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Reviews Categories | Antenna Tuners | ICOM AT-500 Help


Reviews Summary for ICOM AT-500
ICOM  AT-500 Reviews: 13 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $Check at: http://www.aade.com/h
Description: medium power automatic ATU
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.icomamerica.com/amateur/index2.html
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K4PDM Rating: 5/5 Aug 18, 2001 06:36 Send this review to a friend
Excellent accessory  Time owned: more than 12 months
The AT-500 amazed me with its matching ability, in many cases beyond its rated SWR range. I used it with an external balun, 370 foot zepp fed with ladderline, and a 400 watt amp. Imagine using 400 watts into a zepp with an autotuner! The AT-500 made this possible, and the built-in automatic antenna switch was icing on the cake. Highly recommended!
 
KG4LRU Rating: 5/5 Aug 16, 2001 06:47 Send this review to a friend
Simple and Fast (no fuss tunning )  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
This tuner when coupled with Icom Radio has been great auto tunes in seconds and when coupled with their 2 KL amp is makes for a winning combonation. I use it on 42 foot dipole with no problems can be switched to manual mode for non Icom radios very compact self contained power supply and can be manual adjusted to bring swr down for those out band contacts that you need too make. They never break, I payed 300.00 and seen good ones for 255. /400 for like new in the box unit.
 
DK3QN Rating: 5/5 Jul 23, 2000 11:04 Send this review to a friend
fast automatic ATU  Time owned: more than 12 months
I'm using my AT-500 for over 7 years now. Bought it second hand for about US $ 350. The selling price for a new unit was around US $ 650 in DL-land some years ago.

General:

This is a fabulous tuning unit. Because it is fast, as tuning can be preset to the individual antenna(s) or - if not preset - tunes typically within a few seconds. All it needs to tune
an antenna from scratch is providing some 20 to 30 watts of output (minimum).
You can perform the tuning method even by whistling into the mike or sending a few
dots or dashes with your keyer. After 3 or 4 seconds you are set.

Tuning limitations:

There might be some cases where the individual TRX initially sees an high SWR and folds back
the power to a few watts only, thus the AT-500 may not get enough power to start the automatic
tuning process. This situation very much depends on the behaviour of your TRX under high SWR, especially when the antenna(s) are not pretuned.
I am using a shortened trap dipole for 80, 40 and 30 meters (2x14m long). My worst case tuning scenario is on 80m. Here, the resonant frequency is at 3.660 MHz (European 80M band!). Due to the limited length of the dipole on 80m, the SWR climbs pretty rapidly towards the upper and lower segments of the band. The AT-500 allows me to use most of the CW portion of 80m
(i.e. between 3.6 and 3.5 MHz) providing a resonable SWR to my TRX/amplifier. In that portion of 80m I am faced with an SWR of between 1:3 and 1:8 which the AT-500 brings down to an acceptable SWR for my set-up. However, I do NOT recommend to run high power from an amplifier into the AT-500 at those SWR levels!

Interfacing with an TRX.

This ATU can be used with almost any kind of TX/TRX. It sports a manual band selector on the front panel for usage with non-Icom Rigs. Together with (some) Icom Rigs there is a means of controlling the bands from the Icom Transceiver. This requires a cable interlink to the tuner and then you just need to select the 'AUTO' position on the AT-500 band select and leave it there
for the rest of your (Icom) life.

Use with an amplifier:

I use this AT-500 together with my Yaesu FL-7000 amplifier, as the built-in tuner of the Yaesu amp is too lazy for me to generate the desired value-add. The spec says that the AT-500 can handle up to 1 KW PEP. I have not particularily tried that out. However, since years it handles the 500 to 700 watts PEP provided by the FL-7000 with ease. So it should work nicely together with any transistorised amplifier in that power class, like an Ameritron AL-600 etc.

Availability:

To my knowledge Icom has stopped production of the unit some years ago, which is a real pity.
So the only way of getting one nowadays is by second hand. Check it out before buying it.

Klaus, DK3QN

(email to: DK3QN@aol.com)
 
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