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Author Topic: Solid State QSK Amplifier  (Read 1590 times)
N5CM
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Posts: 311




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« on: February 01, 2019, 02:58:49 PM »

I'm in the early portion of my consideration of a 110/120V-capable, solid state, 500W (+/-), 6m - 160m, QSK amplifier.  I operate mostly CW and have had QSK rigs from day one of my amateur radio "career".  Semi-QSK drives me nuts, and I like to listen for the DX station in pileups as I'm dropping my call into the fray.  I stop sending when I hear the DX station. 

Thus far, my blazing 100W and my wires have served me well, but there have been, and I'm sure will be, times when a little extra might help get through the pileup or complete a normal or contest QSO under marginal/QSB conditions.

As of now, my thoughts are leaning toward the ALS-606.  I would have to add the QSK-5 "box" to get QSK.

Have you had any experience with the ALS-606 with QSK-5?  Do/did you like it?

What about other amplifiers in this general price range?

I understand that even a modest directional antenna would help on the higher bands, but for various and sundry reasons, that is not currently a option.

Tnx es 73,

John  KA5GEX
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K8AC
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Posts: 1912




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« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2019, 04:24:58 PM »

The QSK-5 isn't the only option.  I use a QSK-2500 from DX Connection with my ALS-1306 and it works just fine.
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K9AQ
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Posts: 147




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« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2019, 06:20:56 AM »

The Elecraft KPA500 is an excellent 500=600 watt amplifier, using PIN diodes for QSK.

73,

Don
K9AQ
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N3DT
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Posts: 1792




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« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2019, 03:28:37 PM »

I use the (internal) QSK-5 with my AL80B and love it. It won't tolerate any High SWR though. You'll have to keep a stock of 'fuse' bulbs.
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KU3X
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Posts: 623




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« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2019, 04:36:09 PM »

I have and think the KPA500 is your best choice.
Hands down it is one of the best solid state QSK 500 watt amps on the market.
Barry
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K6BRN
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Posts: 1343




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« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2019, 09:21:57 PM »

Third vote here for the Elecraft KPA-500/KAT-500 (tuner) combo.  It just works.  Really well.  You do get what you pay for with this one.  Even better - it comes in kit form and you can spend a night or two building it.

And... its rated at 500 watts, with plenty of headroom.  Can run JT-65/9 or FT-8 all day at 500W and not break a sweat.  So... CW is no problem, either.  Small and runs off 120V, too.

Just the ticket if 500W is all you need.

Brian - K6BRN
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W1VT
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Posts: 3397




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« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2019, 06:20:28 AM »

500W works fine with my two dozen antenna farm on a 0.3 acre suburban lot.  I can work DX on 160M that I couldn't with 100 watts.  I can get on AM and easily make contacts.

Zak W1VT
« Last Edit: February 06, 2019, 06:22:33 AM by W1VT » Logged
W5WS
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Posts: 94




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« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2019, 04:57:43 PM »

The Elecraft KPA500 is cheaper than the Ameritron 606 (with linear supply) + QSK5.  If you don't mind putting a few parts together on a Saturday, the KPA500 kit will save you an extra $200.  For a fully computerized, bullet proof amp with qsk out of the box plus soft and hard faults, fault codes and other features, it's a no brainer.  I have KPA500 #117 and it's been abused (full power rtty and other digital modes during contests, transmitting into the wrong antenna, sending too much power to it) and never had a problem. 
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AA4PB
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Posts: 15066




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« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2019, 06:00:51 PM »

I got a KPA500 kit at Christmas. It's an easy, fun build. All mechanical assembly - no soldering or PC board work. All the PC boards are factory built, tested, and aligned. You just mount them in the case and plug in the various cables according to the instruction manual.
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Bob  AA4PB
Garrisonville, VA
N9AOP
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Posts: 1174




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« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2019, 08:52:40 AM »

Right, if you can run a screwdriver, you can put together the KPA500.
Art
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WD4HXG
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Posts: 379




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« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2019, 09:21:07 AM »

At $6.00 a watt it should be self assembling ?
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AC2RY
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Posts: 756




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« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2019, 02:32:38 PM »

At $6.00 a watt it should be self assembling ?

$6/watt buys you FACTORY ASSMEBLED version of amplifier AND tuner.
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W5WS
Member

Posts: 94




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« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2019, 02:36:09 PM »

The Elecraft KPA500 kit is $2100, so only $4.20/W.  My Rockmite was $29.00 and puts out half of a watt, so $58.00/W.  Seems like a bargain to me.
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W1VT
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Posts: 3397




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« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2019, 03:20:49 PM »

The Elecraft 500 watt amp and tuner/three position antenna switch are totally self contained separate boxes, so you can buy one at a time.  
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KC0W
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Posts: 761




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« Reply #14 on: February 12, 2019, 03:51:36 PM »

 It's amazing no one has mentioned a KPA500 yet. 


                        Tom KC0W
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