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Thread: Amp suggestions for big radio's

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    Amp suggestions for big radio's

    Hi all I'm looking for amp suggestions for a couple big radios. I have a RCI 6900 f25 and a RCI 2970 (on the way) Now I'm looking for a good amp for one or both of them. My base station will likely have the 2970 and with the Sirio Gainmaster antenna I am running I am limited to about 500 watts. On the other hand the 6900 will probably go in the Jeep I drive daily. I'm thinking I'll put the uniden PC122 in my other jeep with the texas star 350. Since they seem to work well together. Doubt I want to go much above a 4 pill so I don't have to worry about changing the alternator etc.. But I do want good clean amps with AB bias for sideband use. I also want to make sure whatever amp(s) I do get can handle the power of the radios without locking up like the 350 does being driven with the rci 6900.

    I'm thinking I would like to get two alike or at least by the same manufacturer so the spare parts could be interchangeable.

    Which brings up a second question what kind of spares should be kept on hand. BTW I live two miles down an old logging road. ROUGH is an UNDERSTATEMENT.

    I also have the 2970 getting a switch to turn the internal amp off in case I want to run either barefoot or with a larger external amp. It's not the new 2970n2 it's one of the older models.

    Thanks in advance for any pointers you may be able to give.
    Last edited by stang; 06-03-2014 at 11:05 PM.
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    Come on no one has any suggestions?

    I'm leaning toward a texas star 500 would that work without locking up like the 350 I have now?

    Thanks
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    My suggestion would be a clean Cobra 29 (Taiwan or Phillipines) and the 4 pill...Nothing wrong with a Texas Star 500, but something like a 1x4 Davemade or some other custom built box would really make that Cobra 29 come alive!


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    You are going to be limited as far as what amp you can get when using a radio like the 2970. Most would recommend a 6 or 8 pill amp in would think. The 350 you have is definitely not useable with the 2970, leave that for the pc122. You are going to have to have that radio de tuned to run a 4 pill and not blow it up IMO. I could be wrong but looking at the spec sheets, unless you can get your dead key to around 10 watts or less, you risk damaging the amp IMO. What do you think JJD?? I know you know a lot more than I do that's why I am directing it to you as I am not an expert in this field. I do know that I use a uniden 980 with my 4 pill and it works great!! No hear issues and it's clean. No complaints, just compliments so far. But I am just loafing the amp along now as I want to keep it for a while. Thanks for any and all replies JJD, like I said I know you know what you are speaking about and that I have learned much by listening to what you and others say. Thanks much and god bless.

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    stang (06-05-2014)

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    What are your radios currently putting out?

    Sent from my SCH-I545 using Tapatalk

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    Thank you guys.

    I'll either sell the cobra 29 or put it in my ford ( which I haven't driven in 2 years) I don't have the 2970 in hand yet. But I did tell them to install a switch to cut the on board amp on and off. The 6900 dead keys about 2w and swings 55-60 pep with the variable power down low. The pc-122 dead keys 5-6 watts swings 15-18. The cobra dead keys 1 watt swings 18. The cobra is a good radio but I talk a fair amount of ssb and free band is where most of the locals around me talk 26.6750. In the mobile I don't mind going over a 4 pill other than I don't want to upgrade the alternator. On the base I am limited to what the gainmaster can handle.

    Thanks
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    Quote Originally Posted by stang View Post
    Hi all I'm looking for amp suggestions for a couple big radios. I have a RCI 6900 f25 and a RCI 2970 (on the way) Now I'm looking for a good amp for one or both of them. My base station will likely have the 2970 and with the Sirio Gainmaster antenna I am running I am limited to about 500 watts. On the other hand the 6900 will probably go in the Jeep I drive daily. I'm thinking I'll put the uniden PC122 in my other jeep with the texas star 350. Since they seem to work well together. Doubt I want to go much above a 4 pill so I don't have to worry about changing the alternator etc.. But I do want good clean amps with AB bias for sideband use. I also want to make sure whatever amp(s) I do get can handle the power of the radios without locking up like the 350 does being driven with the rci 6900.

    I'm thinking I would like to get two alike or at least by the same manufacturer so the spare parts could be interchangeable.

    Which brings up a second question what kind of spares should be kept on hand. BTW I live two miles down an old logging road. ROUGH is an UNDERSTATEMENT.

    I also have the 2970 getting a switch to turn the internal amp off in case I want to run either barefoot or with a larger external amp. It's not the new 2970n2 it's one of the older models.

