Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Pioneer SA-9100

This is my Christmas present to myself. A friend called me two days ago and said he had an "old Pioneer amplifier" that he wanted to unload. As soon as I saw the picture he texted me, I realized I had to make the 25 mile drive to pick it up - quick!

He inherited this from the original owner who bought it new in 1973. The heritage is exactly what one looks for when purchasing 40-year-old gear - one owner and well-appreciated. This shows virtually no signs of wear. The case and front panel are pristine. Took the knobs and switches off and electrostatically cleaned them using Simple Green as the solution. Wiped the cabinet down with furniture polish. Sprayed Caig tuner cleaner on all pots, switches and worked them well to help ensure static-free use.

I'm sure the electrolytic caps are dried up, but these old Japanese units hold up really well. It still sounds nice. This could be a candidate for full reconditioning. Stay tuned.

Power output: 60 watts per channel into 8 ohms (stereo) Frequency response: 10Hz to 70kHz Total harmonic distortion: 0.1% Damping factor: 70 Input sensitivity: 2mV (mic), 2.5mV (MM), 150mV (line) Signal to noise ratio: 70dB (mic), 80dB (MM), 90dB (line) Output: 150mV (line), 30mV (DIN), 2V (Pre out) Speaker load impedance: 4 to 16 ohms Semiconductors: 63 x transistors, 30 x diodes Dimensions: 430mm (17") x 138mm (5.5") x 341mm (!3.5"). Weight: 13.6kg (30 lbs). Year: 1974. The above was copied from HiFi Engine.


  1. Lucky you! I got mine in the 90's, and it is still serving as my amp. It has so many possibilities and so good sound. And yours looks as if it was directly from the shop - 40 years later! A good thing also for future generations. I have been thinking, if reconditioning could be a good idea, but have no experience, so it will definitely be interesting to hear about your work. But here from Denmark I can only congratulate you with your Christmas gift - what better "toy" could you ask for.
    SA 9100 works fine also with fx STAX headphones. /Johannes E.

  2. I have a similar looking SA-7100. It's a beauty but sounds somewhat dark and grainy to me. Pity since the piece is so nicely constructed it deserves to sound better than it does. Maybe a parts upgrade will transform it.



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