Onkyo C-1E

Onkyo C-1E ver.2

1 9 9 2 1992
1 9 9 4 1994
1 9 9 5 1995

From the Japan-only Quest Integra series :
A-1E amplifier, C-1E CD player and SC-1 mini loudspeaker.

The C-1E is a top-loading CD player midway from mid-end (price-wise) and high-end (quality-wise) : its chassis is made of a single extruded non-magnetic aluminium piece (bottom+sides) with profiled patterns added to avoid mechanical resonances and increase rigidity ; the 9mm front plate is bolted on the chassis ; the CD puck is made from solid brass and all parts are machined to a 0,5mm precision.

The parts inside are all high-end : ELNA Duorex, film caps, dedicated low-impedance "laser" transformers and 6x 4700µF caps.
The seven separate windings feed the drive, digital circuits and d/a converters (transformer 1), the analog circuits and muting circuits (transformer 2) ; the d/a and analog windings have positive and negative leads. AC power is filtered and impedance lowered.
Emphasis, muting and digital output are all shielded by opto-coupling devices and the "Accu Pulse" quartz clock is mechanically shielded and damped.

The digital to analogue section starts with a custom 20bit SM5843AP digital filter made for Onkyo, oversampling is done by a Philips SAA7350 (192fs) and ends with two Philips TDA1547 - DAC7 !
With the SM5843AP and its 0,00003dB accuracy, this d/a topology was called Fine Pulse Conversion System by Onkyo.

The drive itself is based on... I don't know - maybe Sanyo, maybe Panasonic, maybe Sony ? Probably Sony.
Analogue ouptuts consist of a pair of fixed/variable RCAs with a dedicated remote-controllable two-gang ALPS motorized pot ; digital out is, alas, only a switchable TOS digital.


Like the A-1E amplifier, the C-1E sold very well in Japan and was very well reviewed in Audio Accessory (even better than the DAC7-equipped and much pricier Philips LHH-600B !) - enough to prompt an updated version in 1994.

The C-1E ver.2 mainly had upgraded custom-developed caps, ceramic feet and better analogue RCAs terminals.

The front of the ver.2 doesn't say so (very Sony) and didn't sell nearly as well : japanese audiophilia, in 1995, had been overshadowed by "exotic" designs from Europe and the US...


These images come from the original october 1992 japanese catalog.
More about the C-1E, A-1E, SC-1 and SC-2 soon and the Audio Accessory review with the Onkyo engineers who designed the Quest Integra !

A real 1E here and ver.2 here.

Onkyo C-1E, image 1 Onkyo C-1E, image 2 Onkyo C-1E, image 3 Onkyo C-1E, image 4
Onkyo C-1E specifications
Title Value
THD : 0,002% (1Khz)
Dynamic range : 100dB (4Khz)
S/N ratio : 106dB
Stereo separation : 102dB (1Khz)
Output level : 2V RMS
PC : 20W
Dimensions : 43,5 x 9,1 x 35,5cm
Weight : 7,6kg.
List price : 180,000¥ (1992-1995 ; both versions)
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