View Full Version : Found a SAE Mark 1b, but......

Brandon J.
03-15-2007, 07:55 PM
Anybody know anything about a SAE Mark 1B?

Today during my lunch break I went and got my hair cut and then stopped in a little second hand shop that has some used electronics. Now normally they just have BPC, but today they had a SAE Mark 1b Preamplifier. I asked the guy how much and he said $49, then I asked him if I could return it if it didn't work and he said yes.

I took a chance figuring it must be worth atleast $49 even if it was broken. Well, unfortunately it is - or atleast it does not seem to power up. I checked the fuse with my multi-meter, and it's good, what should I check next?

I popped open the cover, and found where a a tech had apparently written when it was serviced - 1988. I thought the power switch maybe suspect, but I'm not sure which points to probe. I't looks like two of the main filter caps may have been replaced at one point, and whoever did it used some "white gluey stuff" to keep them in place. It also looks like the power indicator lamp may have been replace at on point - with a shoddy repair that didn't hold up.

Is it worth going through pains to bring it alive again - the exterior and most of the interior look great - it does have a heck of a lot of oxidation on the RCA plugs though. I know (or atleast think) that SAE was a very good if not well know brand, and that these were expensive new.

Any ideas:tears: ?

03-15-2007, 08:47 PM
I may be prejudiced, but I would say it's definitely worth getting it fixed. I have both a Mark I and a Mark IM (the metered version of the IB) and find them to be very fine preamps. (Not to mention pretty cool looking).

I have no idea on how to troubleshoot one, but recommend you go to
Jims SAE Site (
for more info. Jim's the Man on SAE gear.

There are techs here who I am sure would do it justice, or e-mail Jim for a recommendation. Definitely worth restoring, though.


03-15-2007, 09:26 PM
It is a keeper, and it gives you an excuse to get an SAE amp for it
to run. Jim's SAE site will direct you to a Yahoo Groups page with the
most fananical people for one brand out there, including HPM 100 owners.
There's plenty of guys who can get your Pre going on this site. Check
the bottom of this page for the fine shops supporting AK and us, the
members. Good luck.

Brandon J.
03-15-2007, 10:40 PM
Thanks for the input. I've done some more research and it seems it sold for $825 new, it must have been the cream of the crop.
Even before I posted this I was thinking about sending it to one of the techs here, so I sent EchoWars an email to see if he could give me a estimate. Even if it doesn't cost me much money to have this pre fixed, I have a feeling it may end up costing me quite a bit - once it's fixed I'll have to buy a SAE power-amp to go with it. Then what, a tuner?:D

03-15-2007, 11:01 PM
I have a IB, and it's definitely a keeper. For its time, it was incredibly well-made, and even today has great sound. There are several SAE fanatics on this site, including Wardsweb, who I think has a whole SAE section of his web page.

Now, you get to go hunt down the matching amp, and then you'll need a VIB Tuner, which is the coolest piece of vintage gear I own. Welcome to the club!

03-15-2007, 11:11 PM
It appears to be well made. The original sale price of it was definetely up there.

03-16-2007, 07:10 AM
It is a keeper!!!!!! If both channels out, then you may be in better shape than you think as the problem will more likely than not be in the power supply. For what you paid, you can easily afford to put several hundreds into it and still be below market value for units that would still need to go through a checkup.

BTW, get the original matching amp as the pair really sing together.