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Reviews Categories | Antenna Tuners | PalStar AT10 Help


Reviews Summary for PalStar AT10
PalStar AT10 Reviews: 1 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $1,995.00
Description: High Power Antenna Tuner
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.palstar.com
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You can write your own review of the PalStar AT10.

W4HBM Rating: 5/5 Feb 19, 2008 04:57 Send this review to a friend
Handles QRO Well  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
There is no competition for this unit. Paul went well out on the amateur limb to introduce this product. Not only is there the tuner, but included in the deal is the outboard power display Palstar uses as the readout.

The tuner uses a couple of vacuum variable caps and a roller inductor. All of which are controlled by turns-counters for repeatability.

Never mind the small stuff. It's all there, including a vacuum relay to swap between Coax and ladder lines, and a fan to cool off the roller inductor, etc.

What I needed was the beef. I just didn't have time to slap a tuner together. After seeing the guts for the AT10K in a picture I knew this was going to handle the RTTY wattage the HB amplifier in the company's radio shack was capable of.

Additionally, the station works 160 meters, and finding a tuner that encompasses 1.8 MHz at all is a find.

The units were packed in two boxes: The tuner itself and the wattmeter. The wattmeter has a sensor box with a 1/4" stereo jack to hook up to the readout box.

The readout box has Alarm contacts the user can program: Forms A and B to work other gear in case of mishap, (like the FM-200 release circuit in case of a meltdown). Additionally, there is a mishap-related Keying Interrupter that will unkey the amplifier or the rig itself if properly wired, should a situation appear like high SWR. The mishap situations can be programmed into the unit. High power, Low power, High SWR, etc.

I wasn't one for the bargraph meters after being burned by the Emtron glitch, but after trying it in the AT10 I'm once more in the fold: The meter bargraph slowly increments when tuning the various segments of the AT10. No sudden surprises. Of course, the station has redundant FWD/REF meter readouts, analog displays except for the Palstar, with sensors before and after the amplifier, and these agree with the Palstar well.

This unit isn't worth it if you run a couple of hundred watts and are financially wary of new equipment. The unit IS worth it if you run output devices that cost thousands to replace, as the tuning components are eclipsed by the wattmeter protection circuitry that's a whole bunch faster than the human operating the rig.

The unit is very heavy and takes up a big footprint. When compared, however, with Bliss MatchMasters it's not that different, and the remote unit can go anywhere convenient.

Hal Mandel
W4HBM
 


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