New Posts New Posts RSS Feed - Transistors like Valves, Obsolete
  FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Join our friendly forum here and subscribe to our newsletters here

A rule of fairness:
When other manufacturers websites allow people to recommend our products instead of their own then people can do the same here, but please not before! Such posts will be deleted.
See terms and conditions here...


Transistors like Valves, Obsolete

 Post Reply Post Reply
Author
Graham Slee View Drop Down
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Pushing the boundaries

Joined: 11 Jan 2008
Location: South Yorkshire
Status: Offline
Points: 8036
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Graham Slee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Transistors like Valves, Obsolete
    Posted: 03 Nov 2018 at 5:18am
Use it or lose it is what I've said for a number of years, but who listens?

Obviously very few hi-fi purchasers, because the lifeblood of true high fidelity is being drained out to be replaced by "noise technologies".

It doesn't matter anymore how music sounds. The newer generations of hi-fi buyers are content to buy what is in-fact rubbish, so long as it's cheap.

How can I justify saying that? Easy, I can see all the essential transistors true high fidelity used are not just being discontinued, most have already gone!

I know in the UK there is the Monopolies and Mergers Commission which safeguards against the very thing which has happened in the domineering USA semiconductor industry. If the US has a similar Government watchdog, then it must have been sleeping.

Wikipedia will spell it out for you. Each independent semiconductor manufacturer has been gobbled up by the largest competitor, in this case On-Semiconductor, and their ranges rationalised, or in other words, destroyed.

What Philips' Chinese manufacturing facility NXP is doing very few know. The availability of their transistors outside China is shrinking. They're probably following the leader (On-Semi) and it's obvious in searching distributor data bases, they're not interested in supplying the rest of the world.

So what are the losses? Well maybe you won't believe me, but discrete class-A and class-AB amplifiers will soon all carry a premium price tag.

What transistors do designers use for input stages and voltage amplifier stages? Invariably the 2N5551, 2N5401, MPSA06, MPSA56, MPSA42 and MPSA92.

These have been earmarked for end-of-line for at least 4 years, seemingly even before On-Semi acquired the facilities.

Where have all the Japanese 2SA..., 2SC..., and 2SD... transistors gone? Good question - try the word "globalisation".

Think about it. If you have no interest in how things sound, just in how things look, and how cheap they are to buy, you will buy on that basis. You will buy class-D (and its many variants), or maybe a chip amp. You might wonder why some amps are well-over a thousand pounds/dollars, and might see them as rip-off, not realising that sound quality, sound staging and musical timing, as well as being able to listen without fatigue, is what you get from good old linear analogue design (or that's what you'd expect for that sort of money).

But the younger generations want none of that. Their attention spans are too short anyway. Does it make a noise? Yes! OK they'll buy it.

Unscrupulous dealers make available this "noise technology". They like to think they're hi-fi shops. Well, I suppose words (or abbreviations in this case) eventually lose their meaning.

But the casualties are what true music lovers need. Life without the 2N5551, 2N5401, MPSA06, MPSA56, MPSA42 and MPSA92 means no more great sound (from speakers anyway).

Glancing at catalogues you might wonder why I'm writing this. You might still be able to spot some of these transistors for sale from distributors? Yes?

The manufacturers might still state "active" but the missing word is "production". Active means they're on sale so why worry? Active means when they're gone they're gone!

What remains? A US company called Central Semiconductor who specialise in end of line devices. Oh, no need to worry then? But think about it, prices are good right now, but when all the "active" stock is gone elsewhere, those prices are going to skyrocket! And that will put quality amplifiers further out of reach.

Not simple enough for Google-Bot to understand...
Back to Top
ServerBaboon View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member
Avatar

Joined: 16 Jan 2008
Location: NW England
Status: Offline
Points: 819
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ServerBaboon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Nov 2018 at 5:24pm
Reading between the lines .. will 70's amps not so be so abundant?

Is this why valve amps are rising, easier to get hold of tubes. Wink
Steve

-------------

Various bits of GSP Kit ..well two so far, unless you count the cables that is.
Back to Top
Graham Slee View Drop Down
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Pushing the boundaries

Joined: 11 Jan 2008
Location: South Yorkshire
Status: Offline
Points: 8036
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Graham Slee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Nov 2018 at 6:05pm
Well, it does mean we have to rely on Central Semiconductor a heck of a lot. A few years ago I bought considerable quantities of some kinds of semiconductors (BJTs and op-amps) but I never thought such staple types as those listed above would be discontinued. The danger I suppose is that by removing what's needed in a voltage amp, that the power devices it drives will be in less demand. Therefore I suppose he who invests in them lives to see another day... But the cost!?

It also means that Bob Cordell's Designing Audio Amplifiers book 2011, and Doug Self's Audio Power Amplifier Design Handbook 2009 would have only been good up to 2014, if not for the delay in selling out of stock, and are only now worth having because of the existence of Central Semiconductor.

But the real news is that if it isn't worth the big semiconductor manufacturers getting out of bed, then hi-fi sales must have taken a massive tumble over the past few years, so eventually the cracks in the wall are going to make themselves visible, or one would think so.

Then again, in the merry old land of Oz, we don't see how the levers behind the curtain are being pulled. Wink


Not simple enough for Google-Bot to understand...
Back to Top
Richardl60 View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member


Joined: 04 Nov 2014
Location: Yorkshire
Status: Offline
Points: 1120
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Richardl60 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Nov 2018 at 6:50pm
I was reading an interview from Stereophine on line yesterday with Tim dePavancini which was a few year ago but he was outline similar concerns but largely over value supply (I recall he quoted ‘in 45 years time’ ...though think it was written in the 90’s, was quite an interesting article.
Back to Top
Fatmangolf View Drop Down
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar

Joined: 23 Dec 2009
Location: Middlesbrough
Status: Offline
Points: 4982
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Fatmangolf Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Nov 2018 at 9:12pm
It is a real pity that affordable semiconductors that can give real musical pleasure are being wiped out by consumer marketing and mass production of 'noise technology.' Please keep doing the very good work to keep natural sounding music alive.

Jon

Open mind and ears, whilst owning GSP Genera, Accession, Elevator EXP, Solo ULDE, Proprius amps, Cusat50 cables, Lautus digital cable, Spatia cables and links, and a Majestic DAC.
Back to Top
 Post Reply Post Reply
  Share Topic   

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down

Forum Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 12.01
Copyright ©2001-2018 Web Wiz Ltd.

This page was generated in 0.063 seconds.