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Thread: RM Italy amps

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    nexus73's Avatar
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    Default RM Italy amps

    The base station amps from RM Italy go for a good amount of coin but the mobile amps seem to be the Bargain Of The Century, which suggests that getting one of them and a power supply would be a good way to go for a medium power (50 to 200 watt) base station setup. Of course that's a supposition on my part so I am curious to find out where the truth is.

    Are these amps good or junk? If they are good, what power supply manufacturer provides the best one? Astron, Pyramid, other? How well do RM's do on AM and SSB? Are there any sticking points or tricky deals when using an RM Italy amp? When comparing amps from the "outlaw" domestic makes and RM Italy amps, what qualities does each one have to their advantage?


    The few Amazon.com reviews out there rate the RM's highly but I believe the MD's here will speak with a more knowledgeable POV, so I ask for what you who read this post think about the Italian imports. Are they Ferraris or Fiats?

    Rick
    We're not the end of the world but you can see it from here...LOL!


    Quote Originally Posted by HiDef View Post
    I don't make a habit out of loaning stuff unless I know it will result in a worthwhile explosion.
    If you take a radio apart and put it back together enough times, you'll end up with enough spare parts to make another one.

    kb1piz.wordpress.com/about/ shows what happens to rippers on MD

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    DO NOT OVERDRIVE OR VOLT THEM !!

    Good article on one model...


    http://cbradiomagazine.com/RM_Italy_...Amplifier.html

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    631's Avatar
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    They are ok just light duty

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    i have a kl503 and love it its a good lil amp and cruises on the low side at 20 swingin to 250 to 270 range @ reg voltage

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    I have a KL203 that does around 130-140 PEP with ~11w swing according to my crappy meter at 13.8V. Was dirt cheap here, just €50,- ($55).

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    nexus73's Avatar
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    Are there any grounding issues when using one of these RM mobile linears in a home setting with a power supply? Or does one just plug and play?

    Rick
    We're not the end of the world but you can see it from here...LOL!


    Quote Originally Posted by HiDef View Post
    I don't make a habit out of loaning stuff unless I know it will result in a worthwhile explosion.
    If you take a radio apart and put it back together enough times, you'll end up with enough spare parts to make another one.

    kb1piz.wordpress.com/about/ shows what happens to rippers on MD

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    Quote Originally Posted by nexus73 View Post
    Are there any grounding issues when using one of these RM mobile linears in a home setting with a power supply? Or does one just plug and play?
    No issues when I used my RM KL-203 with a Cobra 2000 just hooked it up to the power supply, ran relativity clean didn't contribute any noticeable interference to nearby televisions and only minimally effected computer speakers that are on the same desk as the radio. My Icom does that barefoot. Amps are decent no DaveMade powerhouse but they perform as advertised, Rife is correct you need to keep the input low otherwise they heat up in a hurry. Other than that worked well for over a year before I ran across a brand new Fatboy base amp on the cheap. Still have the RM packed away as a backup or for some future project.


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    nexus73's Avatar
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    Okay, now to ask which power supply is best for using with RM Italy mobile amps in a base station role...again. Astron, Pyramid or some other brand?

    Rick
    We're not the end of the world but you can see it from here...LOL!


    Quote Originally Posted by HiDef View Post
    I don't make a habit out of loaning stuff unless I know it will result in a worthwhile explosion.
    If you take a radio apart and put it back together enough times, you'll end up with enough spare parts to make another one.

    kb1piz.wordpress.com/about/ shows what happens to rippers on MD

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    Astron is one of the best quality power supply's out there... I have had several... No problems...

    Pyramid is OK.. I owned a 52 amp one for years.. Only problem was the meter lights kept burning out (But to tell the truth, I never "Stressed" the Pyramid at all)...

    Whichever brand you choose, make sure you get the right size (Prevents lots of problems later).

    Figure out what DC amps the amplifier AND the radio will draw (What size fuses are in them?), TOTAL. Then add 20% to that. that total is what the MINIMUM CONTINUOUS AMPS the supply should be rated for.

    Personally, I would spend the extra money for a higher quality, higher amp rated power supply. Big linear DC power supply's are heavy and expensive to ship if they need service...

    Some of the guys here use lighter weight "Switching" supply's. Personally, I have never liked them for radio work, but to each their own...


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    this is not a sales pitch its advise

    as a retailer of rm amps i have some advise ...FAN!FAN! FAN! they need a fan or fans its their down fall ,as rife said do not over volt (will shift into class c and overheat if you do) or over drive if run within their ratings they are as good as any other map out there ...

