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Reviews Categories | Amplifiers: RF Power - HF & HF+6M | EMTRON DX-1d Help

Reviews Summary for EMTRON DX-1d
EMTRON DX-1d Reviews: 9 Average rating: 4.0/5 MSRP: $3,133
Description: A 750 watt carrier o/p or up to 1000 W PEP, for the 160m thru 10m (9 bands),desk-top linear amp with self contained power supply and cooling system.
Product is in production.
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K7GFL Rating: 5/5 May 2, 2009 13:53 Send this review to a friend
The Best of The Best  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Having been a ham since 1959 and retired from the Navy as a Chief Electronic Tech (and Radioman), I know the good stuff from the Bad. I live in a neighborhood with houses close by so didn't want a whole lot of power and the Emtron DX-1D fit the bill at at 1,250 watts input, 750 watts output. I read a lot of reviews about it, most positive and a few negative. Then I talked to Rudi, the chief engineer at EMTRON and discussed the negative reviews with him. He said that they had taken measures to improve their quality control and customer service and judging from the way my DX-1D works, I'd say he's taken care of the problems. Also, the money exchange rate between Australia and the US is extremely favorable to hams in the US wanting to buy the DX-1D from Australia.
This rig is truly a work of art, it is ruggedly built and the soldering and overall construction inside is of the highest quality. I have mine sitting on my desk next to me right now. tune up is a breeze and it has several protective devices in it that makes it impossible for you to acidently damage the internal electronics or the tube. It is extremely well built, rugged would be a good description. It is designed for 1,250 watts key down DC input to the final 24 hours a day with no let up and without the final tube overheating. it has a massive fan and for this reason, the fan does make a little noise but in my opinion, that is a small price to pay for the reward in quality and reliability. I would not hesitate for a moment to highly recommend to any ham that is interested in a real quality amplifier to look at any of the EMTRON line of amplifiers. You won't regret it. Gerald Miller - K7GFL - Chief Electronic Tech, U. S, Navy (ret.)
K8CAC Rating: 1/5 Apr 30, 2009 11:41 Send this review to a friend
Buyer Beware !  Time owned: more than 12 months
Three years ago, I purchased the Emtron DX-1D at
the Dayton Hamvention. I made a mistake by passing
up the Acom 1000 becaused I liked the concept of Emtron's front panel display all vital parameters
without switching between them. Looks can be deceiving!
After one week of use, the band switch flashed over and shorted out. After replacing Three band switches, the third switch I replaced I ordered
from Multi-Tech Industries.
The soldered 10m tap on the tank coil got so hot,
it melted the solder connection. I was only running 400 watts at the time. Never could get more than 450w/PEP on 10/12 or 15 Meters.
The 350vdc regulated screen supply has blown the HV pass transistor three times. Now, I can't find
replacement. The first replacement transistor was taken care of by George, Communication Concept in Virginia. I tried numerous times to contact Rudi at Emtron to send me another control board. George was no help because he can't get parts from Rudi. I talked to Rudi at Dayton last year
about my problems and he just smiled. In other words, I got your money so now you are on your own. Emtron doesn't honor it's warranty and as for as I can determine has no US reps or warranty service available.
It's a damn shame hams have to put up with this crap from foreign venders.
The only reason I gave the DX-1D a "1" is the amplifier concept is OK but reliablity and service is a "0". Anybody want to buy a non-working piece of junk ??
VE3CZF Rating: 3/5 May 17, 2007 13:08 Send this review to a friend
well made  Time owned: more than 12 months
Very well made but servicing is very hard to get, Rudy is well intentioned but I have had a poorly working transmit/receive relay for 3 years and had several promises to send a new one but never received. When it works properly its great.
K3GM Rating: 5/5 Oct 21, 2006 20:23 Send this review to a friend
beautifully made  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
