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Commercial LZ1AQ Unboxing – Opening Up

lz1aq unboxing

Everything went well with my commercial LZ1AQ unboxing. This active antenna amplifier appears well made and extensively documented. The kit was complete and well packaged.

My commercial LZ1AQ active antenna amplifier arrived well packed in a small box. I found its contents complete, and everything well protected in bubble wrap.

While it is called a “kit”, that is a bit misleading. Your main components – the amplifier and control boards – are completely built and tested before shipping. The box contains both boards, an exterior amplifier box, a short Ethernet test cable, and a hardware package.

When you do the LZ1AQ unboxing, you immediately notice that the amplifier board is already screwed into the amplifier box. I guess this keeps things tight for the postal journey from Bulgaria. The mounting box is made from ABS and measures 100 mm square by 40 mm deep. Entry into this weatherproof box is provided by six rubber caps, which are easy to remove. You need to drill some proper sized holes into these rubber caps and then seal with silicone when mounting outside.

All of your connections to these boards are made with various connectors or screw terminals. With one exception, you will not need to do any soldering. That exception is the mode control switching. Upon LZ1AQ unboxing, you find a hardware package that contains a six terminal mode connector as well as crimp pins to install wiring for switching between loop and dipole modes.

Both boards contain a number of configuration jumpers as well as control points for testing. Jumpers are provided in the hardware package.

Commercial LZ1AQ Unboxing – Initial Tests

Typically, you will run this system using a 13.8 volt DC linear regulated power supply. There is an initial test procedure mainly designed to ensure that the polarity of the power supply is correct, and voltage is in the proper range.

When you complete these initial tests, as documented in the mounting instructions, you should see a green LED shining on each of the boards. Power is connected to the smaller control board, and then sent to the amplifier via CAT cable.

Chavdar’s documentation is excellent and extensive, all available on his web site. You will only notice two issues. First, the product improvements and versions have changed things over the years. In some documentation, earlier versions of the boards are shown and the pictures do not match. Make sure you download and review the various addendum. Second, jumpers are labeled on the boards using embossed printing on a black surface. This makes them hard to read.

But all in all, well done.

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