26 April 2012

Power to the 4sQRPoMeter

Yesterday was not my day or ... s I thought. It was a normal day, when the postman rang twice and had a present for me! Some weeks ago I saw in Google+ a hint that the 4SQRP Group presented another QRP gear: The QRPoMeter and there was no hesitation. I ordered it. I had only an old SWR-Meter and I had already sold the good one: the QRP-Wattmeter. And I was lucky to catch one. The kits were sold out within 27 hours.

Of course there was no delay and I started making an inventory. Only one resistor was missing but I could substitute it with two others within the 5% variation.

The Manual was clear and I could solder piece after piece without any problems. They final tests could be done with a DRM and my other rig. But that's when trouble began. The original tests were done without problems but then I wanted to see if the QRP-Meter worked as promised:

  • Power Range: 100 mW to 10 Watts
  • Accuracy: Power, 2% Typical
  • VSWR, 5% Typical
It has a build in dummy load and I used my K2 using the tune button. The automatic antenna tuner within the K2 worked and I first put the output power to 2 watt and the QRPometer showed 2 watt. Well done! So I am a QRo man so pushed the K2 to 10 watt and the QRPometer did show only 3,62 watt. I tried an tried. from 0 to 3,62 watt everything was fine but afterwards: No go.

So I made a pause and transferred the pictures from the un boxing and the actual building to the laptop, did't pay attention to the warning and all pictures were lost. So if you want to see more pictures have a look at the NM0S Site. Later in the evening I re-soldered all joints but the digital display was stuck to 3,62 watt.

This morning I was driving and listening to Heifetz playing the 1. violin sonata by J.S. Bach. As always he was playing in a perfect manor, but I did not like the interpretation. In my eyes it was too straight to the notes and I missed some legato parts and emphasized themes. And there it came to me: The K2 reduces the power when pushed into the tune mode to be on the save side with the ATU.

Back home: Switch on the SOLF, connect the QRPometer  and turned the power from 0.0 to 11,00 watt and the instrument did show on the big display all the numbers as it should be.

So all in all: The day yesterday was not bad at all, but I was a little bit out of mind. So my salute to the designer of the QRPometer: Well done!

And to my ears another version of the Bach sonata:

[EDIT] I just decided that I don not like this version either. I have in my ears a version played by Christoph Poppen who also played the solos on the CD "Morimur" with hte best interpretation of the Chaconne ... so far.

I could not find a Poppen solo so here you can hear him playing the 3rd violin:

Stay Tuned!