My 9500 coming back to me with FINAL mods,and the BEST possible sound .

Discussion in 'Exclusively Sansui' started by quadklipsh, Sep 15, 2018.

  1. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    NO,NO its not here yet !!!!
    It will be with me anytime next week .
    Cant wait .

    I got this amp about 6 years ago and had it first refurbished by my local tech just to get it working and to get to know the kind of sound that this amplifier produces as it was highly regarded by a lot many audio aficionados all over the world ...

    The guy in the shop tried to hide his excitement when he played it the first time around .It sounded good . .powerful ,bass heavy with not much extension or detail in the highs .He played through a nominal philips cd player but his recorded tracks were very high quality .His speakers were unknown to me and were not visible . It was his ears that he trusted through those speakers and could tell between several amplifiers that came to his bench everyday.

    I just wanted to hear from him that the amp sounded good enough to be a keeper . He nodded in agreement ,Good.

    I had taken the amplifier home and time went by . It used to serve me with daily beating from few minutes to several hours at a stretch without getting any more than just warm .
    My speakers varied .They would come and go .
    They included :
    Klipsch RF3s
    Fostex RM800
    JBL 4410
    Sansui SP100i.
    Coral CX-7.


    SONIC IMPRESSIONS after bringing it from the dead :

    The 9500 had some subdued highs , feeling recessed in the top frequencies and i felt wanting for more treble in the upper registers but the turn of the treble knobs wouldnot do what was desired . Tt did raise the amplitude of the said frequency ranges but the silkiness was missing whatever i did .

    THE FIRST RECAP:

    Two years or so had gone by .
    I had made friends with a very nice tech and thought of sending it over for a FULL RECAP , 50 miles away . I sourced all Japanese capacitors locally and sent em for the job . He gave it a listen and found it to be a beautiful sounding amp. DELIGHTFUL.He also compared it to the mighty Kenwood supreme 600 but rated the 9500 as the second best at that time.

    MY LISTENING IMPRESSIONS AFTER THE FIRST RECAP

    When i brought it home i was super excited after the recap .
    I had changed my speakers to the DIY pair of speakers with AUDAX drivers and alcone tweeters .
    The sound came as a surprise .
    It was a laid back , gentle , wide and a beautiful sound .
    The bass had authority ,a bit fat and coloured or i would say had a slight hang over ... the mids were sweet and bit laid back .Vocals were clear and never harsh. The highs were silky and sweet but their was a bit of mushiness or i would say slight lack of clarity as if found Luxman L550-x to be a bit more cleaner and detailed in the highs . The sonic signature of the 9500 was loveable and engaging .
    The sound was relaxed like a breeze. In a matter of minutes i had fallen in love with this gem.
    I still felt that the bass heavy speakers would sound a bit overwhelming with this amp and the speakers that were more trebly would find this amplifier complementing them beautifully .

    It served me for another 2 years and i had been reading about the restorations done by LEESTEREO. I wanted to follow that one COMPLETELY.So i sent the amp for the final amendments using polyprops in the tone controls boards , the pre-amp section and all signal paths wherever LEESTEREO had replaced em.
    after some shopping for better components ,mainly POLYS, and some electros , i sent the pack of components to the other city .
    The amp was again opened and all the pre amp electrolytics were removed and replaced with polypropylenes . The four 4700 uF Beryl capacitors were also removed as they were thought to be Chinese/Korean and disapproved by few on the threads .So i got the best LOW ESR rated 10,000 uF capacitors available and replaced .

    Now after THIS recap the tech played the amplifier for sometime and really noticed the difference in highs .He stated yesterday that the amp which had a mushy and mixed up sonics in the higher registers was gone . the treble is now much cleaner and there is more separation. The mids have not changed they are soft and gentle . The bass is roughly the same . big and somewhat less fatty . .

