PGXL April 2019 Updates

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  • Updated 2 days ago
Thread is to ask those that have ordered the PGXL and have Received the Amplifier a few questions.  All hoping that those that have received the Amp can give others some answers to many asked questions.

Upon your receipt of the "Greatest Amp In Ham Radio History".....
-  When did you order it?
-  What was your PO Number
-  When did you get it?
-  How was the Setting Up?
-  First Impressions?

Will stop asking these questions when the units start to ship on a regular bases...

Thanks
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Richard

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Posted 6 months ago

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Jon - KF2E

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Nothing will motivate Flex into action like rehashing the same stuff over and over in the forum.

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KF4HR

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True, but I am looking forward to seeing Dewy's latest consolidated PG-XL Order listing.
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Richard

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Jon...  The point of this thread is not a "bitching" session but one of information that John KC2QMA gets....  Allows those that are waiting for their PGXL a better idea of the What is Shipping and When their Orders were made.
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KC2QMA_John

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I have been thinking about of getting a new HF amp,  If I were to order a PGXL today how long would it take to ship it out to Tennessee?
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Burt Fisher

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They are running their business just fine,, hundreds of thousands of dollars of interest free money. 
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KC2QMA_John

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You are correct Burt.
All I can say is "Fool me once shame on you fool me twice shame on me"
(Edited)
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KC2QMA_John

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I'm sure the PGXL is and will be an amazing HF amp but what a terrible way to launch a new product.
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Rolf Auras

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John, what makes you sure??
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Acording to people using the PGXL it has been a great amp and performs as advertised or better.
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Dewey

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As requested above, here is all I could find from prior posts:
Note: I deleted those not heard from, whose PO dates preceded those recently shipped.

PO Date  PO #   Callsign         Name                         Rcv'd
02/08/17  11643   K9SO            Fred Glenn                  ~1/4/19
02/08/17  11650   KG5MGN      Wayne Westfield         Paid 3/20/19
02/08/17  11652   N7ZO            Bob                            Paid 3/20/19
02/09/17  11667   W8MM          Michael Valentine       Del'd 3/21/19
02/10/17  11682   WØYWW      Dewey Treanor          Del'd 3/26/19
02/11/17  11703   N4RWG         Richard                      Del'd 3/25/19
02/13/17  11713   N3VE            Jeff Kerber                Del'd 3/25/19
02/15/17  11722   WW3N          Daniel Flynn               Ship'd 3/21/19
02/22/17  11767   W9TVX         Dargahi Ross             Ship'd 3/21/19
04/28/17  12043   W9TTH        Dale Johnson              Ph Call 3/27/19
04/04/17                                   Mike Presnell
05/09/17  12080   WA5YOM     Timothy Vandagriff
05/26/17  12297   K4QXX         Burch
06/06/17  12388   K6LJ             Ray DeVreugd
12/10/17  14460   KJ8OO         KJ
12/30/17  14573   N4RZ           Rick Roberson
Dec 2017              KF4HR         Ralph Quallich, Jr
05/09/18  15543   N5PSM         David Mitchell

73, Dewey, WØYWW

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Burt Fisher

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From their site:
ESTIMATED SHIP DATE FOR NEW INTEREST: LATE 2019
thus by the end of the year you will all have yours.
(Edited)
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Jon - KF2E

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Estimated does not equal will.
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Burt Fisher

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Example SmartSDR 3.x .
They are so good at customer service and design and so bad at promises. I predict there will never be a 4.0 and the tuner for PGXL is 2 years out.  
The PGXL defines crème de la crème however.




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David-N5PSM

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I say 3 years for the tuner
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Tom -WM0L

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ordered mine 05/22/2017  ...  I was offer mine a couple weeks ago and passed till August 2019.  
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Steve K9ZW, Elmer

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Projecting future delivery based on delays in development seems rather an unsound methodology.

Some things to also consider is while each individual’s order is a separate end user transaction, production and shipping appear to be in batches.

