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Reviews For: Gamma Research HPS-1A

Category: Power Supplies

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Review Summary For : Gamma Research HPS-1A
Reviews: 36MSRP: 129.95
Description:
The HPS-1a is capable of supplying full power to any 12 volt, 100 watt class transceiver in normal Voice SSB or Morse CW modes. RTTY, AM, and FM modes should be limited to about 35 watts.

Input Voltage = 100-240 VAC, 50-60 Hz, 2 Amps maximum.

Output Voltage = 13.5 VDC
Output Current = 5 Amps Continuous., 22 Amps @ .25 duty/sec.

Dimensions: 3.37" x 1.55" x 5.25"

Weight: 1.25 lbs.
Product is in production
More Info: http://www.gammaresearch.net/hps-1a.html
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
00364.8
NO9E Rating: 2015-02-16
Could be great Time Owned: more than 12 months.
The design of HPS-1A is based a a fact that a CW or SSB rig uses only 30-50% of peak current when averaged over a second. So it has a 5A (perhaps 7A peak) miniature power moudle for supplying the average power and supercapacitor to provide averaging.

This PS will work well if the average current is < 6-7A or the voltage will drop. Some rigs (IC7000) reduce power when the voltage drops so they seem to operate with full power when it fact the power is lower. Some rigs (K3) shut down in CW or heavy-duty SSB but operate at a lower power (60W). Also the power is higher in CW in BK.

The averaging allows for a small module inside and a low weight. However, that module fails when it is overtaxed. A 10A unit would be more than enough.

HPS-1A is very small but the power cord is obnoxiously thick. Its seems silly to have a small unit and a 30A bulky power cord. It eliminates any space savings from a regular 3 lb 25A PS.

In my opinion, this is a good power supply for short trips when weight is of paramount value or as an emergency unit. Especially that it has automatic 100-250V switching, eliminating potential failure (how do I know it?). Currently IMHO it is poor value. It may become excellent if the module inside is replaced by a heavier unit and the cord becomes slim. Reviews indicate that current unit may have a powerful module, but the website says nothing about it.
KC0W Rating: 2015-02-15
Good, but it could use some help Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I needed a small & lightweight power supply for a DXpedition to Haiti as HH5/KC0W. I put several hundred hours of operating time on this power supply over the 3 week DXpedition. The HPS-1A only had to supply a 3 - 4 amps to my Elecraft K3 because I was using a 500 watt external amplifier. This power supply preformed flawlessly & it's self sensing 110/220v input makes this a good choice for DXpeditions.


Improvement Areas:

It's power cord is an absolute joke at only 3 feet long.........The HPS-1A does NOT supply enough juice to operate RTTY at anything over about 50 watts. My K3 would immediately shut down upon doing so.........The UNFUSED red/black PowerPole cord has a usable length of 3 inches. Really, really stupid.

Bottom Line:

Is Gamma would spend literally another $1 more on the cord issues this power supply would be a real winner.


Tom KC0W

KC9IWE Rating: 2015-02-02
Neat power supply Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Believe it or not, my wife gave this to me for Christmas '13 after hearing me mention it in an on-air chat.
Anyhow....it's light, it's small and it's quiet. I have it for my KX3 but I have used it, successfully, with a Yaesu FT 897D at 100w and it acted like a "real" power supply.
I'm very happy with it!
W2DL Rating: 2014-10-17
Perfect! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I've been using my HPS-1A to power my Elecraft KX3, which is my home and portable rig, for the past several years and which I usually operate CW at 10 watts. I've never noticed any RFI or hash. It's quiet, tiny, light, attractive, and reliable. Worth every penny. Worth the wait if there's still a backlog like there was when I ordered mine.
K8EAB Rating: 2014-09-21
Not For DXpedition Use Time Owned: more than 12 months.
The 1 out of 5 rating is to get readers’ attention.

If the purchaser of the Gamma Research (G-R) HPS-1a power supply is a casual, portable, or QRP operator, this power supply is a good choice for a 13-Volt DC power supply. I have owned my HPS-1a for quite a few years ($129 when I purchased), and still today, the G-R web-site continues to say that this power supply will operate a 100-Watt class transceiver for DXpedition or Contest use.

My experience (more than 10,000 DXpedition contacts since 2009) and that of at least 3 other DXpedition operators does not support those claims. On a DXpedition to St. Lucia in December 2010, I and one other operator both burned out our HPS-1a’s on the second day. We were both running 100-Watt rigs … he was operating SSB on an IC-7200 and I was operating CW on an IC-7000. The technician who repaired our HPS-1a’s replaced the power supply module with a heavier duty module and added a diode to prevent current from flowing in both directions during capacitor discharge/recharge. My HPS-1a now runs cooler with my IC-7000 at 100-Watts, but I don’t trust it to power that rig at full output power during DXpedition duty cycles (3 to 4 contacts per minute sustained). It is now my back-up power supply for DXpeditions.

