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Author Topic: K3 question....  (Read 6820 times)
NK7Z
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Posts: 880


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« Reply #15 on: April 10, 2014, 11:02:06 AM »

Thanks for the answers.

Just got a reply from Elecraft, with a full page document line by lining the mods.

There are 19 mods that can be done free of charge and 7 that are chargeable.  Obviously the gear has to be sent to the USA for this to be done.

Sort of going off the idea of getting a s/h k3 by the minute and a new one is out of the ballpark at the moment.




Jeez I have heard of Nickle and Diming people to death but this goes to all new levels.
Buy pretty much any other radio, and you get no updates, or upgrades, unless you spend 1K plus for a new radio...  Buy a K3 and the company provides free updates...  Sort of a no brainer huh?
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Dave
For reviews and setups see: http://www.nk7z.net
ZL1BBW
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Posts: 413




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« Reply #16 on: April 10, 2014, 01:08:51 PM »

The first thing that rather got me is they cannot say sn# 3487654 is built to this level...

Quote
To determine what is needed, use the attached checklist to inspect which ones might be available.  Of course, we can install these mods for you.  Our techs use the same checklist for their assessment.

Since we place the updates into production as the products flow down the assembly line, it does become a bit difficult to assess whether you have them installed.  Some are traced by serial number - but not all.  The reason for this is that the improvements/updates are installed onto boards and then the boards are used in either kit-built or factory-built K3s.

For this reason, if you need additional assistance assessing what is needed, please take pictures of the K3 with the top and bottom covers removed.  They will help our techs determine what may be needed.
Unquote

These are the free upgrades..
K3 NO CHARGE MODS CHECKLIST:
IF OUTPUT BUFFER GAIN MOD K3IOBUFFKT E500374 R8 13K
VFO TUNG NOISE MOD FILTERKIT E560002 E500003
EXTREME SIGNAL PROTECTION MOD wire
CW KEYING RISETIME MOD (CWRTMDKT)rare E530228
HAGC MOD (HAGCMDKT) rare
LPA Heatsink pads E700002
8 Volt regulator filter capacitor E530174 (no Docs)
Power meter diode upgrade E560048 D36 & 37, (no Docs)
EXT NEG ALC MOD (CUT TRACE ONLY)
SUBOUT KEYING PIN E700065
RF IMMUNITYMOD (F & R MIC GND) 2 jumpers
AF STAGE MOD (K3AFMDKT) 50ohm R19 & R20 E500269 & coil E690017
AF OUTPUT MOD (AFOPMDKT) E500003 2 resistors
ADD C101 TO FRONT PANEL E530338 1uf (no Docs) U7 pin 14 to via
Front Panel REV B (only) jumper Approx serial # 632-1057 (rev A had a
capacitor).
KSYN3 ALC MOD E500350 56K R10 Upgrade
8.215 Trap( ) ( )
KSYN3 DDS MOD E500385(211) R20 25ohm
Gold Pins ( )RF board ( )
KPA3 12V SENSE MOD E560002
Gold Pins ( ) KPA3 ( )
KPA3 R25 100ohm 2w E500262 ( )( ) Load new Firmware Gold
Pins ( )FrontPanel( )
Your K3 will get the basic updates as needed covered under the basic minimum charge, the
following upgrade enhancements are optional.


These are the chargeable upgrades.
Y/N Upgrade Cost Benefits
K3Audio Protection Board Protects audio chip if the rear speakers
are shorted
K312MDKT $8.00
K3STFNR $19.95 Reduces micorphonics in the VCO
K3DSPUPGD $109.95
REMIOUPGD $20.00
8.215 Trap Upgrade
KXV3A_UPGR $69.95

Anyway in view of this list, plus the cost and hassle of shipping back n forth, my interest has waned, also the vendor has a idea of what his K3 is worth that does not match others idea.

Conversely at least they are being relatively open about the numbers of upgrades they have done.
Gavin 1bbw



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ex MN Radio Officer, Portishead Radio GKA, BT Radio Amateur Morse Tester.  Licensed as G3YCP ZL1DAB, now taken over my father (sk) call as ZL1BBW.
KG6AF
Member

Posts: 373




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« Reply #17 on: April 10, 2014, 03:59:17 PM »

Thanks for the answers.

Just got a reply from Elecraft, with a full page document line by lining the mods.

There are 19 mods that can be done free of charge and 7 that are chargeable.  Obviously the gear has to be sent to the USA for this to be done.

Sort of going off the idea of getting a s/h k3 by the minute and a new one is out of the ballpark at the moment.




Wow that's amazing.  Why on earth would anyone want to buy an old K3 if once again your going to have to hand over cash to Elecraft to get a "Update".   Jeez I have heard of Nickle and Diming people to death but this goes to all new levels.

I'll go with the vendor who cares enough to provide equipment mods and upgrades.  In fact, I have.
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ZL1BBW
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Posts: 413




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« Reply #18 on: April 10, 2014, 05:38:15 PM »

Its much easier if you are in the same continent/country, for me, it would involve getting customs clearance to ship out and again to ship back in without having to pay duty on it.

