Accuphase integrated Amp reviews

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Manunayar

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Hello there

Is any one In this group experienced Accuphase Amp
They are suppose to be the most expensive Solid state Amp. Why ? Because they employed More people ? because they have 27 dedicated engineers ? Or high quality component

it is still a family owned private company. Proprietaryship

Please share your views
Thanks

Accuphase e203 e206 e213 etc E9890658-C7DE-4449-B38F-3BB4EE8C0D01.jpeg
 

prem

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Accuphase is more upper end of midfi or at best entry level into high end. It’s a highly overrated amp. Amps like Soulution, CH Precision, FM Acoustics, LAMM, Kondo, Vitus, etc fall into high end category.

if you are keen on an Accuphase integrated buy used. The older models are more musical. The newer ones are more modern sounding and neither here or there. They have tried to make it more dynamic but IMO not very successful.
 
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vijwilso

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I tend to agree with this. I am yet to hear accuphase in a well matched system. Generally it lacks texture and timbral accuracy while being more energetic on the top end. These quirks makes it to sound thin and feels disconnected . I would give the benefit of doubt and call it a synergy miss-match till i get a conclusion on this
 

jai1611

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My experience with Accuphase is limited to models 10 years or older (E450 generation and earlier). From what I understand, there was a significant change post that with the E460 with a a move to different transistors. I find the sound refined, balanced with a bit of warmth. Excellent control over speakers. Not the last word in dynamics. Transparency is high but not forced.

Accuphase is to high end amps what Lexus is to high end cars. Not the last word in performance, but more accessible pricing and much better reliability compared to the boutique brands (especially European ones). The reliability is particularly important in India, given relatively harsh conditions (dust, power quality).
 

Dev.R

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Having used the Accuphase E405, E 450 and E 470 , they have a very sweet midrange.....lush and warm , the HF may not be extended still ok and they do lack in dynamics. But having said that, Accuphase is a boring amp...they lack the excitement, it doesn't connect you to the music and soundstage is too narrow and definitely not a VFM product if you are buying new.
 

essrand

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We just finished bashing Accuphase pricing in another thread, do check it out.

I just purchased an Accuphase Class A amp last week, it's brilliant. Pricing wise its a bit above Luxman, also in SQ.

Accuphase are not the most expensive SS amps: that honor belongs to many other: DAG, Technical Brain, Constellation, Soulution, CH Precision.

Accuphase makes amps costing 7000$ to 40000$ so depends on who you ask, you will get a different answer.

Their class A amps are completely different league from their class A/B : 450, 470, 480 integrates from what I have heard.
 

bloredude

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They are suppose to be the most expensive Solid state Amp. Why ? Because they employed More people ? because they have 27 dedicated engineers ? Or high quality component

it is still a family owned private company. Proprietaryship

"They are suppose to be the most expensive Solid state Amp." - Nope!

Accuphase is nowhere near the most expensive solid state amp. Accuphase tops out at about USD 25k, which is not even 1/100th of the price tag of "most expensive Solid state Amp".

Accuphase is loved not because they are the most expensive, or are family-owned, or have dedicated engineers. They are loved due to their mass-market appeal and high-end sound at a bargain.

Audiophile world is extremely subjective. Individual perceptions can vary to extreme opposites. General perception about the Accuphase amplfiers is that they have a great sound that people can remain married to for life.

A common theme among Accuphase owners is that -

(1) Accuphase has a sweet sound (a sound that is commonly associated with tubes) but without the hassles of tubes.

(2) Accuphase has a smooth sound that is highly seductive, it draws the listener in to it.

(3) Often "sweetness" is related to "warmth", and "smoothness" to "lack of details". On the contrary, Accuphase has excellent micro details, which allows a deep peep into the material being played.

(4) To look deep into recordings, some manufacturers "brighten" the sound of their products. Not Accuphase. You will never hear an Accuphase owner say their amp is "hot". That brings me to the next point.

