Pioneer SA-7800Posted: October 20, 2011
Sold for: $405
Right, my friends, in my opinion, this amp belongs to the most beautiful series of amps ever designed. These are the ’63 ‘Vettes of the audio world. You cannot know how good they look and feel until you have one in your rack. In many ways I think that this one—the bottom of the line—is the best amp. I’ve owned all three in this series and the other two (SA-9800 & SA-8800) have a ridiculous number of levers and knobs. This one in the most manageable for those of us who tend to set all of these in the flat position.
Inside the case is one one mofo of a transformer and 4 x 8000uF caps, so plenty of good, clean power to burn. Very good separation of instrumentation and a super-clean, almost clinical, clarity to the music. If you are going to buy (invest in) any of this series, it really does help to familiarise yourself with the insides as you will have to periodically clean ALL the pots and lever switches — I emphasise “all” here because failure to clean them all may cause even the most unlikely of contacts affect sound across one or both channels. I have fixed many a misbehaving amp from this series with a decent clean.
No real weaknesses (except for the pots and switches) and the blue fluro meters have never been beat.