At present, most of the radios we use are within 100W, or even below 50W. But with the increasing electromagnetic interference in cities, it has become more and more difficult to make QSO with hams around the world with only these radios. In order to improve the quality of communication and increase the transmitting power of the radio, it is necessary to buy a short-wave high-power amplifier to work with our radios. There are Electron tubes and transistors power amplifiers for short-wave radio.
Transistor amplifiers are actually current amplifiers. Its advantages are power saving, high efficiency, long life, small size. So it's very convenient to use, and can be launched immediately after power-up, which is very suitable for the movable radio. However, the transistor power amplifier is composed of a transistor or a field effect tube. once it is mis-operated, it is easy to burn the field-effect tube. Fortunately, in terms of cost, transistors are much cheaper than electron tubes. Of course, there are also high-end transistor power amplifiers, which are generally only used for professional purposes.
The electron tube amplifier is actually a voltage amplifier. Compared with transistor amplifiers, electron tube amplifiers are high power consumption, bulky and bulky, and high production costs. However, its most obvious feature is that it has a strong overload capacity and is not easy to be damaged. Therefore, many countries’ military forces have been stocking a large number of electronic tube communications Equipment, and the purpose is to resist powerful electromagnetic pulse strikes in future wars. In addition, the internal resistance of the tube amplifier is small, so it has a stronger thrust at the same power, and it maintains a small distortion regardless of the size of the sound. Even if there is distortion, it does not affect the original sound quality. However, it consumes a lot of power and needs to be warmed up in advance. The lifespan of the electron tube is not as long as the transistor, resulting in a higher cost.
As a ham, if you have used both the electron tube and transistor amplifier, you will have this experience that the tube amplifier is very durable, and it is not easy to damage though it is mishandled. Therefore, after I burnt down a lot of power FETs due to my careless operation, I prefer the electronic tube amplifier now. which one would you choose?