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Reviews Categories | SWR & Wattmeters & Dummy Loads | Array Solutions Powermaster Help


Reviews Summary for Array Solutions Powermaster
Array Solutions Powermaster Reviews: 193 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $400.00
Description: 5% accuracy, temperature and frequency compensated, 1.8-54 MHz, peak-hold modes, bargraph display of power and SWR for easy antenna system matching, PC programmable via RS232, more.

I use two of these meters in my own station, no suprises there for sure, they are great! But we're adding features you may want to know about. The accuracy is NOW 3% with our HP equipment technique which calibrates out more uncertainty. The coupler heads are interchangeable from HF to uWaves with the new LITE 3.0, and all instruments in the field will be upgradable to a new feature, the COUPLER SCANNER. It will automatically scan multiple couplers for you. Pretty cool stuff. AND more features to come.

Product is in production.
More info: http://www.arraysolutions.com/Products/powermaster.htm#top%20of%20page
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W7CPA Rating: 5/5 Jun 3, 2011 13:42 Send this review to a friend
Best in Class  Time owned: more than 12 months
Continuous duty for 2+ years and no problems. Superb performance and features. Latest release includes a handy menu option to refresh the little dots on the display back to like new intensity.
 
K5YY Rating: 5/5 Apr 29, 2011 18:18 Send this review to a friend
Just simply the best  Time owned: more than 12 months
I will make this brief. The Power Master is the only wattmeter accessory you will need in your station lineup, unless you need several for many station positions. The Power Master is so informative, quick, great pixel readouts, multiple functions to control your amplifier in case of high SWR or too high a power output, etc. The SECOND part of my review involves the Customer Support which I consider the ABSOLUTE best in the ham radio industry! I have been a ham for 53 years and have had almost all the equipment that has come out since the late 1950s. Customer Service is SO important in selecting a company to buy from, even if the product itself is excellent. There are only 2-3 companies that I have always respected the "after the sale" service and support structure. Array Solution is my #1 in Customer Support. They go BEYOND the norm to make things right throughout the life of the products they sell. Bob and Jay are in an elite group when it comes to integrity and willingness to help after the sale.
 
W8KC Rating: 5/5 Mar 21, 2011 13:41 Send this review to a friend
GREAT meter  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I considered a long time about spending the money for the Powermaster meter. My success with the Bird PEP kits has not been great. So I decided to spring for the Powermaster. Great meter. It's a pleasent addition to the shack. It allows you to do so much with the meter. I just wish for the cost of the meter they would throw in the extra software.
 
W8YG Rating: 5/5 Mar 9, 2011 19:30 Send this review to a friend
Fantastic meter  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought the power master and at 1st it was giving me weird readings. I over looked the instructions to set the meter by the numbers on the coupler. I was really let down so I emailed array solutions and the same day I got a reply and the meter is set up properly. I would also like to thank array solutions for being patient with an old fart like myself.
This is more meter than I will ever need. I love it and it aint going no where. Oh and before you buy a product if you have questions call them 1st. I will assure you they do support their products.
 
W4ISH Rating: 4/5 Dec 17, 2010 11:17 Send this review to a friend
Additions to Powermaster review  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
After communicating with the staff at Array Solutions, I received more information which was an attempt to counter my objections. I wish to emphasize here that my "cons" were subjective observations, and not necessarily the opinions of anyone else. The Power Master is a great instrument, and this I can not deny. But my own misunderstandings after reading the blurbs and advertising, along with a lack of detail about the issues pointed out (lack of pictures, lack of information which would say to contact them to find out how to connect more than one unit, etc.) led me to think it offered more than it actually does. It was this sense of false expectation which led to my rating. As I stated, to some individuals, the unit rightly deserves 5 stars. To me, since I was aware of what more such a unit can do, the unit was a slight disappointment, and thus the four star rating. If I could, I would give it 4 and half stars. But because of how I experienced it (and eham does say to "describe your EXPERIENCE" with the item!), and because I cannot award half stars, the four star rating must stand.
I will also let others know that the spelling errors in the program will remain since, regrettably, the author of the software is now a SK. Array Solutions is searching for another programmer, and no doubt the software will evolve from there, and corrections will be made. The company works hard to continue their excellent products and reputation, and I believe they are a very conscientious organization, and admire their work.
 
W4ISH Rating: 4/5 Dec 15, 2010 09:14 Send this review to a friend
Quality Measurements -- At a Price  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Although just installing the Powermaster, I have had experience with other digital SWR meters.

