The 'Hitachi' Fishers

Discussion in 'Fisher' started by Kingfisher, Mar 19, 2017.

  1. Kingfisher

    Kingfisher Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    732
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    Western MI
    Hello AKer's,
    I am creating this thread to see if the Fisher receivers made by Hitachi can be positively identified. Old threads only reveal that we've been learning more and more over the years, but information still seems to be shaky as to what models were made for Fisher by Hitachi in Japan during the Emerson era. If any of you have information to contribute to this subject, please do. I'm 90% sure that Hitachi made the Fisher 170, 180, 190, 195, 201, 202, 203, 205, 213, 215, and 295. I am not so sure about the later Emerson era models such as: the 132, 232, 332, 432, 122, 222 or 234 from the mid-'70's. If there were other Japanese contractors for Emerson that you know of please feel free to elaborate. Emerson was known to build some 4-channel Fisher's in Hong Kong, but they were not Hitachi. If you have any of the above listed models, look inside your receiver and examine the markings on transformers, transistors, capacitors, pc boards, etc. If it screams HITACHI! and there company logos everywhere, feel free to contribute to this thread. Hitachi's company logo looks like this:
     

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  2. Kingfisher

    Kingfisher Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    732
    Location:
    Western MI
    My own Fisher 205:
     

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  3. larryderouin

    larryderouin Do I get Food, Med's, or more gear this Month? Subscriber

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    They may have been built by Hitachi, but the circuitry was designed by the "Dutchmen". They had a hand in practically everything from about 1957 thru 1980 when they started retiring. And within the financial constraints set by either Emerson or Sanyo, I think they did a pretty good job.
     
  4. txturbo

    txturbo AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Location:
    Austin, TX
    I think Hitachi must have done lots of contract manufacturing. I know that several of the 70's era Radio Shack receivers were built by Hitachi. Every piece of silicon in the receiver is marked Hitachi. I also found schematic of Hitachi branded receivers that have identical sections to the Realistic STA-180. Now that I can see the pictures of the Fisher 205 I can see that it has a similar look under the hood.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Kingfisher

    Kingfisher Well-Known Member

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    732
    Location:
    Western MI
    I have seen some physical evidence that Emerson started cost-cutting right after the 1969 purchase as Fisher was getting into a serious onslaught of Japanese competition around that time especially in materials (i.e. plywood casings becoming pressboard, wood veneer becoming vinyl, etc) rather than design or engineering. I have to wonder how many of those Dutchmen stuck around after Sanyo made the move to Chatsworth. IIRC from other AK threads, Avery himself no longer had an affiliation with the Fisher brand by about 1978.
     
  6. Kingfisher

    Kingfisher Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    732
    Location:
    Western MI
    That brown-colored PC board should have the Hitachi logo on it also. Hitachi did lots of OEM work, but also had their own brand...in some ways competing against themselves for market share. They did make their own electrolytic capacitors too, but the Fisher 205 only has Nippon Chemicon's.
     
  7. larryderouin

    larryderouin Do I get Food, Med's, or more gear this Month? Subscriber

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    18,153
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    My understanding is most if not all of the "Dutchmen" hung around to clooect full pensions (about 1979 or so). Mr. Fisher stayed on with Sanyo as a consultant until about 1980 or so. The Japanese onslaught hurt ALL of the US manufacturers in 1969-70, as the price of the yen was favorable compared to the US Dollar and we just couldn't compete economically. A lot of industries dried up about then also so it wasn't just an Audio thing. And yes Hitachi did a lot of OEM work for Ratshack, FISHER, and others. The problem was they were late to the game and couldn't get a good toehold in the market and was relegated to 2nd tier. Most of their stuff was as good as or better in some cases to the 1st tier manufacturers, but with their late start, they couldn't catch up. Same with Toshiba in the audio arena.
     
  8. Kingfisher

    Kingfisher Well-Known Member

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    732
    Location:
    Western MI
    Hitachi (and Toshiba) kinda reminds me of Zenith, a radio and TV maker that expanded in to stereo components and was late to the party. Zenith had console and portable record players before the '70's but never delved into components before then. It would have been cool to see Zenith do something like RCA's MX-7, but it never happened and they never captured the youth market with their '70's stereos. Buying Heathkit for their PC kits was their last attempt to stay relevant.
     
  9. KentTeffeteller

    KentTeffeteller Gimpus Stereophilus!

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    Zenith didn't capture the youth market, since they were about quality in what they built and good conservative engineering in what they sold. Zenith tended to be more expensive than average in their class. And they were slow to separates. Consoles and compacts they excelled in, far superior than 99% of RCA anything not to be from or related to RCA Broadcast. Hitachi and Toshiba were more component part manufacture and OEM focused than they were on retail marketing in the USA. And they got into the market a bit too late to have real presence, though these two brands have built some awesome gear, more than competitive on engineering, build quality, and sonics.
     

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