Like

Sansui Amp troubles

 

New member
Username: Chuck57

Sydney, NSW Australia

Post Number: 1
Registered: Dec-12
Howdy all, I just recently fired up an old Sansui Intergrated DC Servo Amp , A-60. It worked for a while nicely, however for no known reason, its died. I checked and the fuse had blown. Tried replacing the 250V/2A fuse twice, but both times it blew instantly. Just wondering whether a) anyone can offer a fixit remedy and b) is it actually worth repairing? Its only a 3rd amp at home.
Thanks in anticipation!
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17578
Registered: May-04
.

Old amps should never be plugged directly into a 120VAC outlet. Particularly if the amp has sat in storage for any time, the power supply caps will dry out during storage and fail when they are subjected to the surge of voltage at turn on. It's very common for an amplifier to work for a week or two and then fail suddenly when they have been treated this way.

Caps are always going to be the weakest link in any vintage amplifier and there's no way to tell what condition the other caps in the amplifier are in. Caps are rather generic though and a cap used in your amp can probably be replaced with few problems in sourcing the correct part. Transistors don't necessarily age like caps but old model transistors tend to less than great sound, unlike vintage vacuum tubes. Many '70's transistors, and most '70's integrated circuits (which were fairly common in the Japanese amps of that time)have no modern day replacements. That means if the transistor or IC goes out, there is no way to make repairs other than to salvage parts from another amplifier. Most of the old amps with cosmetic issues or catastrophic failures will become donor amps. However, with the ps caps failing - which is the most likely situation - the indication would be you amp has other parts which will soon require servicing. Just replacing the ps caps is very likely going to mean your amp will fail somewhere else and be back for more work if you don't address an full restoration at some time. Parts drift in values and the voltages designed into the amp will be wrong which will ultimately cause part failures. You need someone familiar with the A60 to give you repair/replacement advice after having the amp on their test bench. Put "vintage audio repair" into a search engine for shops which might take on a 35 year old amp. You can also try the AudioKarma forum, they have some techs who hang out there.

Replacing the failed parts is not a do it yourself project if you have to ask what's wrong with your amp. When caps fail, one of two things will likely occur. Either other parts have failed first and taken out the weakened caps. Or the caps have failed and taken out other components with them. Either way there will typically be more to getting the amp up and running than just soldering in some new caps. Just like getting an old car running, you wouldn't just stick on some new tires and expect it to get you around.

The '70's vintage Sansui integrateds were known for their good sound quality when compared to the other Japanese components of the day. People have their favorites from the period but Sansui was always a "better than" type of amp among the mass market lines of the day. The Sansui's were always heavy, well built amps which meant they were putting their money into the power supply and being more honest than, say, Technics or Pioneer about their products. Sansui was an early entry into the US market and they were eventually unable or unwilling to compete in the specification wars of the mid-70's. None of the audio manufacturers from that time period (other than the few high end lines of the day still in existence) will provide any sort of support for their older products. There's a good market for a working Sansui A60 but the amp must be "working". The condition of your amp makes it worth considerably less than a fully restored version.

Restoration of anything vintage is never an easy choice unless you know the end result is what you want to own. You'll never get your money back on a good restore so its a function of doing it to have a nice amp you can appreciate for what it is. There's a fairly large difference between being "vintage" and just being "old".

Alot of people like the old stuff - when it's working - just for the retro look. Some like them because they don't have alot of funky circuits and they are mostly discrete circuitry. Sansui was a manufacturer who had a fair amount of circuitry (multiple tone controls, variable loudness compensation, speaker and input switching, phono loading, etc.) which will complicate the restoration process. Early generations of solid state amps are never, IMO, going to be great where a vintage McIntosh, Dynaco or Citation tube amp will always sound above average when restored. Compared to today's solid state amps though, you would still have to look at some of the more "specialty" manufacturers to outdo the Sansui. For what you'll put into restoring the A60 you could buy a new NAD, Cambridge or similar integrated amp with a warranty. You'll have to decide whether you want new or you prefer old after you get an estimate of restoration costs. If you do a full restoration and you have a high quality tech do the work, you'll have a unique amp that will likely last another 30 years. Be sitting down when you get the full restore estimate though.



.
 

New member
Username: Chuck57

Sydney, NSW Australia

Post Number: 2
Registered: Dec-12
Wow Jan, thank you for such a comprehensive and learned response! I guess I would like to have the Sansui restored, rather than just purchase another new amp. I like the fact it is unique as opposed to acquiring a mass produced replacement. I currently also have a Denon PMA 655-R running in my study with a set of Tannoy Little Reds, which together sound wonderful. From what you explain, the Sansui once restored should be a fine addition to the audio family. I'll see what I can find in a vintage audio repair search. Thanks again!
 

Silver Member
Username: Ornello

Post Number: 131
Registered: Dec-12
I wouldn't do it. Those old amps, as Jan says, will break down here or there, and the cost to repair is substantial, if it is even possible. I recently, with high expectations, acquired a 'vintage' integrated amp from e-bay. Smoke came out of it when I plugged it in and turned it on.

The seller indicated that it had been in use, so I did not have any reason to suspect it would do this.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17696
Registered: May-04
.


"I recently, with high expectations, acquired a 'vintage' integrated amp from e-bay. Smoke came out of it when I plugged it in and turned it on."


From my original post; Old amps should never be plugged directly into a 120VAC outlet. Particularly if the amp has sat in storage for any time, the power supply caps will dry out during storage and fail when they are subjected to the surge of voltage at turn on.



Once again, file one this under "What you don't know about audio".







.
 

Silver Member
Username: Ornello

Post Number: 133
Registered: Dec-12
Did you not read where I wrote that the seller said he had been using it? He lied, apparently. If he had been using it, this would not have happened.

