QRO, here we go!

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After waiting 23-1/2 months, my Power Genius was finally delivered by UPS this afternoon. Setup was almost trivial with my 6600 and would have taken only 15 minutes if it weren't for some confusion about the radio s/n.  One comment: either erase the serial number of the setup radio used in the factory or warn the user that the s/n that pops up may not be the correct one. I saw others that had similar confusion on other threads.

I was surprised at how compact the unit of this high power was.
The amplifier connected itself seamlessly to my network and found the radio immediately.
I no longer need my remote power meter... . All built in and displayed on the SmartSDR panels
I no longer need my complex amplifier band decoding matrix (it's now done over LAN)

A great little box. QRO, here we go!
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K9SO

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Posted 2 weeks ago

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KF4HR

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That's great Fred, congrats!  I'm surprised we didn't receive an announcement from FRS that the PG-XL shipments were resuming.  Please keep us posted on its operation.
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Burch - K4QXX

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I ordered mine 19 months ago so hopefully they will start getting them shipped.  Really looking forward to getting the amp except for the payment! :) 
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K1UO - Larry

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Fred..  what is the firmware level in the amp?
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K9SO

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Hi Larry,

Firmware is 2.9.12
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KF4HR

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Fred - when you completed your PG-XL order were you told anything about the estimated delivery of the Antenna Genius 8x2 Switch, or Remote Antenna Tuner?

I'm also curious what the PG-XL's power supply voltage is?
(Edited)
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K9SO

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No... I was so excited I forgot to ask, but I'm not holding my breath.

The drain voltage is 50v (drops to 40v in standby). Power supply is internal.

About 5 years ago, when I was working at Motorola, NXP (Freescale) came in and gave me a demonstration of these 1.5K transistors. Remarkably rugged at high VSWR and 56v drain voltage. I've been waiting a long time for someone to pick them up in an amplifier. Truly groundbreaking. They have 1.8K at 60v now, probably just a re- characterization of the same die, but these 1.5K's are great transistors. 
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Richard McClelland, AA5S

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Maybe one of the new PG-XL owners could post a video of a 6600/PG-XL combo running 1.5 kw qsk at 40 wpm into a dummy load?  It would be interesting to see someone chatting while this happening for about a minute to get an idea how loud the relay and fan noise is.  
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Mike - W8MM

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Great!  Only 24 more reservation numbers to go (11667 - 11643) until mine ships!
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Burch - K4QXX

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K9SO, any comments you can give us about the amp operation?  Are the fans as noisy as rumored, etc?  The only hams that I have seen comment on the amp were the ones who were alpha testing and per the non disclosure they couldn't say much.

Burch

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Gene Duprey

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I was there in December and took a tour.  They had a PG-XL on the bench running Key Down tests, and it was very quiet, I did not hear any excessive fan noise at all.  If I could afford one, I would buy it right away.
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K9SO

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Hi Burch, I thought a lot about how I would respond to this. I am not a paid endorser (I only wish), but I really like this amplifier so here goes:

Yes, the fans are noisy. Probably due to the fact that there are 5 of them and the unit is very small for its power output. I can't put a dBa number on it, but it is certainly noisier than any other amplifier I've ever owned (including other lower power SS amps like the Yaesu Quadra, and Ameritron ALS-1306). It's noisier than the fan on my old Heath SB220 and my old homebrew dual 3CX1500 tube amps. On higher duty cycle modes like FT8, where the heat sink temperatures rise, the fans ramp up pretty fast. On SSB, your mike will certainly pick it up if it's close by. Not terrible fan noise, but it's there. It clicks a lot too. That said, this is unlike any other amplifier I've ever owned in many other ways.

Keep in mind that there is no need to keep this amplifier next to you. Almost everything you normally need to know (amplifier power output, load VSWR, exciter power output, amplifier VSWR input, and heat sink temperature) is displayed on SmartSDR. If you really want to know more, you can open up the XL Utility program and view drain current, drain voltage, and even the harmonic load heat sink temperature. Oh ... and AC line voltage too. Standby mode (remotely switchable from Maestro,  the utility software, or front panel pushbutton) turns off all the fans and instantly comes back on when you want it. No boot-up time, no connection delays, no waiting for filaments to warm up. 

One downside that might be fixable in future firmware releases is that the Maestro does not display amplifier data like SmartSDR does and SmartSDR PC program has no standby button like the Maestro. With Maestro and without a local PC running the utility program and an auxiliary screen, you can't see what's going on.

