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Author Topic: ALS-1306 vs Al-1500 down to a decision  (Read 31653 times)
W8JX
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Posts: 13268




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« Reply #60 on: January 12, 2016, 10:57:38 AM »

I always call CQ with the amp on. I can always turn it off.

3CX1200's are very expensive now days. They have not be used commercially in over 15 years.

Most FM stations use tetroids for their final gain is not FCC controlled.

Richardson Electronics lists tube as still being used in commercial broadcast
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
KK4YDR
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Posts: 673




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« Reply #61 on: January 12, 2016, 11:45:16 AM »

That is exactly what is happening. I am working stations who give me signal reports that are weak, some are strong, but some are weak. These are stations that are in excess of 9 s units in signal to me. I work primarily on the low bands i.e. 40 and below and tend to have a decent signal. But there are some stations that come in clear that just can't hear me well. Hence my want to get an amp.

I really can't improve my antenna much more. Its already very well tended too thus far.
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KM1H
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Posts: 4722




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« Reply #62 on: January 12, 2016, 11:57:44 AM »

Quote
Richardson Electronics lists tube as still being used in commercial broadcast

Which one?
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W8JX
Member

Posts: 13268




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« Reply #63 on: January 12, 2016, 12:38:47 PM »

Quote
Richardson Electronics lists tube as still being used in commercial broadcast

Which one?

3cx1200Z7

Click Here
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
KM1H
Member

Posts: 4722




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« Reply #64 on: January 12, 2016, 02:47:23 PM »

It has been listed with a price on RFP for years, they also have a rebuilt 3CX1200A7 available for the early AL-1200's

I wouldnt buy anything from Richardson.
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W8JX
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Posts: 13268




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« Reply #65 on: January 12, 2016, 03:05:51 PM »

It has been listed with a price on RFP for years, they also have a rebuilt 3CX1200A7 available for the early AL-1200's

I wouldnt buy anything from Richardson.

I was not suggesting buying from them. Ameritron has parts to convert A7 tube amp to Z7. Its pretty rugged tube and hard to hurt tuning vs a 8877 or 3cx800 and it should last many many years or a lifetime for some. Since it is basically instant on too no need for it to spend time warmed up on standby just in case. High power tubes like this, 3cx800 and 8877 have same life time idle or working because cathode emissions are what limits life short of a major failure and cathode ages the same on standby as in use. 
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
KM1H
Member

Posts: 4722




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« Reply #66 on: January 12, 2016, 03:13:55 PM »

The only way any 1200 price will go is way up as all but hams will continue shifting to SS.

Id say the majority of hams are buying the 8877 kit from Ameritron at least while the Eimac/Chinese tube price is low.
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K6UJ
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Posts: 1352




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« Reply #67 on: January 12, 2016, 04:20:14 PM »

I have ran without an amp since I have been licensed and trust me there are times I wish I could just turn a knob and add some juice. If you have never owned an amplifier it is easy to harp on those that do or want too and say things like ... it won't make a difference. If it didn't make a difference why in the world do we even have them? Why are companies making them and selling them, why are HAMs spending thousands on amplifiers? I have my antenna as good as it can get. I can't erect a tower, but I have erected a 70' horizontal delta loop, that whilst I get regular 10 and 20 over reports when conditions are acceptable, I get subpar reports when conditions are menial. My friends I rag chew with whom have amps have 20 over signals when my 100 watts are buried. If I could make do with 100 watts thats fine but I have a dedicated group of 80 meter friends that I like to work all the time and in order to do so for years to come I need an amp.

There is no two ways about it. X.X dBi/d  MAKES A DIFFERENCE.



Eric,

The amp really makes a difference,  period.  In my experience the amp is needed more on the low bands, 80 and 160 the most.  Most of our antennas are not that efficient on the low bands because we simply
dont have enough real estate to put up a effieient antenna so we have to compromise.I am doing the best I can on my city lot.  I use a delta loop strung off the side of my tower for 80 and the apex is at 80 feet and the two bottom ends are about 10 feet high.  I feed with ladder line and the feedpoint is for vertical polarization (for DX)  It works well for DX but since I am feeding for vertical polarization I do lousy ragchewing with the locals.  They boom in but I mostly skip over them.  I tried feeding it for horizontal polarization and then I was a big gun with the locals and crappy for long distance.  I leave it now fed for DX.  I mentioned this because you said you have a delta loop also.  It makes a big difference in how you feed them.  Lastly, I need the amp on 80, sometimes I am just barely above the noise on the DX end with 100 watts.  Turn on the amp and solid copy on their end.  The amp is even more an asset
on 160..........

