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 Post subject: National NCX transceivers
PostPosted: Feb Fri 02, 2018 2:11 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 312
Location: Michigan, 49712 - SC, 29577
Can anyone shed some light on the differences among the National NCX transceivers.

I am not interested in the 3 band NCX-3 or the big NCX-1000.

I am interested in the differences among the NCX-5, NCX-5 MKII, NCX-200 and the NCX-500.

Any help is appreciated.


Terry
W8EJO


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 Post subject: Re: National NCX transceivers
PostPosted: Feb Fri 02, 2018 2:47 am 
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Joined: Jun Sun 19, 2011 2:31 pm
Posts: 5868
Terry,

In short the NCX-5 is the pick of the litter, a great transceiver with an excellent receiver and nice styling. One of the improvements for the mark ii was a diode balanced modulator that replaced the 7360 but it was also available as an upgrade for the original so some of those have been modified. There should be a bunch of NCX-5 stuff on edebris because I sent the stuff I had to someone who uploaded the files.

I have a NCX-5, mark II, NCX-3, and NCX-1000 and the 5 and its mark ii version are by far my favorites.

I am heading out to a late soccer game now but if I think of anything else to guide you I will post it up later. If you come up with a specific question about one I will try to answer it but in short I look at the NCX-5 as the deluxe unit and everything else, including the high power NCX-1000, is a lesser unit. When I was a novice one of the family friends had a NCX-5 with the external VFO and that was always a station I wanted to duplicate. I now have that setup along with a NCL-2000 and HRO-500 pieced together as my favorite semi-modern National setup.

Rodger WQ9E


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 Post subject: Re: National NCX transceivers
PostPosted: Feb Fri 02, 2018 2:53 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 312
Location: Michigan, 49712 - SC, 29577
Thank you Roger.


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 Post subject: Re: National NCX transceivers
PostPosted: Feb Fri 02, 2018 4:11 am 
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Location: Liberty, Missouri
I agree with Roger's remarks regarding the NCX-5. The NCX-5 has an excellent receiver. I currently have two NCX-5 Mk IIs and a couple NCL-2000s that get rotated onto the operating bench periodically. I didn't like the styling of the NCX-3, 200, or 500 and sold them, but looking back, I sometimes wish I'd kept the 500. I've owned all but the NCX-1000 and the HRO-500.

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 Post subject: Re: National NCX transceivers
PostPosted: Feb Fri 02, 2018 2:11 pm 
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Joined: Aug Fri 01, 2014 11:18 pm
Posts: 34
Hi Terry (et al),

For background, I have a bunch of NCX-3s and 5s and an NCX-500 so this is what I will base my comments on.

I like the NCX-5 and agree with the previous comments. I think it was the first of the batch and that the design goal was to produce a top of the line transceiver. It featured two stages of RF amplification and three stages of IF. It seems like the NCX-3, 200, and 500 all represented a series of cost reductions, all removed the second RF amp stage, among other reductions such as replacing the counter dial with a circular plastic dial.

The NCX-3 was a 3-band version designed at the time when 10 and 15 meters were pretty much dead due to entering the sunspot minimum (much as we are now). By switching the VFO frequency for 40 meters, the pre-mixing that was in the NCX-5 could be eliminated. The NCX-3 had three stages of IF and built in VOX. Like the NCX-5, early NCX-3s used the 7360 balanced modulator, later runs used the diode balanced modulator.

The NCX-200 removed the built in VOX and one stage of IF along with cosmetic changes to the case, panel and knobs to reduce the cost.

The NCX-500 changed the final tubes and power supply to compete with other 400w to 500w PEP transceivers on the market. As with the competition from this time, the power ratings are subject to bit of hyperbole. There are only very minor differences between the NCX-200 and NCX-500 and it is quite possible to make a 200 into a 500. This appears to be the case with the one that I have (maybe a prototype or an "upgrade" by a National employee).

By the time the NCX-500 came out, it appears that National Radio was nearing the end and the build and component quality seemed to be in decline.

The transceivers went through a series of tubes in the final. The NCX-3 used the 6GJ5 (17.5w plate dissipation). The NCX-200 and early NCX-5s used the 6JB6 (17.5w plate dissipation) while the later NCX-5s used the 6JE6 (30w plate dissipation). The NCX-500 used the 6LQ6 (30w plate dissipation). The 6JB6, 6JE6 and 6LQ6 are all pin compatible, but bias and voltage ratings differ. All of these are 'sweep tubes' designed for TV horizontal output use. Use of sweep tubes was common at the time as the costs were relatively low compared to 'transmitting' tubes such as the 6146 and the featured relatively high peak power capabilities.

Bob, AB1MN


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 Post subject: Re: National NCX transceivers
PostPosted: Feb Fri 02, 2018 11:01 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 312
Location: Michigan, 49712 - SC, 29577
Thanks Bob for the thorough analysis. Exactly what I was looking for.


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 Post subject: Re: National NCX transceivers
PostPosted: Feb Mon 05, 2018 12:18 am 
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Location: Ohio 45177
Was just looking at one of those National "fireside chat" type full page ads in a 1966 QST. They brag about the NCX 5 quality control and how they have more inspectors per line, and how they carefully install all the parts at right angles, test and more test, shake test and burn in, better warranty etc. So am curious if the quality of the construction and parts strikes you as better than average or anything.


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