Recommendation For Good-Sounding FM Tuner

Discussion in 'Tuners' started by Kratebiker, Aug 18, 2017.

  1. Kratebiker

    Kratebiker New Member

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    Hi Everyone!

    I finally dumped my home theater receiver, and happy to say am back to cleaner-sounding stereo music!! I recently purchased a Yamaha A-S701 integrated amplifier, and would like to add a good sounding FM tuner to the system. I do not mind if it is used. Any recommendations that are not break-my-wallet expensive??

    Thanks!!!

    Steve
     
  2. Raynald

    Raynald AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    So many possibilities. Have a look here

    http://www.fmtunerinfo.com/

    Check out the black Yamaha ones if you want a matching piece for your amp, many worthy choices and then it depends on what shows up locally.
     
    AstroZon likes this.
  3. heyraz

    heyraz Super Member

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    I don't see how you can go wrong with a used Magnum Dynalab. The factory even offers upgrades on their older models.
    I love mine and it sounds great.
    Check the auction sites and prices.
     
    stish likes this.
  4. FauxHall

    FauxHall Super Member

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    1,380
    Finding a low cost but good performing tuner is like an Easter egg hunt.

    Just go looking and expect to be pleasantly surprised
    You might come across a toad or two though.
     
  5. RxDx

    RxDx Speaker collector Subscriber

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    The Yamahas are a good suggestion. T-1s and TX-950s have sold for cheap lately.
    The T-1 is a solid analog tuner, the 950 is a light little digital that does a great job on
    both AM and FM. The TX-1000 is one of their better-sounding units. T-70, T-80, or
    the dx monster T-85 are also good. Sometimes the sound is called a little sterile or
    reserved, but I don't find it lacking. I think it's just uncolored.
     
    Raynald likes this.
  6. Frank Sol

    Frank Sol Addicted Member

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    Very good recommendations above

    Adding the Yamaha T-1020 -- a sleeper sorta. Audio forums like this one will drive up the prices on 'Sleepers'
     
  7. Raynald

    Raynald AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Agreed, I would add the TX-930 which is virtually identical to the excellent 950 mentioned above.
     
  8. mhardy6647

    mhardy6647 AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    To my ears and taste (and FWIW), the best sound per dollar spent is likely to be from a Sherwood vacuum tube tuner (S-2000 or S-3000). The one caveat is that most you'll find are mono (although adaptable to stereo, which would obviously add substantially to cost, with minimal real value (see below).

    The S-3000IV or S-3000V will have on-board FM MPX stereo. Not beautiful, but they sound good.

    [​IMG]Sherwood S3000 V 1 by Mark Hardy, on Flickr


    Personally, I would (far) rather listen to excellent quality FM mono than mediocre FM stereo. YMMV, though, of course.

    I paid $35 for my S-3000V, though, and used it for several years (very good sounding FM stereo), although, in full disclosure I have replaced it with a McIntosh MR-67. The latter cost rather more than the former. The latter sounds a little better, too -- bass goes deeper. Otherwise, they sound far more similar than different.
     
  9. KiM3Ce

    KiM3Ce AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I haven't owned a Yamaha CT-1010 but they are holding their value at $150 and up. They were Yamaha's top affordable tuner below the CT-7000. A black T-7 would probably look nice with your amp.
     
  10. mhardy6647

    mhardy6647 AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    [emphasis added]
    No, that would have been the T-2, and their prices on the used market reflect that.
    The CT-1010 is a decent tuner (I have one) but I couldn't imagine paying $150 for one (unless, maybe it were in brand new condition with original, pristine packaging and documentation). I paid $75 for mine which, given its performance and sonics, is about right, I'd say.

    [​IMG]DSCN6032 by Mark Hardy, on Flickr
     
  11. KiM3Ce

    KiM3Ce AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    [​IMG]
     
    stoutblock likes this.
  12. JDub

    JDub AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    It seems as though good digital tuners are available cheaper than comparable sounding analog tuners - but they don't look nearly as cool. I've owned the T80 mentioned above & it's underrated price-wise. I also have a B&K TS108 that is well regarded at fmtunerinfo and wasn't terribly expensive.
     
  13. musichal

    musichal poet emeritus Subscriber

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    Sony XDR-F1HD. Love mine.
     
  14. Nick_G

    Nick_G Active Member

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    I've never tried one, but judging from the comments I've read about it a Sony ST-J75 is supposed to be an excellent digital tuner on the cheap:

    [​IMG]

    The image is taken from the Tuner Information Center.
     
  15. for_p1

    for_p1 Addicted Member

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    Thos is likely the best choice. Also look at equivalent units from Sangean, or their new HDT-20 model.
     
  16. Eric n Kc

    Eric n Kc AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Hey
    Some of the Denon fly under the radar. Check out that fmtunerinfo site mentioned above. Good hunting. Eric
     
  17. Frank Sol

    Frank Sol Addicted Member

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    I have a stock Sony XDR-F1HD and it is a fine tuner as is but when you consider the old retail price 100.00 dollars it is a steal

    Mods put it in the stratosphere I'm told

    However :) with today's auction prices some very fine analog tuners can be had
     
  18. heyraz

    heyraz Super Member

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    Exactly!
    I paid $1350 for my Magnum Dynalab MD90 in the early 2000's.
    I thought about selling it a few years ago because it wasn't getting much use, but when I saw what they were fetching used (like $250) I decided to hold on to it. Very glad I did because there are some fine stations around here and it sounds better than anything streamed. I like the analog tuning, multipath, signal strength and center tune meters as well as the bandwidth and stereo/mono switches. To say that it's a well made unit is an understatement.
    Many times this summer I saw the tuner it replaced (FT101A) for sale on "that auction site" in perfect working order for well under $500.
    If I was looking for another tuner...it would be a used Magnum Dynalab.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2017
  19. rkgren1

    rkgren1 AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Here's a pitch for the lower end of the food chain:
    I see digital tuners all the time in thrift stores for $5 or less.
    I keep one around for troubleshooting.
    I have had several and they all have tended to work well.
    Pick one up for pocket change and then take your time looking for something better.

    I found a Technics ST-7300 a few weeks back for $15 and I really like it.
    It is not high-end gear, but it looks and sounds great, is in a good state of tune, and it is plenty sensitive for normal everyday use.

    close-cropped.png
     
  20. Yggdrasill

    Yggdrasill AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Ok, let's start with a few questions:
    - What is your price range?
    - What other gear are you matching it with aesthetically and sonically?
    - What are the physical characteristics of your FM market? If you're out in the country far from stations, you want something that is sensitive. If you're in a crowded market, selectivity is more important.
    - What kind of antenna are you using? A great tuner with a crappy antenna is an inefficient allocation of financial resources.

    Factor in $ for an alignment and probably a recap if you're looking at anything over 30 years old.
     

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