PowerMaster II Power/SWR Indicator

 

   The Array Solutions PowerMaster II can monitor VSWR and power in the feedline of an amateur radio antenna. The optional monitor/control software has a high-visibility graphical user interface that is accessible for vision-impaired hams who can use a computer screen.

   The HamPod PM2 MeterReader can speak measurements by a PowerMaster II, and it adds an audio tone tuning feature. The MeterReader is described in a separate article.

PowerMaster II Monitor

   The PowerMaster II includes a stand-alone monitor and a directional coupler to install in the transmission line from a transceiver or amplifier. No RF is sent over the 6 foot cable that runs to the coupler.

   The monitor (Figure 1) is 8.3" W x 3.5" H x 4.3" D. The 4" x 1" LCD screen has a brightness control.

   In the default viewing mode forward power and VSWR are displayed digitally. The other digital readout options are (1) reverse and forward power, or (2) net power.

   During tuning you can toggle to the VSWR Bargraph mode, which adds a bargraph of the reflected power

Figure 1. PowerMaster II Monitor                 www.arraysolutions.com

 

   A letter in the upper left of the display indicates the peak-hold time—four options range from 0.2 - 5 seconds.

   Other features include power and VSWR relay alarms that can flash warning LEDs and shut down a power amplifier.

   The monitor has a second switchable connector for monitoring another coupler.

Directional Couplers

   Various directional couplers are available. For example, the 3 kW model covers 1 - 30 MHz and 50 - 54 MHz. There are also couplers for VHF, UHF, and QRP-HF.

Control Software

   PowerMaster Basic II is free Windows software for monitoring and controlling the instrument. You can operate the software directly from the PC or remotely over LAN or Internet.

   The Basic II readout panel (Figure 2) displays bargraph and digital readouts of VSWR, forward power, and reflected power. On a typical 22" screen using 120 dpi the window in the figure is 6.5" x 11.8".

Figure 2.  Basic II readout panel.            www.arrraysolutions.com

 

 The View menu offers two smaller displays:  (1) digital-only power and VSWR, or (2) a compressed view of digital readouts and bargraphs.

  Menu items at the top of the panel control the configuration and operation of the monitor. The text is small, so a Windows magnification accessory might be helpful.

 

Author Information

   Peter DeNeef, AE7PD, is an Extra Class amateur radio operator in the U.S. Email:  HamRadioAndVision "at" gmail "dot" com.

rev. 1/31/2014

HamPod PM2 MeterReader

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