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Vintage receiver, keeping it as close to original as possible

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restorer-john

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The best pics I have of one that I am looking at.

It's had some cap replacements, but otherwise looks pretty original. Main caps are untouched and the tuner board is also original. A good unit most likely. A possibility of OPT replacements (maybe- look at the shiny vs dull) but most likely it's all 1970s.
 
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It's had some cap replacements, but otherwise looks pretty original. Main caps are untouched and the tuner board is also original. A good unit most likely. A possibility of OPT replacements (maybe- look at the shiny vs dull) but most likely it's all 1970s.


Again thanks I really appreciate the input! This is a lot of money to put out but it appears that vintage gear prices are going to continue to rise.

What does OPT stand for?

This was in storage for a long time, and was purchased from the original owner, and taken right to see his gentleman's technician. Paperwork included, and I believe the original parts that were replaced also.
 
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Jim Smith claims that people often don't know how to solder, applying heat at 350 degrees Celsius when the liquidus temperature of the solder should be the indication, and heat can set the service life back by many years, as well as reworking solder joints too much. Oxidation prevents a proper solder joint, even if it looks good, so he recommended to preapply separate flux. If it ain't broken, don't fix it is always an overarching principle, but you might not have the test instrument for electrolytic capacitors and they are strictly speaking not made for a service life of 30 years anyway.

Not sure if you have seen this that has an in-depth look at important details often glossed over in guides:

These are valid points, and definitely a concern. I think many people overheat solder, including myself.

I also agree with if it isn’t broke don’t fix it approach.

This is a big decision, and I appreciate all the help I can get.
 

Joe Smith

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I love my restored Marantz 2216, it was ideal in that the restorer is a friend and neighbor and he's currently an engineer for Siemens. I had to choose between an unrestored 2230 and the fully restored 2216, and I'm glad I went that route. It's currently down with him for installation of a new power switch and snubber as I was getting just a slight flicker sometimes when switching on directly rather than via a power strip. My first receiver back in the 70s was a new 2245, so I was glad to get a Marantz back into the fold.

It's hard when buying remotely, you have to balance the originality (no one has screwed it up) versus future failure (I will need someone in my neck of the woods to service it when issues develop).

That said, I have plenty of original receivers still working very well (various Yamaha, Harman Kardon, etc.) 40 years on...
 
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I love my restored Marantz 2216, it was ideal in that the restorer is a friend and neighbor and he's currently an engineer for Siemens. I had to choose between an unrestored 2230 and the fully restored 2216, and I'm glad I went that route. It's currently down with him for installation of a new power switch and snubber as I was getting just a slight flicker sometimes when switching on directly rather than via a power strip. My first receiver back in the 70s was a new 2245, so I was glad to get a Marantz back into the fold.

It's hard when buying remotely, you have to balance the originality (no one has screwed it up) versus future failure (I will need someone in my neck of the woods to service it when issues develop).

That said, I have plenty of original receivers still working very well (various Yamaha, Harman Kardon, etc.) 40 years on...

Hi, I appreciate you posting about your Marantz and your experience with them and other gear.

Harmon Kardon! There is a name I almost forgot, they were right in the middle of all the receiver wars of the 70s and 80s. They really made some wonderful gear back in the day, along with the other names we all know.

I guess I didn’t realize that so many of the guys/gals are using vintage gear here.
 

Prana Ferox

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Power supply filter caps aren't in the signal chain. What matters there is if the power supply as a whole can be aligned in spec.

I debated posting about the weird non-standard caps. I have some receiver here (I forget which one) that has 4-pin caps in the power supply. Really old ones may have screw terminals. Sometimes people looking to preserve the looks for aesthetics (or less scrupulous reasons) gut the original caps and put new ones inside the housings, since the new ones are generally so much smaller. Axial caps seem to be even harder to find replacements for, I only see those in really really old hi-fi gear but they persisted in guitar amps and the like for way longer.
 
