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Reviews Categories | Amplifiers: RF Power - HF & HF+6M | Kenwood TL-922A Help


Reviews Summary for Kenwood TL-922A
Kenwood TL-922A Reviews: 49 Average rating: 4.5/5 MSRP: $1200
Description: 160-10M 2K PEP- cct resembles SB220, with 2 x 3-500Z tubes
Product is not in production.
More info: http://www.rigpix.com/linears/tl922.htm
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Page 1 of 5 —>

G0FVT Rating: 4/5 Aug 6, 2014 08:09 Send this review to a friend
TL922  Time owned: more than 12 months
Pretty happy with this amplifier, mine is not the "A" version so includes 10m. TX/RX relay developed an o/c coil but after heating the solder tag up it works again. Mine has the original parasitic stoppers but I have recently grounded the grids. The relays are pretty noisy but the fan seems a good compromise between noise and airflow. Amplifier works without drama but beware of the highish voltage on the "PTT" line, if in doubt use an interface.
 
EA1XF Rating: 5/5 Jan 12, 2014 11:56 Send this review to a friend
Great fun driving it !.  Time owned: more than 12 months

Four years have passed since my TL-922 went through a complete servicing. I must say that it has been working better than ever with not a simple failure. I think the only secret to keep it running flawlessly is just to follow the manufacturer recommendations regarding not to overdrive it. It is been obviously made under the technology of the 80´s, with no protection circuits at all like current amps, which means you have to know what you have in your hands and how to play with it, otherwise you can ruin it easily. More or less it is like driving a vintage car which you have to be very careful with, as there is no ESP, DSC, ABS, I mean none of those security controls are present and an inappropriate or extreme use may end in an accident or just blowing up the engine if you try to drive it out of its limits. I find the same joy using it as driving a vintage car because 100% of the control is in your hands and not in a “central unit” that controls your errors. If you don´t like playing its rules, you better stay away from it.

I feel fortunate owing one of these vintage amps and for running it trouble free, even in the Warc bands.

73, Carlos
 
K5ZG Rating: 5/5 Jul 1, 2013 18:04 Send this review to a friend
WONDERFUL OLD AMP  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
BEAUTIFUL AMP. K5WG GAVE ONE TO ME THAT HAD BEEN ON A SHELF FOR 18 YRS. ONLY HAD 5 HRS ON THE TUBES WHEN HE WENT QRT. BROUGHT IT HOME AND PLUGGED IT IN AND IT RUNS SMOOTHLY WITH A KW OUT. NOT A QRO-TECH 8877 BUT FUN TO USE WITH 900 OUT ON CW. I HAD ONE IN 1981 AND A GUY REALLY WANTED IT SO LET IT GO. ...THE RELAY CLACK MADE ME HAVE A PVC (THATS NOT PIPE) AND I GOT USED TO IT. WILL PUT THE QSK MOD IN IT...WAS DESIGNED FOR A KW OUT NOT THE 1500 WE ARE ALLOWED NOW. SOME SAY THERE IS A CULT FOLLOWING AND OTHERS SAY IT IS A HUNK OF JUNK...I LOVE ALL THE EXPERTS THAT HAVE NEVER BUILT AN AMP BERATING THIS LITTLE GEM.. RUN IT WITHIN SPECS AND YOU HAVE A NICE AMP FOR MANY YRS TO COME.
SEE YOU IN THE PILES (NOT HEMORRHOIDS)
 
AE6ZW Rating: 5/5 Jun 18, 2011 21:30 Send this review to a friend
easy to tune, never had trouble  Time owned: more than 12 months
I used this at club station many times, it was used by several people and might have seen some abuses. but, it survived, it put out about 800 watts in CW modes. t was easy to tune to 3 ele yagi they had without external tuner.
 
KX7P Rating: 5/5 Dec 2, 2010 21:23 Send this review to a friend
SOLID HF AMP  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had my Kenwood TL-922A for since 1986. It has performed flawless until a few months ago. A relay started sticking. It was a fairly simple fix for the tech. Not bad for about 25 years of use. I've never had to replace the tubes.

This amp is built like a tank! Very solid quality construction. It looks especially nice in my shack next to Kenwood radios. I use mine with my Kenwood TS-830S and Kenwood TS-930S and receive great signal reports. I get 1KW to 1.2KW with about 85 to 100 watts drive.

The only negative I can say about this amp is the relay is a little loud.

I'm very happy with the TL-922A and recommend it very much. I'm sure my amp will keep performing for another 25 years.

 
KM6SD Rating: 5/5 Feb 27, 2010 17:41 Send this review to a friend
A 1980-1993 Classic !  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have used this amp since 1992, and it has operated flawlessly since that time...As far as cabinet constuction goes, there is none better. I only use it on SSB, so I can't speak for CW, RTTY,etc...Mine is the TL-922 (Export) version that I bought new in '93 thru a good friend in the UK, so 10 meters was factory installed. I am driving it with a 950sdx, and 120w in gives me 1.5kw out on all bands except 160. It plugs along with 95-105w drive, which is where I keep it, and it barely gets warm..Still running the original Eimacs...Other than the noisy relay, no complaints. Read the QST review from 9/1980, it is worth it if you are thinking of purchasing one used.
 
