iPortable – My Portable HF station
This afternoon I finished with my iPortable – Portable HF station build. I purchased one of the iPortable Pro boxes from the vendor at the Dayton Hamvention. This write-up will be somewhat a review of the product as well as documentation about my particular installation.
The boxes look really nice. They have a matte black finish on them that really looks great.
Here are the features of the iPortable Pro:
- A nice sounding front facing speaker.
- A 1/4 inch headphone jack (that also disconnects the front facing speaker).
- A red LED indicating power.
- Anderson Powerpole connectors for connecting optional devices to the power supply.
- A cigarette lighter power receptacle for external devices (10 Amps max).
- 2 USB power ports (for connecting devices that charge or power via USB connections).
- Fuses for all of the ports to protect devices.
I installed the following equipment in the box:
- Icom IC-7000 HF/VHF/UHF Transceiver
- LDG IT-100 Auto Tuner
- Jetstream variable voltage switching power supply.
- Diamond Duplexer for HF/VHF-UHF
iPortable Pro – Front
iPortable Pro – Rear
iPortable Pro – With Covers On
Pretty nice eh?
Well now for the review…I found the construction of this box to be somewhat flimsy. It is made of particle board type wood. It will not take an impact very well, and water might not be good for it (although I suspect the matte paint will give it some protection). The mounting hardware is not as good as other boxes that are used in the music industry. For durability, I would recommend one of those instead. The box is somewhat too small to mount the equipment that you really want to put in it. I found it a great challenge to fit everything inside well. The power supply was in particularly difficult for me to fit inside well.
My friend Jeff N9IZ, has a portable setup with a Gator portable AV enclosure which I think is of better quality. It is larger and has better construction, but lacks the nice plate with the front speaker, all the jacks and that kind of stuff. However I think perhaps one could be fabricated my a skilled metal worker, or a metal worker shop.
Over all I give the iPortable Pro enclosure a 3 out of 5 stars. It has some shortcomings, but looks great and has lots of features.
Tell me what you think in the comments!
73! de Nick N9SJA