Summary:
As far as the PM is concerned, it seems to be quite accurate and versatile: It agrees with my other meter (an LP-100) and seems easy to use. It is straight forward in its use of menus to set it up, even though you can use the included software to set it up (more on the software later). The size fit in well with my other meters and the display is easy to read.

Pros:
Fast, accurate readouts and data for quick tune-ups, along with amplifier protection (PTT cutoff) and notification of when your amplifier is not putting out the power it should be putting out.

Large display for easy viewing by both young and older eyes.

The Low power alarm is a nice addition for those times when I think the amplifier is working, but for some reason it is not!

The ability to enter trimming values for your particular coupler is essential of accuracy. My coupler came with the trim values of 0, 0, 0, and -1 at 50MHz, which attests to the basic constructed accuracy of the units even without the trim values!

Cons:
The inability of displaying the VSWR when less than 5 watts of forward power eliminates the wider use of this meter for those wishing to run QRP (Of course, this product is designed more for those who wish to run QRO!)




Items for improvement:
1) Newer hams (who probably would not be purchasing this item) may not realize that the white stripe on the coaxial plug power cable is the positive line and should be connected to +12 V, not ground. (A small item, but potentially dangerous to the unit if hooked up with reverse polarity)

2) Both software and the downloadable manual have many instances of the misspelling of "Parameter" as "Paramater". ( Who or what is beside (para) whose mother (mater)?)

3) Pictorial instances of how to install the directional coupler between the Transmitter and Tuner (or Amplifier and Tuner) would be helpful in this age of visually oriented hams.

4) This meter is advertised on Array Solutions' pages to provide for "multiple couplers on one display head -- Just add them together with an adapter" -- but I could not find the adapter listed on their web site, nor did I see any instructions for building one in the literature. If all it takes is to switch in different cables from different couplers,(a simple and cheap procedure) I wonder how the software takes into account the different coupler trimming values? If you have to go in and enter the values each time you switch the couplers, this does not seem to be very convenient.

Comments:
Although this is an excellent measuring device, it is not the best value for the money. The LP-100A, (http://www.telepostinc.com/lp100.html) for a little less than the price of the Powermaster has more functions, better software and equal accuracy. The upcoming LP-500 will duplicate the Powermaster's functions while adding more, and be in color, besides! Of course, the price will be more, also.

The Powermaster is an excellent unit when considered by itself, but there is so much more that it could be capable of doing (such as providing reactance, resistance, impedance and or phase values) that I had to lower the rating to 4 stars. The software is dated and does not fill the needs of the modern, more advanced user in today's information hungry world. For the rag-chewer, the high-power addict or the person who believes price and/or name equates value, then this would rate 5 stars. For the leading-edge experimenter, or the person who wants all the data about his or her system, then the powermaster is not the best product for the shack.
 
WZ1U Rating: 5/5 Dec 4, 2010 09:06 Send this review to a friend
Excellent meter  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had my Power Master meter for a year and have had no issues. Its a quality meter and makes it nice with the remote coupler...If your looking for a well built accurate meter this is the one....You get what you pay for....
 
G0ATV Rating: 5/5 Nov 16, 2010 09:32 Send this review to a friend
Array Solutions powermaster  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
what a meter, so many features, a little pricey over here in the UK but once used trust me there will be no other meter.Tested along side 2 major competitors and knocked them both for six.A nice partner for my Ameritron 811 and even for absent minded hams like me a perfect safety net with the features in the meter to switch out the amp.
 
N4RSS Rating: 5/5 Sep 2, 2010 14:32 Send this review to a friend
Update  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Based on recent dummy load readings and comparison to readings from my OCF dipole, the PM accurately portrays net power=forward-reflected for my SWR's of up to 1.6, so I can reasonably rely on the net power reading as being real power into my antenna.
 
N5YCN Rating: 5/5 Aug 23, 2010 07:41 Send this review to a friend
Commercial Quality, First Class!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The Powermaster is absolutely the best investment I have ever made to my station. Highest quality materials and workmanship. This is no cheap hobby box type meter. Is it expensive...well yes and no. Right at $500.00 with shipping to my door but consider this, as with anything in life, you get what you pay for! The Powermaster puts my Bird 43 out to pasture, may it rest in peace. This is a commercial quality meter and one quick click of the microphone gives you a complete overview of what's going on with your station. This is the one piece of equipment that will not be sold or traded. The folks at Array Solutions are serious about customer service too. Real people actually answer the phone and are more than willing to address any questions or concerns you may have. A Super Product!
 
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