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Reviews Categories | Emergency/Portable Power: generators, solar, wind, thermal, etc | N8XJK 12Volt Boost Regulator Help


Reviews Summary for N8XJK 12Volt Boost Regulator
N8XJK 12Volt Boost Regulator Reviews: 23 Average rating: 4.7/5 MSRP: $155
Description: This Boost Regulator was designed to supply a constant voltage to the radio or other equipment regardless of the battery voltage. The Boost Regulator is a switching power supply that regulates the output and boosts the voltage to your equipment. The increased voltage prevents distortion commonly seen on modern mobile radios. It also maintains transmit power and allows longer operation from a battery.
Product is in production.
More info: http://stores.tgelectronics.org/Detail.bok?no=7
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K0ZR Rating: 5/5 Apr 18, 2009 23:57 Send this review to a friend
A Must for Field Day  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This product delivers exactly what is advertised. I am so happy with this device that although I have had it a short time, I am posting my positive experience. This is a MUST for Field Day operations -- my intended use.
 
W0QE Rating: 4/5 May 21, 2008 07:33 Send this review to a friend
Very useful addition for mobile use  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have made numerous measurements on the noise from the N8XJK battery booster which can be see at http://www.bnk.com/W0QE/N8XJK_battery_booster.html for those interested. I did hear a small amount of noise which was curable. The need for the booster was due to the replacement of my IC-706mkIIg with an IC-7000 which needs a "little" more voltage to produce a 100W especially for SWRs that are not 1.0:1. See http://www.bnk.com/W0QE/IC7000_vs_IC706_mobile_pwr.html for a comparison. I am in no way affiliated with either Dan or Tim at TGE ELectronics nor am I selling anything. I have made several hundred mobile contacts with the unit installed and have over 40K mobile contacts in the past 5 years.

73, Larry, W0QE
 
WA1TNR Rating: 4/5 Mar 25, 2008 22:48 Send this review to a friend
A permanent addition to the shack  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I've owned the N8XJK 12V boost-regulator since
requesting one from Tim in early to mid 2007, when
there were fewer reviews available. Tim sends
out regular product updates via e-mail; I decided
to check with eHam to see how the unit has been
received by the ham community in recent months.

The N8XJK boost-regulator I have is an early 2007,
fanless design, and has paper labels by the switches
(2 ea.); ports (3 ea.) and indicators (2 ea.). Newer
units appear to have a silk-screened chassis. There
are more variants offered today; one is sealed for
use in a marine environment; another has a cooling
fan (and is rated for higher current than mine, I'd
guess).

After several rewrites, I've come to the conclusion
I don't know how to write a review I'd admire if
someone else wrote it. I gave the N8XJK a 4 but with
a smirk; it probably gets a 5, but I want them fancy
silk-screenings with no cost, effort or anything
else. Major Nelson had a genie; I don't and would
have to lift a finger myself ..and I'm back quiet.
 
KB9VCS Rating: 5/5 Feb 26, 2008 15:11 Send this review to a friend
Sturdy Design, performs as advertised!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Tim at TGE was great with my email questions. I received the unit promptly and wired it up to my 2 meter base/mobile rig right away. Nice that I can finally run my rig on full power (if necessary) with much more mileage off of my two deep cycle batteries in the shack before my radio starts to starve from low voltage. My opinion is that it comes with clean workmanship and top shelf performance. I ran it for over two hours the first morning with the radio at all power settings (5,10,25,60 watts) and the batteries ranging from full charge to about half discharged and it gave me the solid service that I was looking for. Features I am using include: low battery alert, adjustable output voltage and bypass/enable switch.
Also, the Anderson power pole connectors sure are convenient and make for a nice solid connection with easy detachment.
My radio is now a happy camper and ready for emergency use!
 
W1IVB Rating: 5/5 Nov 11, 2007 12:53 Send this review to a friend
GREAT PRODUCT AND EXCELLENT SUPPORT  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The device does everything it is advertised to do. It is built like a tank with perfect soldering and what appears to be quality parts. The support is superb. I had reason to call Tim and he is more than cordial and supportive even when the problem was most probably due to my action. TG Electronics is an example of how a small vendor can compete with the large corporations successfully. Tim: Thank you for marketing this item which has solved a low battery problem here at my station.
 
VK2FPR Rating: 5/5 Nov 8, 2007 04:05 Send this review to a friend
Fantastic product and supplier..  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Received my Super Booster only 5 days from the placement of my order... in Australia. Tim was very accommodating and responded very quickly to my e-mails answering all my queries in a very professional manner, overnight, because of the time difference between Aus and the US.

One of the questions was in regard to the fan noise of the 40A unit. I was pleasantly surprised that the fan wasn't as noisy as I expected and hardly even noticeable in RF switching mode when transmitting.

The case is very sturdy and the adjustment screws are easily accessible even if they are a bit stiff when new. (probably a good thing eh!)

Previously I used a 600W DC-AC inverter and a 20A switch mode power supply to do the same job but this is just so much neater, compact and robust in my 4x4.

I couldn't detect any interference or line noise attributable to the booster and it has in fact reduced some of my "engine" noise synonymous with an old Diesel.

I am very much looking forward to years of mobile and portable operation with this booster in series, allowing my voltage hungry FT-857D to pump out 100W EVERYWHERE I go.

Great product from a very professional supplier.. congratulations Tim and the team at TG Electronics.
 
KI4OFU Rating: 5/5 Oct 26, 2007 22:03 Send this review to a friend
must have for portable ops  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Even though it was a little hot at a smidgen over 14 volts when delivered, I still give this a rating of 5. What a fantastic piece of equipment! I have the original model, not the new or super models, and I just love it. It takes marginal voltage from a used-all-day battery and bumps it to a solid 13.8 volts, which means I can keep on rockin' the bands. One of my most worthwhile purchases.
 
