I don't really know why but two years ago I started collecting older Japanese equipment. Maybe because I couldn't afford it when it came out. It basicly doesn't do anything, just sits on a shelf, but I like to look at it and remember good , old days.
I too plead guilty of nostalgia since I bought this from a pawn shop in S.C. over the net last year. The amp was my first piece of "serious" HiFi that I bought used when I was 17. The salesman was outraged that I wouldn't buy it until I actually listened to it!
Thank's for the reminder Peter.
Back in the early 70's, all my drop-out buddies were coming back from Vietnam with the Quad system they bought in their stop-over in Okinawa. Did you ever hear Nielson's "Jump Into the Fire" in quad on a quad system. "Ohh Wow Man,... That was Far Out!"
Anyway this Sansui QS800A quad synthesizer and discrete 4 channel amp is one my last remnants of those "Good Old, Bad Old Days". It has 4 - 45wpc amps in it so I'm using it as an amp for my computer.
I remember trying to repair (to no avail, sadly) an old solid state integrated amp from a US manufacturer, perhaps Scott or Fisher before they sent all production overseas. Mid 1960s or early '70s vintage I think, not sure.
But I marvelled at the build quality. Although the components were largely crap, ceramic caps, carbon composition resistors, etc ... phenolic circuit boards, it was clearly built with care and pride.
One interesting thing I found was that there was almost NO DUST in most of the circuit boards despite years of use. Everything that didn't dissipate a lot of heat was sort of sealed off in an internal metal subchassis, away from the vents. The thing was heavy. It was as if they were still sort of attached to subchassis construction and point-to-point wiring techniques more often seen in tube amplifiers, with small phenolic circuit boards used as modules.
It might be interesting to see some pics of the insides of old gear like that. Unfortunately I don't have any -- I was in grad school at the time, didn't have my equipment or much time, so I replaced a suspicious looking old electrolytic and gave it back to my friend, didn't solve the problem.
By the way, what is the fascination with carbon composition resistors for tube gear. Those things are noisy and have poor temperature performance.
Yes I have plenty of examples of Japanese gear.
And European and Australian gear too.
On my PC table and rack I have an early sixties National all tube Am/Fm Reciever that even has a motional feedback.
This one is a ripper.
I am not using the original 4 wire speakers though - they're in the shed.
At my girlfriends place I have a late 70's/early 80's ? Onkyo highend amplifier made for US market.
This one sports goodies like dual secondaries and 4 psu caps, and Alps pot, and switched passive tone controls - 10uF poly caps in this circuit !.
This one is a ripper too.
At work I have an eighties highend Akai power amp that used to have an internal SMPS.
The switcher ic is NLA, so I built a transformer dual mono external psu for this and this one works a treat.
If I take a look around my shelves I have tons of classic pieces of kit.
Turntables include Garrard 401, and SP-10, and others.
Build quality is not quite the same nowadays.
Peter you are not alone in appreciating older examples.
Damnnnnnnn, love those Nakamichi decks...... Legendary and...... it's just THAT macho look... Been trying to buy a current Nakamichi deck the CR7A or better still the Dragon) during my student days in Canada, but as they said: champagne taste, beer budget. Bought an AKAI GX52B, no Nakamichi but still with those angled buttons, and enough quality to keep me smilin'..... Still wishing for a Nak..... Thanks Peter for bringing this up...
One way to show how just how clever and discerning you are is to use something that hardly anyone else does. That proves it must be better. E.g once upon a time vacuum tubes and vinyl records couldn't be ditched fast enough because every ordinary person had them. How could an audiophile differentiate himself (I say "him" because women use more sensible ways to display their own worth) from the unwashed masses if they had the same kind of stuff? Now that the masses have digital everything, those in the "know" have found this to be wanting. Or so they say...
Sorry no pictures but I have, for nostalgic reasons, a 1975 Bang & Olufsen (Danish "designer" brand with heaps of stuf in the British museum of modern art or somewhere like that I think) set with a TT, receiver and speakers all in really good condition with receipts and manuals. I used to have it at work to listen to the radio...
I unfortunately have gotten rid of my 1965 Westerstrand receiver and 1953 (Manufactured 18 March 1953 with "optical" inputs)KlangFilm amplifiers.
I repaired a prettyy similar Sony R-R the other week, although even higher end model.
This was a seriously good machine full of goodies like Alps pots, and very nice casting, machining and engineering.
Love nor money could buy this sort of machine ever again.
Cherish and enjoy !.
BTW - I did a service call this week, and the dear old lady (85yo) had a Sony R-R that she still uses regularly to listen to old Goon show recordings !
This reminds me that I have a couple of Revox B-77 R-R that I have not used yet, because I need to change the capstan shafts diameter for higher tape speed (these are set up for logging recording), and then they should be very nice.
Anybody know of a cheap soloution ?.
I have a spring reverb effects box in the same style as the amp you have - same panelling, knobs and switches.
This unit has a unique multi-coloured kaleidoscope (psychedelic man) display that changes according to the effect/dry control position.
This one is one of my favorites, and in the right application the spring reverb sound is a winner !.
BTW - I remember Stereophile referring to Sansui as Sansewage
And what about portables? Sure, the one I did sounds good and is more high end, but nothing beats the looks of a good, old ghetto blaster. That one has even phono input and Dolby. When I saw it at $15 I couldn't resist temptation to buy it.