It sounds like your Ref 3 needs service.
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Yes , I give ARC an Email , answer sent to the distributor in the Netherlands ( Europe ) , bring the unit to the distributor , they will bring to
a service and repair centre , they will take a look in the unit and make contact with ARC US to know which display is mounted , ARC does not know which display in mounted in my unit , mf number not known ?But
ARC can't be sure if replacing the unit would solve the problem !!
If it will be repaired you will not be very happy for the total labourprice by the distributor , the service department , and the price of the display + postage + customs + over this total the taxes ( 20 % ).I decided not to repair !
... the total labourprice by the distributor , the service department , and the price of the display + postage + customs + over this total the taxes ( 20 % ).I decided not to repair !We’ve seen this before, where an owner of a high end component will suffer with problems rather than bear the cost of repair. It just confounds me. In particular, Audio Research will service to factory spec (or better) just about every product it ever built. Why a user wouldn’t want to avail himself of the best performance from a product he already owns just doesn’t make sense to me. The Ref 3 hasn’t been manufactured in a decade, so that it might need service now isn’t far-fetched.
And believe me, I’ve been stung by service costs, too. I’ve spent more to service my tape decks over the years than they cost me when I bought them new, for example. And freight costs are high even if the repair bill itself isn’t. But it’s all part of the hobby.
It’s like owning a car. There will always be periodic service expense.
Just a suggestion. You might be able to kill two birds with one stone. Some years back, ARC upgraded my Ref 5 to the SE version. I seem to recall that the upgrade was about $2500 at the time.
The mod entailed a significant upgrades to parts and the addition of a dozen or so power supply caps. The face plate was also changed.
Bottom line: your pesky problem will be fixed and you will get what will be a remanufactured brand new unit. IMO, the old Ref 5 sounded a whole lot like the Ref 3. I owned both units at one time. The Ref 5SE is definitely a major sonic upgrade over the Ref 5.
Two unknowns: I do not know if ARC is still doing the SE mod and if they are, I do not know the cost. But for the bucks, what a cheap way to really upgrade your sonic experience.
BTW, I own the ARC Ref 6. That is a whole level above the Ref 5SE. Even so, IMO, the Ref 5SE was a heck of a linestage!!!!!! Most excellent!!!