Guiguang is another Chinese tube brand – or I should say ‘was’ because it has been bought out by Psvane Audio in Oct 2011.
Gui – is the abbreviation of GuangXi province – just west of GuangDong province where 90% of Chinese Hi-Fi is made and probably 60% consumed. Xi – means West, Dong means East in Chinese language.
Guang – means ‘light’ in Chinese language. So Guiguang is light (bulbs) from GuangXi province. It was established in 1960′s in the city of Liuzhou as military factory for south west region of China. It was closed permanently in 2000. In 2006, a group of investors bought out all the equipment of Guiguang and moved them to just outside of Guangzhou in Guangdong province, hoping to capitalize on the highly booming hi-fi tubes market. However, as the investors are business people not tube making guru and all workers had to be newly trained, Guiguang ran into many quality issues of their initial production runs although they have decent production equipment. The re-located Guiguang didn’t make profit for years then the investors decided to give it a boost by hiring away Shuguang’s Chief Designer in 2010 to try to turn the business around.
Guiguang launched a few models of tubes in 2010 under the Shuguang ex-chief designer’s leadership; however, as tube making isn’t just about one person’s skill – it’s a group efforts including highly experienced assembly workers who are still on learning curve at Guiguang, Guiguang tubes on the market are made up with various quality levels and feedback is mixed with positive and negative experiences. It doesn’t appear any sellers out of China have applied any screening of quality of the Guiguang tubes before they ship out to buyers worldwide, some buyers in the western world got good tubes raving about it, others got lemons and swear they are again ‘Chinese junk’.
Guiguang was in difficult time when trying to train workers and keeping up with paying back investors at the same time. So when the buy-out offer came from well-unded Psvane Audio, the merge becomes a win-win to both sides.
When you buy a Guiguang tube from a vendor (there are fair amount of Guiguang tubes out there from all sorts of online vendors, made in various time of the 5 years of re-located Guiguang), try to buy from someone who knows what they are doing and be honest to stand behind their sale. You never know what you get because it had been a bumpy road for Guiguang since it opened door for production in 2006 until being bought out in Oct 2011 by Psvane Audio.