Can't you read?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17698
Registered: May-04
.

Can't you read?

Old amps should never be plugged directly into a 120VAC outlet. Particularly if the amp has sat in storage for any time, the power supply caps will dry out during storage and fail when they are subjected to the surge of voltage at turn on. It's very common for an amplifier to work for a week or two and then fail suddenly when they have been treated this way.



File this under, "Doesn't understand audio, can't read."




.
 

Silver Member
Username: Ornello

Post Number: 136
Registered: Dec-12
Well if the seller had been using it continuously for quite some time, as he said, neither of these would be true.

Can't you read?

It didn't work for a couple of weeks then fail. It blew up immediately.

The seller lied.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17700
Registered: May-04
.

"Quite some time"? Did you inquire as to how long "quite some time" might have been? "Quite some time" for someone who has pulled an amp out of storage could have been two weeks. No matter how long it had been operating for the other guy, if you know electronics - you claim to be an expert on electronics, don't you? - you would know better than to do what you stupidly did. NOW you want to argue against the fact YOU SCREWED UP!!!

You never change and that's why no one wants to have anything to do with you on this forum. You waste everyone's time.

Didn't you read, Old amps should never be plugged directly into a 120VAC outlet. Particularly if the amp has sat in storage for any time, the power supply caps will dry out during storage and fail when they are subjected to the surge of voltage at turn on. It's very common for an amplifier to work for a week or two and then fail suddenly when they have been treated this way."


" ... and then fail suddenly when they have been treated this way."


You abused a piece of vintage equipment and now you want to blame someone else for your f*ck up!


Typical troll.



It really doesn't matter, this is "vintage" equipment according to your post Anyone who stupidly plugs a unit they don't know anything about directly into a 120VAC wall plug and then flips the switch without first checking the unit out for themself, is responsible for their own stupidity. Typical for you, you blame someone else for your own stupid mistakes and inability to understand electronics. It doesn't take a genius to know you just don't do what you did. If you even failed to check on line how to bring the unit up to full power without blowing it up, you're even more to blame.

A device to safely check the current draw of the unit before it blows up and smokes costs about $5. If you didn't do any of this before you hit the power supply of any vintage component with full power, the damage done is no one's fault but your own!

Accept the fact and shut up then move on. You're wasting my time.




Files this under, "Doesn't know crap about electronics, can't read and doesn't read, argues everything he doesn't know crap about and doesn't read about and then blames everyone but himself when he screws up".










.
 

Silver Member
Username: Ornello

Post Number: 138
Registered: Dec-12
So, what is one supposed to do with an amp, then? Look at it? He told me he had been using it since it was new. That means it had been plugged in and was working. If that were true, it would not have blown up!

How is it 'stupid' to expect a piece of equipment to work?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17702
Registered: May-04
.


CAN'T YOU READ?!!!


YES! It is STUPID to expect a vintage anything to just "work" because you think it should. You're the self proclaimed "expert" in audio who doubts I know more than you do. You're the guy who, on his tenth, twelfth, fifteenth, twentieth, etc, etc, etc post on this forum, wants me banned from this forum. You are the supreme troll on this forum now.

Figure it out for yourself!


If you actually wanted help from this forum, you've certainly screwed the pooch in how you've gone about it.





.
 

Silver Member
Username: Ornello

Post Number: 139
Registered: Dec-12
I didn't want help here. Especially not from the likes of you.

It's not 'stupid' to expect a seller to be honest.

It was for a second system. and I got something else. No big loss.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17703
Registered: May-04
.

"I didn't want help here"


Then there's no need for you to stay. No one wants to deal with you. Look around.


And, for god's sake, accept responsibility for what you've done. The seller's not to blame for what you did. The stupid fool who slammed the gear with 120Volts and 15 amps of current is the one who blew up the amp. That stupid fool is you. Accept what YOU did and stop blaming other people for your failures.




.
 

Silver Member
Username: Ornello

Post Number: 141
Registered: Dec-12
It's not 'stupid' to plug in a device to the voltage for which it's designed. How did you come up with that one?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17705
Registered: May-04
.




Go eat your pudding.







.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 2991
Registered: Oct-07
The BIG electrolytic caps use an aluminum paste which is self healing, but over time goes away.
When an amp is first plugged in after a LONG time without power...it is a good idea to let the cap re-form at low voltage before giving it the works.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrolytic_capacitor

Please see section 'types' and subsection 'aluminium' for further details.

Large PS caps can fail 'spectacularlly' with some danger if not contained. And a MESS afterwards......
 

Silver Member
Username: Ornello

Post Number: 146
Registered: Dec-12
So, if the guy lied to me, what was I supposed to do? How do you get it started?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17706
Registered: May-04
.

You have no proof the guy "lied" to you. You only have proof YOU BLEW IT UP by not doing a search on how to restore vintage audio gear. Or not asking someone with more knowledge than you have to do the check. You just bulled your way through and you blew up the amp! Like I said, the test equipment to check out most any vintage equipment costs less than $5. Instructions are on line if you only look.

Stop blaming someone else for what you screwed up!



Go eat your pudding, the kitchen wants to close up and the staff needs to collect trays.





.
 

Silver Member
Username: Ornello

Post Number: 149
Registered: Dec-12
It was an old amp, nothing much lost in any event. Just disappointed. I sold it on e-bay for parts. Not worth getting upset about. the seller lied to me, I am sure, though. It came with no feet, and it was filthy.
« Previous Thread | Next Thread »

Add Your Message Here

Bold text Italics Create a hyperlink Insert a clipart image Add a YouTube Video
Need to Register?
Forgot Password?
Enable HTML code in message
   

Facebook

Shop Related Deals

Directory

Main Forums

Today's Posts

Forum Help

Follow Us