narrow" view of a small slice of spectrum right around wherever the receiver is tuned.
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N8EUI
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Posts: 146




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« Reply #10 on: February 07, 2013, 07:56:34 AM »

Thanks WB2WIK for the reply, correction and definition.  So to be accurate, how would I patch it into my station chain?  I have my transceiver, amp, wattmeter, automatic antenna tuner (with an onboard wattmeter) and antenna.  Where will the monitor scope fit in?

Thanks,
Tom, N8EUI
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AA4PB
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« Reply #11 on: February 07, 2013, 08:13:41 AM »

Immediately after the amp.
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KB1NXE
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« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2013, 11:46:40 AM »

Here's a link to the manual:

http://www.foxtango.kc9foz.com/Eighties/YO-301.pdf

You would place it in the path as my original post describes:  Rig > Scope > Amp > Scope > Watt Meter > Tuner.

This way you are able to show the linearity of the transmitted signal to assure you are not over driving the amp causing splatter.
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N8EUI
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Posts: 146




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« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2013, 04:27:40 AM »

Hi KB1NXE

Please excuse my ignorance, but if I patch my Rig > Scope > Amp > Scope > Watt Meter > Tuner, how do I loop the scope back to the amp and then to the wattmeter?  There are only two so-239 connectors on the back of the scope, one is connected to the incoming rig and the other is connected to the amp input.  Maybe I misread your suggestion.  I'm a little confused.

Thanks,
Tom, N8EUI
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KB1NXE
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« Reply #14 on: February 08, 2013, 06:45:11 AM »

According to the manual, there should be 4 connectors on the back of the YO-301 scope.  Two for 'Exciter' (your rig) and two for the AMP (the SO-239s).  Looks like the exciters connectors are Phono style connectors in the manual and to the right (when viewed from the rear) of the SO-239s.  Refer to figure 5 in the manual that is linked in my last post.  If this is not what you have, then my apologies, but the manual clearly shows this arrangement.
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