If a new individual order just makes in into a batch in process the order might be fulfilled much earlier than simple day-counting projections suggest, and likewise an individual order that came in too late to be included in batches in process might take significantly longer.

Ask FRS directly when you are prepared to place your order.

Back in the Flex-5000A roll out I asked FRS what my expected delivery would be, but I didn’t place the order on the spot choosing to smooth the XYL’s skepticism first. That took my a couple weeks to settle down, and when I placed my actual order I had missed the batch cutoff and had to wait much longer for the second production run. Lesson learned.

Hopefully the development cycle delays seen to date will disappear.

And eventually the backlog issues will come out of the the lead time.

One thing that does seem pretty clear is you have to have a reservation and deposit to have any sort of delivery date. Reflect on that simple fact that no matter how long it takes to fulfill your individual order you have to be in the game to get a new PGXL anytime soon.

73

Steve
K9ZW
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Bill -VA3WTB

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I don't think we have heard anything since Geralds letter telling about some amps not meeting specs, and that he was investegating the problem at the factory.  Correct?

But several members on the community have received theirs lately, that must have been the batch he talked about being ready.
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KF4HR

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Correct(?) is a darn a good question Bill.  The last FRS PG-XL Update I received was back in February and it seemed a bit confusing to me.  If I remember correctly it mentioned 4o3A had been cleared to restart production.  But additional changes had been identified and are being worked out with 4o3A.  And three dozen PG-XL's were suppose to ship in the coming month.

At this point I'm not sure whether to be disappointed my PG-XL hasn't shipped yet, or be thankful I'm further down on the waiting list. :)
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Bill -VA3WTB

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All I know is, according to the ones that stuck it, they are really glad they did. The PGXL it not your standard amp.
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Burch - K4QXX

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Just wanted to bump this back to the top and see if anyone else had received their amp.  I believe the last post I saw was someone who had ordered their amp on 4/28/2017 had received theirs.  I ordered on 5/26/2017 so I am hoping mine will be coming soon.

Burch
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Richard

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Burch...  Yes I too have not seen any more inputs as to anyone ordering and or receiving their PGXL.  I can tell you once you receive yours, you will not be disappointed.  So far mine is performing as advertised..... it just works.  Good luck. and hope you get yours soon.
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KF4HR

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Did anyone receive their PG-XL in April?
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Richard

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I received mine.  Simple to set up.  No Power Supply Issues.  Simple to follow Set Up Page.  Powered Unit on and Initial Checks showed "OK".  Powered up unit into a Dummy Load to insure Amplification and no issues and away I went.  Follows me around the bands like "a little puppy".   No issues to date.  Nice amp and works well on all Modes.  Fan Noise is much less than my first amp OM2000A+ and is acceptable.  Enjoy yours once it arrives.

Richard - N4RWG
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Sergey Abrikosov

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not me, ordered in June 2018
Sergey, KN7K
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Ray - K6LJ

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Burch,

You may be hearing something soon. I ordered mine 6/6/2017. Recently FRS said there were 3 shipments coming in. I was told today that I would probably be contacted in 2 weeks. It is the first time that I was not told "2 more months". I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Ray K6LJ
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Burch - K4QXX

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I just noticed someone got their amp yesterday.  Looking forward to finally getting the amp.
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Burch - K4QXX

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I just got the call from Flex for payment.  My amp is ready.  Should have a tracking number soon.  I ordered May 26th, 2017.
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KF4HR

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Congrats Burch.  Perhaps there's some hope my December 2017 order might get filled this year. 
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Burch - K4QXX

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Tracking number says it should arrive on Monday May 20th.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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It sounds like the amps are being shipped again, nice.
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Neal Pollack, N6YFM

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So it's only taking 2 years from order to delivery? WOW!
Even Tesla is faster than that!   Perhaps 4o3A was a rocky pirate to partner with.
By then I would forget I have even ordered one :-)
Perhaps I'll stick with my KPA-500.  It's working just fine with the Flex 6600.

Another small company called Elecraft seems to be delivering plenty of 
KPA-1500 amps to happy customers.  So a small company "CAN" do it.
One has to wonder what went so wrong with 4o3A as a sub-contractor?