    Thanks in advance for any pointers you may be able to give.
    In my opinion high powered radio's are not good with running amps with in general unless a 6 pill or higher.. But if you choose to the Texas Star 500 straight 4 pill (2 Watt to 40 Total Swing) would be good but have to check the amps on alternator and probably need another battery. Using 1x2 and won't have to worry with that amp draw. Probably only going to see 300-400 watts may not be worth it with high powered radio's. But 1ST of all going to have the deadkeys and swing adjusted to match the amp on the radio's, maybe even a RF power knob put on radio if doesn't have. I personally would use a single final inexpensive radio with a 1x2 Biased Fatboy and get 300-400 watts on SSB and AM and won't have to worry about the radio heating up on long conversations. The 2950 with the Texas Star 500 would be good but will have to increase alternator and add one battery as backup. Then if you peak those high powered radio's up, they heat up so much they wind up blowing up in car. Those high powered radio can be tuned upwards of 300-400 watts but won't last with heat issue. That's why if plan on power, always low power radio and small. medium, or large amp.

    PS - Anything larger than a 1x2 or a straight 2 pill will need more than 90 amp alternator and extra battery. In my opinion, and that is using Texas Star or Fatboy. Sometimes these other amps draw even more, check the spec's.
    Last edited by NY714; 06-05-2014 at 10:36 AM.
    RCI-2950DX, 1978 Cobra 148 GTL Taiwan, SHURE526T MIC, Tug-8 With Astatic 10 DA Head, Astatic 575M6, ASTRON 70/20 AMP POWER SUPPLIES, IMAX 2000 W GROUND PLANE KIT. TIMES MICROWAVE LMR-400 COAX, RF CHOKES. DIAMOND SWR/POWER INLINE METER. 250 of Sea Level Under Me. Recent World Radio Member.

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    Thanks everyone.

    Supposed to pick up a used texas star 500 tomorrow long as everything checks out with it. $200 seems like a pretty fair price for it. Guess I need to start looking for a six pill next. Or maybe not, might do better to just turn the radio(s) back down a bit and find another 4 pill. What 714, 222 and others have said I would rather not push anything to hard. I'm not after every possible watt just good clean talking and long life out of everything.

    I'm not typically long winded so I think the 1000 CCA gold series battery I just put in the jeep with the 120 amp factory alternator will probably be okay, if it turns out not to be I do have a good alternator connection. There really isn't room for a second battery in the jeep. With two kids storage / carry space is at a premium.

    I like the texas star amps because they sound clean and are ssb ready. I'm sure some of the others are as good or even better. But for basic communication and a bit of DXing not competition they seem to work well for me.

    As soon as the other radio comes in I'll be rearranging everything. No since in moving things several times. Still debating hard mounting that 102" steel whip on the roof of the jeep and selling the wilson 1000 I bought a few months ago. That or getting one of the Sirio 5000 that can fold down without tools. Does anyone make a hard mount that can fold over the same way? Am I correct thinking a 102" SS whip is better than all the others?

    My main goal here is for my mobile to be able to talk back to home base from 25-30 miles consistently. Far as the base goes I would like to reach out 75 miles or so. If I could make the mobile do the same I would love it but I think that would take more than I am willing to spend.
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  12. #9
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    200 is a great price as long as it works and is in decent condition. I paid 300 for my TNT 600hd, but it came with a few extra things as well. And it is one of the older ones that was built well. I don't mind anyway as it was from family. My brother in law has had it and maybe keyed it 5 times, the rest of its life it been in the radio room sitting on the shelf. It was in mint condition so I am happy. Glad you found what you wanted as in the end it's yours and you will be the one using it. You will be happy with the setup you plan to use. Shoot the PC122 will drive it the best IMO and will probably sound the best. Get a good mic, I like the uniden bearcat mic's like this one
    Good all around stock mic. It's 4 pin cobra, so it will work with a lot of radios. As far as the antennas, yes sirio makes a hard mouth for the performer 5000 that folds down. The antenna itself folds, the hard mount and base won't move. Good antennas and I have had good luck with mine. 25-30 miles should be a walk in the park on ssb if conditions aren't bad. I speak that far daily with my magnum 257hp on SSB with the sirio performer mag mount. It does depend on the conditions I will say that though, there are no absolute guarantees that you will talk that far everyday. Mother Nature doesn't allow it sometimes. But for the most part I don't think 25-30 miles is out if reach from a mobile to base if both are setup properly and conditions allow it. You should be able to talk that far with the 2970 by itself unless there are a lot of hills or obstructions. Especially with a 4 pill. But again conditions can make it a bitch to talk down the street at times. Best way to find out is to try it. I have spent a lot of money just finding the right antenna combo for my needs. It's trial and error on some level, but with the help of good forums like this, it makes getting your system right a lot easier!! Hope to hear you on the air. God bless. 222 Daytona beach, FL mobile, I'm standing by listening.

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    Hey 222

    Haven't heard you on 27.385 lately?

    Not sure is exactly what I wanted & don't have it in my hand yet. But it should work well for one or the other. It's about the biggest thing I should put on the base antenna. In the mobile it looks like about the biggest thing the charging system will handle. I always try to have multi use items when possible. Takes less backups that way.
    STANG
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