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Author Topic: Ameritron solid state amps way backordered?!?  (Read 1432 times)
AE6RF
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« on: September 22, 2007, 12:15:23 PM »

Hello all,

I'm getting ready for a county DXpedition during the California QSO party and wanted a light-weight amp to go along. I don't trust my SB-200 to hold up to a contest and my AL-80a is too darn heavy to take on the road.

So, having done well in consulting recently, I thought I'd get a AL600S.

Called HRO. Turns out that Ameritron is currently shipping amps for orders placed MONTHS ago. (April and May).

There was no stock and no promise date for the amps I was asking about. HRO claimed that they wouldn't give a date other than "months."

Is anybody having a different experience or know a vendor that does have stock on the AL-600S?

Thanks & 73 de Donald
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K6AER
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« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2007, 07:35:44 PM »

w2kjm has one for sale on QTH.com.
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KE3WD
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« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2007, 09:31:53 PM »

This fellow might still have one on his shelf, give a call:

http://www.hiltonsport.us/


KE3WD
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N4KZ
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« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2007, 12:54:27 PM »

Speaking of the ALS-600 solid-state amps, has anyone heard anything about Ameritron equipping the latest run of ALS-600s with the ability to use the Ameritron ARI-500 automatic bandswitch?

This is the interface that allows the ALS-500M amps to read band data from certain Icom, Kenwood and Yaesu radios for automatic bandswitching. It would seem a natural to equip the ALS-600 to use the same device for automatic bandswitching. I heard someone mention this on the air recently but I might not have gotten the full story or the info might not have been accurate.

73, N4KZ
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N4KZ
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« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2007, 08:10:46 AM »

I too was interested in buying an ALS-600 but can't find any new ones. Vendor after vendor say they are out of stock and don't know when to expect new ones.

So I called Ameritron to get the scoop. A very friendly lady who answered the phone said procuring all the needed parts and materials to build these amps is very challenging at present. And she added that I should add my name to the back-order list.

73, N4KZ
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N4KC
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« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2007, 11:32:58 AM »

Talked with Martin Jue himself at Huntsville Hamfest/ARRL National Convention back in August and he said they were gearing up, acquiring parts, and hiring people to get caught up.  Scares me a little on QC but we'll see.

Notice where you found one at HRO...with auto bandswitching.  That's exactly what I was waiting for!  Martin did say HRO would probably have stock first, then everyone else.  I may not be able to wait until WB0W, Cedar City or one of the other deep discounters get them.

Don N4KC
www.n4kc.com
 
 
 
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N4KZ
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« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2007, 11:40:16 AM »

I've had the ALS-600S with remote control and auto bandswitching for 3 weeks. It works very well and am really enjoying the convenience of a no-tune amp. I should have done this years ago. My tube amp is feeling mighty lonely these days and it's not likely to get any better.

I'm not sure how I secured this amp. I'd been searching high and low for a vendor with them in stock and coming up empty-handed everywhere. Then the evening of Oct. 18, I was surfing the Net and visited HRO's site where it suddenly -- and unexpectedly -- showed that HRO had the ALS-600S in stock. I called the Atlanta store as soon as they opened the next morning and was told they had receive one such amp from Ameritron and it was in their store. In fact, the salesman said, "I'm looking at the box right now." I bought it on the spot. Later that day, I checked their web site and it again showed the ALS-600S "Out of stock." He was serious when he said they had just one.

When I bought it, I had no idea it had new features, such as auto bandswitching capabilities. I was surprised -- very pleasantly surprised -- when I took it out of the box.

I must now purchase their ARI-500 interface in order to activate the auto bandswitching feature (a $120 investment). I might add that the front panel of the amp has been redesigned. The bandswitch has been moved to the lower right corner with an additional position labeled "Remote."

There are now two RJ-45 female connectors on the front panel near the upper right corner. The amp logo and other model text has been moved up to where the bandswitch used to be -- the top middle of the panel.

There's been a learning curve on my part. I have learned that a solid-state amp is more SWR and overdrive sensitive than any of my previous tube amps. Of course, I'd read all that before but it didn't really sink in until I had one sitting on the desk.

I hooked up the ALC cable from the rig (a Pro3) to the amp and finally have it adjusted correctly. I also reworked some coax jumpers and a coax switchbox for connecting multiple rigs to multiple antennas. There were some SWR issues that weren't so important before the new amp came along. Now I see why the more expensive solid-state amps often have internal antenna tuners for keeping the amp happy. I think I'm going to buy an auto tuner. I have a 25-year-old MFJ KW transmatch that has served me well -- and I will never part with it -- but tuning my open-wire-fed horizontal loop is a bit more critical now and having an automatic transmatch just kind of makes sense. Plus, as I get older I just want to talk and send CW more and do less adjusting of dials, conrols, meters, etc.

I still haven't run into anyone else yet on the air with one of these newly redesigned ALS-600 amps. Nothing has been said on the Ameritron web site or shown up yet in their advertising about the new features. Heck, the manual makes no mention of those two new connectors on the front panel. It still shows the older model with the bandswitch a little to the left of where you now find two RJ-45 connectors.

I originally ordered a Tokyo Hy-Power HL-1.2 Kfx 750-watt amp from HRO. But they were delayed and when this model showed up on their web site, I took a stab at it. In the end, I will have spent about the same money on the Ameritron that I would have spent on the Japanese amp (about $2K) but for that amount I will have an amp with auto bandswitching and an automatic tuner -- features not included with the THP amp or at least not at that price. Yes, I've seen the THP amps in person at Dayton and know their built quality is excellent. Probably better than Ameritron's but I like my little American-made amp and it is very robust in its protective circuitry. And I even feel a little patriotic about buying American.

Anyway, so much for dipping and peaking -- after 39 years that was getting old anyway.

73, Dave, N4KZ
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K9YEQ
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« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2009, 11:13:54 AM »

I picked one up in Jan from AES while in store.  I also got the MFJ994 and have it remotely mounted in a patio box with 12 v line running to it.  I key my K3 into it using 5 watts into the amp and it tunes to 1:1 on 160-40 meters. I have not used it on other bands.  

I have the remote cable and bandswitch but am not using it as I was able to place the amp closer to my operating position.  I would like to get the interface for the auto switching though and also want to get a QSK switch for the 600 as well.
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