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Reviews For: Elecraft XG1 Receiver Test Osc.

Category: Tools & Test Equipment for the amateur radio work bench

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Review Summary For : Elecraft XG1 Receiver Test Osc.
Reviews: 13MSRP: 39
The XG1 is a crystal-controlled signal generator with very accurate 1 microvolt and 50 microvolt output levels. The output frequency is 7040 kHz. The unit can be used to determine the actual sensitivity and receive gain of any HF receiver that covers the 40-meter band. The 50-microvolt output can be used for S-meter calibration.

The output levels are accurate to better than +/- 2 dB (typically +/- 1 dB). This makes the XG1 a low-cost alternative to expensive lab-grade signal generators when comparing the performance of various receivers.

Like Elecraft's other "mini-module" kits, the XG1 is easy to build, as well as small: the PC board is just 3.5 x 1.5 inches. Other features include a power-on LED, on-board battery with low-battery warning LED, and protection against accidental transmit at QRP levels.
Product is in production
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# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
K3ROJ Rating: 2009-09-23
A must have item Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
This little oscillator has helped me a lot to locate problems in the shack and at hamfests. Recently while attending a hamfest, I was interested in a Yeasu transceiver a seller had at a low price. He was hesitant allowing me to connect the XG1 but after checking 40 meters, found it had a problem. I walked out with an FT847 for a very reasonable price and later found a cracked circuit board. Now I have a spare for satellite operations.
G8KVP Rating: 2007-07-11
Great! But be warned. Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Just built the XG-1 which was easy and it's a brilliant bit of kit, amazing.

Now the downside if you live in the UK, like me. The kit cost $39, with postage and the exchange rate being as it is it cost me just £26.32, again amazing. Then the theives at Royal Mail get involved. Of course no duty to pay but £3.42 in VAT (not quite sure where that figure comes from) for which the Royal Mail charge you £8.00 to collect!!!!! So overall this wonderful little kit cost me £37.74 so UK buyers be warned. Rip off Britain rules again.

Not Elecraft's fault of course and still a worthwhile addition to the shack.
PA0NMH Rating: 2005-10-23
"All has been said" Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
Bought it without reading the reviews (I usually do).Goes with me anywhere, anytime.
Prevented already several times from buying equipment not within specifications.
Also very convenient in the shack and I'm lucky, 40m is still my favourite band.
(I once - long ago - dismantled my TS510 during atmospheric disturbances).
The eyeglass folding case is a good idea anyway!

mike pa0nmh
NS6Y_ Rating: 2005-10-16
Puts the fun in functional Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Hm, I should not be up this late, but about an hour ago decided to put this together, this is a very good confidence building kit. Yes a DMM is a good idea for all those precision resistors, I counted on a good magnifying glass and lots of double checking and got by OK but using something like an egg box to put the parts in with labels once identifed is an age-old good idea. Once some parts are installed there are extensive ohm-meter checks, and this passed just fine. Then on to installing the other parts! Remember the crystal installs underneath, and the reference diode will have its numbered side toward the IC, U1, not Q1. Before I knew it I was out of parts - on to testing. No Problem. Hooked it up to my '817 and it works great.

I should be in bed but I am up writing this - why? Because, I just have to rave about this, you see, it's musical too! If you put your finger near the xtal, you can vary the freq and I think with some practice a passable rendition of the theremin (if that's what it is) part in the Beach Boys' Good Vibrations is possible. Musical XG1's! Dueling XG1's? This thing is cool!

It is the right size to fit in an Altoids box, except for the BNC connector, it's too tall. Altoids boxes are overrated anyway, you could use any metal or plastic box since it's dead-stable and doesn't need shielding. If you take it to swap meets to check out equipment, one of those hard folding eyeglass cases would be perfect for keeping it safely in your pocket and yet easy to take out and use.

Just a very, very cool little unit.
I8VYE Rating: 2005-04-21
Very good item Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Cheap, easy to mount, very accurate. I checked output, after mounting, with top class laboratory instruments. Its outputs (1 microV and 50 microV) are +- 0,5 dB from nominal! Sure enough to calibrate my smeters and to check receivers. Nothing to add, satisfied by the kit and by the delivery.

VE4AMN Rating: 2005-04-14
Easy build and useful Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This is an easy kit. The mid construction test is very handy and builds confidence. One hint they suggest and I endorse is to use a DMM (autor-ranging if possible) to check resistors. This is a must for people like me who have trouble will colour. Great fun to test the receivers. Found that my R-4c is not too shabby compared to the Ft-1000 MP. Not sure if that makes me happy!
AK2B Rating: 2005-04-04
Test gear for the masses Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I can't imagine doing without my XG1. This has got to be one the most novel ideas yet to come out of Elecraft. I couldn't afford or justify the expense of a decent signal generator for my home workbench. What could be easier than connecting a tiny little portable generator to the antenna jack for checking your receiver performance and S meter with a calibrated signal source? If they made them for all bands, I would buy every one of them. It’s like having a mini HP in your pocket.

AB2EZ Rating: 2004-04-22
Very nice accessory Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I built mine in about 2 hours... being very careful to do a neat, professional-looking job. It is fun to build, and fun to own. It works as advertised, and is a very nice accessory to have around the shack.

You can easily build one from parts, if you have the parts on hand... but for this price, it is worth buying the kit, with all of the parts and a nicely laid out printed circuit board.

I received it by mail within a few days of placing my order.

This would make a great gift for almost any ham who likes to build small projects and to tinker around the shack.
WA2PVK Rating: 2004-01-29
Great Shack Accessory Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This XG-1 was a pleasant surprise. It went together well. The instructions were very good and I had not a single uncertainty about assembly.
The unit worked just as mentioned. Checked one of my Paragon II's and got an EXACT S-9 meter reading. Used the XG-1 to calibrate the other Paragon II's S-Meter as it had been reading higher than the other one.
For $39.00 this is probably the best investment you can make as you will always have a known signal strength that can be used for comparisons, alignment, and/or troubleshooting.
No more wondering about receiver performance (or the lack thereof)
AA8VE Rating: 2004-01-23
Handy tool Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I just got done with this little kit and was happy to see it work perfectly the first time I turned it on. It gives a clean carrier which is handy for many things, check S meter, sig to noise checking and peaking, check filter offset and width, spot carrier for a QRP rig, RF signal for trouble shooting, etc. There are several things I've not even thought of yet. Older rigs had calibration carriers which could be used for some of these things too but most modern rigs no longer have this feature so this is a great way to have one with a stable output. I just had a rig back from factory alignment and this XG-1 at 50 uV put my S meter right on S9 on 40 meters and allowed me to check all my rigs S meters real fast. The 1 uV is very handy for alignment of the IF stages and checking sig to noise ratios and ajusting the rx for the best weak signal performance. It's also handy to log the readings to check the rx from time to time, it works on 40, 20, 15, 10 meters, the harmonic freq's aren't calibrated outputs but are good enough for relative readings and alignment. I've been wanting a clean carrier like this for a long time and am glad to have this one.

Jeff aa8ve