Neal
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mikeatthebeach .

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Neal
So it probably be 4 years before Anyone gets a Tuner Genius as well !!!
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John - K3MA

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Maybe it deserves a new name.  Maybe Tuner Stealth.
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Chris DL5NAM

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... and not only Elecraft can do it! Also RF-kit.de can do it with his B26 -PA with included ATU - and show it at Hamvention with some nice news this year at #1207 in hall 1

Chris
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Volker Geith

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I think this is not fair to compare. When Elecraft (e.g.) firstly talked about the AMP and started pre-orders, it took also quite a while to get one. I also was waiting for a 6600 for one year, others waited longer. After I got my 6600, it was not a big deal to get one. I think that initial problems with 6m pushed everything back quite a bit. Fixing the 6m amps, modifying design and shipping again took several month. Now, I expect that throughout the year most of the orders will be satisfied and then waiting time will be much lower. Sure, still means that some of you will have waited couple a years which is quite unsatisfying.

Volker
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HCampbell WB4IVF

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Also, the PG XL is a more ambitious and complex design.

Howard
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K5XH

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Got the call from Matt yesterday (15 May). Tracking says delivery tomorrow (5-17). Ordered the day after Dayton/Xenia 2017. Sadly, my 6600 is crossing paths with the amp as it heads to Flex for a checkout.
Mark K5XH
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Lucas - W6AER

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I have ordered mine at the IDXC in Visalia and is dated 4/27/18 - in case you want to add me to the running list - I was told the end of the year (2018) for delivery at that time. I called last month the last time (March 2019) as well as asked Matt at Visalia this year (April 2019). Was told very soon now....We'll see,

Frankly, While I am OK with waiting for a little while (although I must say did not expect this long and even my patients are running a little bit lower now) I can honestly say the Flex has missed out on at least 3, that I KNOW of, sales to hams due to the wait with folks who all got the Elecraft amps instead after hearing about the insane delays. Even though 2 at least said to me they would have rather buy the flex, even for more money, but were not willing to wait "years", the other was indifferent just wanted a solid state amp but would have bought the flex if it was not back ordered. I can understand that! I seriously considered canceling my order a few times and just getting the Elecraft amp as well but I will stick it out...for now.

For what it is worth, I think it is a good amp based on those I know who have one. But the release and the insane waits could have been handled a little better to say the least looking at it from the customer perspective. I think some of this has to do with the international nature of the amp and the partnership perhaps, not sure. I do understand there was an issue with 6m, and I appreciate addressing this and the great quality control. But I would have been happier is someone just said: "Hey Lucas, you will have it July 2019" back when I ordered. I would have STILL ordered it. Then I can plan accordingly and know not to possibly expect it soon. That's all! Just my 2 cents.

I am very curious to see how the "list" above progresses.


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Ray - K6LJ

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Hi All - Finally PG-XL in my care. Order # 12388 6/6/2017. As I picked it up at FRS. I saw a number of others in boxes ready. Good news for other. :)
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KF4HR

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Thanks for the report Ray!  Good to see a 6/6/17 order being filled.
(Edited)
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Warren Wegerer

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Like others, I'd like to thank Dewey for compiling the list of us waiting for the PGXL. I may add at this time my order of 6/14/17 #AB-12440 for K6WKW (Warren) is still outstanding - no contact from Flex as of 5/27/19. I am 52 orders after Ray - K6LJ but remind everyone that not all orders included a PGXL. Lots of folks were probably ordering the new 6000s without including the PGXL. My order was for a 6600M, Maestro, and the PGXL, but I suspect not everyone can do that.

We should all remember that it seemed like it took forever for the 6400/6600s to ship. My 6600M came in Feb 2018 (8 month delay) and I decided to order a 6400M in April -- which shipped immediately after I ordered it because there was no backlog. It was so fast it startled me! I expect that's what we're going to see with the PGXLs. In a few months the naysayers will be ordering w/o a backlog, but they will not have the tuner advantage our early orders get. To my mind the tuner is simpler than an amp (each amp has a form of tuner in its output) so I anticipate seeing it sooner than the skeptics are saying.

