Calling All "Vintage" Integrated/Receiver Owners

Discussion in 'Headphone Amps (full-size)' started by moodyrn, Feb 3, 2011.
  1. rigo
    Any opinions on the Pioneer SA-9500 amp? Might be able to get one in great condition at a good price.
  2. Guidostrunk
    I figured I'd leave this here for @robrob to comment on.

    I've been messing around with the calculator, and came up with this resistor configuration. Definitely open to a better suggestion if needed. The only thing that has me wondering, is the attenuation value. Not sure where that number should actually be. Screenshot_2017-11-05-23-43-17-1.png
  3. robrob
    25dB of attenuation is a good place to start. Your resistor values look good.

    Here's the basic attenuator layout:
    Guidostrunk likes this.
  4. Guidostrunk
    Thanks a ton Rob!
  5. Monsterzero
    I had a confusing phone conversation today and hope someone can shed some light on it for me.

    Ever since forever Ive wanted to own a McIntosh piece,whether it be a tube amp,or pre amp or receiver,doesnt really matter to me,I just want one.
    I have read a bit on the various pieces theyve made over the years and decided to pursue a MAC 4100 to do double duty for speakers and headphones.Having read about their legendary customer service I phoned McIntosh to inquire specifically about the HP jack of that and other receivers...Ended up talking to a nice enough guy,but he informed me that up until 5 years ago,give or take,the HP outs on their products "were equal to something one would find on a normal CD player",and not something that would be good for driving headphones.

    He talked up their current 4500.00 HP amp and commented that while the 4100 would be a great addition for speakers,it wasnt advisable for double duty on headphones.

    So my question is he just being naive about vintage gear ability to drive HPs?Is he being dishonest in hopes of trying to get me to drop 4500.00 on a dedicated HP amp? Or is it possible that the Japanese really just did HP jacks correctly and Mac dropped the ball back in the day?

    Anyone with a MAC care to chime in,please.
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2017
  6. Skylab Contributor
    Outstanding piece of kit. If you can get a nice one priced well, jump.
    Oregonian, Guidostrunk and SirMarc like this.
  7. sotto123
    I was trying to decide between a Scott 233 or Fisher X-100 (both refurbished) but decided to wait it out. Well that was until the retailer offered a one day only 15% discount. I couldn't resist!

    As I had a hard time deciding between the two, I just went by which output tubes they use (Scott 7591, Fisher EL-84). So it looks like I'll be joining the Fisher X-100 club. :) I know there's a few guys on here who really enjoy it with headphones.

    Even with the 15% discount it was by no means inexpensive, but I guess that's the way it is with this kind of gear in Europe. I can always return it if the sound isn't to my liking anyway, which is a huge plus.

    With a Sansui AU-555A currently in my possession and Sony TA-4650 V-Fet and Fisher X-100 coming my way, I've gone all in on vintage gear. It's going to be a fun next couple of weeks
  8. richard51

    I dont know the price you paid, but vintage is the way, the ratio quality /price is over the roof if rightly choosen....Congratulations and report here thanks:L3000: And the gear was created in an era where music was all there is, not frequencies, only music to human ears....
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2017
    northendjazz likes this.
  9. sotto123
    I've had the Sony TA-4650 in my possession for over 24 hours now. I think I've got a pretty good grasp of its sound, although I'll need to listen to it for longer of course.

    If I could describe it in one word it would be smooth; two words, silky smooth etc. I can't overstate just how smooth this thing sounds. VFET technology seems to result in a sound that is a combination of solid state and tubes.

    It is very clear, quick on its feet, airy and the soundstage is large with impressive separation. Treble is wonderfully smooth and extended. Bass is quite hard hitting and the midrange is liquid smooth. I could listen to it all day without a hint of fatigue setting in, which is a big deal for me. It beats the Sansui AU-555A in almost all of these aspects. So you would think that the Sony is the clear winner, right?

    Well, not quite.

    For 8/10 people on Head-Fi, I have no doubt that this would be the case. However, the bass isn't quite as hard hitting as the Sansui, it's a touch less resolving and the tone isn't as warm and rich. The Sansui has a little bit of magic that draws me into the music and results in a more emotional listen, which people would call colouration I suppose. The Sansui is more in line with my sensibilities, particularly in regards to its tonality.

    The Sony really excels for classical and jazz. Those make up 5% of my listening. Female vocals are also excellent, which is what you would expect due to its smoothness, and make up quite a bit of my listening actually.

    The Fisher X-100 should be here in a couple of days :)

    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017
    Monsterzero and richard51 like this.
  10. richard51
    Incredibly convincing and clear comparison....Any Sansui lover will understand, the others will buy others....Thanks:L3000: I cannot wait for the fisher review of yours...
    SirMarc and sotto123 like this.
  11. i luvmusic 2
    This maybe off topic but since we're on a vintage gear thread i should ask here instead,Which one of the two is a better format to transfer VINYL RECORDS Cassette Tape or Reel To Reel?I'am looking at this PIONEER RT-1011L and AKAI GX-265D R2R Decks but for the Cassette Recorder haven't see anything yet.Thanks!
  12. robrob
    Reel-to-reel will offer much better fidelity and signal-to-noise ratio compared to cassette and they look much cooler too.
    i luvmusic 2 and Oregonian like this.
  13. KG Jag
    I have the 1976 Akai and it's an excellent deck that out specs the 1974 Pioneer, which offers 10" reel capability. In general moving from the early 70's to the mid to late 70's produces better performance over the same quality lines. See:


    However the key to all these decks (R to R and cassette) is not the factory specs but of the actual specs of the deck you have. That is why checking and service by a qualified tech is critical to these 45 to 35 +/- year old machines.

    I started in 1970 with R to R and by 1971 had Sony TC 366 (which I still own and it still operates). These machines have a special place in my heart and in my audio rack. However, today reel to reel tape is both hard to find and is expensive. These machines--especially the ones that run 10" reels--take up a great deal of space and don't fit easily (if at all) on the shelves of most audio racks. Further, by the early 80's the specs on quality cassette decks had become quite impressive--often better (especially on the low end--lowest bass) than high quality R to R decks, which by the mid-80's were mostly discontinued by manufacturers. Quality cassette decks like the Nakamichi BX line, JVC TD-V6 and its 3 head successors, Denon DRM-800 and various 3 head Harman Kardon decks (just to name a few) are very high quality and can be had for significantly less than R to R. Cassette's are easier to get and less expensive. See:

    They all go great with quality receivers from the 70's through early 80's.
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017
    i luvmusic 2 likes this.
  14. i luvmusic 2
    I didn't think about sourcing R2R tape,Maybe i should look into Cassette instead it doesn't take up much space,Thanks Guys!
  15. sotto123
    Fisher X-100 came today and it won't power on. I'm beyond disappointed. It came with an European plug, so I plugged it into an adapter for UK use but no such luck. The adapter works fine with other EU devices.

    I switched out the fuse it came with but it appears to be okay after having used it in another device.

    It was ridiculously well-packed - the box was about 5x as big as the amp and took me 5 minutes to get to. So I doubt it was damaged in transit.

    Looks like I'll never get the chance to hear one of these, as I'm probably just going to ask for a refund.

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