August 18, 2013

ARC will soon introduce SP20, a new preamplifier combining a tube line stage with a tube phono preamplifier and a headphone output. This will be the first time Audio Research brought together these three formats into one chassis.

July 14, 2013

ARCDB recently bought a few lots with sales literature on eBay:

- A flyer with SP-11
- A flyer with CLASSIC 150 and SP15 (slightly different than the one already published)
Various literature:
- A rather rare brochure from 1978 with SP-3, DUAL-51, DUAL-75A and Magneplanar Tympani.
- A flyer with Magneplanar Tympani T-1C.
- A dealer newsletter with information regarding employee sales.
- Price lists from September 15 1976, January 17 1977, June 1 1978, June 1 1981 and January 1 1982

Additionally, some of the material was already available on the site, but having the originals made it possible to create higher quality scans:

- A flyer with CLASSIC 30 and CLASSIC 60
- Two different flyers with SP-3A-1
Various literature:
- A flyer with the Magneplanar Tympani range of loudspeakers.
- A price list from August 1 1980.

May 6, 2013

Just announced, the two-chassis tube phono preamplifier REFERENCE PHONO 10.

April 21, 2013

Paul Wethe in Minneapolis is an audio historian and a great contributor to the site. Through his contacts within ARC he got a chance to visit the ARC Museum last year and I am proud to be able to present his story!

Thank you very much, Paul!

April 15, 2013

Jack Anderson sent in some photos of a rare Equipment selector.

He writes: "When I worked at Fulton Musical Industries, Robert Fulton had this piece of equipment. We used it at the '79 Summer CES show. As you possibly are aware, FMI had a close relationship with ARC. As the service manager and budding audiophile, I enjoyed using and owning a lot of early ARC equipment."

Thank you, Jack!

April 2, 2013

ARC announced a new integrated amplifier, the VSi75.

December 31, 2012

Back in black!

ARCDB is back after a long break with almost no updates. Apologies to all of you who has tried to make contact but didn't get any reply back. Thanks to all who sent in pictures or information. The site will be continuously updated the coming weeks.

I am saddened to report that Bill Johnson passed away on 12-10-11. His obituary as it appeared in a local newspaper:

William Zane Johnson

Johnson, William Zane age 85 of Edina, MN, died 12-10-11 in California. Founder and president of Audio Research Corporation for 38 years. Preceded in death by his parents, Floyd and Alma; and sister, Trula. Survived by his wife, Nancy E.; children, Clayton Johnson (Audrey), Kathie Oriet (Greg), Karen Johnson, Lila Standlee (Mike), Glenn Johnson (Shawna), Judy McCaul (Jay); ten grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Funeral service Sunday (12-18-11) 2:30 PM at Oxboro Ev. Free Church www.oxoboro.org, 9431 Nicollet Av. S., Bloomington, MN. Family and friends may call at the church after 1:00 PM. Interment (private) Pleasant View Memorial Gardens. Memorials preferred to Northwestern College, Roseville, MN or Oxboro Ev. Free Church. www.albinchapel

ARC announced two new products:

- DS450M solid-state mono power amplifier

- REFERENCE 150 tube stereo power amplifier

Both models are already in production.

Check out this video where ARC's Dave Gordon (Head of North American Sales) shows and talks about a prototype to what will become the REFERENCE 150:

ARC's President Terry Dorn captured on video speaking mainly about the REFERENCE ANNIVERSARY:

From High End 2010 in Munich, Germany, which was held May 6-9 2010:

From CES2011 in Las Vegas, held January 6th-9th 2011:

ARC recently announced the new PH8. Shipping starts in early January.

ARCDB recently bought another nice collection of vintage literature on eBay! This time I am proud to present the following:

D-52 - Marketing flyer
D-110 - Marketing flyer
SP-4 - Marketing flyer
SP-5 - Marketing flyer
EC-5 - Marketing flyer
Various literature :
- AM-1 - Flyer
- Price list from June 1, 1979

The all-new KT120 power output tube manufactured at the New Sensor factory in St. Petersburg, Russia, is a new design specifically targeted to the music market. Allegedly, it offers better sound quality, improved reliability and longer service life and with a dissipation rating of 60 watts, the KT120 is capable of higher power output than the 6550C. Measured with a 120V 60kHz power line, the output power of the current amplifiers when switching from 6550C to KT120 increases as follows:

REF610T: from 610 Watts to 840 Watts
REF210: from 210 WPC to 250 WPC
REF110: from 115 WPC to129 WPC
VS115: from 115 WPC to128 WPC
VSI60: from 45 WPC to 52 WPC

The KT120 has the same pin configuration and is a direct replacement for the 6550C in current models. It also biases to the identical 65 mA value as the 6550C. However, because the KT120 is slightly taller than the 6550C, it may not physically fit all older ARC amplifier models, and it will not fit under the cage of the current VS60 and VSi60.