All said, I'm really starting to get excited knowing that my PGXL is getting close...
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Burch - K4QXX

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My PGXL was delivered on 5/20 to my office but I didn't get it hooked up until 5/26 which is exactly 2 years from when I ordered on 5/26/2017.  I haven't used it much but so far it has been worth the wait.  Works seamless with the Flex 6700 and will put the fire to the wire!  Fans make noise but I don't think it's to bad.  My home brew 2 meter 1500 watt amp has a big blower and makes more noise than the PGXL so I guess I might just be used to it.  Amp appears to be well built and looks very nice with the front display.
(Edited)
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David-N5PSM

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Flex informed me yesterday that my PGXL ordered May 9, 2018 AB15543 should be ready to ship "SOMETIME" in the 4th quarter, That is a delay from order between 510 and 600 days. Those numbers roughly match the ones in the list.   If you get your PGXL earlier that that then you are very lucky.

  In contrast..... I ordered a HF-Auto from Palistar at Hamvention and it was waiting for me when I arrived home.  (They paralleled it with great tracking info to my e-mail)

 I ordered a Maestro from stock at the same time and it is not here. (No tracking info at all)....so far
(Edited)
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KF4HR

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David, I sincerely hope your ready-to-ship date comes to pass.  If so, perhaps that might mean my order should ship in the 3rd quarter this year (order AB-14461, placed Dec 10, 2017).

I called about my order delivery date earlier this year and I was given an estimated ship date of April 2019, but with with the caveat that they do not have a good feel as to 4o3A's production rate.  I've been waiting 532 days so far.  One post above indicates a June 2017 order was recently received (K6LJ), so that's promising.   

Reference your Maestro order, give Matt a call.  My guess is Flex is probably catching up from the Dayton hamfest.

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Warren Wegerer

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On 5/30/19 I received E-mail indicating my PGXL has shipped, so those still waiting may consider #AB-12440 for K6WKW (Warren) as completing. I believe that leaves us with a gap of some 2000 order numbers and 6 months before KJ8OO's known order. Keep your fingers crossed guys and be patient. They're getting to us.
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KF4HR

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Thanks for posting your info Warren.

The 2,000 order gap (to get to KJ8OO's order) encompasses orders for many other items other than the Amp.  It would nice if others added their Order# and Date to this thread so we could get some rough idea how many PG-XL orders are outstanding.

Congrats on your new Amp.  Keep us posted on how you like it.
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Burch - K4QXX

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For all you people waiting for the amp, the wait is worth it.  I've only had mine on the air since Sunday and I love it.  Like shooting fish in a barrel making contacts.
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KF4HR

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For those that ordered their PG-XL before the end of 2017 Flex offered either the 4o3A ATU or Antenna Genius 8x2 antenna switch (free) as a buying incentive.  The ATU is still under development but I see posts of people using the AG Antenna Switch.  I'm curious if anyone that has received their PG-XL opt'ed for the Antenna Genius switch and was it delivered? 
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Asher - K0AU

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PGXL order number AB-14093 on 10/12/17. No rush. My Alpha is doing fine.
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KF4HR

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After my first year of waiting I purchased an Alpha 87A.  Great amp, just the 3 minute warmup can be a minor hassle on occasion. 

If this Forum is an indication it sounds like only a few PG-XL's were shipped out over the last coupe of months, although K6LJ mentioned he saw several at the factory, so I wonder what's up with that.  Hopefully we'll get a new PG-XL update from Gerald or Matt soon.

My wait continues...
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Bill -VA3WTB

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I have a feeling that the members on the community are not the only ones waiting...
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Mark - WS7M

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I have an SPE 2K which is a great amp but it cannot sustain 1500w key down for long and FT8  causes it to power back.

I doubt I'll ever get rid of it but I have been watching the PGXL for some time.  It frustrates me that this amp is still not stocked on the shelves ready to buy and that people are still waiting.