KG7RS Rating: 5/5 Sep 6, 2007 21:11 Send this review to a friend
A Portable Op's Dream Come True  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Hi Folks,
I've had my N8XJK Booster for nearly a year and have used it on half a dozen outings, including ARRL Field Day 2007. It does exactly what the manufacturer says it does without fuss or bother. The booster utilizes a switching-mode power supply to add the difference between the supply voltage and desired output voltage with excellent efficiency. One great feature of this unit is the adjustable output voltage. My older IBM laptop requires at least 14VDC. I can set the booster for a 14.5VDC output and power both the transceiver and laptop from one battery while operating HF digital modes in the field. The regulation is excellent even under the relatively heavy load of a 100-watt HF transceiver and laptop PC. I've observed no more than a 0.3V drop in voltage at full current drain. Another significant feature is the T/R switching of this device. The transceiver runs in receive mode at normal battery voltage. When the unit senses RF through its built-in sample port, it instantaneously enables voltage boost to provide the higher voltage necessary to keep modern transceivers happy. Unkey, and the boost drops out returning to normal battery voltage. The die-cast aluminum housing provided with the booster is very heavy duty, capable of surviving the worst knocks and dings one can subject it to in the rigors of outdoor ops. The wrinkle-finish paint also appears to be very tough. The unit can be essentially made to order with your choice of input and output cable length. I chose short 1-foot cables with pre-installed Anderson PowerPole connectors. The unit is reasonably well assembled and quality components are used thoughout. I have experienced zero trouble with mine and would expect it to continue to perform well over the years based on the fairly high quality and robust construction.

There is one somewhat minor downside I have observed. There is indeed some switching mode noise easily heard on my HF transceiver. I first noticed the noise while operating Field Day on 40-meters. It is best described as the sound of a falling bomb (minus the final explosion)! Although we immediately knew the cause, the noise garnered some good laughs from our Field Day party for the rather realistic wartime sounds! Fortunately, it's not there all the time, but seemingly wanders onto the operating frequency, remaining for a minute or so, then wandering on. It typically appears every 4-5 minutes or so regardless of operating frequency. The amplitude was low, but certainly noticeable and somewhat annoying after the initial novelty wore off. It is far less noticeable on the higher frequency bands, as may be expected of switching mode noise. The good news is that it can be eliminated altogether if the T/R keying feature of the booster is used. The switching circuitry of the booster appears to be completely turned off until the rig is keyed to transmit. Folks, it always has amazed me that many HF ops experience no interference from switching-mode power supplies, while others swear they are completely unusable for HF work. Personally, I have noted noise from EVERY switching mode supply I've ever used, some more than others. Some I've found completely unusable for HF work, others have little or no discernable noise with the possible exception of 160-meters or the AM broadcast band. Given the tremendous benefit this battery booster provides for those of us who enjoy operating battery portable above QRP level, the little noise it does emit is perfectly acceptable. If the T/R keying feature is used, switching noise is a non-issue altogether.

This product was ordered by telephone after a brief conversation with Tim, who is the builder and distributor. Delivery was quick and without issues. Overall, a very noteworthy product that solves the substantial problem of low supply voltage that has plagued portable operators for a long time.

73, John, KG7RS
 
KQ4KK Rating: 5/5 Aug 3, 2007 04:26 Send this review to a friend
ROCK solid 14 VDC  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Built like a battleship part. Used it mobile, used it on Field Day. Holds any battery at 14+ VDC till it shuts down because of low battery cutoff. Got so used to it, when the alarm when off due to low battery, it surprised me. I have not run into any noise issues using on HF and VHF. When I do, I'll try the antenna sensing. It is nice that they will configure the length of the power cables with PowerPoles to your liking. This is one of those products, after you buy it, you think to yourself, I should have invented this, or I should have bought this years ago! You run off of any type of battery, you got to have one.
 
K7RFW Rating: 5/5 Aug 2, 2007 16:40 Send this review to a friend
Satisfied  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The only problem was in the order process, you have to send Tim a separate email if you want to specify the lead length and the connectors. But that was not a big issue because he also answered several questions, including a few dumb ones that I should have known the answer to. Tim is very responsive to email questions both before and after a purchase. I also emailed one of the other reviewers to double check his ratings and he was still happy with it which pushed me to purchase it.

As received I have Andersons on 12 inch input and output cables. Looking inside at the top of the motherboard I saw no glaring discrepancies in the construction (but then I am not the best solderer in the world). The unit puts out 14.2 volts, which is great since all my equipment is good to 15 V and with the stock cable from Yaesu the voltage only drops about .3 volts on transmit.

I experimented with the RF switch, and while it mostly works with a 12 inch piece of RG58 with the shield peeled back half way, I just leave it on full power all the time. Doing a 4 hour op (FT-897 at 100 W) trying to break into IOTA pileups did not result in appreciable battery discharge (53 AH gel cell). The unit warmed slightly (or was it the 98 degree day?) on some longer transmissions but not as much as I thought it would.

Talking to a few contacts on 20 and 80 meters, I am told that my signal is much better/stronger using this unit than when I was using only the battery. A few hearing tests with 80 meters (S9+ noise baseline) and 20 meters (S2 noise baseline) did not show any difference in noise levels with this unit in line or out. Of course, I have not put a Scope or SpecAn to it and checked all bands, frequencies, and modes, so this is currently subjective.

So far, a needed purchase for this portable operator. This is my limited experience, your's may be different.
 
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