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Author Topic: What Reciever to get ?  (Read 16792 times)
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NR5A
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« on: June 06, 2010, 12:34:08 AM »

This is probably a loaded question. I just picked up a Viking Ranger thats in pretty good shape, now I wonder what would be a good reciever to along with it ??  Working on a AM station. Why?

Jerry - NR5A
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K1ZJH
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« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2010, 01:20:15 AM »

How much do you want to spend, and how far into a restoration effort do you want to get involved?

For inexpensive and easy to get going, a NC-303 pops into mind. I like the SX-42 and SX-28, but restoration is not for the faint of heart.

Did you check W3JN's receiver comparision writeup that is posted on this site?

Pete k1zjh
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KC4VWU
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« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2010, 02:19:00 AM »

I'll give a vote towards a Hammarlund. With a little prep, a HQ-129X is dependable, easy to work on, and a good performer. Best of all, they can be had real reasonable. 120, and 140X are right in there too.


If you want to put a little more coin into it, get something with a PTO ... Collins, Drake ... the stability is a whole lot better.
 
73, Phil 
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w3jn
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« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2010, 02:47:29 AM »

That's like asking "What car should I get?"  Impossible to answer.

Here are a few articles to get you started

http://www.amwindow.org/tech/pdf/slabrxreview.pdf

http://amfone.net/ECSound/JNRECS.html
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« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2010, 08:24:49 AM »

I also found the w1vd receiver test data very useful.  Sherwood has a small amount of data on vintage receivers but W1VD covered more of them with the information I was looking for:  passband and distortion.   It is a good idea to learn a few things about detectors.  Many of the old receivers used envelope detectors and they start getting above 10% distortion when modulation on the signal exceeds 70 or 80%.  There are simple ways changing to a product detector.

http://www.w1vd.com/BAreceivertest.html
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« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2010, 10:44:22 AM »

For general overall performance (and coverage) and price, (this is all things considered and my opinion only), its hard to beat the HQ-140X.
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« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2010, 11:06:17 AM »

Yep, I vote for the Hammarlund 120, 129, or 140 as well. Wink
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« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2010, 12:51:26 PM »

The HRO-50 or 50-1 would be a nice match to the Ranger or a NC-300, NC-183D. Any of the 75A series Collins also or GPR-90, SX-101 series. The Hammarlunds were a bit lower on the economic scale than the typical Ranger owner altho nice radios in their own right. I cant think of any other contemporary Halli; I use a SX-42 with a postwar gray HT-9 but its not that great a radio for battle conditions so it stays away from 75M.

If you dont mind a decade mismatch then a SX-28, SX-32, NC-183, NC-240D, SP-400.

I generally run a Viking I/HQ-129X, Viking II CDC/HRO-60, Prewar black HT-9/SX-28 and cycle several other receivers thru to keep them dried out a few times a year.

Carl
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WA3VJB
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« Reply #8 on: June 06, 2010, 12:58:00 PM »

I've always liked the looks of this pair.
They physically match in size, and they just seem to look right together.



The HQ-100AC is a good receiver. NOT high performance. You can get images on it, but the selectivity is adequate, it's got average audio quality, it's easy to work on, and they're not very expensive.  

Larry, W8ER has come up with some mods to improve the fidelity and AGC, but you will need to decide what you want out of your AM station.

It is not my primary receiver.

(this was a backup HF station I cobbled together for one of the AM Expeditions to Thomas Point Lighthouse, K3L. As it turns out, only the "table" made it out there. That's a back door from a rack)
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ke7trp
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« Reply #9 on: June 06, 2010, 01:08:28 PM »

I ran my ranger with a Hallicrafters SX100.  If your into fixing things. I have two sitting in the garage needing repair or restoration.

I think your choice is going to come down to your budget and your personal "draw" to a certain unit. 

There are lots of cheap Hallicrafters units like the SX110 that work great.  I ran the 110 for 2 years. Its audio beats alot of my other recievers. Its very stable and never gave me trouble.

If you have the budget,  Jump into the military recievers. They are Far better as far as performance goes.  My favorite is the SP600.  But I do own R390 and R390A.

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WQ9E
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« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2010, 02:09:23 PM »

I think the Hammarlund HQ-110 is a good cosmetic and performance match.  The 110 is dual conversion and has adequate selectivity for AM and CW.  Other reasonable matches include the Halli SX-96, 100, or 101 and the National NC-183 or 183D.

I am running an SX-88 with mine but my Ranger is used with a Desk KW.  I have a Ranger 2 paired with an HQ-110A.  An HQ-110 receiver has good performance and is basically most of an HQ-170.  Add the HC-10 adapter to the HQ-110 and you have the functional equivalent of an HQ-170.
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« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2010, 11:43:18 PM »

I use an HQ 129X with my Ranger I, and have been very happy with the pair.
The only thing I should point out is the performance of the '129X on ten meters.
It uses a 6K8 converter tube, which is a fairly noisy converter tube. Combine that
with the 6SS7 RF amp, the S/N on ten could stand to be a bit better.
Having said (typed) that, I have done side-by-side comparisons between the '129X
and the Icom IC-746 Pro. As expected, the '746 outperforms the '129X, but by a surprisingly small margin. If I can hear it on the Icom, I can also hear it on the Hammarlund, although a couple dB
weaker. The '129X is perfectly usable on ten, but expect a little converter noise.
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« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2010, 12:40:43 PM »

I use a HQ-129X with a Viking I, similar to what I ran in the 50's. Back then a 717A in the RF hole woke up 10/15M a lot.

