Altec 725A

Altec 725A

Here’s a receiver you won’t see very often. It’s an Altec 725A and it’s a strange looking beast. I believe they were made in Anaheim California in the early to mid 70’s. The long row of white buttons look a little like teeth or perhaps a piano keyboard. The dial face looks similar to the early Harmon Kardon units. The Altec 724 and 714 had a similar design. The look didn’t catch on and stereos in general later moved toward the iconic silver faced look.

Altec 725A Buttons

You’ll notice that the volume, Balance and Bass and Treble controls are controlled via slider knobs while everything else if controlled with a push button.

Altec 725A Dial

Still, this is a very good performing stereo. The 725A was Altecs top of the line receiver at the time and was introduced in 1970. It’s got a pretty large power transformer and power supply caps as well. It’s rated at 60 watts per channel into 8 ohms. One reviewer had this to say about it, “Brings you crystal clear music and vocals. The bass is powerful, the midrange highly detailed and lush and the highs silky smooth”. OK, that’s some hyperbole if I’ve ever heard it but if Altec built this receiver as well as they built speaker drivers then perhaps it’s accurate.

Altec 725A Inside

It features front and rear panel tape in/out jacks and a headphone input. The unit measures 17 3/4″ x 5″ x 16-1/2″ and weighs roughly 48 pounds. The 725A retailed for $699.99.

Altec 725A Back

As you probably already know Altec was known world wide for their high quality speaker drivers. Their attempt at breaking into the stereo market didn’t pan out very well so there are not many Altec units around nowadays.  This 725A is in very good working condition and sold for $300.00.

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2 thoughts on “Altec 725A

  1. I had a friend who worked for an Altec sound contractor in Bellingham, WA back in ‘73-74. This shop also had Pioneer receivers, so I was able to hear them all side by side, and with several of Altec’s finest speakers, such as the Segovia, the Valencia, and the Santiago.
    The Shure V15 type III was the cartridge of the day. I can say that the Altec 725 was the best sounding receiver of the bunch, including being a touch more musical than the Pioneer SX-1010.
    But just a hair. Maybe. But damn good. The 725 was very fast, though-so fast that it occasionally would fry itself when being turned on, or having a piece of kit plugged into it while it was on. But too bad more weren’t sold-they’re almost impossible to find nowadays. And with the ultra-efficient Altec Speaker’s, 60 wpc was plenty!

  2. I worked as an engineering tech at Altec in 1972 and 1973. I bought a 724 tuner-preamp that has the same faceplate as the 725. They were trying to make a 100WPC stereo power amp to match (to be designated the 772A). The voltage gain stage was noisy, and two engineers couldn’t clean it up, so they abandoned the project. I have the engineering prototype (still in pieces), but it’s on my bucket list to make it work and pair it up with my 724 in the TV room.

    The best of times, the worst of times. But we did build consumer electronics two blocks from Disneyland in the early 1970s.

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