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Palomar ERF-2030+

Discussion in 'CB Radio Modifications' started by Eldorado828, Sep 2, 2018.

  1. Eldorado828

    Eldorado828 Member

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    Back when these first hit the market I purchased a handful from a distributor just to experiment with later. Now after talking to Eric at Palomar they're telling me that these are a direct replacement for the 520 & 13n10's but couldn't provide a data sheet. I remember the original 2030's we would use companion parts that of course could be made with a couple of resistors and a diode. I guess where I'm going is, has anyone here used them and what results did you end up with? I know hard drive swears by them, but I have yet to see even the Palomar guys use the in their Magnum 1. (even though the original specs for that radio claimed to use them but used a 520 instead.)


     
    Shadetree Mechanic likes this.

  2. nomadradio

    nomadradio Analog Retentive

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    I suspect that all the Magnum 1 radios were already built before Eric came up with his new "plus" part.

    73
     
  3. Eldorado828

    Eldorado828 Member

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    If I remember correctly they were both released around the same time but you may be right. I just remember the pre release spec sheet for the magnum 1 did list the 2030's as the transistors used but as you said maybe the weren't ready yet. Just curious about the (plus) results and if they in fact are a direct drop in replacement. I'll play around with a few if I can free up some time.
     
  4. TheRealPorkchop

    TheRealPorkchop Certified Sith Pimp

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    I bought about 100 of them. I started out attempting to use them in mosfet conversions and transistor replacements in Cobra/Uniden chassis’s. Personally, I think they’re crap. The bias circuit (companion part) listed at CBT doesn’t work with them that great, not in my experience. The adjustments some have posted on this forum to build that part, doesn’t work well for me with them. I also tried them for mosfet conversions on Ranger chassis radios.

    Dropping them in place of something currently using a 520 or whatever, doesn’t seem to work well for me. Is it possible that what I was sent from a wholesaler is fake, maybe. Is the + addition just nothing and doesn’t mean anything, maybe. Could it be a magnetic force on my Death Star that’s causing the problems, possibly. Maybe the damn things just aren’t intended to put out the same power levels as 520’s? But how am I supposed to build a 150 mosfet amplifier to power the laser on my death tower fondly known as the Death Star? Or maybe somebody marketing those things just passed out a lot of koolaid or red pills.

    I’m not impressed with them. I like the 520’s much better. I too have yet to see anything shipped with the 2030+ in it, maybe I’m just impatient.

    I tried several of them in one radio, not satisfied with the result, took it out and to the trash it went...wash & repeat. Did that form about 5 or 6 of them and then said to hell with that part. So I have a huge handful of them in my shop and no use for them. I tried to contact Palomar and see if there’s a better bias solution but nobody has returned my email or call.

    So, unless I can come up with something better or someone else can show me the error of my way, I won’t buy anymore them of them.
     
    Shadetree Mechanic likes this.
  5. Martian

    Martian Active Member

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    There is no error in your way.
    When you buy ERF2030s or Max Mod transistors you are buying a brand and not much else.

    I wrote a couple long posts outlining the binning process and such but the bottom line is that Max Mod got debunked and The ERF2030s don't exactly hold up to their purported reputation either.

    Some think that the people at EKL are gods.
    EKL is an importer and the owners initials.
    That means he buys something and has his name put on it.
    It's just marketing. Nothing more.
    But it must be something "special" to have his brand or name put on it.
    It's trivial. You pay a couple grand and you can have a transistor that says "I am god" in quantity, too.

    People like Fine Tune CB and EKL use subjective or downright incorrect testing methodologies to create an illusion that the product is nearly miraculous.

    The infamous video of EKL testing the max mod transistor with an IR thermometer yelling into a microphone and showing you "more power" with the max mod transistor is an example of a testing methodology that I would expect from a CB hack shop, not someone that others purport to be an engineer. It should be viewed as pure nonsense.

    That said, Your "Fine Tune CB Shop" type people reinforce your choice-supportive bias or post-purchase rationalisation to make money. It's a bunch of razzle dazzle.
    I have come to view the "Palomar" devices as the CB shop house brand.

    There are devices on the market right now that will outperform both the ERF2030 and the Max Mod transistor.

    EKL should have selected devices with better properties during the binning process.
    But those devices would have graded higher and cost him more so I guess I can see why he went with what he did. More profit that way.
     