QRPNEW Rating: 2/5 Nov 21, 2009 16:53 Send this review to a friend
Outdated Design  Time owned: more than 12 months
This amplifier seems to have a cult following. Theres no doubt that its physically well built, however electrically its an marginal amplifier.

The prices that people are asking for these amplifiers borders on insanity for such a old weak amplifier design.

The many faults include

Poor RF design
Poorly rated RF parts
Poor or NO protection circuits
Lots of trouble with parasitic problems
No spare parts available
Tubes that are getting expensive

If you ran this amp in a contest you will probably burn it out.

If the bandswitch or power switch goes you in deep trouble. If you have a grid filament short you could be in for some real trouble. None of the spare parts are available.

The load C spacing is marginal, if you even try and tune it into a moderate 2:1VSWR you will ARC this crappy capacitor.

The relay switching is slow and will damage newer model radios. No inrush limiting and many other design failings.

Just do a google on the TL922 and you will come across several pages on "mods" to try and correct its many design failings.

I like buying blown up TL922's and converting them to 6 meters. However on HF I would only recommend the TL922 to my worst enemy. If you have one keep it, however I would not invest money in such a marginal amplifier.

Today if I was looking for a 1 kilowatt to 1300 watt amplifier I would be looking at one of the new solid state designs like the SPE or Ameritron.
If you need a real 1500 watt amplifier get the AL1500.

Bottom line is that I hate using equipment that makes me nervous every time I turn it on or use it. The TL922 is such a beast, its better to look at than USE!
 
EA1XF Rating: 5/5 Nov 21, 2009 16:21 Send this review to a friend
Nice Amp and working better and better  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought mine in 1999 and it has been running flawlessly until a couple of months ago when a choke burnt out, so I thought it was time to send it for a complete overhauling. Every little part, board and values were checked in order to have it as the very first day when came out from factory. Input swr was re-adjusted and some components were replaced for new ones, like the zener bias diode, capacitors and even the final tubes, although there was no need to replace them yet, now has a new pair of matched Amperex 3-500 ZG and I am keeping the old ones as spare.

It loads and tunes very smooth and I always tune mine by the “Plate – Load – Plate procedure” to maximum power output, with the meter switch on the RF position. When the amp is perfectly aligned, this method will make the Ip automatically dip to the minimum. With the transformer set in the 240 volts position, these are the readings I get on 14.200 MHz, on the SSB position and on my PowerMaster meter:

Input 86 w ---- 1.185 w (output) 130 mA (IG), 0.55 mA (IP)
Input 108 w --- 1.429 w (output) 175 mA (IG), 0.62 mA (IP)

(Note that the IG and IP readings do not exceed the ones given by the manufacturer)

With 120 watts from my TS-830S, I saw 1500 watts coming out from the TL-922. Not bad, isn´t it?. I wonder how much power will put out if connected to 220 volts, but I will not make the experiment, hi,hi.

The only thing I dislike is the loud relay. It was not worth to change it for a quiet one because it works perfect and is quite solid.

I enjoy very much working with it and I am sure that if we keep the
recommendations suggested by the manufacturer, this amp will last for ever. It is built like a tank and makes a nice looking piece of gear on the shack.

73, Carlos
EA1XF
 
ON4UQ Rating: 4/5 Jun 24, 2009 01:21 Send this review to a friend
Easy to use, compact, nice to see...  Time owned: more than 12 months
My former amp was the 1200 Watts made by AMP UK. I had been too badly surprised about what I had seen when opening the case...

I purchased the TL-922 second-hand from a CB-fanatic.
Of course, I knew the tubes were poured down to the last eV (...!) but I also knew the most strategic part (= the bandswitch!) was brand new because it had never been turned!

What I saw in it was amazing: dual shielding, tank coils made of silver-plated copper pipe, redundant anti-idiot proof circuit and interlock.
The way this amplifier was built was just the same as the professionnal transmitters I operated while sailing as a radio officer in the Belgian Merchant Navy...

This amp is easy and accurate to tune, nice to see, built as a german WW2 bunker. Sixty years later, most of them don't anymore exist, but for sure the big loud switching relay will survive the next war...

Another point to mention is that the upper cover never becomes warm: it simply means the cooling is efficient.
My 3 cats loved to sleep on the case of the AMP-UK after I switched it off; they don't put any interest in the TL-922 sleeping place..

It gives about 900 W out in CW, but where is the difference between 900 and 1000 W out? Less than 1 dB.

The only negative point is that the HV transformer is a little bit short. The "protective clixon avoiding the transfo to overheat" is not a protection circuit, but simply proves that the transfo overheats because the iron is too small and the secundary wire too thin for giving the full input power during a long transmitting time. That's why I only gave 4 instead of 5...
The "Latour" voltage doubler gives a sufficient HV regulation but this can be improved by using new (bigger value in same dimensions)electrolytic capacitors, but anyway, if you want a table-mount but not too bulky amp, you have to make some compromises...
 
K5LG Rating: 5/5 Jun 3, 2008 06:44 Send this review to a friend
good amp but noisy relay  Time owned: more than 12 months
The 922 is a good solid amp that I have used since 1988 . It will put out about 1200w-1300w with new graphite tubes. It is a well constructed amp and I have never done any mods to it.

I recommend it highly
 
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