Jungson’s JA-88D appears like an electric power amplifier but it’s not. It seems that Jungson Audio was caught out by a high consumer demand for integrated amplifiers at a time in the event it was primarily producing separate pre and power amplifiers. The company judged that the fastest way of getting a product or service to advertise in order to satisfy demand was to build preamp circuitry into one of its existing power amplifier chassis.
Thanks for searching out Australian HI-FI Magazine’s equipment review and laboratory test in the Jungson JA88D Integrated Amplifier originally published in Australian Hi-Fi Magazine, September/October 2006 (Volume 37 Number 5). This equipment review includes a full subjective evaluation of the the Jungson JA 88D Integrated Amplifier authored by Peter Nicholson, as well as a complete test report, including frequency response graphs conducted by Newport Test Labs, along with an exhaustive analysis of the test results written by Steve Holding.
This equipment review is currently available only as a low-resolution pdf version from the original magazine pages. Yes, it seems much like a power amplifier, but it’s not. It’s an integrated amplifi r. You’d be forgiven for the mistake, however, because it appears that Jungson was caught out by way of a high consumer need for integrated amplifiers at the same time when it was primarily producing separate pre and power amplifiers. Jungson’s engineers judged that the fastest way to get a product or service to advertise to satisfy this demand ended up being to incorporate the circuitry from a single of their preamplifiers into among its existing power amplifier chassis.
It chose a roomy chassis it had been using because of its JA-99C power amplifier and modifi ed its circuit, which of the existing JA-1 preamplifier, to create this integrated amplifier, the JA-88D. The Machine Self-evidently, the front side panel in the JA-88D is dominated by the two huge, power meters which are not only ‘oceanblue’ (to quote the purple prose in the brochure!) once the amplifier is off, but an attractive iridescent shimmering blue when the amplifier is powered up-a blue so blue it offers a nearly ultraviolet quality. They search so good that one is tempted to overlook this that power meters don’t actually let you know exactly how much ‘power’ an amplifier is producing at all, but alternatively provide a rather a rough and prepared indication of the overall voltage at the amplifier’s output terminals at any given time.
Not too Meixing MingDa Valve Amplifier is creating any pretense that you’ll use the meters to gauge power output, since there are no wattage or voltage markings on the meter faces at all! I assume that if I were a designer at Jungson, I’d look east over the wide blue ocean for the large power amplifiers made in america, and say something along the lines of ‘if American companies including McIntosh still include power output meters, so should we.’ Actually, Jungson would additionally be answering consumer demand, even if they didn’t realize it, because bit by bit, businesses that previously eliminated power meters using their front panels are slowly reincorporating them into their designs, driven only by requests off their dealer networks and customers. I can’t say I’d blame them.
I don’t find meters useful or practical, but if I received deciding on a a JA-88D (or other amplifier its physical size) having a plain metal front panel or with a couple of great-looking meters, I’d opt for the version using the meters every time. Jungson continues to be very clever with the design of the JA-88. As opposed to fit a pair of ugly handles towards the front panel, it offers designed the front side panel as two completely different parts, with one panel before the other. The foremost of the two panels features a large rectangular cutout inside it, through which you may view the two power meters, which are fitted to the hindmost fascia plate. The key here is that you can use the cutout being a handle! Examine the front panel closely and you’ll observe that the ability on/off, Volume up/down and source switching buttons are fitted to a scalloped semi-circular depression on the foremost panel. Involving the two meters is a sloping rectangular section which is a mirror when ‘off’ as well as an LED read-out when it’s on (about which more later). Overall, you can see that between them, the 2 meters, the mirror between the two, the buttons as well as the semi-circular scallop form a type of rudimentary ‘smiley face’-giving a whole new meaning for the wqilvi of anthropomorphism in highend audio.
In reality, since the Xiangsheng DA-05B DAC is made in China, it might adequately be deliberate, since anthropomorphism (the action of attributing human forms or qualities to things which are not human) holds much significance in Chinese culture. The name Jungson means, literally ‘The spirit of the gong’ which alludes to your 4,000 year old copper gong that is famous throughout China. Chinese people believe the sound from this particular gong is different because it’s underneath the control over a musical god. On the rear panel there are two pairs of gold-plated speaker terminals per channel and four line level inputs. Three of the inputs are unbalanced, connection being created by RCA connectors. Your fourth input is balanced, using a female, lockable XLR terminal which uses Pin 1 for ground, Pin 2 for ( ) and Pin 3 for (-).
In the centre from the panel is really a standard fused (10-amp) IEC power socket. Each of the connectors are of excellent quality, but they’re not ‘audiophile grade.’ It appears to be the negative terminal is not referenced to ground, so that you should connect the Jungson’s speaker outputs simply to ordinary passive loudspeakers. You’ll need a fair bit of room as well as a sturdy rack to support the Jungson JA-88D. Its dimensions are 470 × 430 × 190 (WDH) and weighs 29.6kg. I would personally recommend placing it on a solid surface, with several centimetres of clear space all-around, because for any solid-state amplifier it runs hot-very hot indeed.