An Accuphase amplifier is non-fatiguing despite offering excellent micro details, for which some other manufacturers rely on the other route - etching out the details in shiny silver so much it bleeds the ear in long listening sessions. With Accuphase, you can listen on for hours without a hint of fatigue.

[Note: I have heard from some people that recent Accuphase amps are hot in the top region]

(5) Among the audiophiles in search of that holy grail of sound, equipment are like gazar-mooli. They come to the chopping block like voiceless veggies. In that sense, audiophiles with deep pockets are merciless butchers, they spare none but the very best. But many of such Audiophiles stop their quest when they find that an Accuphase works like magic in their setup, that this is what they had been looking for.

Similar stories can be heard from the owners of other manufacturer products too. But these stories will more often than not have two names as the protagonist. Accuphase being on of them.

(6) People kind of get married to an Accuphase. If a survey was to be done among audiophiles as to which amplifier has outlasted others in their home, the top-three names would be - Marantz, Luxman, Accuphase. All three offer excellent sound - that belies the price point they come at. Marantz has chosen to become mainstream. Luxman has chosen to take a middle ground. Accuphase still remains in the more exclusive club.

If such a survey were to be done among "high-end" audiophiles, the results would shrink to Luxman and Accuphase. And if the bar is raised further high, the only name that will remain will be Accuphase.

The average span of time, an Accuphase stays in a "high-end" system is far higher than many of much more expensive amps. Many an audiophiles literally get married to Accuphase once they install one in their system, upgrading only within the family.

(7) In such discussions the term "high end" becomes a source of utter confusion. Most people equate the tier of a product with their cost. That is an obvious criteria but not entirely determinate. I (personally) equate the tier of a product with the league in which it plays. I do not grade a product for its individual cost - but by the total cost of the system in which it plays. This approach has two advantages. (a) it makes it easier to judge the calibre of a product. (b) it makes it easier to judge the "value-for-money" quotient of a product.

With this approach - an Accuphase amplifier is truly a high-end product. Accuphase amplifiers can be seen playing well in setup with highly priced equipment. Accuphase is not high-end because it costs USD 5000-25000 but because it can play with a setup of USD $50-250k without being outclassed.

(8) One of the less discussed criteria about hifi equipment particularly when it reaches the high-end territory, is the "ease of upgradability", "ease of exit". Audiophiles, particularly those playing the high-end game, don't really bother about these two factors, because, generally speaking, money, or its judicious spend, is nowhere in their list of priorities.

But to those for whom it matters, an Accuphase is a Godsend. Accuphase is among the easiest to get out of or upgrade within the family. One can blindly upgrade from say an Accuphase E270 to an E280/E370/E380 without a fear of breaking his system and going into the cycle of recalibrating the setup (often a time-consuming, expensive and frustrating exercise).

For any reason, when an Accuphase owner wants to sell his Accuphase, it gets sold in no time (specially compared to a typical "high end" gear which takes a long-long time to sell). The best part is - the cost of this exit. In case of Accuphase, the loss borne by the seller is very small in percentage terms compared to even mainstream gear (better not to even mention the "high end" gear here, which loses value exponentially).


***


An audiophile getting into an Accuphase is more often than not a highly delightful, rewarding, gratifying experience. Most people fall in love with their Accuphase and stay with them longer than they do with any other gear of the same class.
 
Last edited:

Miany

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"They are suppose to be the most expensive Solid state Amp." - Nope!

Accuphase is nowhere near the most expensive solid state amp. Accuphase tops out at about USD 25k, which is not even 1/100th of the price tag of "most expensive Solid state Amp".

Accuphase is loved not because they are the most expensive, or are family-owned, or have dedicated engineers. They are loved due to their mass-market appeal and high-end sound at a bargain.

Audiophile world is extremely subjective. Individual perceptions can vary to extreme opposites. General perception about the Accuphase amplfiers is that they have a great sound that people can remain married to for life.