I have to admit that the OM-4000A while expensive and would still incur the long power up wait is very interesting because a friend of my has the OM-4000, non-A.  He can keydown 1500 watts for like a century and the fans barely come on.

The A model is fully auto so it still looks quite interesting.
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Rick - N4RZ

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I've owned both the SPE 2K-FA and the OM 4000A.  I decided to sell one in order to purchase a PGXL, that I am still waiting for. I decided to keep the 2K-FA.  The 2K-FA is more automatic and easy to use than the 4000A.  With the 4000A you must manually tune it up on each sub-band you wish to use it on and it remembers the settings for the next time it is operated on that frequency.  The 2K-FA tunes itself and can adapt to a changing antenna load. The 2K-FA has three different power levels that you can set up and easily switch between although only two can be used for FT8 since the amp isn't designed to transmit continuously in MAX mode for over about 10 seconds at a time.  The OM will easily transmit 3.0 KW on FT8 and over 4.0 KW on CW/SSB.   However, if you want to limit your power to 300 watts it is a more involved change than just reducing your drive power.  The friend I sold my 4000A to reduced his drive and ran the amp on FT8 at 300 watts The results were that in less than three months he had problems with the amp that led to him sending it off to ArraySolutions.  They determined that the finals needed to be replaced and told him that the amp should always be run at the legal limit or more to prevent premature tube failure. 
 
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Neal Pollack, N6YFM

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Seriously Mark? :-)
Can't sustain 1500W on FT-8 and folds back...

Um, er, ah, I have no problem closing QSO's in difficult situations with 300 watts
going into my zero gain end-fed wire antenna at 20 feet off the ground.
If you really need 1500 watts on FT-8 to close a QSO, what are driving?
A train-track rail,  a ground rod, or a CHA-250 vertical dummy load?

Cheers,

Neal
(Edited)
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mikeatthebeach .

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Maybe Mark is trying to work a guy next to a
Solar Array RFI generator or Pot Weed Farmer
And need to get over S9+10db Noise Floor
Hi ! Hi!
Many Chinese DX stations on FT8 have no ears
It those Noisy RFI LED lights and sometimes
1500watts is not enough !!
73 Mike
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Neal Pollack, N6YFM

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Ah, so true :-)
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Bill -VA3WTB

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FT8 is a high power low signal mode. But lots of fun can be had with low power as well.
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KF4HR

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Looks like the PGXL April 2019 Updates thread has run its course.  PGXL June Updates anyone?
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Ray - K6LJ

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Sure my PG-XL is working great. Only one thing to note. Received a beta 3.2.4 version of firmware for the PG-XL Ion order to get the pg meter in sdr to work.
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KF4HR

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I thought I'd pick up the ball and make an update to Dewey's PG-XL Listing:

PO Date  PO #   Callsign         Name                         Rcv'd
02/08/17  11643   K9SO            Fred Glenn                  ~1/4/19
02/08/17  11650   KG5MGN      Wayne Westfield         Paid 3/20/19
02/08/17  11652   N7ZO            Bob                            Paid 3/20/19
02/09/17  11667   W8MM          Michael Valentine       Del'd 3/21/19
02/10/17  11682   WØYWW      Dewey Treanor          Del'd 3/26/19
02/11/17  11703   N4RWG         Richard                      Del'd 3/25/19
02/13/17  11713   N3VE            Jeff Kerber                Del'd 3/25/19
02/15/17  11722   WW3N          Daniel Flynn               Ship'd 3/21/19
02/22/17  11767   W9TVX         Dargahi Ross             Ship'd 3/21/19
04/28/17  12043   W9TTH        Dale Johnson              Ph Call 3/27/19
04/04/17                                   Mike Presnell
05/09/17  12080   WA5YOM     Timothy Vandagriff
05/22/17               WM0L         Tom                              Passed until 8/19
                             K5XH          Mark                             Rec'd 5/17/19              
05/26/17  12297   K4QXX         Burch                          Rec'd 5/20/19
06/06/17  12388   K6LJ             Ray DeVreugd            Rec'd 6/19
06/14/17  12440                        Warren Wegerer         Ship'd 5/30/19
10/12/17  14093   K0AU           Asher
12/10/17  14460   KJ8OO         KJ
12/10/17  14461   KF4HR         Ralph Quallich
12/30/17  14573   N4RZ           Rick Roberson
04/27/18               W6AER        Lucas
05/09/18  15543   N5PSM         David Mitchell
06/xx/18               KN7K            Sergey

Anyone else?  Corrections or updates?