    .the kl203 is the best bang for buck amp on the market 125 watts pep class ab 1 watt drive gives 25-30 carrier 125 pep all day for the amers and 12-15 watts gives 125 watts peak (4x rm03 mosfets)

    for the class c amer boys a cheap kl200 is all you need 80watts pep (sd1446)

    but i can not stress this enough FAN the things as the heat sinks are small on the kl200/kl203

    the kl500/503 are great bang for buck if you want to step up to the 250-300 watt class both class ab

    the tube amps suck ...not worth the effort to lift them other than to push them off the bench on to the concrete floor trust me on that ..the tubes are hard to get new and the load caps they use are crap(arc over at full power rating on them is very light) let alone the under sized hv supply transformer

    if you want to step up to the 1kw pep class go the new bla2000 amp ..forget the klv1000/1000p (klv1000/p is no longer made as they cant get the tubes anymore)

    for bang for buck they are great ...if you put a fan on them of all the rm amps i have sold in the last 8 years i have only had 1 returned due to self destructing (silly ham put 100 watts into a kl500 not once but twice!) and found them to be very reliable .
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    Yes, i found my KL203 runs hot, but nowhere near as hot as my Fatboy 2 pill Trucker.(w/o fan) Does this mean my Fatboy is running too hot? The KL203 cools down pretty quick but the 2 pill holds the heat much longer.

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    Thanks to all for so much great information! Read and heed beats learn the hard way and bleed...LOL!

    Rick
    We're not the end of the world but you can see it from here...LOL!


    Quote Originally Posted by HiDef View Post
    I don't make a habit out of loaning stuff unless I know it will result in a worthwhile explosion.
    If you take a radio apart and put it back together enough times, you'll end up with enough spare parts to make another one.

    kb1piz.wordpress.com/about/ shows what happens to rippers on MD

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mean Gene View Post
    Yes, i found my KL203 runs hot, but nowhere near as hot as my Fatboy 2 pill Trucker.(w/o fan) Does this mean my Fatboy is running too hot? The KL203 cools down pretty quick but the 2 pill holds the heat much longer.
    I wouldve coughed up the extra $15 for the one with the fan and mounting bracket, but you could always pop a hole in the lid and install your own fan.. guy i know did that with a 2 pill i sold him even though its ticked along for 4-5 years without one just fine.

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    A switching power suppy works great with the KL203

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    Quote Originally Posted by moonshiner180 View Post
    I wouldve coughed up the extra $15 for the one with the fan and mounting bracket, but you could always pop a hole in the lid and install your own fan.. guy i know did that with a 2 pill i sold him even though its ticked along for 4-5 years without one just fine.
    The difference is $39,- but seeing how hot the amp runs, the bigger heatsink might have justified that. Maybe i will put one or two fans in the top like you said.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nexus73 View Post
    Okay, now to ask which power supply is best for using with RM Italy mobile amps in a base station role...again. Astron, Pyramid or some other brand?

    Rick
    I'd go with the astron if you can afford it.

    If your in need of an elcheapo, look into a megawatt.

    http://www.12voltpowersupplies.us/

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    Quote Originally Posted by rifleman223 View Post
    Some of the guys here use lighter weight "Switching" supply's. Personally, I have never liked them for radio work, but to each their own...
    Astron switching power supplies are the bomb, I own two extremely quiet the filtering is superb!


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    Quote Originally Posted by Mean Gene View Post
    The difference is $39,- but seeing how hot the amp runs, the bigger heatsink might have justified that. Maybe i will put one or two fans in the top like you said.
    Oh okay, i assumed the 2x2290 not the 2x2879 since you didnt mention which it was, i can understand the $40 difference vs $15 especially when you're purchasing an item you're not real familiar with, since im guessing theres not a ton of people using Fatboy amps over there.. RM seems to be the amp of choice overseas

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    I think i'm one of the very few in my country owning one. On second thoughs i would have been better of getting a 1x2, my radio doesn't have enough drive to make it shine. I'm considering one of them small 35 watt RM amps as a driver now. Bad idea?

    But yes, the RM amps are widely available over here.

    Sorry for taking this off topic.

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    unfortunately, the RM amps are garbage. poorly made, and emit spurious crap all over the band. they also sell them for ham bands, I have opportunity to look at them on a spectrum analyzer. Stay away from them, you are throwing your money away.

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