A common theme among Accuphase owners is that -

(1) Accuphase has a sweet sound (a sound that is commonly associated with tubes) but without the hassles of tubes.

(2) Accuphase has a smooth sound that is highly seductive, it draws the listener in to it.

(3) Often "sweetness" is related to "warmth", and "smoothness" to "lack of details". On the contrary, Accuphase has excellent micro details, which allows a deep peep into the material being played.

(4) To look deep into recordings, some manufacturers "brighten" the sound of their products. Not Accuphase. You will never hear an Accuphase owner say their amp is "hot". That brings me to the next point.

An Accuphase amplifier is non-fatiguing despite offering excellent micro details, for which some other manufacturers rely on the other route - etching out the details in shiny silver so much it bleeds the ear in long listening sessions. With Accuphase, you can listen on for hours without a hint of fatigue.

[Note: I have heard from some people that recent Accuphase amps are hot in the top region]

(5) Among the audiophiles in search of that holy grail of sound, equipment are like gazar-mooli. They come to the chopping block like voiceless veggies. In that sense, audiophiles with deep pockets are merciless butchers, they spare none but the very best. But many of such Audiophiles stop their quest when they find that an Accuphase works like magic in their setup, that this is what they had been looking for.

Similar stories can be heard from the owners of other manufacturer products too. But these stories will more often than not have two names as the protagonist. Accuphase being on of them.

(6) People kind of get married to an Accuphase. If a survey was to be done among audiophiles as to which amplifier has outlasted others in their home, the top-three names would be - Marantz, Luxman, Accuphase. All three offer excellent sound - that belies the price point they come at. Marantz has chosen to become mainstream. Luxman has chosen to take a middle ground. Accuphase still remains in the more exclusive club.

If such a survey were to be done among "high-end" audiophiles, the results would shrink to Luxman and Accuphase. And if the bar is raised further high, the only name that will remain will be Accuphase.

The average span of time, an Accuphase stays in a "high-end" system is far higher than many of much more expensive amps. Many an audiophiles literally get married to Accuphase once they install one in their system, upgrading only within the family.

(7) In such discussions the term "high end" becomes a source of utter confusion. Most people equate the tier of a product with their cost. That is an obvious criteria but not entirely determinate. I (personally) equate the tier of a product with the league in which it plays. I do not grade a product for its individual cost - but by the total cost of the system in which it plays. This approach has two advantages. (a) it makes it easier to judge the calibre of a product. (b) it makes it easier to judge the "value-for-money" quotient of a product.

With this approach - an Accuphase amplifier is truly a high-end product. Accuphase amplifiers can be seen playing well in setup with highly priced equipment. Accuphase is not high-end because it costs USD 5000-25000 but because it can play with a setup of USD $50-250k without being outclassed.

(8) One of the less discussed criteria about hifi equipment particularly when it reaches the high-end territory, is the "ease of upgradability", "ease of exit". Audiophiles, particularly those playing the high-end game, don't really bother about these two factors, because, generally speaking, money, or its judicious spend, is nowhere in their list of priorities.

But to those for whom it matters, an Accuphase is a Godsend. Accuphase is among the easiest to get out of or upgrade within the family. One can blindly upgrade from say an Accuphase E270 to an E280/E370/E380 without a fear of breaking his system and going into the cycle of recalibrating the setup (often a time-consuming, expensive and frustrating exercise).

For any reason, when an Accuphase owner wants to sell his Accuphase, it gets sold in no time (specially compared to a typical "high end" gear which takes a long-long time to sell). The best part is - the cost of this exit. In case of Accuphase, the loss borne by the seller is very small in percentage terms compared to even mainstream gear (better not to even mention the "high end" gear here, which loses value exponentially).


***


An audiophile getting into an Accuphase is more often than not a highly delightful, rewarding, gratifying experience. Most people fall in love with their Accuphase and stay with them longer than they do with any other gear of the same class.