73,
Bob
K6UJ
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K4PDM
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Posts: 144




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« Reply #68 on: January 13, 2016, 02:54:29 AM »

I like to use my amp to encourage QRP CW stations to call me.

They hear a nice, strong signal and know that they should be able to make the contact.

A lot of hams are in noisy locations. I have it mostly quiet here and so I can copy their four watts when they could not copy me at 100 watts.
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W8JX
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Posts: 13268




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« Reply #69 on: January 13, 2016, 03:28:15 AM »

The amp really makes a difference,  period.  In my experience the amp is needed more on the low bands, 80 and 160 the most. 

It helps on 40m too especially during the day when absorption is higher and ranges are reduced. I have had many day time QSO's pushing the range limits of 40m that would not of been possible without a amp on both ends. One other benefit of a amp on these bands is it can limit QRM in that sometimes higher power signal will crowd in near your frequency but if you have some power they usually keep a little more distance because they have to a harder time rejecting your signal if it is stronger.

One of the most impressive signals I have heard on 40m was barefoot but they had a approx 9 verticals in a phased array too.
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
KK4YDR
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Posts: 673




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« Reply #70 on: January 13, 2016, 07:15:19 AM »

Very nice. I just traded for an Al-811 to play with for another few weeks until I have funds for a big boy amplifier sometime in early Feburary.
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W8JX
Member

Posts: 13268




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« Reply #71 on: January 13, 2016, 07:55:58 AM »

Very nice. I just traded for an Al-811 to play with for another few weeks until I have funds for a big boy amplifier sometime in early Feburary.

If you avoid long key down during tune up (say 5 secs or so before taking at least the same amount as a break) and limit output power to 400 to 450 watts max it should give you good service for some time if in good order at start.
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
WA3DQS
Member

Posts: 2




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« Reply #72 on: January 13, 2016, 08:25:59 AM »

I have owned both a tube amp (AL-80B) and solid state (Tokyo Hy-Power) and there's only a very slight reduction in workload when using the solid state amp.  The reason is that all of the solid state amplifiers are more sensitive to antenna SWR, and will "soft fault" somewhere around 1.5 to 1 - therefore there's more frequent antenna tuner adjustments.  Tube amps can, in general, tolerate at least a 2.0 to 1 SWR before requiring any tweaking.....If you're using an "automatic" antenna tuner, you still may run into some "soft faults" from SWR if, for example, you're working "search and pounce" in a contest.  Another minor consideration is fan noise - most tube amps have a one-speed fan, so the noise level stays the same.  Solid state amps generally have a fan that will start out quieter, but the noise level goes up as the temperature of the heatsink rises - probably louder at sustained legal limit operation.......WA3DQS....
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W8JX
Member

Posts: 13268




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« Reply #73 on: January 13, 2016, 08:33:24 AM »

Tube amps can, in general, tolerate at least a 2.0 to 1 SWR before requiring any tweaking.....

Even 3 to 1 is doable in a pinch if you throttle back a bit to limit tank circuit heating from reflected power.
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
KD8MJR
Member

Posts: 5446




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« Reply #74 on: January 13, 2016, 05:14:21 PM »

I have owned both a tube amp (AL-80B) and solid state (Tokyo Hy-Power) and there's only a very slight reduction in workload when using the solid state amp.  The reason is that all of the solid state amplifiers are more sensitive to antenna SWR, and will "soft fault" somewhere around 1.5 to 1 - therefore there's more frequent antenna tuner adjustments.  Tube amps can, in general, tolerate at least a 2.0 to 1 SWR before requiring any tweaking.....If you're using an "automatic" antenna tuner, you still may run into some "soft faults" from SWR if, for example, you're working "search and pounce" in a contest.  Another minor consideration is fan noise - most tube amps have a one-speed fan, so the noise level stays the same.  Solid state amps generally have a fan that will start out quieter, but the noise level goes up as the temperature of the heatsink rises - probably louder at sustained legal limit operation.......WA3DQS....

THP amps usually work with SWR up to 1.8
If you have a good antenna system an SWR of 1.5 or less should really not be a problem.   As for the Fans, they only go to high speed when you talk for a pretty long time, and you can also Mod a SS amp so the Fan is off when your not Transmitting.

73s
Rob
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“A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.”  (Mark Twain)
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