The KT120 will only be used as a driver and output tube. ARC will continue to use the 6550C as the power-supply regulator tube in the REF CD8, REF PHONO 2, PH7, REF5, REF ANNIVERSARY, REF210 and REF610T. Because of its beefier construction and higher performance, the KT120 tube is also slightly more expensive. Suggested US retail price is $100 per tube.

After months of testing, new amplifiers started to ship with KT120 tubes installed during the first week of November. However, beginning November 22, US retail prices will increase on the following models in response to both the cost of the new tubes and other material increases:

REF610T: from $19,995 each to $21,995 each
REF210: from $9,995 each to $10,995 each
REF110: from $9,995 to $10,995
VS115: from $6,495 to $6,995
VSI60: from $3,995 to $4,495

The VS60 will be discontinued and a replacement is not planned.

LS26 is replaced by the new LS27.
The new DS225 will be introduced shortly. SD135 was discontinued.

ARCDB acquired a collection of vintage literature from eBay last year, and now this rare material is available on the site just in time to celebrate ARC's 40th anniversary! The collection consisted of the following documents:

Press release from April 20, 1970
DUAL 50 - Marketing flyer, promotional photo
DUAL 75 - Service bulletin from April 27, 1972 (DUAL 75 modification)
DUAL 100 - Marketing flyer, promotional photo
SP-1A - Marketing flyer, promotional photo
SP-2 - Marketing flyer, promotional photo
CSP-1A - Marketing flyer, promotional photo
M60 - Promotional photos (M60, M60 w/ rack mount)
PC-1 - Promotional photo
STE-1 - Promotional photo
M4C - Promotional photo (M4C1)
M10C - Promotional photos (M10C2/M10C2A (?), M10C2B)
Various literature :
- Product brochure from 1970
- Price list from August 15, 1970
- Special notice (Operating instruction)
- Dealer terms effective May 1, 1970
- Warranty card

ARC recently announced three new products:
ARC will be debuting the second product in their Definition Series, the DS450 stereo power amplifier at CES2010 Jan 7th - Jan 10th, 2010. This will be available in the last week of January.
Paul Wethe sent in some recently taken photos of the two first locations that Electronic Industries/Audio Research occupied. You can see them here. Thanks a lot!
ARC will introduce the integrated solid state amplifier DSi200 in August/September 2009.
Paul Wethe, Minneapolis, sent in some very interesting details about the mysterious DUAL 400. Thanks!

To commemorate the REFERENCE 3 amazing four-year-run, ARC decided to designate the last approximately two dozen units the "Limited edition". When these units are gone, there will be no more available.

The silver handles introduced on the REFERENCE PHONO 2 will be available as an option on all products at no extra charge after June 8th 2009. US retail prices will remain the same for either silver or black; $50 each for medium handles, $55 each for large handles (REF110, etc.). Small silver handles for older products (SP-7, BL-2, LS9 etc) will not be available.
ARC is incorporating a running production upgrade to the power supply of the PH7.
The new line stage REFERENCE 5 replaces the REFERENCE 3 and will start production in the middle of June 2009.
The new phono stage REFERENCE PHONO 2 will start production at the second half of May 2009.
The new CD player/transport REFERENCE CD8 will start shipping end of November 2008. This unit is replacing the REFERENCE CD7.
The new VS60 and VSi60 will be introduced in September 2008. They replace the VS55 and VSi55 which are already out of production.

Bernard Bartzen sent in some scans of the following vintage marketing flyers:

- D-40
- D-90B
- D-120
- D-160
- SP-8

Thanks a lot, Bernard!

Some interesting news:

- CD3MKII is discontinued and a new solid state model (probably named CD5) will be introduced in May.

- VM220 is discontinued. No replacement model has been announced.

- A USB DAC will be introduced next May. Inputs: USB, AES/EBU, BNC coaxial, RCA coaxial, Toslink optical. Chassis size will be like the current preamplifiers and it will come with a remote control. The price will be around US$3,495.00.

- Tube prices will increase shortly.

ARC has been acquired by the Italian private equity firm Quadrivio SGR on January 25! Read more about it here.

Thierry Martin in France contributed with some great high-quality scans of the following marketing flyers:

- LS2
- LS3/LS3B
- D200, D300 and D400MKII
- LS7 and VT60
- V35, V70 and V140

Thank you very much, Thierry!

