Check out this beautiful Luxman M-4000 power amplifier I’ve just serviced. This classic vintage beast needed a little work, let’s take a look.
The Luxman M-4000 power amplifier is a compact, dense, 180 Watt per channel amplifier. It’s the predecessor of the M-4000A, which looks very similar, but is substantially different design-wise and even rarer. I completely restored an M-4000A for a customer a couple of years ago.
The M-4000 and others in this series share a lovely wooden case, out of which slides the immensely heavy for its size amplifier unit. This is a true dual-mono design, with two big transformers and separate filter capacitors and diode bridges for each channel.
Specifications, Courtesy of HiFi Engine
Power output: 180 watts per channel into 8Ω (stereo)
Frequency response: 3Hz to 100kHz
Total harmonic distortion: 0.05%
Input sensitivity: 1V
Signal to noise ratio: 108dB
Dimensions: 485 x 390 x 175mm
Year: 1975 – 1979
As always, there’s additional information on the Luxman M-4000 at The Vintage Knob.
If you would like a video summary, watch my M-4000 video on YouTube. Otherwise, read on!
This M-4000 presented with one channel out of service and I was able to get her working again without too much drama. In this case, I checked all of the 20+ fuses, and no I’m not kidding, there are actually at least 20 fuses in the Luxman M-4000. Many are standard M-205 glass fuses. Some are board mounted and some are soldered to boards, but there’s a lot of protection built into this design. Good work Luxman.
All fuses must be checked of course because any open fuse will stop the amp from running or at least part of it. This takes time because of the need to remove each board, pull the fuses, test them and the soldered fuses too.
Service & Repair
It’s good practice to remove and clean fuses. It helps re-make the connection between the fuse and fuse holder and allows you to feel if the end caps have come loose. Few people bother, but it’s good practice and if you are familiar with my work, you’ll know how much we like good practice here at Liquid Audio.
I took the opportunity to clean the board card edge connectors whilst testing those fuses. After checking fuses and reinstalling cards, I powered up the amplifier with a variac for testing and to make some adjustments.
To my surprise, both channels now worked, and I spent some time setting DC offset and bias current, and further cleaning and testing components. I also took the opportunity to clean the chassis, fascia and beautiful wood case.
Those who follow along will know I’m a little fussy about cleaning. This Luxman M-4000 needed a clean and didn’t escape my fetish. Here she is, after a clean and wax.
This beautiful Luxman M-4000 power amplifier absolutely sang after a good clean and service. It just goes to show that some TLC, correctly delivered, can make all the difference to an old girl like this.
Don’t skimp on servicing your cherished hi-fi gear, especially at this age. You’d be amazed how reluctant some people are to have this sort of work done, yet if you knew what this amp might cost to replace, you’d absolutely need to spend $10,000 + AUD to get anything even close. Compare that to the few hundred dollars you might spend servicing it and it’s just a no-brainer.
Just on that point of not skimping on vital age-related maintenance, this beautiful Luxman M-4000 is a classic example of an amplifier that really needs a ton more work. Deep overhaul at this age will dramatically improve performance and yet many think they can just keep using gear like this without doing basic maintenance.
An overhaul on a beast like this is significant in terms of what needs to be done, but this is a priceless irreplaceable classic. A board and chassis-level disassembly and overhaul is about the most sensible thing one could do for a wonderful old girl like this.
If you live in Perth and you’d like me to service your Luxman amplifier, get in touch and we can arrange an inspection.