    I am waiting for the amp anxiously,and hoping for goose bumps yet once again !!!!!!
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2018

     

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  2. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    AU-9500 Tone Board Original label_zpsz0cgbhwv.jpg [] 2_IMG-20180913-WA0023.jpg [] [] 0_images.jpeg 5_IMG-20180913-WA0052.jpg 4_IMG-20180912-WA0019.jpg unnamed.jpg
     
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  3. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    I had a small demand from all these years with this amp ...
    the volume knob is working fine but it has lost the firmness of rotation .Its very free to move .maybe as after the loss of film inside that makes the firm feeling to rotate .
    Can it be solved.I dont want to replace the whole volume pot .
     
  4. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    Can i get the volume back to firmness ?
     
  5. pete_mac

    pete_mac Super Member

    Messages:
    2,808
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Sounds like someone has over-cleaned the volume pot by spraying too much cleaner inside, and it has washed-out the grease which provides some smoothness and weight to the feeling of the pot.

    Short of fully overhauling and re-packing the grease in the pot (which may or may not be achievable), there’s nothing else you can do.
     
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  6. pete_mac

    pete_mac Super Member

    Messages:
    2,808
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Forgot to mention... I recently overhauled a 9500 and followed Leestereo’s mods. I was suitably impressed afterwards - a tweaked 9500 is an amp to be reckoned with!
     
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  7. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    Good to hear that .
    Would you describe your speaker pairings with this amp.
    The room size and the genre preferrences with 9500
     
  8. pete_mac

    pete_mac Super Member

    Messages:
    2,808
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    I only had the amp set up for a few days, as it was a customer’s amp.

    The speakers were some Axis Audio speakers from Australia, and some Australian Acoustics speakers which use the same Tonegen drivers as the Axis. These are my current test speakers for recently restored amps. They sound lovely (probably 80% as good as my mains) and I won’t shed any tears if any amp goes rogue and destroys them ;)

    I had recently heard an upgraded/restored 777A and 999 in previous weeks, and the 9500 sounded very powerful, with deep extended bass response. I didn’t connect any of these amps to my main speakers though - it’s too much hassle.

    Music was a mix of predominantly electronica of various genres (beautifully produced and excellent sonics) along with some music with guitars and pianos.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018
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  9. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    Id Iike to know more about sonic differences between the 777 or 999 amps vs the 9500 .
    Which of these makes the guitar strings sound more real or lifelike . I mean theres a very familiar hormonics that every grownup knows with guitars that you dont get when guitar has been recorded and played back through much ordinary systems . A real world acoustic guitar and a recording are way apart for me usually. But when i first played the guitars from good recordings through a friends 10watt pioneer tube amp of the 60s the real guitar tone was brought to life .
    I wanna know if your 9500 experience or any of the above ever did that kinda hormonics that you simply feel the vibrations of the strings and their slow n original guitar like decay
     
  10. pete_mac

    pete_mac Super Member

    Messages:
    2,808
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Sorry, I can’t help there. I heard the three amps several weeks apart, and didn’t critically analyze the them to that level of detail. The best that I can offer is that the 9500 sounded similar to the 717 regarding punch, the 777A had a lovely midrange presentation, and the 999 was just a great all round amp with great presentation from top to bottom.
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2018
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  11. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    9500=717 . Hmmmm. Isn't that 717 a middle grade amongst sansuis 70s amps
     

     

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  12. slow_jazz

    slow_jazz Lunatic Member

    Messages:
    13,724
    Location:
    SE Michigan, Downriver....
    Congrats.

    Always wanted one.
     
  13. pete_mac

    pete_mac Super Member

    Messages:
    2,808
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    The 717 is a fine amp, and was the top of the line in its model range when released.

    The take-away message that I was initially trying to make via my post was that the 9500 is not the crap amp that many posts on AK had made me falsely assume. It’s a very fine amp once tweaked and modded - very capable indeed! However, it is not the nicest of the vintage Sansuis that I’ve heard though. I still prefer a modded 999.
     