Plus several hundred dollars in freight and insurance.

Frankly I cannot be bothered to do a R & R by R & C inspection to see which mod has and has not been done.

...- .- to the K3 idea.
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ex MN Radio Officer, Portishead Radio GKA, BT Radio Amateur Morse Tester.  Licensed as G3YCP ZL1DAB, now taken over my father (sk) call as ZL1BBW.
KD8MJR
Member

Posts: 2706




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« Reply #19 on: April 11, 2014, 12:57:14 PM »

Thanks for the answers.
Just got a reply from Elecraft, with a full page document line by lining the mods.
There are 19 mods that can be done free of charge and 7 that are chargeable.  Obviously the gear has to be sent to the USA for this to be done.
Sort of going off the idea of getting a s/h k3 by the minute and a new one is out of the ballpark at the moment.

Jeez I have heard of Nickle and Diming people to death but this goes to all new levels.

Buy pretty much any other radio, and you get no updates, or upgrades, unless you spend 1K plus for a new radio...  Buy a K3 and the company provides free updates...  Sort of a no brainer huh?

I am not sure if your being sarcastic but if your serious.  You should look at the Icom 7700 and 7800.  They have releases a recent software upgrade that basically gives the Rig a new lease on life in terms of features, it makes the 7800 very close to the kenwood 990.  Icom has also had ONE extensive hardware upgrade for the 7800 and it’s obvious within 30 seconds of using a 7800.

I am not getting upset about Elecrafts free software upgrades, what I am talking about are the hardware changes that cost additional money.  It’s sure as heck going to make anyone think twice about buying a used K3!  What hardware versions are you getting when you buy one? Which boards have been changed and which units on eBay or eham are old first generation units?
Will newer firmware work “properly” with all hardware versions?  Will new hardware peripherals work properly with all main board versions?  I am sure someone will post “Yes” but only Elecraft really knows why they did the hardware mods and if those mods are also designed to make a particular upgrade board work properly or to fix an unrelated issue.
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NK7Z
Member

Posts: 880


WWW

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« Reply #20 on: April 11, 2014, 01:47:43 PM »

Thanks for the answers.
Just got a reply from Elecraft, with a full page document line by lining the mods.
There are 19 mods that can be done free of charge and 7 that are chargeable.  Obviously the gear has to be sent to the USA for this to be done.
Sort of going off the idea of getting a s/h k3 by the minute and a new one is out of the ballpark at the moment.

Jeez I have heard of Nickle and Diming people to death but this goes to all new levels.

Buy pretty much any other radio, and you get no updates, or upgrades, unless you spend 1K plus for a new radio...  Buy a K3 and the company provides free updates...  Sort of a no brainer huh?

I am not sure if your being sarcastic but if your serious.  You should look at the Icom 7700 and 7800.  They have releases a recent software upgrade that basically gives the Rig a new lease on life in terms of features, it makes the 7800 very close to the kenwood 990.  Icom has also had ONE extensive hardware upgrade for the 7800 and it’s obvious within 30 seconds of using a 7800.

I am not getting upset about Elecrafts free software upgrades, what I am talking about are the hardware changes that cost additional money.  It’s sure as heck going to make anyone think twice about buying a used K3!  What hardware versions are you getting when you buy one? Which boards have been changed and which units on eBay or eham are old first generation units?
Will newer firmware work “properly” with all hardware versions?  Will new hardware peripherals work properly with all main board versions?  I am sure someone will post “Yes” but only Elecraft really knows why they did the hardware mods and if those mods are also designed to make a particular upgrade board work properly or to fix an unrelated issue.


You have very good points, however, if I own a radio which can not be updated, I simply have no choices...  If I own a radio that can be upgraded, (both hardware and software), I will take that radio in a moment...  I see the updatability of the K3 as an opportunity, not as a limiting factor.  Nor do I see it as an impediment to a used purchase.  The fact that I can take a used radio, and bring it to current specs to me is a good thing...  Maybe some folks will consider that too complected, but I don't...  Finding out which hardware version is just one more step is all...  In a radio this complex, (including the Icoms you mentioned), that sort of thing is not an issue for me.  I don't disagree, that for some it will be too complex, but for me it is not.  I looked at a used K3, and it took not long to verify the current state of the radio, I decided to buy new, as it was a kit, and I spotted a few things that made me nervous about the build.  Had it been factory constructed, I most likely would have bought it on the spot.
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Thanks,
Dave
For reviews and setups see: http://www.nk7z.net
KG6AF
Member

Posts: 373




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« Reply #21 on: April 11, 2014, 02:16:33 PM »

I am not getting upset about Elecrafts free software upgrades, what I am talking about are the hardware changes that cost additional money.  It’s sure as heck going to make anyone think twice about buying a used K3!

I know what you mean.  If what I see on the Elecraft reflector is any indication, sometimes it can take hours to sell a used K3!
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