View Full Version : Sony TA-AX380 integrated amp ?

danger boy
09-21-2004, 03:44 AM
Any Sony lovers out there know the specs on this integrated amp? Sony TA-AX380

friend of mine will sell his to me.... but i'd like to know something, anything about it. He got it from his brother... and it's been in storage for about 10 yrs. He doesn't know anything about it.

I can tell it's from the 80's.. no doubt about that.. but i looked on the net.. and couldn't find any specs on it.

the rear panel says... 200watts. but it appears to be a bit to light to be that powerful to me.

found one on ebay that went for $50 yesterday. that dude didn't know any specs either.

Also.. does anyone know about at which point did amps begin to go high current? Is this something new.. or have amps been high current for many years?

so many questions.

09-21-2004, 04:28 AM
Not much help here but Audiogon Bluebook records do not list that creature either. They have one listed going back as far as 1974 but nothing like you have . If no one has your answer then some sort of web search may still be the answer.

..........gotta go............Pat:D

Danny Tse
09-21-2004, 02:35 PM
The following is merely for information only....


Is this the one?

I do have a Sony TA-AX590 stereo integrated amp. It was part of my first stereo, which was a rack system, that I purchased in 1987. It's rated at 100 watts/channel at some very low distortion percentage (can't remember - I am at work now) over the full audio spectrum. Made in Japan and heavier than most current HT receivers, it is still pumping out good quality sound everyday.

09-21-2004, 02:49 PM
That's vintage Sony, and worth picking up if it's NM or Mint.

danger boy
09-21-2004, 03:41 PM
Danny and Mark,

yeah you pinned it right.. that's the one..

I might just buy it and see where i can find a spot for it.

tanks guys

09-22-2004, 02:49 AM
Originally posted by danger boy
Also.. does anyone know about at which point did amps begin to go high current? Is this something new.. or have amps been high current for many years? High current has been around for a long time, dating back at least to the late-60's. McIntosh most immediately springs to mind. Crown, Soundcraftsmen, SAE, Phase Linear and others in the early 70's. Some of these were huge brutes and all were expensive. A couple grand in 1970 was some serious cheese.

You hear more about high current designs now because they are more affordable now. Started in the 80's with NAD, Carver and Adcom designs, and has spread from there. The same two grand now buys you a hell of a lot. Including a lot of old McIntosh, etc...

07-19-2011, 08:43 PM
I actually own that amp. I use it to drive my "computer stereo". My computer stereo consists of a KLH 10" powered subwoofer and then the Sony amp driving a pair of JBL 6" bookshelf speakers. The combination sounds ABSOLUTELY AMAZING and despite the modest size of the speakers, I can shake the house.

Part of the reason it is so dynamic, crisp, and sometimes loud is that the Sony TA-AX380 puts out, per the service manual:

At 8 ohms 125 watts per channel minimum RMS with no more than .08% THD (the same output as the TA-AX381). The TA-AX285 puts out 100 watts X 2.

My JBL speakers are 6 Ohm so I suppose the amp can put out even a bit more (as the amp has never shut-down or overheated).

I really like these kind of integrated amps for building simple stereo systems. First, I have always felt that any component with a tuner built into it (i.e. receivers) by definition introduce radio frequency interference.
Second, as I am using both a subwoofer and bookshelf speakers from different manufacturers (as opposed to a pair of carefully balanced full-range speakers), some type of EQ really helps blend the two together. Also, an EQ helps greatly with MP3's that are often poorly ripped or have other sonic peculiarities. YET, I have always been of the school that when you introduce more processors in the signal path, you increase THD. A small 5 band EQ built right into the integrated amp deals with these issues perfectly. 25 years ago I used to use a 150 watt per channel RMS integrated stereo amp with a 5 band EQ from a company called Scott (this brute was 40 pounds AT LEAST!). I loved this amplifier for it's simplicity, clarity and power (in college, I used to DJ dances and would use my own Scott amp as it was more powerful than the one provided by the school).

Anyway, I LOVE this Sony amp. Though not as "fancy" or powerful as my large 7 channel Yamaha home theater amp, it's simplicity is part of it's strength. I don't listen to music generally on my home theater system, but I do on my computer system so I still go the extra mile to improve SQ on this system (I use Discovery interconnects and other audiophile tweaks). Some might argue that using one's computer as the "source" would preclude true high quality audio, but I would disagree as my system sounds as good as any I have built in the past.