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 Post subject: Alrad SE Japanese stereo tube amplifier
PostPosted: Feb Thu 27, 2020 7:50 am 
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Joined: Dec Sun 07, 2008 7:05 am
Posts: 4237
Location: Meridian, MS 39307
Got my hands on this Alrad lower end single ended stereo tube amplifier, probably from the early '60's. It uses a single 6BM8 for each channel and a 6X4 rectifier tube. It has controls for L tone, R tone (seems like they could have ganged those two on the same shaft), L volume, R volume, and a selector switch for mono aux, mono phono, stereo aux, and stereo phono. It only has one stereo input and since there is no preamp tube ahead of the 6BM8's, you can't use a magnetic cartridge (unless you use an outboard preamp).

I tested the amp with a CD player and, for what it is, it sounds decent (connected to a pair of "tube era" Oaktron speakers that were found at the dump). As far as the phono/aux. switch setting, it sounds much better when set to phono and I think the aux. setting is for a high level input.

As you can see, someone serviced it and did a decent job; but, I'm probably going to replace the filter cap for good measure and I'm probably going to install a strain relief for the power cord and get rid of the hot glue that they used.

As far as the brand, I know there was the Calrad brand that was popular during the '60's and '70's; but, I don't know anything about Alrad and can't find much out about them.

If you think this one is low end, you'd be right; but, there were even lower end models and I have one of those coming in a few days. The one coming is a Trutest integrated stereo tube amplifier with a series-string chassis (35C5 X 2, 12AX7, and 35W4).


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 Post subject: Re: Alrad SE Japanese stereo tube amplifier
PostPosted: Mar Sun 01, 2020 12:53 am 
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Joined: Dec Sat 24, 2011 9:17 pm
Posts: 6050
Location: Vancouver Island, Canada
Nice speaker cabs that can probably handle way more power than what that little amp puts out.
But nothing wrong with low power, and in a high density world, makes sense too. Looks like a fun project.

No idea about Alrad origins. Might be some clues in the components.

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 Post subject: Re: Alrad SE Japanese stereo tube amplifier
PostPosted: Mar Sun 01, 2020 5:47 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 26006
Location: Detroit, MI USA
It's an interesting little amplifier. The white paint on the screws tells me this particular one was sold already assembled, but the fact that everything including the tube sockets is fastened to the chassis with screws rather than rivets tells me it was almost certainly also offered as a kit.

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Experience is what you gain when the results aren't what you were expecting.


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 Post subject: Re: Alrad SE Japanese stereo tube amplifier
PostPosted: Mar Mon 02, 2020 1:01 am 
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Joined: Dec Sat 24, 2011 9:17 pm
Posts: 6050
Location: Vancouver Island, Canada
Right, the power cord strain relief is a blob of hot glue, or maybe silicone, but that was done by the previous owner most likely.
No doubt it was a limited production, that probably fizzled when sales were slow.

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Burl Ives, RIP, oldtimer.
[:l>)


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 Post subject: Re: Alrad SE Japanese stereo tube amplifier
PostPosted: Mar Mon 02, 2020 6:35 am 
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Joined: Sep Thu 23, 2010 6:37 am
Posts: 12437
Location: Powell River BC Canada
Looks like a pre-60s amplifier that might have been imported by Armaco.

Could not of been CSA approved.

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 Post subject: Re: Alrad SE Japanese stereo tube amplifier
PostPosted: Mar Sat 07, 2020 1:05 am 
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Joined: Nov Fri 10, 2006 12:24 am
Posts: 2702
Location: Thornhill, Ontario, Canada
The single triode voltage amplifier does not really provide enough audio gain for a decent amount of NFB. I have a similar amplifier (1/2 12AX7 to EL84 per channel)... but it works well enough.
Cheers,
Roger

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