‘Amplifiers’ Category

PACO SA-50 Tube Amp Rebuild

I find it exciting to discover a nice audiophile amp from a nondescript brand.  In this article, I chronicle my rebuilding of a PACO preamp-amplifier model SA-50.

PACO is the Precision Apparatus Company, best known for building quality test equipment such as tube testers, signal generators, and oscilloscopes.  The “PACO” branded gear (as opposed to gear that used the full name of “Precision Apparatus”)  was sold as a build-it-yourself kit.  During this rebuild and subsequent troubleshooting, I found two connections that were never soldered, and one loose solder joint.  Those issues are extremely common to find when servicing vintage kit-built gear.

I do not have any paperwork or background information about this model.  I did find a schematic for a model SA-40, which appears to be largely the same circuitry.

The SA-50 is a stereo preamp-amp with these design provisions: (more…)

…more Phase Linear (round 2)

My neighbor was thrilled to find someone local who could repair has Phase Linear audiophile gear.  One of his friends was also a Phase fan, and his gear had been sitting for a longtime in disrepair.  So now I had 3 more Phase Linear units to repair: a Phase Linear 2000 preamp, Phase Linear 200 power amp, and a Phase Linear 400 power amp.

All three units were very dirty (cigarette smoke yellowing) and dusty.  After cleaning, each looks excellent.  It was obvious that all three units had not been in use for many years.

Here is a summary of each repair:


Phase Linear …on the bench!

Here is something that I don’t see everyday… Phase Linear audiophile gear! In fact, this was my first opportunity to use, repair, and evaluate any Phase Linear gear.

While I only use tube audio gear, it is hard to argue with the exceptional quality of a premium audiophile solid-state amplifier such as this Phase Linear 700 Series Two. It makes me want to reconsider tube audio …at least for a day or two!

I agreed to tackle this Phase Linear gear for my neighbor, even though I do not typically service solid state gear. He had originally purchased this pair brand new back in 1979 — a Phase Linear 700 Series Two amplifier, and complimentary Phase Linear 4000 Series Two autocorrelation preamplifier. Both units had defects. My good buddy Donnie and I spent most of entire day working on this gear.


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