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Thanks for the post. I’m not so much worried about aesthetics, although nobody wants their otherwise in great shape gear butchered up inside or out.

I believe I’m going to plunk down my hard earned cash for the one in the pictures. Although this has had some of the capacitors replaced, the guy seemed very particular about who he brought it to.

The only thing I really never liked on the older receivers/amps was the spring clip speaker connections. I would like to have some regular binding posts on there if I can find something that would fit properly and be easily converted if I ever sold it. I’ve seen what are supposed to be direct swaps for other models but not for this one.
 

restorer-john

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The only thing I really never liked on the older receivers/amps was the spring clip speaker connections. I would like to have some regular binding posts on there if I can find something that would fit properly and be easily converted if I ever sold it. I’ve seen what are supposed to be direct swaps for other models but not for this one.

My advice is to leave the terminals alone if they are in good condition. Make up short pin to 4mm socket (banana) leads and use that for your 'audiophile' banana equipped speaker cables.

What that does is preserve the originality of valuable receivers, allows bananas to be connected and prevents excess strain from damaging the existing speaker terminals.

I'm making up some for my father and a friend right now actually. Will post a few pics.

In reality, many of the old spring speaker terminals on vintage amps and receivers actually make better electrical contact with plain speaker wire than audiohpile bananas and sockets comprised of multiple different metals, teminals and plugs etc.
 
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My advice is to leave the terminals alone if they are in good condition. Make up short pin to 4mm socket (banana) leads and use that for your 'audiophile' banana equipped speaker cables.

What that does is preserve the originality of valuable receivers, allows bananas to be connected and prevents excess strain from damaging the existing speaker terminals.

I'm making up some for my father and a friend right now actually. Will post a few pics.

In reality, many of the old spring speaker terminals on vintage amps and receivers actually make better electrical contact with plain speaker wire than audiohpile bananas and sockets comprised of multiple different metals, teminals and plugs etc.

That’s good advice and I’m going to take it, I don’t have a problem making up some new cables.

Can I get 12 gauge speaker wire in those spring terminals? I have quite a bit of it, and not that it matters but I believe it is silver tinned. I’m hoping if I twist the living daylights out of it that I will be able to fit it in there.
 

Joe Smith

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Hi, I appreciate you posting about your Marantz and your experience with them and other gear.

Harmon Kardon! There is a name I almost forgot, they were right in the middle of all the receiver wars of the 70s and 80s. They really made some wonderful gear back in the day, along with the other names we all know.

I guess I didn’t realize that so many of the guys/gals are using vintage gear here.
Yeah, another receiver I use in my basement system is an unrestored Harman/Kardon 430 ("Twin Power" dual transformer unit) that I bought used from our local HiFi shop back in the late 90s for about $110. Still working like a champ. I also have some 330B's that still get rotation, but they have a bit of transformer hiss. The only HK I've ever had that is ailing badly is the mid 80s 590i, which has developed some bad DC issues, I need to find someone locally who wants a project.

I've found the 70s and early 80s HK and Yamaha gear to be very well made/reliable.

I remember my Marantz 2245 fondly - the 2216 is not as powerful, but is perfect for my smaller listening room needs at present.

Good luck with your purchase!
 

Joe Smith

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That’s good advice and I’m going to take it, I don’t have a problem making up some new cables.

Can I get 12 gauge speaker wire in those spring terminals? I have quite a bit of it, and not that it matters but I believe it is silver tinned. I’m hoping if I twist the living daylights out of it that I will be able to fit it in there.
12 gauge is pushing it a bit for many of the old clip type terminals, but it might work, esp if they are tinned. Try and see.
 
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Yeah, another receiver I use in my basement system is an unrestored Harman/Kardon 430 ("Twin Power" dual transformer unit) that I bought used from our local HiFi shop back in the late 90s for about $110. Still working like a champ. I also have some 330B's that still get rotation, but they have a bit of transformer hiss. The only HK I've ever had that is ailing badly is the mid 80s 590i, which has developed some bad DC issues, I need to find someone locally who wants a project.