Nice write-up!! On a lighter note, you can easily apply for a marketing job at accuphase. :)
 

Selvin

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I like the sound signature of older Accuphase amps models like 203, 303, 305, 405...
In modern Accuphase amps somehow the warmth and musical intimacy is missing. Yes.. I may buy a modern Accuphase amps only if my priorities are Champagne finish with VU meters and reliability. Definitely not for the performance for the price.

"They are suppose to be the most expensive Solid state Amp." - Nope!

Accuphase is nowhere near the most expensive solid state amp. Accuphase tops out at about USD 25k, which is not even 1/100th of the price tag of "most expensive Solid state Amp".

Accuphase is loved not because they are the most expensive, or are family-owned, or have dedicated engineers. They are loved due to their mass-market appeal and high-end sound at a bargain.

Audiophile world is extremely subjective. Individual perceptions can vary to extreme opposites. General perception about the Accuphase amplfiers is that they have a great sound that people can remain married to for life.

A common theme among Accuphase owners is that -

(1) Accuphase has a sweet sound (a sound that is commonly associated with tubes) but without the hassles of tubes.

(2) Accuphase has a smooth sound that is highly seductive, it draws the listener in to it.

(3) Often "sweetness" is related to "warmth", and "smoothness" to "lack of details". On the contrary, Accuphase has excellent micro details, which allows a deep peep into the material being played.

(4) To look deep into recordings, some manufacturers "brighten" the sound of their products. Not Accuphase. You will never hear an Accuphase owner say their amp is "hot". That brings me to the next point.

An Accuphase amplifier is non-fatiguing despite offering excellent micro details, for which some other manufacturers rely on the other route - etching out the details in shiny silver so much it bleeds the ear in long listening sessions. With Accuphase, you can listen on for hours without a hint of fatigue.

[Note: I have heard from some people that recent Accuphase amps are hot in the top region]

(5) Among the audiophiles in search of that holy grail of sound, equipment are like gazar-mooli. They come to the chopping block like voiceless veggies. In that sense, audiophiles with deep pockets are merciless butchers, they spare none but the very best. But many of such Audiophiles stop their quest when they find that an Accuphase works like magic in their setup, that this is what they had been looking for.

Similar stories can be heard from the owners of other manufacturer products too. But these stories will more often than not have two names as the protagonist. Accuphase being on of them.

(6) People kind of get married to an Accuphase. If a survey was to be done among audiophiles as to which amplifier has outlasted others in their home, the top-three names would be - Marantz, Luxman, Accuphase. All three offer excellent sound - that belies the price point they come at. Marantz has chosen to become mainstream. Luxman has chosen to take a middle ground. Accuphase still remains in the more exclusive club.

If such a survey were to be done among "high-end" audiophiles, the results would shrink to Luxman and Accuphase. And if the bar is raised further high, the only name that will remain will be Accuphase.

The average span of time, an Accuphase stays in a "high-end" system is far higher than many of much more expensive amps. Many an audiophiles literally get married to Accuphase once they install one in their system, upgrading only within the family.

(7) In such discussions the term "high end" becomes a source of utter confusion. Most people equate the tier of a product with their cost. That is an obvious criteria but not entirely determinate. I (personally) equate the tier of a product with the league in which it plays. I do not grade a product for its individual cost - but by the total cost of the system in which it plays. This approach has two advantages. (a) it makes it easier to judge the calibre of a product. (b) it makes it easier to judge the "value-for-money" quotient of a product.

With this approach - an Accuphase amplifier is truly a high-end product. Accuphase amplifiers can be seen playing well in setup with highly priced equipment. Accuphase is not high-end because it costs USD 5000-25000 but because it can play with a setup of USD $50-250k without being outclassed.

