Do you need a 40 Amp to transmit 200w on Kenwood TS 480 HX?

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by K7HN, Aug 13, 2019.

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  1. K7HN

    K7HN Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Thank you Frank very much for your help!
    I’d like to figure out how much different it would be then working the Yaesu 3000 which I’m also considering and I know to be a wonderful DX receiver.
  2. KQ0J

    KQ0J XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    "Not much difference between 100W out and 200W out, less than an S-unit." Ahh the old ' s unit ' blather.

    I have found operationally that is a significant difference in how many contacts you will make with 150-200 watts compared to 60-100 . The s unit stuff has no
    meaning in reality. I try it all the time - call DX stations on FT8, FT4 whatever mode on 70 Watts - no dice - call them with 150 - boom , contact. Meter readings don't mean
    squat to the decoder.

    MFJ makes a nice 45 A power supply MFJ4245MV I run multiple rigs at the same time on it.

    Now as far as the rig choice, the FTdx-3000 is a STEAL at the current $1395, I paid $2395 for mine and it was worth it and its a modern rig. Get it. Its a much better all around rig and easier to operate than the Kenwood.

    Get an Amp if you want a tad more power.
    K7HN likes this.
  3. K7TRF

    K7TRF Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    The 3dB difference between 100 watts and 200 watts is nothing to sneeze out and though only half an S unit it can make a difference in noisy band conditions or in a pileup. That said, since you've currently got a great rig with the Yaesu FTDX3000 I'd suggest a modest 600 watt class linear amp for the Yaesu rather than a new 200 watt rig. You'll boost your signal by almost 8dB instead of 3dB which is a substantial signal gain and you'll retain all the receive features of your FTDX3000 at a similar or perhaps lower total cost especially when you consider that 40+ amp DC power supply.

    I'd keep my eye out for a used Ameritron AL-80b in good working condition or something similar. Even a good working condition Heathkit SB-200 or SB-220 would get the job done nicely at a fraction of the price of a TS-480HX and you'd still get all the modern receive features of your Yaesu.
    K7HN and WE4E like this.
  4. N3PM

    N3PM Ham Member QRZ Page

    No matter which way you power it, one big supply or two, I believe both power cables should be used and of the same length.
    Mike N3PM
    NL7W likes this.
  5. K7HN

    K7HN Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Thank you very very much for your reply! I really appreciate it so much. Now there’s a little fly in the ointment however… I found a nice gentleman with a used FTDX 5000 I can purchase for $1800. It’s in excellent condition I guess. I’ll drive tomorrow a couple hundred miles to take a look at it.
  6. K7HN

    K7HN Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Thanks so much for your reply. I love to work DX most of all. Suddenly, by the grace of God, I find a very kind amateur that’s willing to sell his excellent condition FTdx 5000 for $1800 three years old. Man!! That’s my dream radio for doing DX for sure!

    So do I save the $900 to purchase the Kenwood and buy an amplifier or buy the great receiver and buy the amplifier later… I think I’m going to go with the latter.
  7. K7TRF

    K7TRF Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Well I'm sure you'll enjoy the features of the FTDX 5000 if you go that route but don't be surprised if in actual use on the air the new receiver doesn't really dig out any stations you can't copy now as the rig you have is no slouch.

    The biggest improvements in the higher end gear are with respect to close in dynamic range and RMDR specs. If you run contests in crowded band conditions and have a very good antenna system such that you're regularly operating CW slammed right up against two or more very strong stations then those specs can be very important. But if that doesn't describe your typical operating scenario then you're unlikely to even notice the performance improvements moving to the FTDX 5000 but you'll probably enjoy the features upgrades like the sub receiver and a better bandscope.

    Tough call, personally I'd invest in an amp or improving your antenna systems if they're not already top notch before I upgraded the rig but there are many ways to skin this cat.
  8. W2JKT

    W2JKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Order of priority in spending money on ham radio:

    1) Antenna
    2) Antenna
    3) Antenna
    4) Antenna
    5) Receiver
    6) Microphone
    7) Headphones
    8) Power Output

    KD0CAC and NK2U like this.
  9. K1VSK

    K1VSK Ham Member QRZ Page

    You were doing fine until you got to #6.
    WR2E likes this.
  10. WR2E

    WR2E Ham Member QRZ Page


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