Leben CS-660P

Grzegorz "gsmok" Makarewicz

Not everyone likes the design of the amplifier. This is not surprising. Aesthetic values are not universal - this is what impresses some, others may not like. As for me, I have mixed feelings. I think that if the Designer was consistent and showed also the output transformers this amplifier would look nicer. But, as I wrote, it's just my subjective opinion.

Beforethe main description few words of introduction. The owner Leben actually Leben Hi-Fi Stereo Company is Taku Hyodo. According to some rankings, he is among the top eight best Japanese designers of tube audio devices. At one time he worked in the Luxman company. He plays several musical instruments, and at one time even played professionally on the guitar. In 1979 after leaving the Luxman he founded the Kouri Denki Company and worked on designing and manufacturing audio equipment on request under the brand KFH. The first commercial amplifier TRIODE 33 was manufactured in 1991.
This amplifier looks like this: (http://www.hifido.co.jp/KW/G1/P0/A8/E/0-10/S3/C07-29386-87954-00/):

Now you understand what I mean by "presenting all output transformers". Here's the view from the back:

And here is its interior:

The first amplifier's signatured by Leben was power amplifier RS-35a introduced in 1995, and preamplifier RS-28c offered since 1998.
Here are the photos of the amplifier RS-35a
The front panel...

...and rear panel:

Let's go back to our title amplifier. As I mentioned his appearance is perceived differently and raises very different emotions. Quite different with the caseof  assembly and internal view what I like the most. The amplifier is wonderfully assembled. That's my opinion. On some audiophile forums soldering method is criticized. Their users do not like mostly soldering points and the surface of tin, which is considered too rough and devoid of glamor. I do not agree with them.

For those interested in circuit details, schematic diagram of amplifier section drawn from nature is presented below.

Feel free to look at the details and form your own opinion.

Written by Grzegorz "gsmok" Makarewicz