[time-nuts] eBay seller has Z3801A upgraded to 58503A

Bob Camp kb8tq at n1k.org
Thu Nov 27 18:34:36 EST 2014

> On Nov 27, 2014, at 4:55 PM, Dr. David Kirkby (Kirkby Microwave Ltd) <drkirkby at kirkbymicrowave.co.uk> wrote:
> There's a seller on eBay selling what he says is Z3801A upgraded to
> 58503A. One or two things have made me a bit suspicious of that seller
> - nothing to do with his GPS things. Does anyone know what he does? He
> also have an 58503A, but that's a couple of hundred $'s more than an
> upgraded Z3801A.

Most (if not all) of the eBay 58503’s are repackaged Z3801’s. There is very little difference between the two of them. The 3801 manual sends you off to the 58503 manual for a number of details.

> I've been thinking of buying one of the Jackson Labs devices, which is
> obviously a more modern design, but I'm giving some consideration to
> buying a used GPSDO with an OCXO, rather than a TCXO. By the time I
> purchase the TCXO based unit, stick it in a box, build a buffer, add a
> power supply etc etc, it is not going to work out a lot cheaper than
> buying a used OCXO device.

If you can keep it on power all the time, the OCXO is the better way to go. If you want portable / fast turn on the TCXO is the way to go. Once it’s settled in, the OCXO will outperform the TCXO for every spec other than input power and size.

> My mind is not made up about this. There are advantages and
> disadvantages of both.

The TCXO is very specialized. The OCXO is the solution most go with. 


> Dr. David Kirkby Ph.D CEng MIET
> Kirkby Microwave Ltd
> Registered office: Stokes Hall Lodge, Burnham Rd, Althorne, Essex, CM3 6DT, UK.
> Registered in England and Wales, company number 08914892.
> http://www.kirkbymicrowave.co.uk/
> Tel: 07910 441670 / +44 7910 441670 (0900 to 2100 GMT only please)
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