McIntosh MR71 vintage tuner upgrade

The McIntosh MR71 vacuum tube FM stereo tuner was in production from 1963 to 1969 and retailed for US$399.  (Today a good MR71 can still command a price 5 times that!)

The MR71 was the last tube tuner made by McIntosh and, together with the earlier MR67 model, is regarded as the best tube tuner that McIntosh made. Continue reading


Sun Audio SV-2A3 amplifier

This Japanese single-ended, vacuum tube amplifier can be purchased in ‘kit’ form or fully assembled.

Power output is 3.5 watts/channel.   Supplied with Russian Sovtek tubes – 2A3 (2), 6SN7 (2), 5U4G (1).   Amplifier weight is 16 kgs.

Input Sensitivity is high (150mV), so with the in-built volume controls, this amplifier will accept Line level sources easily.

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‘Adagio’ TDA1541A non-oversampling DAC

When I first listened to DACs, I concluded quite quickly that ‘multi-bit’ DACs sounded more like music to me, than ‘bitstream’ DACs – more dynamic & ‘alive’.

The TDA1541 was originally developed by Philips (in 1985) as a high performance stereo DAC.  The ‘A’ version was manufactured between 1989-1995.  It was (is still?) regarded as one of the best sounding DACs ever made.  This chip was used in almost 100 different CD players Continue reading