Power Genius shipping delayed again!

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  • Updated 1 year ago
  • Acknowledged

Thank you to all of our loyal FlexRadio customers (Flexers) who have been so patiently waiting for the Power Genius XL (PGXL) amplifiers to arrive.

As you are aware we began shipping the amps in May, and have been slowly rolling out production units after each one completes a rigorous and extensive test/burn in process.

Last month, as more users began exercising the 6-meter (6M) band in the exciting new FT8 mode, units began showing stress in a way not previously experienced. As a result, an issue in the post-amplifier 6M filter was identified. Our engineering team has already identified root cause and incorporated changes into the design to resolve the stress issues with the amp.

Unfortunately, this has further delayed our delivery plan, and at this time we expect to resume shipments in approximately 8 - 10 weeks.

For those individuals who have already received a PGXL we will be rotating each unit through our facility over the the next 6 weeks to address this issue. You will be receiving a more detailed communication in the next few days.

The cost of this process will be completely covered by FlexRadio and the start date of the 2-year warranty period will be reset to the begin when unit is returned following the update, In the meantime, we recommend not running the amp above 500 watts on 6 Meters.

Thank you again to all of the faithful Flexers! If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me at matt@flexradio.com any time.

Best regards,

Matt Youngblood

VP Sales and Marketing

Photo of Jeffrey Kerber, N3VE

Jeffrey Kerber, N3VE

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Posted 1 year ago

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Photo of Roger,  W6VZV

Roger, W6VZV

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Running high power on FT8 is often the difference between getting a contact and not getting the contact.  Laws of physics apply just like any other radio signal such as CW, PSK31, RTTY, and yes, FT8.  It is a myth that power level makes no difference on the digital modes.  A strangely persistent, but very wrong, myth.
Well, the shipping delay gives me more time to save my shekels for what will be my last linear amplifier. 
Photo of Roger,  W6VZV

Roger, W6VZV

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No, PSK31 is a weak signal mode, not a low power mode.  Again, it is a strangely persistent myth that power levels make no difference on PSK31.  CW has a better S/N ratio than PSK31 but you don't see CW DXers running QRP all the time.  Far from it.  I was in a ragchew with a bunch of CW guys awhile back and every one of them was running an amplifier.  Often needed in today's poor band conditions. Often not needed.
And Pat, no one is saying that you cannot make a significant number of DX contacts with relatively low power -- we all know that this is possible.  I've done it for decades.  But anecdotal experience does not substitute for facts.  But I can state with experience that often running more power results in making a contact where otherwise you would not make the contact.
I used to be an avid Pactor-2 user, and that mode automatically adjusted the power to the level necessary to maintain the link.  It often adjusted power to QRO levels.  It often adjusted power to QRP levels (i.e. below 100 watts).  It all depended on distance, band conditions, and so forth.  But don't believe for a second that power does not often make a critical difference in the ability to make (or keep) a contact.  It most certainly does.
de Roger W6VZV
Photo of Bill-N6RV


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I agree with the statements regarding weak signal versus low power. Weak signal does not mean low power (or low EIRP) at all. In fact in order to even create a weak signal on the receiving end the transmitting station may need to use maximum allowable power. Sometimes on HF it is also the case however it is usually is not necessary to run high power. It is more often than not the case on 6 meters.

Six meters is a different band from HF. The propagation mode is sporadic E (Es) and log haul DX received SNRs often never go much above -17 and many contacts are made with SNRs between -20 to -24. A few have been copied on CW but not many and not often. Furthermore, the paths are not reciprocal. Often were are heard when we cannot hear them and vice versa. Both of these conditions require more EIRP than on HF.  Until WJSTx many of these paths were never observed! This is new and exciting!

Now to say weak signal is equivalent to low power is incorrect. Yes, you can do a lot with a wimpy antenna and a few watts and that is a good thing for hams with compromised stations. For those who really put the time and effort into chasing DX on 6 meters the goal is to work these short openings on these highly attenuated paths. Not only is it interesting to work the stations it is really informative to see who can be decoded and observe the propagation patterns. Neither can be done using low power. Neither side will decode each other.

For the most part local and foreign stations on 6m are using large antenna arrays and high power. True, there are times when signals are strong enough that the power could be backed down however the Es conditions on 6m can change so quickly that an opening lasting only a few minutes could be missed, particularly on the long haul paths (e.g. West Coast to Europe or Asia past Japan).
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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I have a superb antenna System (MONSTIR) yet on occasion when trying to work really weak FT8 signals (below -22dB) I have found it quite necessary to run power so that they can actually hear me...

Not an Ego Trip but rather it is a fact that many rare DX stations do not hear that well ...this is especially true when they do not run Flex radios and suffer signal loss and distortion with external interface boxes...

I typically find that I have about a 4-6 dB gain advantage over most Legacy Receivers with my Flex.. so the addition of Power is necessary for them to hear me.

HOWEVER.. when running power I always keep the gain out of the red and in fact even out of the yellow because introducing splatter with power will actually make your signal more difficult to copy.

Perhaps the most exciting thing about the PGXL is that you can run full 1.5KW on FT8 which I cannot do on my SPE 2K-FA.

Bottom Line: FT8 is a Weak Signal Mode NOT a Low Power Mode   BUT you should only run enough power to make the contact, There is little point in running 1KW when the other guy is -12db or better

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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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PSK31 is actually a LOW Power Mode because reception is severely impacted by 3rd order IMD.  So running power makes reception of your PSK31 signal worse unless you have a way to filter out 3rd Order IMD from your transmitted signal.  TO the best of my knowledge no one does this
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Bill N6RV,

For 6 meters I use a Comet CA-52HB4 4 element beam. It weighs just 4 pounds and I run only 100 watts as my amp does not handle 6 meters. The beam is up only 25 feet.

I've been doing FT8 for about a year but I just started FT8 on 6 a few months ago and so far I've worked 38 states on 6 with 37 confirmed and about 150 grids. Also about a dozen DX stations. The coax is just cheap Radioshack RG58.

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