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Reviews Categories | Power Supplies | Astron RS-20M Help

Reviews Summary for Astron RS-20M
Astron RS-20M Reviews: 23 Average rating: 4.9/5 MSRP: $130.00
Description: 13.8 VDC, 20 A Linear Power Supply (with separate volt and amp meters)
Product is in production.
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KG7OR Rating: 5/5 Oct 18, 2017 06:20 Send this review to a friend
Old Reliable  Time owned: more than 12 months
Bought it in 1991; still use it many hours per day for my VHF base radio.
No induced noise in the radio.
No vibrating or other noise from the unit.
I never have to do anything to it except turn it on and off.
Can't ask for much more than that.
KS4HY Rating: 5/5 Nov 6, 2014 06:33 Send this review to a friend
Reliable servie since 2004  Time owned: more than 12 months
I purchased an Astron RS-20m in 2004 to run with a Kenwood TS-450sat. I have also used it to run a Kenwood TS-850sat. I have had zero problems with mine. Very happy with my purchase.
K4HYJ Rating: 5/5 Nov 12, 2012 14:39 Send this review to a friend
Built like a tank!!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have been running it at near capacity powering some ham radio equipment. It sees several hours of use each day.

Simple straight forward layout and heavy duty binding posts - mine came with rated ring terminal connectors to use, nice touch!

No noise on any band (160-.23cm) including SWL, general AM and FM listening. It just works!!

Now I need a bigger one for an HF amp!!
WU6X Rating: 4/5 Sep 28, 2012 17:23 Send this review to a friend
Great supply, but no easy adjustment  Time owned: more than 12 months
This supply has been rock-solid for years. I trusted the front panel meter to be accurate. One of my VHF radios power out was not as expected so checked the power supply output with a Fluke-83 meter and was surprised to find the output was 1 volt lower than the front panel meter. The output voltage plus power cord drop was killing my output power on the rig.

So, I re-calibrated the meter and thought, I'll just tweak the supply up a volt. Well, although I'm reading this is possible, it can't be done without disassembling the unit; incredible that the manufacturer did not include at least a hole in the chasis to get to the adjusment.

Check your output at the PS terminals with a good meter and re-calibrate the front panel meter on the unit. Hopefully, yours will be closer to 13.8 volts.
NW6V Rating: 4/5 Jun 20, 2012 16:45 Send this review to a friend
Old, and possibly showing its age  Time owned: more than 12 months
A few weeks back (May 2012) I pulled my RS-20M out of a moving box full of station gear in which it sat for 20+ years.

Happy to report that it's now providing power for various station accessories, and the voltage remains rock-solid. And if that were all there is to the story, I'd give it a 5.

I don't remember how the unit operated when new, but this unit now powers up with a bang and is mechanically (not electrically) noisy; a constant AC hum emanates from the case, probably caused by transformer windings or core plates that loosened with age.

How loud? Well, except when I'm transmitting (at which point my equally old IC-740's internal fan comes on and drowns out the hum) it is by far the loudest noise in the shack - louder than the drone of two computer fans and drives in the same room. Also understand, I generally LIKE background noise because I have tinnitus - a loud squealing noise in my ears - and background noise can help "mask" this infernal incessant racket, but this hum makes it worse if anything, and can get pretty annoying. I wouldn't dream of leaving the PS on when not in use.

Since this 20 Amp model is not enough to power accessories plus the current rig (let alone the newer rigs which invariably spec 23 Amps) I was planning to replace it anyway, but were that not the case, this is something I'd want to fix - or discard.

Loose windings or whatever are perhaps understandable for a PS that sat around for decades not being used. Accordingly, I don't think this in ANY way should be construed as a criticism of Astron; even granite wears to dust over the ages. But if I were buying a used unit - off E-Bay or some such - I'd specifically inquire about mechanical noise when powered up.

I'm hard pressed to imagine that new units exhibit this issue, so I'll probably pick up an RS-35M in the next week or two. If that proves equally noisy (I've no reason to expect it will) it will be returned.

73, Chris NW6V
KJ4QAN Rating: 5/5 Aug 5, 2011 13:42 Send this review to a friend
Built like a tank.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I like a linear supply because they are just plain more reliable. This one gives nice clean power. I put it on a scope. There's just no hash. Not even at 5mV. I've been using mine with a Yaesu FT450 on SSB and it works just fine. Even at 100W the duty-cycle of SSB makes the supply barely warm and the voltmeter never moves. The meters are nice and big and easy to read. I read on the net that somebody replaced the incandesant bulbs with blue LEDs. That would be cool. Maybe I'll use tri-colored LDSs and put a selector switch on mine.
N1UHF Rating: 5/5 Feb 10, 2011 12:11 Send this review to a friend
Fantastic power supply  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought this PS about 8 years ago, used it as my power supply through most of those years. It always supplied clean and capable power. I really like the Ammeter and Voltmeter version as I can always tell what's going on.
It is a heavy beast at 17 lbs compared to the newer switched supplies, though i'm sure big ones are even heavier! Surely not for dragging around for portable or emmcom i recommend a good switching supply. But for home base use this one and other Astron metered versions are excellent.

The reason i'm leaving this review today is because a last week the lighted power switch on mine failed. I called Astron today in CA, and they took my name and address and said they were going to send a switch out to me free of charge. They didn't even ask me how old the power supply was! What a great company...
W4DXL Rating: 5/5 Mar 21, 2010 12:05 Send this review to a friend
I was able to kill one!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I ran this power supply for years, it was a bit underpowered for what I was doing. It ran 2 VHF radios and 2 HF radios without complaint for many years. Then I got a new HF rig that needed even more power and the RS-20M just couldn't keep up, the main fuse blew. I put a new fuse in but no joy, I probably toasted a transistor. My fault totally I have pushed this supply way too hard and it finally cried uncle when I hit transmit on AM. I will fix it and use it in a less demanding application. I'm sure it will again work for many years.
KB0XR Rating: 5/5 Sep 10, 2009 04:35 Send this review to a friend
Mine is good  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had mine cooking on the operating desk for about 17 years now. Very boring. Apply power and it works.
KJ4GXU Rating: 5/5 Sep 9, 2009 14:02 Send this review to a friend
Great power supply  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I picked one of these up at the Huntsville Ham Fest last month and have been using it to power a TS-2000. It pushes full power out on SSB without a single complaint. I have it under the desk because due to the space so the meters aren't such an issue for me but if I had it on the desk it might be interesting to watch the current draw.

For 60 bucks this was an incredible deal for me.
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