  6. Eldorado828

    Eldorado828 Member

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    Well it's good to know that ahead of time so I won't jump hurdles to do testing but eventually I hope to at least see a few go up in smoke. The original 2030's did OK back when we were replacing 1969's so I can say your could achieve some decent results back in their time. I've learned to like the 520's and maybe it's because they're what's in the common radios of today. I've subbed a few 13n10's just for fun and I really wasn't extremely impressed with the results, not speaking down on them but not all the hype. Back to the 2030+ though, it's strange that I can't even get a data sheet and was just told that they fall right into the place of the 520's. No companions parts, just a drop in.... From what I'm told here that's not the case I see. Now the max-mod, I can say I've installed a few of those and for temperature purposes I say they're a cooler running animal than the 817,827's. I don't try to squeeze every watt like the typical truck stop shop so I can't say I've compared to see pep wattage differences.
     
  7. loosecannon

    loosecannon Sr. Member

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    LeapFrog and Eldorado828 like this.
  8. Martian

    Martian Active Member

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    I have not seen the max mod tested against the 817,827, or 754 like transistors.
    Against the TIP36 it fails miserably.
    To keep it simple assume it's nothing more than a linear voltage regulator circuit.

    And that's easy to compute power dissipation to get an idea if it's even going to work.
    P = EI

    An example would be a radio with a C-E voltage drop of 5.5 volts drawing a worst case scenario of 6 amps thru the transistor.
    That gives us 33 watts of power dissipation.
    If we have these values for a max mod, it's 33 watts.
    If we have these values for a 2SB754 it's 33 watts.
    The heatsink is constant unless you add more to that so it's a fixed variable.

    Which one runs cooler if both devices are dissipating 33 watts into the same heatsink?
    That's the pickle.... and an exercise for the reader :)

    The max mod is a good replacement for the 817 or 827 or 754, etc.
    Albeit an expensive one over a TIP36c which is what I would use because it's cheap and it's available.


    Now, the MOSFET replacement of BJTs in a circuit that was intended for a BJT is going to suffer from other issues.

    Edit: clarify current thru device not whole radio.
     
    Eldorado828 likes this.
  9. LeapFrog

    LeapFrog Sr. Member

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    The new + part has the Vgs ON voltage listed on the accompanying sticker.
    Rumor has it, rumor has it.. (lol) this "ON" voltage may in fact be higher than the previous generation ERF2030.

    If the rumor is true, this would mean the part is not a "Direct, Drop-In replacement" as the bias voltage requirement would change.

    I don't have the time to test any rumor, just wish the datasheet could be provided. :)
     
    Tallman likes this.
  10. Martian

    Martian Active Member

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    If that is true then these parts should be AVOIDED at all costs.

    If something like Vgs changes beyond the spec of the original component it's a totally different component and should have a new part number.

    Rumors are rumors and this one can be easily confirmed with a curve tracer or a simple test jig and a sample of "old" and "new" devices.
     
    Eldorado828 and LeapFrog like this.
  11. Handy Andy

    Handy Andy Do Your Research First, Then Decide...

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    Wow - shades of 13N10L

    Some spec sheets refer to the "L" as No lead "Pb"

    And other spec sheets refer to the "L" as Logic Level trigger (like TTL days)
     
    LeapFrog likes this.
  12. Martian

    Martian Active Member

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    I think it's going to take another decade for people to understand the difference between voltage and current controlled devices.

    The two variants of 13N10 work just fine in the proper application but you have to pay attention to their drive levels and input capacitance.
     
  13. LeapFrog

    LeapFrog Sr. Member

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    "proper application" Says it all! ;)
     
  14. Ranch55

    Ranch55 Well-Known Member

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    I have installed the ERF2030+ MOSFET's in a Stryker 955 ......
    This radio has four "finals" in it.
    It has a pre-driver, a driver, and two finals .....
    I could not get the driver to turn on and drive the two finals. Turn-on voltage on the driver would not turn the 2030+ on.
    After working with this for a couple of hours, I took the 2030+'s out, and installed 13N10's, set all the bias voltages and the radio performed as it should, and still is today .....
    Just saying .....
     
  15. TheRealPorkchop

    TheRealPorkchop Certified Sith Pimp

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    I still say they’re crap.

    I hate I bought so many but the price was so good that just couldn’t pass on it, plus there wasn’t a lot to go by either.
     

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