KF4HR

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Burt Fisher

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I wonder if anyone died waiting? Did anyone opt out when called? Could you give your place in line to a friend?
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K5UFO

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Ordered 12/3/2017, AB-14429, K5UFO, Markus Thomerson
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David-N5PSM

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When did they tell you it would ship?
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K5UFO

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Their best guess was approximately 3 months
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Joseph

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My order, AB-14684, 1/17/18 is still four months out.  So Matt just informed me.  Here is what I have been told:

1/17/18     initial order, delivery expected by September (9/18).
12/31/18   4 months ("early April")
03/28/19   "a few months"
05/13/19   "end of the year"
6/14/19     4 months

Like many of you, I was wise enough not to sell my Alpha, so I can wait.  But it is so irritating for the company not to keep everyone in the loop wrt what is going on.  If it weren't for an exemplary interaction with Eric when my update to 2.5.1 killed the radio completely, I might be more tense about the procrastination.

Having a background in high-tech where we actually made nuts/bolts/hardware for our customers, it is unfathomable that the ramp to production would take this long.  I would love to hear the ops guy explain it!!
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David-N5PSM

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I have the same experience.  The last I was told (1 month ago) was 4th quarter of 2019
If we complain or point out our vendors lack of performance or communication then we are labeled "bad customers" by many  of our colleagues in this forum.  When I compare with other vendors I get very discouraged.   So I am just waiting patiently for the greatest amp ever made.
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Pat N6PAT

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I would not be too concerned about what others in this forum call you.  Don't let anyone intimidate you.

This forum is provided to allow Flex owners to express and share their opinions and experiences be they positive or negative.
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Sergey Abrikosov

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Bill -VA3WTB

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The PGXL is ramping to full production:

4O3A Signature is with Marko Pavlicevic and Milica Boca.June 11 at 11:44 PM · 

PGXL is ramping up to full production

Dear PG XL customers,

I recently received the communication below that Ranko drafted to you, our shared customers:
____________________________________
“Our goal of producing the best amplifier on the market would not have been possible without our dedicated team of alpha testers. Serious testing of the amplifier by pushing it to it’s limits through RTTY, dual CQ mode and FT8 was critical to our success and we are very grateful for all of the time and expertise that was shared. Besides pointing out issues, alpha testers added excellent suggestions in regard to functionality and the UI. It was a long, difficult and expensive path but ultimately the only right one. The delays were certainly longer than we would have wanted but we made a decision to release the amplifier to the market only when it was completely ready, with no compromises.

We want to express deep gratitude to all our Alpha testers for their invaluable contributions!

Even though we have been very silent during the past few months, the development of the 4O3A Genius family of devices has been intensive. The main goal being full integration into SmartSDR. Our partners from FlexRadio were a true pillar of support for the entire time. Their dedication and support were on the highest level during the entire process. Our partners have great respect and gratitude from us, and they have earned it.

We are currently reaching out to key users to assist us with Tuner Genius alpha testing, which is scheduled to begin in the third quarter of 2019. The production is planned as soon as the alpha testing phase is complete.

I would like to personally thank our patient clients who recognized that PG XL represents a separate league and have supported us.

Ranko Boca, 4O3A
President of Sky Sat”
_____________________________________

Gerald Youngblood, K5SDR
President of FlexRadio

P.S. We at FlexRadio share our partner Ranko’s gratitude to the many alpha testers who have played pivotal roles in getting this unique product to the level it has achieved.
(Edited)