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Reviews Categories | Keyers & CW Keyboards | HamGadgets MasterKeyer MK-1 Help

Reviews Summary for HamGadgets MasterKeyer MK-1
HamGadgets MasterKeyer MK-1 Reviews: 22 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $169.00
Description: The MasterKeyer MK-1 breaks new ground both in features and in ease of operation. Six multi-color, LED illuminated pushbuttons give instant access to stored messages any of five banks -- that's 30 messages in all, over 7500 total characters. Changing colors tell you whether a message is being sent or recorded. A large, smooth operating, machined aluminum speed control knob is used to set the speed within whatever range you decide. The smooth, sine-wave sidetone lets you hear what you're doing at all times. Of course it can be muted, or turned up with the rear panel mounted volume control for room-filling sound - ideal for code training and practice sessions. Commands to change options and messages can be sent from your paddle, or plug into your computer's USB port for easy, text-based setup!

The latest low-power embedded microcontroller technology is used to give you the features you want, with the ease of operation you need. Advanced operating modes such as message pause, auto-repeat (beacon), QRSS and HSCW are a snap -- and with future firmware upgrades, even more features are just a quick (and free) upgrade away.

Of course the MasterKeyer can be used as a top-quality, fully featured stand-alone keyer, with no computer or keyboard. All the operating features you expect, and some you may not, are built in and ready to use. The built-in USB capability can add a whole new dimension to your operating! The USB host connector can be used to load new updates directly from a USB FLASH drive, without using a computer. You can also save all operating parameters and memory contents to a FLASH drive, so you don't risk accidentally losing your settings. Edit the simple text file if you wish to suit your exact needs. The ability to save and load the entire configuration makes this keyer perfect for clubs and contest stations!
Product is in production.
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K2II Rating: 2/5 Nov 18, 2015 12:33 Send this review to a friend
Has one major problem  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought my new MasterKeyer MK-1 just as they were going obsolete. I had high hopes for it. The problem I have and cannot solve is that unit records my 'CQ' or message and then certain letters get scrambled togther. The spacing of some letters play back wrong. For example, my call sign is K2II. The two letters 'I' come out as a crude letter 'H.' I have contacted the company and am waiting for a reply. I really hope this problem can be resolved because the unit is otherwise very nice. I also have the AEA MM-3 (Morse Machine) which is almost 20 years old and it works flawlessly. The MasterKeyer physical layout is easier for my to use with the unit on an upper shelf on my operating desk.
KK1MM Rating: 5/5 Feb 15, 2014 15:24 Send this review to a friend
Awesome!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I love this keyer, easy to use, easy to program. computer interface is excellent, simple to use with a keyboard, firmware updates a doddle, instructions very clear. I particularly like having the easy set speed. N0XAS really has thought of everything. I wish all my gear was this good.
NA6D Rating: 5/5 May 12, 2013 19:02 Send this review to a friend
Great Product  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Bought it for using in contests, but been too busy to get on. Nonetheless, this is a feature rich product. Probably overkill for someone who may be a casual CW op. I have owned MFJ memory keyers in the past, but this is infinitely superior. Would highly recommend.
NZ8J Rating: 5/5 Sep 21, 2012 17:19 Send this review to a friend
Great Features !!!!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This is a full featured keyer that I have had my eye on for sometime but just never got around to getting one. Well I ran into an issue with keying a ALS-500 solid state amp with an IC-7600. The relay in the amp is too slow for the IC-7600 key output and there is no way to change the amp key timing on the 7600 that I know of. I know there are other solutions to the problem, but this was the nudge I needed to try the MK1 because it has adjustable "lead/tail" timing for the AMP KEY out function it has. It worked beautifully, I can key the amp directly from the MK1 and set the AMP key to activate prior to the KEY OUT going active. Result is that the radio no longer sees a high swr for that fraction of a second. A secondary benefit is the wonderful keyer itself. It is certainly full featured but extremely easy to set up and operate. Dale has a hit a home run with the MK1 keyer.
Tim NZ8J
N0GRA Rating: 5/5 Jun 6, 2012 15:07 Send this review to a friend
Remarkable Keyer  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had this keyer for several years now. I use it and a couple of other keyers. I like trading them off just for fun. ( K-5, MFJ 409D, plus I own several others I don't use any longer)

During the time I have had the keyer, I have done one hardware upgrade (for free!) and several firmware upgrades. I don't know of any other keyer that offers firmeware upgrades to current already out the door products.