These days Ive gone a bit further with a 6SG7 RF and 6X8 mixer/oscillator that was written up in CQ maybe in the late 50's. I can dig it out if needed. Now its fine on all bands and the AGC isnt disturbed.

Carl
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« Reply #13 on: June 07, 2010, 01:21:54 PM »

I use a HQ-129X with a Viking I, similar to what I ran in the 50's. Back then a 717A in the RF hole woke up 10/15M a lot.

These days Ive gone a bit further with a 6SG7 RF and 6X8 mixer/oscillator that was written up in CQ maybe in the late 50's. I can dig it out if needed. Now its fine on all bands and the AGC isnt disturbed.

Carl

hi Carl ... I have a 129x and have the CQ article for the 6X8 .... what did the 6sg7 mod entail?
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« Reply #14 on: June 07, 2010, 07:17:17 PM »


An interesting approach today, that many are taking is to take any receiver of your preference and strap the output of the IF section (before any filtering) to a "software defined" receiver board. The "Softrock Lite" is a good example of such a board. Then you get more or less state-of-the-art performance (with the addition of a computer of course) with your old boatanchor as the front end. I like the idea, although I have not yet personally implemented this scheme, many others have. It works!

I really like my stock R-388 (51-J) receiver for AM.
I know many don't particularly like this receiver, but it really does work FB for me...

                         _-_-bear

                                                                                                                                                           
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K1JJ
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« Reply #15 on: June 07, 2010, 07:27:55 PM »

For AM use I really like my SP-600. It's tapped off the detector into a stereo amp using big speakers. The velvet, weighed tuning is like a receiver should be.  It's easy to work on compared to some and is of rugged construction. Add a digital counter kit and this general coverage receiver is almost as exciting as a blue-eyed, blonde-haired 18 year old college cheerleader.

T
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« Reply #16 on: June 07, 2010, 07:43:41 PM »


Add a digital counter kit and this general coverage receiver is almost as exciting as a blue-eyed, blonde-haired 18 year old college cheerleader.

T

Tom...

Seriously, you definitely need to get away from Rico and Fabio's grip. This is... a staggering viewpoint that the AM Geek may address at some point.
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« Reply #17 on: June 07, 2010, 07:46:08 PM »

LOL.. I have the same setup here. SP600 restored with the AADE digital display and the HiFI mods. Its sweet as honey. Add in the fixed Xtals and its even better.

And hey.. He did say "almost"


Clark
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WU2D
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CW is just a narrower version of AM


« Reply #18 on: June 07, 2010, 07:53:25 PM »

NC-270 Cosmic Blue but if you plan on working pile ups - the Knight Kit R-100A.
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« Reply #19 on: June 08, 2010, 08:06:14 AM »

Add a digital counter kit and this general coverage receiver is almost as exciting as a blue-eyed, blonde-haired 18 year old college cheerleader.
T

Tom,
        I think you've had too much RF exposure lately Huh  Huh  Grin

Methinks you better start building stuff in better shielded cabinets Grin  Grin
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« Reply #20 on: June 08, 2010, 08:42:12 AM »

Frank,
Makes me think of the email you sent me over the weekend of the commerical.
I sent it to Tom last night.
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k4kyv
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Don
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« Reply #21 on: June 08, 2010, 10:41:55 AM »

NC-270 Cosmic Blue but if you plan on working pile ups - the Knight Kit R-100A.

Better still, a Heathkit HR-10 or Hallicrafters S-38
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Don
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« Reply #22 on: June 08, 2010, 11:15:20 AM »

Knight Kit Ocean Hopper

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Don, K4KYV                                       AMI#5
Licensed since 1959 and not happy to be back on AM...    Never got off AM in the first place.

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« Reply #23 on: June 08, 2010, 12:11:04 PM »

Nah, get a crystal set like my mom's uncle Howard had in the 20s.   She used to tell me she remembered when she was around 10 years old, seeing her dad and Uncle Howard wearing headphones and listening to Amos 'n Andy.   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Crystal_radio_receiver_from_wireless_era.png

The problem with all those PC operated soft-space-flex-rock receivers is they convert the analog to digital.  If the digital over samples there can be distortion.  With all analog vacuum tube circuits you get that great sounding audio quality.  Glass audio Rulz Ooorah.
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K1JJ
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« Reply #24 on: June 08, 2010, 12:28:31 PM »

LOL.. I have the same setup here. SP600 restored with the AADE digital display and the HiFI mods. Its sweet as honey. Add in the fixed Xtals and its even better.

And hey.. He did say "almost"

Clark


BTW, for those of possible different "persuasions", (ahem)  "blue-eyed, blonde-haired... cheerleaders" was left unspecified... We try to be politically correct here and not leave anyone out...Grin

Clark:  That's an interesting idea about using fixed crystals. I imagine you have a few in there for the 3885/1885 type watering holes.

T
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Use an "AM Courtesy Filter" to limit transmit audio bandwidth  +-4.5 KHz, +-6.0 KHz or +-8.0 KHz when needed.  Easily done in DSP.

Wise Words : "I'm as old as I've ever been... and I'm as young as I'll ever be."

There's nothing like an old dog.
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