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finnbow
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Replace vintage Sansui G9000DB with Integrated Amp?

Newbie to this forum. Thanks for opportunity to post. I'm the original owner of a Sansui G9000DB purchased in 1978, considered by many to be among the finest of all vintage Japanese receivers. It's still in high demand and would be easy to sell for probably 50% more than I bought it for (probably about $800). For several reasons (size, care, maintenance, age, etc.), I'm considering replacing it with something along the lines of an Onkyo A-9555 (I don't need a tuner). I've gotten feedback from vintage gear fans stating that nothing would come close to this (sonically speaking) without spending multi-thousands of dollars, whereas others say technological advancements would result in a low budget replacement (by this forum's standards) sounding far better. I'd like to keep my expense down to under ~$800 (decidely modest for this forum, I know). I curious as to your collective feedback on a prospective course of action.

mrlowry
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Re: Replace vintage Sansui G9000DB with Integrated Amp?

On of the biggest obstacles that people face when auditioning new equipment after using the same piece of gear for so long is that they use they unconsciously use the sound of their old gear as a reference point instead of live instruments in real space. This causes great frustration because nothing new "sounds" like that old favorite. However, many times that old favorite sounds nothing like real instruments in real space which should be the bench mark of high end audio. In short don't use the sound of 30 year old components as a reference point when auditioning new gear.

An example of this outside audio is vintage sports cars. The British TV show "Top Gear" tested 3 or 4 highly sought after vintage sports cars(Austin Martin DB5 etc) against a modern Toyota Corolla. Those cars sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars. The Corolla SPANKED them on EVERY test.

Obviously with audio that isn't going to happen 100% of the time in audio but there is relatively little vintage gear (20+ years old) that can compete with modern equipment. For example there are probably less than 10 speakers that are over 25 years old that are in modern terms neutral sounding. Most old speakers, even if they were highly regarded in their day are colored-sounding junk by today's standards. Much of the draw in vintage audio gear is the same as vintage cars. It's the romance and the nostalgia of it. One of the only categories to be an exception is vintage analog FM tuners which are far, far superior to todays quartz-lock loop "digital" tuners. I'm sure that there will be some that disagree with me and they are entitled to their opinion.

dcstep
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Re: Replace vintage Sansui G9000DB with Integrated Amp?

The question is, why are you retiring it and what is your goal in making a change. If it's still operating, then why change it?

Dave

jackfish
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Re: Replace vintage Sansui G9000DB with Integrated Amp?

The NAD C372 integrated amp is on sale right now for $800. Helluva amp for that money if you can find one to listen to that would be icing. You could do a lot worse.

http://nadelectronics.com/reviews/TAS-C372-Working-Class-Heroes

http://nadelectronics.com/reviews/Stereophile-C372-Review

http://nadelectronics.com/reviews/SoundStage-C372-Review

finnbow
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Re: Replace vintage Sansui G9000DB with Integrated Amp?

Thanks for the input. Any advice for something comparable that includes a phono stage?

59mga
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Re: Replace vintage Sansui G9000DB with Integrated Amp?


Quote:
Thanks for the input. Any advice for something comparable that includes a phono stage?

Check out the Rotel RA-1062.

JSBach
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Re: Replace vintage Sansui G9000DB with Integrated Amp?

Simple, anything by Marantz in your price range or have your old amplifier refurbished with new capacitors etc by an expert. If I remember correctly your amp has a number of internal 'plug-in' connections that should be cleaned. Try that first and see if there's an improvement. Some amps of that vintage, if well designed, can be bought back to life by simple and relatively inexpensive means. However, many parts have moved on (such as output transistors by companies like Sanken and potentiometers by Alps etc) and are far ahead of what was available back then. The idea of using real instruments heard live as a reference, rather than your old amp (as expressed here by another poster) is valuable advice.
For anyone to answer your question properly though you need to tell us what speakers you are running and what it is that makes you want to change over from your old Sansui.

finnbow
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Re: Replace vintage Sansui G9000DB with Integrated Amp?

Re: Speakers -
For now, I am running Energy C-100's with a 10" Dayton Titanic MkIII powered subwoofer. I may improve upon the Energy's in the future (for space limitations, I'm limited to smallish bookshelf speakers), but the Titanic is hard to beat without spending an arm and a leg.

Re: Reason for possibly replacing old Sansui -
Given its value and demand among vintage audio fans, I would probably be able to replace it with a decent "mid-fi" integrated amp without significant additional expense (probably no expense at all). It needs a little TLC from a professional now (thorough cleaning and new lamps, maybe selective capacitor replacement). I can get this done quite reasonably. I don't have a strong emotional attachement to it, although I recognize its sonic qualities were (are?) excellent. Spousal considerations dictate a modest rehab of the Sansui (probably not a total replacement of all capacitors) or spending in the range of $600 - $800 for an integrated amp replacement. I guess my dilemna is that I hear in some circles that nothing short of many thousands in expenditure will replace the sound (and durability) of the rehabbed Sansui whereas others insist that a decent "mid-fi" integrated amp will blow it away in terms of sound performance due to advances in audio technology.

For those unfamiliar with the Sansui G9000DB, it has 160 WPC, Freq Response of 5-50,000, THD of 0.02%, monstrous toroidal transformer, and weighs ~70 lbs.

dcstep
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Re: Replace vintage Sansui G9000DB with Integrated Amp?

You don't mention anything specific, but evidently you're hearing some things that make you think that the Sansui needs to be refurbished. If so, then that's what I'd do, assuming that you know of a competent refurbisher. I don't think that any sub-$1,000 integrateds are gong to blow away a properly functioning Sansui.

Things HAVE advanced a long ways since the 1970s, but at your budget point your doing well.

Dave

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