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Elecraft K3: KSYN3A synthesizer installation notes

Posted by on June 27, 2018


Elecraft K3

Elecraft K3


At one point, myself and K7OLN were living about 700 feet apart.  Both of us were very active, and as a result could not operate on the same band at the same time.  I purchased an Elecraft K3, and that helped, K7OLN then purchased a K3 and that helped more.  Then Elecraft came out with a low phase noise synthesizer, the KSYN3A.  This helped a lot.  As it turns out I was able to document the changes as we each added the new sensitizer boards to our radios.  This set of notes contains a set of images that were taken shortly after Elecraft made the new synthesizer available, and as we made the changes to each K3.


Two K3s were used in this test and the old synthesizers were replaced in stages.  The K3s were separated by approximately seven hundred feet, both feeding resonant antenna, and both running approximately 50 watts each when tested.  K3 A, was owned by NK7Z, and K3 B, was owned by K7OLN.  Both started with the old synthesizer in place.


You will see three images, each captured using an Elecraft P3 connected to Elecraft K3 A, at my home, and looking at K3 B, approximately 700 feet away from K3 A.  The first image is with the both K3s using the old synthesizers.  The second image will show the results of upgrading K3 A  to the new synthesizer board, while leaving the old synthesizer in place on K3 B, seven hundred feet away.  The third image will show the results of replacing the old synthesizers in both radios.  As can be seen there is a profound difference between the two states of, no synthesizer, and both radios with synthesizers.

Old Elecraft K3 synthesizer in both rigs.

Old Synth on my K3, old synthesizer in second rig.

Old synthesizer in both Elecraft K3s..

New Elecraft K3 Synthesizer, and old in K7OLN’s K3.

New Synthesizer on my K3

New Synthesizer on my K3, and old in K7OLNs K3.

New Elecraft K3 Synthesizer in both K3s.

New synsyther in both radios.

New synsyther in both radios.

As can be seen the new synthesizer is a real help for width of signal.  K7OLN and I were able to operate on the same band almost next to each  other.  No issues of any kind a few Khz. apart and running a KW.

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2 years ago

Lovely web page and description

3 years ago

Great study, big improvements. TNX for sharing!
73, Joe AJ2Y