(8) One of the less discussed criteria about hifi equipment particularly when it reaches the high-end territory, is the "ease of upgradability", "ease of exit". Audiophiles, particularly those playing the high-end game, don't really bother about these two factors, because, generally speaking, money, or its judicious spend, is nowhere in their list of priorities.

But to those for whom it matters, an Accuphase is a Godsend. Accuphase is among the easiest to get out of or upgrade within the family. One can blindly upgrade from say an Accuphase E270 to an E280/E370/E380 without a fear of breaking his system and going into the cycle of recalibrating the setup (often a time-consuming, expensive and frustrating exercise).

For any reason, when an Accuphase owner wants to sell his Accuphase, it gets sold in no time (specially compared to a typical "high end" gear which takes a long-long time to sell). The best part is - the cost of this exit. In case of Accuphase, the loss borne by the seller is very small in percentage terms compared to even mainstream gear (better not to even mention the "high end" gear here, which loses value exponentially).


***


An audiophile getting into an Accuphase is more often than not a highly delightful, rewarding, gratifying experience. Most people fall in love with their Accuphase and stay with them longer than they do with any other gear of the same class.
Nice write up. Hope you are using Accuphase.. would like to know other equipments in the chain.
 

jenson

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i have never seen an accuphase in real life, let alone heard one. however one can sense that vintage warmth, soft silky treble extensions from this...my assumption is, they got the aesthetics nailed perfectly. champagne gold, those vu meters and the works..

should they remove this facade, not sure many would still be as loyal.
 

powerslave

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Accuphase has made a name of itself and amongst the Japanese giants of golden era (70s and 80s) it's the only one that survived in its entirety and continues to hold its own against established brands in the west. That coupled with it's vintage looks and good reliability built an image that made it an aspirational buy.

I think what has happened is back in it's hay day most competing offerings from likes of Luxman, Marantz and Sansui looked similar along with a very similar offering. VU meters, busy front facia, tone controls etc so aside from the house sound they all had similar personality. Today while Luxman and to some extent Yamaha and Technics are trying to take a leaf from Accuphase's book they all are owned by larger conglomerates and hence don't have the same bragging rights (to some this may matter)

Today we have Hegel, Karan Acoustics, Pass Labs, Gryphon, and many new entrants in this space who to some may sound better than equivalent Accuphase product, however, most of them sport a utilitarian look. So the image they project in minds of a prospective buyer is of a different kind.

What may seem ironical or bordering on the vanity is we all are talking about audio equipment based on it's perception and how it looks as against how it sounds (in person). That speaks to the power of brand and human psychology. I have no shame in admitting that I have personally not bought audio equipment that sounded great based on how it looked, ruled out audition of some homegrown products based on such super ficial criteria.
 
Last edited:

bloredude

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Nice write up. Hope you are using Accuphase.. would like to know other equipments in the chain.

I read you.

Most of what I write here (and not only in this thread) is from personal experience and has the backing of my conviction. I mean what I write. Holds true for hifi gear as well. Any opinion I voice about a particular piece of equipment is mostly from personal experience. Not everything may have been owned by me, but personal experience in some way.
 
Last edited:

Manunayar

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"They are suppose to be the most expensive Solid state Amp." - Nope!

Accuphase is nowhere near the most expensive solid state amp. Accuphase tops out at about USD 25k, which is not even 1/100th of the price tag of "most expensive Solid state Amp".

Accuphase is loved not because they are the most expensive, or are family-owned, or have dedicated engineers. They are loved due to their mass-market appeal and high-end sound at a bargain.

Audiophile world is extremely subjective. Individual perceptions can vary to extreme opposites. General perception about the Accuphase amplfiers is that they have a great sound that people can remain married to for life.

A common theme among Accuphase owners is that -

(1) Accuphase has a sweet sound (a sound that is commonly associated with tubes) but without the hassles of tubes.

(2) Accuphase has a smooth sound that is highly seductive, it draws the listener in to it.