But note that there is a huge advantage in that other than the coax RF inputs, when running with any Flex radio, there are absolutely no cables needed between the exciter and the amplifier. No PTT leads, no band data cables, no ALC feedback cables. All it needs is the RF connections, a LAN cable, and 240v. What that means is if you're sensitive to the fan noise, put it away in a corner of the room or even mount it at the base of your tower !

One big advantage of the FlexRadio system is that you don't really need to be in front of your actual radio or your amplifiers. I have 3 different uncluttered operating positions here in Wisconsin and two at my home in North Carolina. (see my QRZ page for the rat's nest mess beneath my floor) Everything that makes any noise is tucked far away in my basement. 

Don't dwell on the fan noise. I wouldn't want to sleep next to it, but I suspect I'll hug it a lot. 

73,
Fred
K9SO


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Mark - WS7M

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Well one thing the PGXL might be very good at being networked and completely connect is you could mount it and your Flex a ways away from the op position.

I have my Flex6600 and SPE 2K out in a shed that is like 20 feet from my op position but separated by a wall.  I can't hear either of them.   I have temp control and video monitoring but it nice not having that gear making noise.

M
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Burch - K4QXX

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Fred

Thanks for the response.  I have a full legal limit home brew 2 meter amp (8877) that has a very noisy fan so I am kind of used to it.  I don't use it near as often as I use my current HF amp.  The fan in my Ten Tec Titan is getting noisy but it's not too bad. I use headphones when transmitting SSB so hopefully the noise won't be bothersome.  I have a 19" rack that has my current home brew amps installed next to my operating table.  I plan on buying a rack shelf to install the PGXL.  Hopefully I will get an email soon from Flex giving me a shipping date.  I purchased in May of 2017.

Burch
K4QXX
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Richard

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Fred..... TNX for the update.  Finally found my copies of my Purchase back at the Orlando Hamfest on 2/13/17.   My Order Number was AB - 11703.  Not sure if Flex is going by any specific Order Number when Shipping the PGXL but could you tell me what yours was?  If not... no issue just curious.   As you can see I am approaching 24 Months so if you were at 23 1/2 months my unit must be close to shipping......  We can only hope.  

Enjoy the PGXL and see you on the bands.......

Dick - N4RWG
(Edited)
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K9SO

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Hi Dick,

My order was 11643 for what it's worth. I placed my order within 4 hours of the opening but was already pretty far down the list. A more complete list is found on this thread:
https://community.flexradio.com/flexradio/topics/when-will-my-new-pwoergenius-xl-ship-track-yours-he...

73,
Fred
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AC9S

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Oh my God - order number 14552 last December 27.  Lets hope these aren't given out sequentially incremented by 1.
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Richard

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Hi Fred,

My order was 11703 so we are close.  Not sure if it really means anything but at least not 100's away.  I was first told I was within the first 40 but that was changed to something around 70.  I was told at the time the first Production Lot was 113 Units and mine would be one of those.  I guess I am getting anxious.  Going to the Orlando Show, as I do every year, in a few weeks and would hate to not even be contacted by then.

Appreciate your information and I am assuming your pleased with the PGXL.

73's
Dick - N4RWG
(Edited)
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KF4HR

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My PG-XL order, AB-14461, was submitted on December 10, 2017.  As for guessing how far down the PG-XL queue we are by referencing our order numbers, I'm guessing Flex issues a sequential order number for every transaction, be it an accessory, transceiver, PG-XL, etc.  But we probably can draw rough estimates of how fast the PG-XL orders are being filled if those that receive their Amp post their order number.

I was told by two Flex employees this week that PG-XL deliveries have resumed this month, and Matt mentioned I could receive my PG-XL order as soon as late March.  (I assume Matt meant March 2019 hi.)  Although Matt also mentioned a lot will depend on how quickly the factory can turn out.  In any case, it's great to hear PG-XL shipping has resumed. 




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Richard

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Yes...  I too assumed that Flex issues sequential order numbers.  That is why I am so anxious to hear from Flex.  Not sure how it is done... Again, assume and Email, Billing the balance and since I was one of the early people to order there is the decision of either a Tuner or Switch.   Those two are "in the future" and were not a factor for me on the original order.  Fact is that announcement came after the fact.  Still the numbers show my order is getting close.....   Good luck to all and great news to hear that the Amp's are shipping again.....

Dick - N4RWG