Luxman SQ-38D Tube Integrated Amplifier
This 30W vintage integrated from the 70’s is sure to bring you back to the golden age of HiFi.
Back in the 70’s Japan made some of the most revered amps on the market. They were known for the quality of the output transformers which were absolutely flawless.
This unit is so exceptional they re-issued it 40 years later and charged a small fortune for it. I especially love the art deco solid aluminum knobs not found on any other Luxman unit.
There are many interesting features on this unit, including dual phono inputs for two turntables or a single table with two arms, and independent bass/treble controls for the left and right channels.
This SQ38D is in beautiful condition. The faceplate is absolutely flawless while the wood case does have a few signs of aging.
Internally it’s perfect. We tested the unit to the full rated power and checked all the tubes for both accuracy and strength.
Also the capacitors in the power supply were inspected for leakage and tested for performance and passed with flying colors. All controls were cleaned and lubricated.
This item is super rare and is priced accordingly.
They are even harder to find in the US and most buyers have to purchase from Japan.
Here is your chance to buy from a local and reliable seller.
From the Vintageknob.org:
One of Luxman's most successful amplifiers, released at a time high-fidelity still was for the cognoscenti : for many a japanese audiophile (with grey hair today) (if any left), the SQ38D is when it all started.
LUX was riding high on its already old existence and experience :1925...1964 = 39 years !
Classic 12AX7 and 12AU7 tubes were used in the first and driver stages respectively ; output tubes were 6BQ5, while the power transformer was OY14 type.
The first version was the SQ38 from 1963 : two phono, three aux inputs but no DIN rec/play terminal ; this layout was chosen for the '98 reissue.
Rapidly after came the SQ38D and SQ38Ds, the latter had no input transformer, replaced one auxiliary input with a regular tape i/o and added the DIN tape terminal. Both could handle modern but low-output MM catridges ; the backplates name remained the same, though - very Luxman (or Sony).
So popular and successful that Luxman, at the dawn of yet another ownership change (ie. bankruptcy) and its upcoming 75th anniversary made a reissue of it !
The SQ-38D Reissue (yes : with a dash between SQ and 38D) swapped the 6RA8 tubes for 6BQ5, the number of inputs was increased to five, the Monitor button had an added plastic surround added and the Phono 1 circuit was altered to accept MC cartridges.
Only 500 reissue models were produced, among which was a (very) small run made with/for the japanese MJ magazine with a front badge added saying "MJ 75th Anniversary" ; the latter sported their own serial number sequence (like "MJ75009") with all normal T-Tag references erased... and apparently some upgraded parts inside - Luxman all the way !
The 38D and 38Ds sold in enormous quantities in Japan and are therefore very easy to find. Still rather expensive, alas, at about 2000€ ; the original SQ38 is much more rare.
The reissue belongs to the AZDEN period of Lux manufacturing, between late 1994 and c. 1999, sold in a jiffy despite a rather impressive price and even made the cover of the july 1999 issue of Audio Accessory (JP).
Sure, if specifications, power output and distortion pale in comparison of more modern amplifiers, if only an SQ202, there must have been something to the 38D for it to keep selling so well, beyond simple 1960s nostalgia and utter design perfection...