An interesting interview with William Z. Johnson published in Vol. 17 No. 8 (1994) can now be enjoyed online here.
The new VS115 will be introduced in January 2008. It replaces the VS110 which is already out of production.

Lars Hansson in Sweden found a very interesting picture in the Swedish publication "Radio&Television" Nr.3, 1974. It's a photo of the DUAL 400. Is there anybody out there who knows anything about this amplifier?

Thank you Lars for spotting this ultra rare amp!

Emile de Vlieger in the Netherlands contributed with some very interesting scans:

Marketing flyers for:
- CLASSIC 150 and SP15
- D400
- D200, D300 and D400MKII
- VT100MKIII, VT200MKII and VTM200
- VT130SE and VT150SE
Schematics for M100
Price lists from 1994
Product booklet from 1988

Thank you very much, Emile!

ARC has introduced a new preamplifier: the SP17. It replaces the SP16 in the product line-up.

Paul Wethe, Minnesota, who previously contributed with details about the PAS-2 preamplifier and the ST-70-C2 amplifier, sent in some very interesting information and pictures on the Electronic Industries J-Z800 loudspeaker. Yes, Bill Johnson did manufacture a loudspeaker back in the sixties!

Thank you, Paul, for this nice addition to the vintage gallery.

has been visiting ARC's demo room - check it out here.

Mike Barney sent in a new batch of scans. This time it's some very interesting newsletters from the early days:
D-76A, ST-70-C3, Magneplanar, Magneplanar Tympani, ARC's view on audio equipment specifications, Dynaco modifications and an open letter to Sony! (these can be found in the literature section)

Thank you Mike!

The new solid state stereo amplifier SD135 will soon be introduced. For a description, see SD135.

Mike Barney sent in a really large batch of scanned material:

Marketing flyers for D-150, EC22, M300, SP-9 and SP-11
Newsletter for D-150
Schematics for SP-3C, LS25, LS25MKII, D-79B, ST-70-C3, EC-2, EC-2A and EC-3

Great stuff, Mike! Thanks a lot!

ARC has replaced the 6550EH Electro-Harmonix tubes with the 6550C Svetlana output tubes in both the VS55 and VSi55 models, as they did previously with the VS110, in 2005. The output tube bias of both the VS55 and VSi55 is now set to 55mV, providing better sonics and improved reliability. No other models in the ARC line of production are set to 55mV.
The 300.2 and 150M amplifiers are out of production from last May, due to Tripath (manufacturer of power amplification modules) has declared bankruptcy. Therefore, at this moment, ARC is unable to obtain more modules for production of said models. A new model substituting the 300.2 will be announced soon.
The new hybrid stereo amplifier HD220 was shown at CES2007 in Las Vegas. For a description, see HD220.

Marc Ehrenström sent in yet another contribution - a high-resolution scan of the marketing flyer for the legendary SP6-B to add to the collection of vintage literature.

Thanks, Marc!

The editorial for January 1, 2007, written by Marc Mickelson, selects the entire ARC Reference line as the Editor's Choice for 2006. Please note that he honors not just one of the Reference products, he honors all of them: Reference 3, Reference CD7, Reference 610T, Reference 210 and Reference 110.

Here is the link: Soundstage Editorial
PDF version of the article:

Marc Ehrenström in Geneva, Switzerland, sent us a great collection of scanned material:

The product brochure from 1983 (now in the literature section), marketing flyers for D-100A, D-350, D-79, D-79C, MCP-2, SP-6 and schematics for D-79C.

A big "Thank you!" to Marc for this fantastic contribution. If anybody else have material similar to this; put it in the scanner and send it to ARCDB!

The following price changes will take effect from January 1st 2007:

150M - $3,995 (chassis only)
150M - $1,000/amplification module
150M handles - $100/pair
300.2 - $4,495
PH5 - $2,495 (Handles included, not optional anymore)
SP16L - $2,495 (Including new full width panel with handles, not optional anymore)
SP16 - $2,995 (Including new full width panel with handles, not optional anymore)

Extra medium sized handles - $45.00 each
Extra large amplifier handles - $50.00 each

150.2 is now discontinued
Litzline2 Speaker Cables are now discontinued

We got a link to a great little collection of reviews of ARC equipment from James Leahy of "Dr Hi-Fi Housecalls" in Australia. Reviewed models are the D125, VT100MKIII, VT200, VS55, VS110, SP15, LS15, LS26 and PH5.

Thank you, James!

Here is the link: Dr Hi-Fi Housecalls