Stereo and Audio Service
A golden age of audio equipment began in the from the Sixty’s to the late seventies . Many examples are not only aesthetically beautiful, they also outperform modern day counterparts. There are still many examples of fine audio equipment produced today, but most all are in modest numbers by smaller companies, and are priced accordingly. The time when mass produced audio gear was built for sound and built to last, has long since passed.
We have serviced what is now considered vintage audio, as well as audiophile stereo equipment for over 40 years. We believe in doing a complete service, rather than patching up symptoms one by one. Our repair services carry a one year warranty on our repairs.
Amplifiers and Receivers
Amps, tuners, receivers and so on all have a few things in common. They all use components known to fail over time. These are known as capacitors, and every single amplifier ever produced uses them. Many of these components are known as “electrolytic capacitors” and use a chemical compound that decays with age. Fortunately, they can be replaced with new components, and with higher quality versions that will outlast and outperform the originals. Other symptoms, such as noise when switches and controls are moved, or channels cutting in and out when a knob is turned, or button is pushed, are caused by “dirty” controls. A common misconception is that the problem is dust or dirt, in fact it is actually caused by oxidation or tarnish. The same thing that makes a shiny penny turn brown.
For units with all original “caps”, we recommend extensive replacement of all electrolytic capacitors in the amplifier circuit. Our typical “overhaul” involves replacing from 30 to over 60 individual components. Every control and switch is cleaned, all lamps are replaced, receiver tuners are cleaned, and any other known causes of problems are addressed. We have found that this complete service is the best approach for vintage equipment.
With amplifiers and receivers, another all too common repair is a “blown” channel. A significant number of these failures are actually caused by the user. One of the most common causes of amplifier failures is shorted speaker wiring. Even a single filament crossing between the red and black terminals can seriously damage your amplifier. We offer assistance in correctly terminating and installing speaker wire.
Turntables are some of the most durable audio components. With the possible exception of the stylus that is. If handled carefully, a high quality stylus can serve for hundreds, and of not thousands of hours. Turntables use one of several different drive systems. Belt drive, direct drive, and rim drive are the most common. Most record changers, such as those produced by DUAL, BSR, BIC and GARRARD, used rim drive. The key replaceable part was similar to a small tire on a metal or plastic wheel. Belt drive turntables are driven by what appears to be a giant rubber band. These “rubber bands” are actually critical in size and composition. Fortunately, replacements for most turntables are produced today. We sell replacements for many belt drive turntables. Direct drive turntables operate by connecting the motor directing to the platter as the name implies. While direct drive turntables do not suffer from belt failure, due to their much more complex electronics, they eventually suffer from electrolytic capacitor failure.
The Stylus (needles) and Cartridge are where the music begins. The user replaceable part is the stylus or “needle”. Unfortunately, thousands of different types and models were made, and the replacements are rare to unavailable. Some clones were produced, but were of much lower quality. Fortunately, the entire pickup unit, or “cartridge” can be replaced. We sell new cartridges that fit the majority of component turntables.