Audio Research SP-3A-1 Tube Preamp - Factory Restored
Many consider the SP3 as the best preamp ARC ever produced.
Its classic looks and reliable operation has made this piece a favorite among classic collectors.
This is the finest example we have ever come across.
This particular sample came from a collector that had ARC restore the unit to better than its original glory. Since the restoration it sat in the box in a closet for many years. It has a sticker in the back that reads A-1 and serial number stamping that ends in 2-A. I’m not quite sure what this means but I’m sure some savvy reader will chime in.
I don’t have the documentation, but it looks like ARC not only restored it to perfect working condition, but they also replaced the RCA connectors on the back with very high quality gold plated pieces. I suspect a call to ARC will yield all the details if you’re interested in finding out.
There is evidence that all power supply caps were replaced as well as all the filter caps in the signal paths. There is also a modern Alps volume potentiometer in place. It has new bulbs for another 20 years of trouble free operation. The top cover is the newer high-quality type with smaller perforations.
Cosmetic condition is the best I’ve ever seen for an SP3. The top cover is free from rust, the knobs and faceplate are near perfect and the silk screening is intact. The faceplate is as close to perfect as I’ve seen. I doubt you’d be able to find a better sample.
Unit will come in an official ARC box that will be double boxed for safe travel.
Sure, there are cheaper units on eBay - but none have the provenance, upgrades, and service that this unit has.