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  14. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    Pete,
    Thanks for the account.
    I got more into tweaking. Tweaking for good sound is real fun to me .
    Keeping things stock is about playing safe but tweaking and making it sound the way one would like is the next step up for me.And this is the way my tech is headed too and is keeping me waiting .
    I know others would suggest keeping the 9500 the way it is and enjoying it and i dont mind that at all. But it wont hurt if a little reversible tweaking could get me EXPLORING into the different sonic characters that a machine can do. .

    If there are those tweaks missed out in the 9500 threads we have followed and if someone could point me in that direction , id be very happy to consider
     
  15. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    My friend owns an AU-666 . Is that amp with a sonic style close enough to the 999 .
    I could test it
     
  16. shojam

    shojam SHOJAM

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Pakistan
    Oh... I think I am that friend who owns sansui au 666. By reading the whole thread i have came to the conclusion that someone around globe must describe the basic sonic difference between 9500 and 999. Coz i have had 717, and now having 907X decade also i have used D 707F extra WHICH IS AU - D 9 globally. What i have found in sansui's is a sheer power punch with strict mids and moderate highs. This au 666 is not TOTL but its sonic signature is different from later versions. It sounds warm and engaging somewhat like NAD or Cambridge audio style. I hope au-999 will be an ultimate sansui in this regard. Thanks Quadklipsh for buying me AU-D707 (AU-819). Will be restoring it soon.
     

     

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  17. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

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    1,160
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    It would be more fun for me to compare the listening experience of a Sansui 9500 with the AU-D707.
    So i guess shojam must start working on it .
     
  18. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
  19. quadklipsh

    quadklipsh Super Member

    Messages:
    1,160
    Location:
    Lahore, Pakistan
    Hey kevzep,
    During your mods to the 9500 Did you play around with the pre amp capacitors . Does it make any BIG differences ????

    In those threads it was stated as only bringing subtle differences , the ones that a listener can only pick up when sitting alone in deep sessions and playing very familiar recordings .

    However the differences that my tech have picked up are pretty noticeable ....especially in the high frequency department
     
  20. Hyperion

    Hyperion Roobarb & Custard Subscriber

    Messages:
    46,753
    Location:
    Hertfordshire, UK
    I think this http://audiokarma.org/forums/index....-upgrade-of-scribby31s-sansui-au-9500.654341/ thread should answer all of your questions, but I think you may have seen this before?

    You seem to be obsessed with the possibility that you are missing out on some 'heaven sent' sound experience that maybe we are all enjoying, and that you are missing out on and have yet to discover. This is almost certainly not the case, as you own a model of amplifier that many here would regard as the last piece they'd ever need or want. I currently have the luxury(?) of owning 6 Sansui amplifiers, they each sound a little different, and I prefer some models playing some kinds of music but that's about it. They all sound wonderful to my ears and I love them all, even when not playing the music that makes them sound the best.

    Your undoing is the slight variability of sound from some models of Sansui, partly because of the changing 'voicing' of those amplifiers depending on the exact model, and the time period they were produced in. But also because of the improvements (or not) that a reconditioner can make to those amplifiers by the subtle upgrading of some components to account for small shortcomings, or more recently found (larger) engineering issues in a very few models.

    I am thinking you would be much happier auditioning new amplifiers and choosing the one you like the sound of, because honestly you sound like you're going to worry yourself into an early grave with your obsessing about this 'sound' that you are searching for. Only YOU know what it is - we can point you in a different direction of search with OUR descriptions of the sound of amplifiers - but that is with OUR music, sources, speakers, cables, rooms - and ears!

    Please try to just use and enjoy your vintage pieces and accept them for what they are, there is no magic sound, it all depends on the individual. To be perfectly honest I don't think I have found total Audio Nirvana yet... but even if I don't find it (before my ears give out on me :)) - I KNOW I will still be hearing some really wonderful sound.
     
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