My criteria for an amp was that I wanted one that employed the 4CX800 tube. It's a rugged, forgiving tube, that will last a long time. I found 2 amps in my price range the Emtron DX1-d, and the A*** 1000. I examined both at the 2006 Hamvention....or at least I tried. I first attempted to look at the A***. The cover was on, and the rep was not interested in removing it so I could see its innards. He also gave me the impression that he was doing me a favor by quoting me a price, and the company owner sat in his chair without so much as glance my way. The amp has a good reputation though, and I walked away reluctantly, although unimpressed with the sales staff. Next was the Emtron. It was on display with its cover off so I could examine the workmmanship and construction quality. Everything about it was first class. The chassis alone can support the components, and does not rely on the covers for stiffening. The soldering and construction is beautifully done, and the assembler should be proud of his work. The US rep was friendly, talkative, and I was greeted by Rudi, the company's CEO. Because of the price point of both of these amps, it's hard to get a number of strong opinions to help you decide. But based on the construction quality, and the friendly salesmanship, I decided on the Emtron. I must add that the price of the DX1-d has gone up from that shown in the description above. I was quoted a $3200 "show price" plus another $75 for the QSK module. The amp arrived about 1 month later. It was well packed in a double walled box and was packed securely in foam rubber. My amp was wired for 240V, but it can operate at 120V if desired. I also opted for the QSK vacuum relay. Operation is superb. The soft start is a nice feature, and it runs cool. This amp is rated for 100% duty cycle, so running AM, and RTTY are no problem. The LED bar display is a nice feature, and there are lots of indicators that monitor the amps operational state. So to sum up my review, I could have purchased a 2kW amp for the price I paid for the DX1-d. But this amp is in a different class when comparing it to them. I preferred the construction quality, and the tube reputation of this amp, and so far it has not disappointed me.
WZ4P Rating: 5/5 Jan 15, 2006 21:53 Send this review to a friend
Sales and service rep in the USA  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned my DX-1d for over a year and am
very pleased with it. The workmanship is first
class and the LED light bars give an instant
indication of all operating perameters.However
one day it developed a problem. I called Rudy
several times and explained the problem. He gave
several things to check, but was unable to locate
what was causing the difficulty. Rudy then told
that he has stateside rep and i should call him.
I called George at Advanced Communications in
Lynchburg, VA (434)237-8255 and he told me to
send the amp. to him for warranty repairs, which
I did. He replaced a defective control board and
is up and running like new.
K3SRO Rating: 4/5 Sep 22, 2005 10:13 Send this review to a friend
excellent amplifier for the money  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned the DX-1d for well over a year. It has performed flawlessly. It is very easy to tune on all bands. My only criticism is that the fan is a little noisy. The amplifier operates without ever getting hot. The photo shown in the eham reviews is not the photo of the DX-1d, but the older DX-1b model. The DX-1d has the beautiful LED displays that show all of the amps parameters at once, no analog meters. This amp even has a separate band position switch for 30 meters and the other WARC bands. The amp is well built, well designed and protected. The components are top notch. It makes a small footprint on your ham desk. The manual is very detailed and complete. Unfortunately, there are no USA service centers for warranty repair or other problems.
AA7ZC Rating: 5/5 Feb 21, 2005 20:35 Send this review to a friend
4.5 out of 5  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned the DX-1D about 15 months. During that time due to moves and other interruptions, I have only used the amplifier intermittently. If you grew up as I did dipping finals and other such matters, this amplifier is simple to use and very forgiving. I’ve only had one problem which it turns out was simple to fix once I figured it out.