(3) Often "sweetness" is related to "warmth", and "smoothness" to "lack of details". On the contrary, Accuphase has excellent micro details, which allows a deep peep into the material being played.

(4) To look deep into recordings, some manufacturers "brighten" the sound of their products. Not Accuphase. You will never hear an Accuphase owner say their amp is "hot". That brings me to the next point.

An Accuphase amplifier is non-fatiguing despite offering excellent micro details, for which some other manufacturers rely on the other route - etching out the details in shiny silver so much it bleeds the ear in long listening sessions. With Accuphase, you can listen on for hours without a hint of fatigue.

[Note: I have heard from some people that recent Accuphase amps are hot in the top region]

(5) Among the audiophiles in search of that holy grail of sound, equipment are like gazar-mooli. They come to the chopping block like voiceless veggies. In that sense, audiophiles with deep pockets are merciless butchers, they spare none but the very best. But many of such Audiophiles stop their quest when they find that an Accuphase works like magic in their setup, that this is what they had been looking for.

Similar stories can be heard from the owners of other manufacturer products too. But these stories will more often than not have two names as the protagonist. Accuphase being on of them.

(6) People kind of get married to an Accuphase. If a survey was to be done among audiophiles as to which amplifier has outlasted others in their home, the top-three names would be - Marantz, Luxman, Accuphase. All three offer excellent sound - that belies the price point they come at. Marantz has chosen to become mainstream. Luxman has chosen to take a middle ground. Accuphase still remains in the more exclusive club.

If such a survey were to be done among "high-end" audiophiles, the results would shrink to Luxman and Accuphase. And if the bar is raised further high, the only name that will remain will be Accuphase.

The average span of time, an Accuphase stays in a "high-end" system is far higher than many of much more expensive amps. Many an audiophiles literally get married to Accuphase once they install one in their system, upgrading only within the family.

(7) In such discussions the term "high end" becomes a source of utter confusion. Most people equate the tier of a product with their cost. That is an obvious criteria but not entirely determinate. I (personally) equate the tier of a product with the league in which it plays. I do not grade a product for its individual cost - but by the total cost of the system in which it plays. This approach has two advantages. (a) it makes it easier to judge the calibre of a product. (b) it makes it easier to judge the "value-for-money" quotient of a product.

With this approach - an Accuphase amplifier is truly a high-end product. Accuphase amplifiers can be seen playing well in setup with highly priced equipment. Accuphase is not high-end because it costs USD 5000-25000 but because it can play with a setup of USD $50-250k without being outclassed.

(8) One of the less discussed criteria about hifi equipment particularly when it reaches the high-end territory, is the "ease of upgradability", "ease of exit". Audiophiles, particularly those playing the high-end game, don't really bother about these two factors, because, generally speaking, money, or its judicious spend, is nowhere in their list of priorities.

But to those for whom it matters, an Accuphase is a Godsend. Accuphase is among the easiest to get out of or upgrade within the family. One can blindly upgrade from say an Accuphase E270 to an E280/E370/E380 without a fear of breaking his system and going into the cycle of recalibrating the setup (often a time-consuming, expensive and frustrating exercise).

For any reason, when an Accuphase owner wants to sell his Accuphase, it gets sold in no time (specially compared to a typical "high end" gear which takes a long-long time to sell). The best part is - the cost of this exit. In case of Accuphase, the loss borne by the seller is very small in percentage terms compared to even mainstream gear (better not to even mention the "high end" gear here, which loses value exponentially).


***


An audiophile getting into an Accuphase is more often than not a highly delightful, rewarding, gratifying experience. Most people fall in love with their Accuphase and stay with them longer than they do with any other gear of the same class.
Great I would be interested in one later as a collection ,
 

yogitashwer

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The Accuphase commitment to audio excellence is clearly evident in their entire product catalog. When it comes to high-end audio components there really is no single "best" but Accuphase is certainly among the top tier of what is widely considered the best audio equipment on the planet.
 
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