One eHam.net reviewer told me in an eMail that he and another operator both burned out their HPS-1a’s on their DXpedition. He said he did not write a bad review of the G-R power supply because the manufacturer “made them whole”. He also said he no longer uses the HPS-1a as a DXpedition power supply.

So why have I waited until September 2014 to write this review? After buying and using this power supply, I was quite pointed in my criticism of the Molex power output connector that G-R uses. G-R now offers a pre-made Anderson PowerPole adapter (for $16 plus $5 S&H), but adapters like this are easily misplaced or lost on DXpeditions. A new product (the Anderson AutoGrip) from Hardened Power Systems made it possible for me to replace the Molex connector that G-R uses with an Anderson PowerPole connector.

http://www.portableuniversalpower.com/anderson-autogrip/

This project wasn’t technically demanding, but the tight space inside the HPS-1a meant considerable modification of the Anderson AutoGrip so that it would fit inside the chassis. See the results of this project here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ghqz3Zsic3s

My mod did not involve “nibbling” of the HPS-1a chassis and did not require the use of metal brackets that typically hold PowerPole connectors in place. Two holes were drilled for the screws that hold the AutoGrip in place.

After cutting the Molex connector away, I salvaged as much of the red and black power output wires as I could. The short leads that remained fit into the PowerPole crimp terminals perfectly. Inserting a drastically reshaped AutoGrip (cut in half on a band saw, both sides cut away, bottom shaved slightly) with its installed PowerPole connectors meant bending the back plane of the chassis outward enough for the combined AutoGrip/PowerPole fitting to be twisted into the chassis opening that previously held the Molex connector. I bent the back-plane of the chassis back into place, secured the AutoGrip with two self-tapping screws, and this project was finished.

After owning the G-R power supply for a number of years, a robust Anderson PowerPole connector now resides where that non-standard, wiggly Molex connector once was. All my radios have Anderson PowerPole connectors on the ends of their power cords, and I am now able to retro-fit all of my power supplies with these ARES standard connectors thanks to the Anderson AutoGrip.

I have no financial or other relationship with Hardened Power Systems. I am a very satisfied user of their Anderson AutoGrip product.

My DXpedition power supply of choice is now the SAMLEX SEC-1235M. It is the next power supply I will retro-fit with Anderson PowerPole connectors.

Weymouth Walker – K8EAB
FS/K8EAB
J6/K8EAB
J38EA
J79EA
8P9EA
J8/K8EAB
W7SAG Rating: 2013-03-07
Quality all the way! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I bought this power supply for portable operation with my Elecraft KX3. In my opinion, this is the perfect match for the KX3. No hash noise, puts out enough power to run a 100W rig all day long and very easy to use. You have to wait about 8 weeks to get one after ordering, but it is worth it. You get what you pay for.
John--W7SAG
KE7UFZ Rating: 2012-12-20
note current price Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Price now $229 + $12 shipping. If your fan fails it's $40 for repair. Used mine alot, worldwide.
W1UJR Rating: 2012-01-22
Very Well Done! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
Perfect portable or station supply for low power AM, or up to 100 watt CW and SSB. Build quality is exceptional, unit is very quiet, sits next to my rig on the desk. At just over 1 lb of weight, very portable for travel or off site use. Fred is excellent to deal with, ships promptly, even comes with the power connector. I made a short stub lead off the connector, 6 " or so, terminating into Powerpoles. AAA+ unit, great value, you will not regret adding this to your station.
K4HPP Rating: 2010-12-24
Good, but . . . Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I picked up this supply at a hamfest a few years back. The intent was to use it as a portable supply for my Florida QTH. While it works almost as advertised, it will not provide enough output voltage to run an IC-7000 at more than 50 watts CW for more than several seconds. The IC-7000 draws 5 amps in transmit mode with no key down. This is the continuous rating for the supply. Apparently, there is not enough time to recharge the capacitors between CW characters. The voltage soon drops below 12 VDC and rig output drops to about 50 watts output. reducing output power to 45 or 50 watts allows it it just "stay ahead". Using QSK keying works better, because of the reduced current draw while the rig is in receive mode between characters. The problem is that the IC-7000 uses what may be the loudest keying relay in the industry, making it a lousy QSK rig.
Additionally, the HPS-1A cooling fan has a relatively high noise level but moving it away from the operating desk (to the floor?) reduces noise to a tolerable level.
I love this supply for it's size. Using it with a K3 or other rig with lower transmit mode standby current probably works just fine as the many reviews indicate. I finally sold the HPS-1A supply and replaced it with a PowerWerx SS-30DV which does the job nicely (at a size sacrifice of course).
VE3JSJ Rating: 2010-11-30
Excellent product Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I am very satisfied with this product Small, efficient, and keeps its cool !

It will in fact power the FT-857 on receive (unsquelched, dial illuminated) for 35 seconds from the internal capacitors after the power is turned off. And the FT-817 will keep going for 55 seconds. So, I also describe this PS as an "Uninterruptable Power Supply"!!

Gordon (VE3JSJ)