After my last move, I set up the amplifier at my new location and it ran fine until all of a sudden the readings and loadings were way off. Eventually, the amplifier quit although I had plate voltage and grid current. Troubleshooting didn’t reveal anything except no power output. Anyway I got busy with other matters and had the amplifier open on my bench next to the rig. During a long QSO I was staring at the amplifier on its side and it finally dawned on me that something looked funny with the final tube. Sure enough, the tube which is in a spring loaded socket had worked loose to the point that it finally lost contact with the socket. It was probably partially dislodged in the last move. A few minutes with the socket, the spring and the tube cured the whole matter. (My bad.—I should have spotted that earlier except the tube sits inside a ceramic shield that is pretty tight and it isn’t easy to see the filaments—Hi Hi!)

Rudi is sometimes tough to track down by e-mail. Telephone is best and he has always been very helpful. If you call with a troubleshooting problem, he will call you back so you don’t have to spend your dime.

I wanted a bullet proof amplifier for MARS work for both voice and digital that would cover from 2-30 MHz. (It will cover 160 but I don’t work there.) I use T2FD antennas for HF broadband coverage and plan to add a T3FD this summer. The DX-1D normally handles the SWR variation without a tuner where my solid state amplifier will not.

Currently Army MARS operations are limited to 500 watts on HF which this amplifier handles without breaking a sweat. The amplifier also uses very low drive. I currently use a Yaesu Mark V Field running about 20 watts. I also like to metering setup very much. It is all multi-color coded and very easy to read quickly. I also got the QSK feature.

I don’t know what Rudi’s plans are for North American service are, however, the amplifier is easy to work on and very well built with a multiyear warranty.

VE3TFZ Rating: 3/5 Feb 4, 2005 10:17 Send this review to a friend
A 3.75 out of 5.0  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I decided to purchase the Emtron DX-1d primarily because of the review it received in the December, 2004 edition of QST Magazine. I received my Emtron DX-1d just before Christmas. It arrived in, all the way from Sydney Australia, in good shape. Upon arrival, I naturally took the cover to ensure that nothing loosened up during transit. I must admit, it is a very solidly built amplifier and will, no doubt, last a long time. tested the amplifier according to the enclosed manual, which included a set of measurement data, and it did everything that it was claimed to do. Testing on the air brought nothing but great audio reports, which is always nice to hear.

Some reports make the claim that the DX-1d is capable of doing 1,000 W SSB. Make no mistake about it, this is definitely NOT a 1000 W Linear amp. The most you can get out of this amp, at least the one I got, is 850 W, that is what it is designed to do. If you are the type of person like I am, who wants some headroom for comfort sake, might as well spring for the extra bucks and get the DX-2. Short of defeating the “Overload Protection” I can not see how people claim that they get 1,000 W out of this amp. I have no doubt that it will run forever at 850 W SSB. So for performance, I give it a 4.5/5.

Why 4.5? Well, I found that this amp has some issues. Firstly, I find it curious (and frustrating) that the ACOM 1000 can do 1000 W SSB “comfortably” and the Emtron DX-1d can not, considering they both utilize the same 4CX800A/GU-74B tetrode. In fact, you should be able to get 1200 W SSB out of a GU-74B, but you wouldn’t want to do that too long. It would be nice to hear from Rudi about opening up the “Overload Protection” just a bit. My second issue deals with the Slow Start circuit. The Slow Start circuit works the way it is intended to work. It utilizes a Motorola TDA1085C standard triac based motor control circuit. In fact, if you look up the TDA1085C application notes, you will essentially see the identical circuit. HOWEVER, unless you have a good LC line filter, which the DX-1d does NOT, you will get triac switching spikes radiated back on your power line which will re-radiate as RF. Unfortunately, I was able to hear this loud and clear on 160m, especially around 1.910 MHz, and no, using the noise blanker on my rig is NOT a solution. I emailed Rudi about this and he actually telephoned me on this. Claimed he would look into it and let me know what he found. (I am still waiting). To solve the problem, I purchased a commercial line filter from Corcom (at my expense) and installed it in my 240V line. Problem solved.

As far as customer service is concerned, there essentially is only Rudi. If you are lucky enough to get him to respond to one of your emails, or even better, call you back, you are dong well. Emtron is a one man operation. To date, there is no one in North America who does servicing or is available to answer stupid questions like I have, once in a while. Vince (NT4I) is no longer in business. The last time I talked to Rudi, he said he was working on N. American service. Well, work harder. So for Customer Service, I rate Emtron 3/5. Therefore, overall they get a 3.75.

ZL2ORA Rating: 5/5 Jan 8, 2004 00:39 Send this review to a friend
Pure quality  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Rudi at EMTRON made this model as an upgrade to the DZ-1b. All of his units now have the same professional black finish and the LED readouts rather than a meter. After 6 months I'm still amazed at this work of art. Quality, craftmanship, reliability, Rudi always available to ask a question. All units are full of safety features and oversize quiet cooling. The exhaust is barely warm after considerable operating and best of all a FOUR YEAR WARRANTY. I purchased mine from Australia and had it shipped to my home in New Zealand. Arrived beautifully packed, on time and performs flawlessly as advertised. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED 5 STAR

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