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#4781308 - 06/08/18 01:33 PM Amplifier lifespan?
Camprunner Offline


Registered: 02/19/08
Posts: 1044
Loc: MA.
How long do amplifiers usually last? I have a nice Denon Intigrated amp model PMA2000 IVR that's about 10 years old and running fine but just wondering at what point should I have it inspected and or parts replaced?

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#4781320 - 06/08/18 01:48 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
mx5miata Offline


Registered: 03/28/10
Posts: 654
Loc: NY
I'd just keep on listening to it don't turn on one day.
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#4781329 - 06/08/18 01:53 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
alex_at Offline


Registered: 05/31/16
Posts: 119
Loc: Vienna, Austria
other than a potentiometer or a cold solder connection usually these things last forever. I'm not so sure about these modern amplifiers with all the electronic controls in them, but the old school stereo amplifiers last pretty much forever.

I have an Accuphase E-206 from 1989 which still works perfectly fine. I recently got it serviced (replaced old condensators and resoldered 1 soldering joint). As good as new.


Edited by alex_at (06/08/18 01:54 PM)

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#4781331 - 06/08/18 01:55 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
Leo99 Offline


Registered: 03/30/14
Posts: 3167
Loc: NJ
Keep the dust out of it and it will last a long time.
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#4781355 - 06/08/18 02:22 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Leo99]
NormanBuntz Offline


Registered: 07/27/13
Posts: 2201
Loc: Outer Banks, NC
Originally Posted By: Leo99
Keep the dust out of it and it will last a long time.


+1 and make sure it gets plenty of ventilation when in use to prevent overheating. If the tuner or control knobs start to show static, get an electronics cleaner/lube spray. I love home audio separates. I have a 2005 Arcam and a 1990 Harman Kardon integrated amp in secondary setups, but I prefer my Conrad-Johnson MF-2250 amp and Acurus pre-amp in my main audio system. Somewhat old school stuff.
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#4781375 - 06/08/18 02:44 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
madRiver Offline


Registered: 07/11/15
Posts: 3687
Loc: New England
Mine was parents Denon from 1989 and works fine.

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#4781405 - 06/08/18 03:22 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
Kestas Offline



Registered: 06/04/02
Posts: 12466
Loc: The Motor City
It's usually the electrolytic capacitors that have a finite life. Modern ones are suspect after 30 years. I've seen some still working after 80 years.

I wouldn't worry about the unit needing any kind of "tuneup." Just address the problems as they appear.

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#4781419 - 06/08/18 03:42 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
9050lx Offline


Registered: 11/07/08
Posts: 125
Loc: FL
Well, just get a tube type point to point wired amp and hand it down to the next generation.Keep a correct size fuse in it and retube every 10 or so years.

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#4781429 - 06/08/18 03:50 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
LotI Offline


Registered: 01/01/13
Posts: 1339
Loc: America's Dairyland
I am currently using a Onkyo A8500 integrated amp I bought new circa 1990 and it works fine.

I went multi-channel a couple years after purchase so my parents have been using it for the past umpteen years and since they’re moving, I got it back.

I’m using it power my mains in a 5.2.4 system and I have to say, it sounds better than my current Denon AVR amps. Very warm sound even driving Klipsch RP speakers. 85W/channel is plenty.
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#4781431 - 06/08/18 03:55 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
BrocLuno Offline


Registered: 09/06/15
Posts: 5700
Loc: Kalifornia Kollective
Tube amp - maybe 10 years before one "burns out". Solid State (SS), indefinitely ... smile

Usually the electrolytic capacitors will go somewhere between 15~30 years and they will take out other components. If you have a beloved piece of gear, it's best to get it "re-capped" about every 12~15 years or so smile

I collect stereo gear (classic stuff) and have pieces as old as 1964 running fine smile But they have been tended to ...


Edited by BrocLuno (06/08/18 03:56 PM)
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#4781436 - 06/08/18 04:00 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
sleddriver Offline


Registered: 02/06/10
Posts: 4805
Loc: Central Texas

Looks to be a straight-forward dual mono stereo integrated amplifier. First thing is to inspect the two large AEC (aluminum electrolytic capacitor) in the rear for buldges. Ditto for the small brown ones on each driver board. A more thorough test involves measuring ESR & value for each, which involves some disassembly.

If you have an oscilloscope, you can check all the power rails for any signs of AC and other noise. With a signal generator, you can also check for distorsion on the outputs under load. Check all outputs for any signs of DC.

If either of the power xnsfrmrs is too hot to touch, something's wrong. Same with the heatsinks. As the later are internal, blow the dust/cob webs out and don't put anything on top. Bias can drift over time, especially with cheap trimmer pots, so it's good to check it.

If the 'pots' are encoders, you won't need to worry about noise nor cleaning.
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#4781441 - 06/08/18 04:08 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
9050lx Offline


Registered: 11/07/08
Posts: 125
Loc: FL
If the tube circuits are run conservatively using OEM tubes they may last God knows how long(Well over ten years.I have some #45 tubes that date to the 40's that work fine.Small signal tubes may last several hundred thousands of hours.Some discrete transistors are getting difficult to find. Maybe not a bad idea to source the common failure points and keep for a rainy day.

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#4781646 - 06/08/18 07:39 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
Lubener Offline


Registered: 01/22/11
Posts: 2670
Loc: N.Ohio
Originally Posted By: Camprunner
How long do amplifiers usually last? I have a nice Denon Intigrated amp model PMA2000 IVR that's about 10 years old and running fine but just wondering at what point should I have it inspected and or parts replaced?

No way to predict. I am still using a Daystrom tube amp built in 1964, a Rotel built in 1979 and a Technics built in 1980.All work fine. I had some tubes wear out in the older amp but no big deal.. Filter capacitors will be the first to go and you will get an annoying hum but I wouldn't expect them to breakdown in ten years. . I wouldn't do anything but enjoy as long as it is working.


Edited by Lubener (06/08/18 07:46 PM)
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#4781663 - 06/08/18 08:00 PM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
Wheel Offline


Registered: 12/22/11
Posts: 575
Loc: Upstate NY
I've found that it's the capacitors that are less reliable than tubes. I've got a couple tube radios that are older than me, and a JVC amp from the 80's still running well. Cool and clean helps too.
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#4781985 - 06/09/18 08:10 AM Re: Amplifier lifespan? [Re: Camprunner]
9050lx Offline


Registered: 11/07/08
Posts: 125
Loc: FL
Getting ready to rebuild a Dynakit(Dynaco) stereo 70 amp my wife bought me years ago at a garage sale for 10 bucks.The Mullard EL34 output tubes work fine, circa 1968 or so.

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