Clifton Laboratories 7236 Clifton Road  Clifton VA 20124 tel: (703) 830 0368 fax: (703) 830 0711



To search within the Clifton Laboratories site, enter your search term below.


Software Updates
Softrock Lite 6.2
Adventures in Electronics and Radio
Elecraft K2 and K3 Transceivers


December 2010 Archive


25 December 2010

The Z1203B power coupler is now available. Details are at Z1203B Coupler.

The differences between the Z1203A (which will continue in production) and the Z1203B are:

Property Z1203A Z1203B
Power Source Requires 13.8V DC from an external power source Powered from 120V/60HzAC mains. Includes external "wall wart" transformer. Z1203B has rectifier, filter and voltage regulator.
Output Voltage Depends on supply; normal range is 10-15V and operation above 16V is not recommended. Adjustable from 9V to 24V
Maximum Current Output 200mA 400mA
Active Antenna Connector BNC or Optional "F" BNC Only

If your radio room has a low noise analog 13.8V DC supply, the Z1203A is suitable. If you do not have 13.8V DC available, or if you prefer the advantages of an integrated power coupler, the Z1203B is suitable.

The Z1203B is somewhat more expensive than the Z1203A, which reflects its greater complexity.

The Z1203B also is in a new color for Clifton Laboratories; medium gray instead of black.

04 December 2010

One of my new kits is close to ready. The enclosures arrived today, and I will have the last PCB revisions finished over the weekend and out for production.

It's a revised DC power coupler to be used with the Z1501D active antenna or with any other device requiring DC power duplexed over the coax feedline.

This coupler is the Z1203B and differs from the Z1203A in the following ways:

  • The Z1203B does not require a stand-alone low noise 13.8 DC power supply. It is powered from a "wall wart" AC transformer and contains a rectifier, noise filter, DC ripple filter and adjustable voltage regulator.
  • Variable regulated DC voltage output. I'm still deciding what the output range will be, but my present thought is 10V DC minimum, 24V DC maximum. This allows the Z1203B to power certain other antennas. It also permits the Z1501D to be operated at its optimum voltage as the Z1203B's voltage regulator can be adjusted to provide 13.8V at the Z1501D antenna amplifier, thus compensating for voltage drop within the Z1203 and in the coax feeder to the active antenna.
  • The front panel LED has two colors. Green indicates DC power is available for the active antenna. Red indicates the active antenna has been placed in standby or "safe" mode via the TX CTRL line.
  • Removes the need for interconnecting cables between the panel connectors and the PCB. All connectors are now PCB mount style. This improves "buildability" if there is such a word.
  • The Z1203B uses a mix of through hole and surface mount components, necessary in order to fit everything into the same enclosure size as the Z1203A.

I've also decided to shift from black enclosures to gloss gray with black silk screen in all new kits.

The Z1203A will continue to be available for customers that have a 13.8V DC supply, or customers requiring an F connector for the active antenna.

The Z1203B will be slightly more expensive than the Z1203A as it has many more components.

I expect to have the Z1203B ready for sale in approximately two weeks, although that schedule may be slightly delayed with holiday closings.


04 December 2010

As usual, the prior month has been moved to an archive page, readable by clicking here or via the navigation table at the top of the page.