Sansui AU-919 Integrated Amp - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 02-20-2010, 01:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello...I have a chance to buy a vintage Sansui AU-919 Integrated Amp in like new condition for a great price for my 2-channel set-up.

The reviews at the time indicate this amp is a beast and was a sensational amp when Sansui was making top notch equipment.

Anyone have an opinion of this amp or know anything about it? And, even though it's an older model, is it just as good as a pre-owned amp from the 90's or early 2000's since it is like new? Or is it better to stick to brand new stuff.

This amp sure looks like it was the real deal plus two phono stages, etc.

Thanks
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post #2 of 8 Old 02-20-2010, 02:05 PM
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My advice, stick with something more recent, especially if you will be using your system for critical listening.

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post #3 of 8 Old 02-20-2010, 02:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input. Not sure if the following would be considered critical listening, but I am only going to be listening to music I downloaded from I-Tunes. I can listen to those songs from either my Macbook Pro or from my I-Pod. I understand that I will also have to get a separate DAC to improve upon the compressed files and lower 256t bit rate of the I-Tunes music.

I will also be listening to some 45 rpm vinyl that I have.

That is it. I do not plan on listening to AM or FM radio, No CD's, No SACD's, no LP's.

I assume you saying to stay away from the older gear just because of its age, or are there any other reasons. From what I read, it would not appear that it would be from a quality issue, since most professional reviewers rate some of this vintage gear much better than most of today's product.

I am new to this and that is why I am asking many questions.
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post #4 of 8 Old 02-20-2010, 02:44 PM
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Age. The problem is that electrolytic caps dry out with time. About 7 years is considered the norm. Yes, some seem to do fine much longer, some do not. Other things start after time. Transformer microvibrations can tend to short windings about then. Flaws in silicone start to cause potential for failure about then. Pots get old, switch get dirty. A rule of thumb is that when buying electronics, figure the price/value to you based on 7 years. If it lasts longer, it is free. Less, blame the manufacturer.

I am a fan of re-caped older "QUALITY" gear, but I can do the work myself. Just because it is older, does not mean it was great. Some was, some was horrid, and some new stuff is fantastic. You have to know or trust your ears for the exact units in question, not a reviewer's.
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post #5 of 8 Old 02-20-2010, 02:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks tvegeek....Makes a lot of sense. Never thought that about what you mentioned.

I think I will make my life simple and just get something new. Since I am new to this, I do not know what brand to get that is used. I do see so many used Integrated amps on that Audiogon and other places, but it would seem like more experienced people such as yourself would know better what to get and look for that I would. They also sound great when reading the description.
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post #6 of 8 Old 06-13-2012, 11:58 AM
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I have a AU 919 that is currently being tuned up with the best parts available to restore it in the best possible way.

My question is: should a fine working Sansui Au-919 be worth considering instead of a newer two channel amp? what would be a comparable two channel amp nowadays? (in know this last one is difficult, just asking in terms of a comparable equipment)

I would be powering eventually some martin logan electromotions esl for two channel music listening (currently as part of a HT set up with a marantz sr8002 + anthem A5 amp)

thanks!
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post #7 of 8 Old 06-14-2012, 05:25 PM
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Hi Bsandovalb,

Being a Sansui fan, I didn't want your post to go unanswered, lest you think the AU-919 wasn't worth an answer. It is an awsome device, and once you have it re-capped, it will stand up against most amplifiers made today. Re-capping may not even be necessary, as I have a lot of 70's Sansui equipment, and only my quad amp needs re-capping. Let me know if you ever decide to sell.

Having said that, there is much to be said for the newer DSP-based equipment. What the AU-919 would lack is equalization and the other tools that let you optimize for your speakers and your room. Although I love my old analog gear, I know I need to move in a digital direction for those added, and truly worthwhile, features.
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post #8 of 8 Old 06-15-2012, 04:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkHotchkiss View Post

Hi Bsandovalb,
Being a Sansui fan, I didn't want your post to go unanswered, lest you think the AU-919 wasn't worth an answer. It is an awsome device, and once you have it re-capped, it will stand up against most amplifiers made today. Re-capping may not even be necessary, as I have a lot of 70's Sansui equipment, and only my quad amp needs re-capping. Let me know if you ever decide to sell.
Having said that, there is much to be said for the newer DSP-based equipment. What the AU-919 would lack is equalization and the other tools that let you optimize for your speakers and your room. Although I love my old analog gear, I know I need to move in a digital direction for those added, and truly worthwhile, features.

Hi MarkHotchkiss, I appreciate you taking the time to answer me smile.gif
It makes sense what you are telling me, there are lots of great amps now and electronics are wonderful this days. And there is also something incredibly attractive on the AU919, jaja... I love how robust it looks, how simple and also powerful she is... since I already have the Sansui and it is being worked, guess I should keep it and use it when in the mood for some older gear... I was thinking in adding later a turntable.... how´s the phono on this amp? cheers!
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