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Reviews Categories | Amplifiers: RF Power - HF & HF+6M | ALPHA 78 Help

Reviews Summary for ALPHA 78
ALPHA 78 Reviews: 40 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $3495
Description: 3X 8874
Product is not in production.
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KE2TR Rating: 5/5 Aug 31, 2012 07:29 Send this review to a friend
Great Amp  Time owned: more than 12 months
Had owned two different 78's, both were late serial# and both worked outstandingly well, used in day to day rag chew's,dx'ing and contests. These amps have vacume realays and nice qsk for cw, will put out the leagal limit with no problems on ssb/cw maybe for RTTY you might wanna settle it down around 1K only to save tube life(those 3CX400 aint cheap) but they are built to last. The bandpass auto tune feature is great for contest, it makes band changes between 80 thru 15 easy but you do have to manual tune on 160 and 10, no biggy. I wish I didnt sell my last 78 but the ones on the used market today are way overpriced when you consider the price of the tubes but if you can find one for around $1200-$1500 thats an excellent used amp for those prices. The one thing thats good is the company still supports the older amp's but rememeber there old amps so components will fail so dont overpay for a used amp even if its an Alpha.
WC2L Rating: 5/5 Aug 30, 2012 17:26 Send this review to a friend
Workhorse Amp!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Love the amp! The amp had the sticky paint. Replaced the front panel and had the cabinet painted black. The amp just keeps working. The amp is now at a contest station in the NE.
N6WIN Rating: 5/5 Jun 18, 2012 03:04 Send this review to a friend
Excellent contest amplifier  Time owned: more than 12 months
This amplifier is being borrowed from a great CW Sprinter (N6RT) and was once used at W6EEN's (SK) contest station. It is now in use at my QTH for domestic contests and dabbling in DX contests. It is providing my SO2R station setup with a great 2nd radio amplifier that is complimenting my Acom 2000A auto-tune amplifier nicely.

It is on 220v and puts out ~1200-1300w when operated in "SSB" mode with up to 75w drive (watch grid current to not exceed 100ma CW or 50ma SSB) using original stock 8874 tubes. It works excellent with my various resonant mono banders using the band pass mode on 80-15m with the 10m or 160m tuned manually.

I cannot see upgrading this amplifier until my friend says I can no longer borrow it.
N5XZ Rating: 5/5 Apr 16, 2012 10:52 Send this review to a friend
Fantastic Old Amp  Time owned: more than 12 months
I purchased my '78 on eBay a couple of years ago. It was listed for $1800 to bid or $2000 "Buy it Now"...I hit "Buy it Now" as fast as I could get my pointer there. I knew it would be bid higher if allowed to. Guess I got lucky. The amp has been a real workhorse and works great on all bands, including WARC bands (12 meters with the help of N4UQ. He did other upgrades as well and I am extremely pleased with them, as well as this 30-odd year old amp. I am proud to have a almost exclusively USA made station (K3, Alpha 78, Hy-Gain tower and SteppIR). Once again, a great amp!
W2MV Rating: 5/5 Feb 24, 2012 08:05 Send this review to a friend
A keeper!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Purchased the amp used three years ago...a creampuff. It loafs along at 1KW output, QSK works great, and it's solid and reliable. My only minor complaint would be the RCA phono jack used for RF input...a bit strange, would have liked an SO-239.
I would recommend this amp as well as other Alpha products...have used some of the more modern models and they're built like tanks.
W1ITT Rating: 5/5 Feb 4, 2012 13:22 Send this review to a friend
New front panel  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have an older Alpha 78 that works fine, but needs aesthetic improvement. It has the old sticky paint on both the front panel and cover so I bought a new front panel from Molly and it's nicely screened and pretty. I'll get the top cover stripped and repainted locally. It's probably time to replace the electrolytic capacitors in the high voltage supply as well but this beauty should live to fight many more battles. It's great that RF Concepts/Alpha still supports their classic rigs.
K3PG Rating: 5/5 Jan 15, 2012 17:09 Send this review to a friend
Best Old Amp  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought mine used several years ago from K5VT (sk) of the VooDoo Contest group. The amp had been to West AF several times and had spent a year in the Caribbean. The QSK board had been 'field repaired' in Africa and Vince sold it to me as sort of a project. Everything was good except for a few small parts and once I got it figured out it works great. I bought an extra set of tubes and plan on keeping it. The Band Pass mode is almost all I use. Only have to put it on the correct Band and choose CW or SSB and it is 'No Tune' Puts out close to legal limit with under 100W drive and is solid.
N5WJ Rating: 5/5 Apr 22, 2011 17:09 Send this review to a friend
Great Amp  Time owned: more than 12 months
What a great amp.. had mine for a couple of years and have it mated with my Flex 5000A rig.. and a 3 ele SteppIr antenna.. can work anything I can hear for sure.. Very Quiet amp and doesn't take much to get it to legal limit.. Usually run mine on 20 mtrs about 40 watts in for a good Clean KW out.. Sent it to Dick Byrd a couple of times for Various upgrades .. he is a super person and Tech and always has done a great job on my amp...
W2FBS Rating: 5/5 Dec 18, 2010 05:10 Send this review to a friend
Great Amp - Made Better by W4UQ!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought my 78 back in 1995. I am the second owner. I have had zero problems with it, using it daily. I recently sent it out to W4UQ for updating and what a great job he did! Added the WARC bands, put in step start and did other mods, all for far less than Alpha would have charged me. Dick even got me connected to another owner who had several tubes for sale at a great price. Now I have a full set of extra tubes too.

Legal limit output, bandpass tuning, quiet operation, what more can you ask for?

Great amp made better by the Alpha Master W4UQ.
SV1OZ Rating: 5/5 Aug 17, 2010 10:59 Send this review to a friend
SUPER  Time owned: more than 12 months
This amplifier is my best linear I ever had.
I bought it in a hamfest 1 year ago.
When I tried this beauty on all bands incl. warc I was surprised how quite was with plenty of power coming out from 3 8874 tubes.
I really enjoy to work RTTY full output 1-1,5kw for hours without any sign of problem.
The power supply has a heavy duty transformer which never complained with noise on high output.
This little beauty will stay in my shack for ever.
Photos in my shack can be found at
If I ever buy another will be 9500...
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