I've found the 70s and early 80s HK and Yamaha gear to be very well made/reliable.

I remember my Marantz 2245 fondly - the 2216 is not as powerful, but is perfect for my smaller listening room needs at present.

Good luck with your purchase!

It sounds like you have some great gear!
 
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12 gauge is pushing it a bit for many of the old clip type terminals, but it might work, esp if they are tinned. Try and see.

I figured that it was probably a stretch and it sounds like I better buy some 14 gauge to have on hand. Thanks.
 
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I pulled the trigger on the Marantz 2385. This is the one in the pictures that I posted most recently, and it was supposedly put into storage a long time ago and the owner forgot about it. How that happens I have no idea, but evidently it was wrapped in plastic and had a blanket over it for I don’t know how long. The gentleman I bought it from purchased it from the original owner and promptly drove it 5 hours away to his favorite technician. The service paperwork is included and it was done roughly a year ago. I want to thank everyone here that gave me some
invaluable information and made this pretty straightforward.

As far as I know it was cleaned, some capacitors replaced, and adjusted. It’s coming from the other side of the country, but it looks like it’s packaged very well and I’m not really worried. I am hoping that it gets here by next Saturday so I can set it up and give it a listen. Thanks again to everyone that participated in this, and I’ll post a couple of pictures when it’s sitting on my rack.
 
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Here’s a funny tidbit of information. I recently bought the benchmark la4 preamp, and I really wanted to like it. Don’t get me wrong it’s transparent, beautiful display, all the inputs & outputs one will ever need for good uncolored 2-channel listening. I just couldn’t get into it, and it just lacked the character, the appeal, the interaction that I like to have with a preamp. I will probably be putting it up for sale right here on ASR very soon. That’s what led me to the Marantz, because I’ve always wanted one, and once I found out that state of the art isn’t everything, I wanted one even more.
 

Joe Smith

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Here’s a funny tidbit of information. I recently bought the benchmark la4 preamp, and I really wanted to like it. Don’t get me wrong it’s transparent, beautiful display, all the inputs & outputs one will ever need for good uncolored 2-channel listening. I just couldn’t get into it, and it just lacked the character, the appeal, the interaction that I like to have with a preamp. I will probably be putting it up for sale right here on ASR very soon. That’s what led me to the Marantz, because I’ve always wanted one, and once I found out that state of the art isn’t everything, I wanted one even more.
Whoa, that's quite a preamp...but yes, in terms of style and interaction/human factors, very different than a vintage Marantz. I drool over the Benchmark lineup (particularly the AHB2 amp), but it's just a a different level than where my equipment sits, and I don't need balanced connections.

I use a balance of old and new equipment. Variety is the spice of life, right? The one thing I would do differently now is not buy so many vintage receivers (just because I could, and the price was right) and put a bit more towards one or two really good vintage units, probably just integrated amps or standalone amps as I don't really have any need for a tuner. Over time, it's narrowing down and I'm finding ways to sell some of my secondary units. I like having backups but that just got a bit out of control. Far better to zero in on what you like and put some dollars behind it (good stock and then selective fixes to keep it healthy), and sounds like that is what you are doing with the Marantz you picked out.
 

Dimitri

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Here’s a funny tidbit of information. I recently bought the benchmark la4 preamp, and I really wanted to like it. Don’t get me wrong it’s transparent, beautiful display, all the inputs & outputs one will ever need for good uncolored 2-channel listening. I just couldn’t get into it, and it just lacked the character, the appeal, the interaction that I like to have with a preamp. I will probably be putting it up for sale right here on ASR very soon. That’s what led me to the Marantz, because I’ve always wanted one, and once I found out that state of the art isn’t everything, I wanted one even more.
I'l save you all the long-winded post and just say: "you are not wrong" :)
 
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