I read KM4VX review, and I don't doubt the sincerity of his remarks. This is a feature rich keyer, and thus complicated and not a "two page" manual like my MFJ keyer. I had to read the manual a couple of times, all the way through, to figure out what I needed to do. But, it is very through, which I found really helpful, and provided me (a very non-teche psychiatric social worker ) the details I needed to know to configure the keyer the way I wanted.

The manual is on the internet, and who would not like a hard copy in addition to this. But, the routine upgrading of the firmware really does require a manual that can likewise be " up graded", and the internet is probably the only cost effective way to do this.

I have not tried all the keyers out there, but I have tried more than any sane person probably should. This is a wonderful keyer, give it the time it deserves, and know you will be getting the very best

73, Grant
K6CF Rating: 5/5 Jun 1, 2012 14:19 Send this review to a friend
Great Keyer!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had my MK-1 for well over a year now. It has replaced two other well known brand keyers that I used for years. Ever since I put my MK-1 on the air, I have not looked back. Customer service and tech support have been great. Frequent email updates and firmware upgrades have kept my MK-1 performing much better than expected. I love the features, especially the keyboard interface.

The MK-1 is a quality product that performs at an outstanding level with great customer service and tech support. For the money, it is an excellent value too. I am a very happy camper!
KM4VX Rating: 3/5 May 26, 2012 16:50 Send this review to a friend
Very Complex   Time owned: 0 to 3 months
My previous review was based on extreme frustration in working with this unit. I believe the absence of a printed manual and the disorganized way in which the instructions are presented make it very difficult to easily bring this unit to operational status. I am confident many if not most Hams enjoy the quality workmanship; for me the effort is not worth the gain. The instructions should be A-Z and focus on how to program for normal use, not arcane minutiae for a limited number of users. One cannot follow the information on a computer screen due to the way it is organized. For the price a printed manual would be helpful.
NU7J Rating: 5/5 Dec 18, 2011 22:17 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Features, High Quality, Outstanding Support  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've used the MK-1 for well over a year now and love it. I've used many different memory keyers and this is the best one by far. It's designed to operate from a wide range of voltages and is protected from over voltage or reverse power connections. The side tone sounds great and is adjustable, unlike some other keyers I've owned. Dale has obviously put a lot of time and effort into the design and build. The build quality is superb. It has an amazing set of features and Dale is incredibly responsive to feedback. The MK-1 can be updated via firmware to incorporate new features or corrections. One of the features that I like to use is the variable amp key timing, which prevents hot switching of my old SB220 amplifier. I also use the WinKey function for contesting. I highly recommend this keyer, or any other products that Dale comes up with!
K8EAB Rating: 5/5 Dec 18, 2011 16:50 Send this review to a friend
The perfect keyer for my needs ...  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I received my MasterKeyer MK-1 as a Christmas present in 2010. For many years prior to receiving this unit, I have bought or built numerous electronic keyers hoping to find that one keyer that worked so well, I would never have to search again. For me, the MK-1 is that keyer. I can rest my right hand near the memory push-buttons on top of the case and turn the speed knob with my thumb. This keyer has never missed making a character or hung-up due to RF getting into the electronics. It has many features that I have not used (I’m not a contester) and so far I’ve not hooked a keyboard up to it.

I realized after almost a year of using the MK-1 that I no longer look through HRO catalogs, QST ads, or eBay pages trying to find “the perfect electronic keyer” … for my needs, the MK-1 from HamGadgets is all I need …

73, Weymouth (Wey) Walker
WA2SON Rating: 5/5 Sep 17, 2011 11:28 Send this review to a friend
Complete, glitch free and user friendly  Time owned: more than 12 months
Anyone attempting to send morse code using the 'squeeze' or 'Iambic' method soon realizes there IS a difference in keyers. Most are not user friendly requiring precise paddle timing on the part of the operator. The MK-1 (and also the Pico Keyer) make sending Iambic code not only very easy but most of all effort free. Features like automatic and variable character spacing enable the operator to send near perfect code.

Customer support and genuine friendliness are tops and make dealing with HAMGADGETS a true pleasure.

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