Cuttin-Edge, On-the-Spot Reporting

Audio Research Product Paneling

The final department that a product moves to before it's packaged and shipped is what Audio Research calls paneling. In paneling, the top, bottom, and front panels are attached, as well as the knobs and handles. Other small jobs to complete the product also occur here. It's when paneling is complete that an Audio Research product really looks like an Audio Research product, since it's where all the distinctive cosmetic elements are added.

Paneling

When I arrived, Dzevad was beginning the Paneling process for a Reference 5 SE preamplifier by first removing some of the protective tape from some of the edges (there to ensure no cosmetic damage occurred when it passed through the various assembly stages and testing).

Paneling

First the control knobs are installed.

Paneling

The Audio Research logo is attached to the front faceplate.

Paneling

The buttons are inserted through the back of the front faceplate.

Paneling

The faceplate glass is attached.

Paneling

The faceplate is put on the chassis.

Paneling

The handles are attached.

Paneling

The bottom panel is put on.

Paneling

Tube pins are dipped into a contact enhancer and . . .

Paneling

. . . inserted into the tube sockets and left for a short time.

Paneling

The tubes are then removed from the sockets and . . .

Paneling

. . . packaged separately.

Paneling

The tube box is labeled with the product's serial number to ensure no mixup occurs in final packaging.

Paneling

The top cover is attached to complete a Reference 5 SE preamplifier.

Doug Schneider
Publisher, The SoundStage! Network