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Reviews Categories | Amplifiers: RF Power - HF & HF+6M | Cubic 1500ZA Help

Reviews Summary for Cubic 1500ZA
Cubic 1500ZA Reviews: 2 Average rating: 4.5/5 MSRP: $(missing—add MSRP)
Description: With two 572B's and tuned input this amp came from the factory with 80 to 15 Metre coverage.
Product is not in production.
More info: http://
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N8YX Rating: 5/5 Apr 23, 2006 18:51 Send this review to a friend
Solid performer  Time owned: more than 12 months
These amps were originally marketed by Swan as the 1500Z and had a black face with white lettering. When Cubic bought Swan they made a few design changes, gave the amp a new paint job and released it as the 1500ZA.

A rackmount version - the 1500ZR - was also offered. It was part of the "Cubic Kilowatt" package and has a flat black front panel w/ white lettering. Electrical layout is identical to that of the 'ZA.

I currently own three of these amps - two of the ZA variety and one ZR. Each of them arrived in less than optimal shape, but they're fairly easy to work on and parts are mostly off-the-shelf types.

(As I type this, the 'ZR is in the process of getting its power supply rebuilt. The units use a string of screw-terminal computer-grade electrolytics as their HV filter; replacements are available but one must do a little digging to find units of the correct form factor. The previous owner opted to use a string of snap-in electrolytics as replacements; I would consider leaving them but the total capacitance is about half of what it should be.)

Per Chris, the 1500Z series do not have an ALC input - but such a circuit could be incorporated if the user wishes. One thing to keep in mind - the loading capacitor is of the 250v plate-spacing variety and will arc under certain loading conditions. Tune slowly and increase the drive incrementally, peaking the plate tuning and load caps as you go. This amp likes to be loaded a little heavy; the loading cap will not arc if tuned correctly.

One of my amps arrived with an improvised plate-loading capacitor arrangement; I rebuilt the entire plate circuit and used a plate loading capacitor with wider spacing than the stock unit. The new arrangement resulted in a circuit that will not arc under any circumstances.

For some reason, the Cubic collectors go nuts when a 1500ZA in excellent shape appears on the market. Thus, expect to pay for one.

10M is easy to add and involves no extra components. Instructions are included in the owner's manuals; they're typical Cubic in that the quality of information is excellent.
VK2ICJ Rating: 4/5 Apr 14, 2006 21:45 Send this review to a friend
Good Amp for the Money  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Having recently aquired a Cubic 1500ZA and attempting to find information on the Net I was depressed. Not much out there. It appears to be a SB200 clone of sorts. Ok on to the review. Having only one meter and a 3way switch for operation isn't the best but seems to get the job done. Mine seems a bit flakely but then again it is 27 years old. The Amp does not use ALC and has only a Relay connection on the back. Inside the design seems well layed out and the soldering is good. My meter is faulty but I'm not including that in my review number. After warming the amp up last night after over 10years of shelf time the first keydown gave a nice steady 650watts out with 50watts drive. I recieved good audio reports with 2 DX stations right away. The amp has a Swan feel and look. Doesn't suprise me as Cubic owned Swan at the time these Amps were made. End result. The Amp works even after a long time break. It didn't get too hot and the audio was nice. The fan vibrates in the cabinet and the meter is flakey but gee it isn't new either hihi (part of the fun of old ham gear) . So with a little TLC this will be a nice little AMP. In my opinion you can't go wrong with one of these if the price is right. Not the best out there but certainly a good workhorse.


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