Discussion in 'Tuners' started by javelin79, Dec 10, 2008.
The Day Sequerra Studio is my best tuner with a Sansui TU-X1 being a close second.
Ha, ha........... had never thought about a Tivoli as a 'portable' unit, but, why not? Great idea to take it along for a chance to discover new listening possibilities.
Do agree that the ST-5000FW & T-2 (unless you decide to do your own alignment ) is right at the top. But, nothing I've heard can beat the Accuphase T-106. Unfortunately, moving it about has resulted in something coming loose, so it is off for some professional help (recap & alignment by one of our "known good" tuner techs). The mighty T-85 is doing a yeoman's job in its stead and stands only 'just' below it in sonics.
Tivoli PAL is/was a purpose built portable. I gave my daughter one when she went to college (in 2002) -- she's all married and stuff, and the PAL serves as their kitchen radio to this day.
Generic PAL photo from Tivoli's website.
Where is the Sony XDR-F1HD? Sensitivity off the charts, cheap when it was available, how does it rank in the pantheon of great tuners?
Go to the auction site, and search Sold Sony Tuners, the XDR is by far the most in demand and traded tuner in Sony land. There are one or two collectables that fetch more, but doubt they outperform it.
Apparently the XDRs can be heavily modded to address most or all of it's shortcomings, tuning isn't one of them.
which happens to be a Pioneer F-91.
Any love for the Sony 444ESX?
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Since we are talking Sony, their first true digital, the ST-J75, is still the quietest tuner I've owned. Sound-stage is not up to the best, but nothing beats it for a black background.
I actually had one of the Tivoli iSongbooks I picked up at goodwill. I'd heard one of the other Tivoli radios and expected good things.
I was disappointed. The radio in this thing was no better than a $20 portable. A single IC, handfull of cans..and that was it. It was badly distorted on AM; but to fix that you had to reduce the AM sensitivity till it was nothing. FM performance was pretty poor. I wound up doing some mods and it's been sitting on a shelf.
Not to go too off topic since it's a thread on tuners, and this is...kind of a tuner (except it uses your PC to do the actual demodulation).... I got a RTL-SDR rig back at Christmas that I started playing with; it's got some of the best FM performance I've ever seen. 122mile FM DXing with a folded dipole and all kinds of impedance mismatch on the antenna? No problem. 40mile away stations putting out less than 10kw with a standard magnetic 1m whip? Sure. I've never compared it to a really good vintage tuner; but I know it's picked a few stations up my stuff didn't even know was there. Whenever I actually set up to do any FM DXing, I always have to tell radio-locator to pull "fringe" or just do a 100 mile radius of all FM stations, because I know I'm going to come across a couple outside of their "distant" range.
dewdude: Can you please provide more info on that RTL-SDR rig? A link or pictures please.
I have to agree with Doug Sedon that the Rotel RHT-10 is just awesome, it cleans up my local classical station beautifully. It even surpassed the excellent Mitsubishi DA-F20 in my system. I'd love to hear a Marantz 10 and 20 but have never had the chance.
I haven't done a tuner shoot out, I own several of them, but every time I walk into the room the McIntosh MR 78 sounds pretty good to me.
The distance tuning on it is impressive, more so with an omni directional antenna.
In the tuner which bankrupted an audio company forcing a sale of the company category. Marantz 10 and 10B, also shared with one other tuner in the "Tuners which were sold to lose their manufacturer money", you also have the inspiration for the Marantz 10 and 10B, the REL Precedent. Which is said by many to be the first high end FM tuner really ever made, and still highly rated by many, myself included as the finest FM tuner ever manufactured. And along with the Marantz 10 and 10B were sold too cheaply relative to their cost of manufacturing. Which is why REL left consumer Hi Fidelity. And continued with broadcasting and military electronics.
XDR-F1HD or Nikko Gamma V
I could not part with either of them.
Tuner lovers already know this, but the best tuner is often whatever tuner is attached to the best antenna. And though I actually had a McKay Dymak antenna and the component used with it (Sleuth?) and ended up selling it when it didn't seem to improve results when not mounted on the roof (the antenna that is, not the Sleuth) I tend to use simple antennas. But of all the tuners I've had (which includes quite a few listed) the Sanyo Plus T55 which I found at the dump surprised me the most. Partly because of low expectations, but mostly because it's startlingly good.
Tuners. Started out with a nifty little KLH 18 that I gave to my little brother when I got hold of a Marantz 10B. Then I put a Jerrold QFM9 up in my attic with a rotor, and could pull in Chicago's WFMT. Shortly after, the 10B got hopelessly expensive to maintain (and I couldn't afford a Sequerra) ... and the guy who designed the Sherwood Micro/CPU was discovered to live in my wife's former hometown, about when Sherwood stopped paying royalties. So I went to the guy's house and got me a Draco Labs Micro/CPU. That did the job very nicely ... until I moved to a new house that 'looked' through three FM broadcast antennas and WFMT was off the menu. Then a cat decided that pissing into the little vents on the top of the tuner was a Good Idea (he is no longer with us). So I did some research and went for a used Magnum Dynalab FT101, finally working my way up in stages to a 108T with an ST2 antenna. It ain't cheap, and there are but two stations worth listening to (the local NPR station and a local listener-sponsored station that occasionally plays what I want to hear - early music on Sunday mornings), so I doubt that I will need another tuner for many years.
I have more than 10 digital tuners, the best are;
Hitachi FT5500 MK2 and the Denon tu-800, the controls in the Denon sucks, I like the Hitachi better on that level, however the Denon is a super DXing tuner, both tuners have automatic selection of filters.
the kenwood t-2 basic is a masterpiece and sounds wonderful the same about the Nec T-710 they sound really good stock. I also have a Sony SA50ES is a good tuner overall with plenty of functions, and it has automatic selection of filters
2) Denon- modded
3) Kenwood T-2 and Nec t-710,Sony SA50ES-modded
4) Pioneer F99x
6) Marantz st6000
The Kenwood L-1000T I have here is the second best I have had. First was a Kenwood L-02T, third was a Kenwood KT-917.
A new antenna, a Godar has improved reception in some smaller stations dramatically.
Interesting that your L-1000T beat your KT-917. Were all the tuners aligned and in spec? How close was it between them?
My best tuner is a BW Broadcast RBRX Encore, but it was a heck of a lot more expensive than any of my other tuners!
I just bought a Yamaha T-85, it is a really nice unit. Red LED, no vfd, which I like. Went over the design, it has one BP capacitor in the signal path/ch from the FM detector to the o/p. that one ecap/ch could be removed if one was to offset trim or servo the last opamp stage. Not too many tuners can make a claim of only one ecap in the sig path! Some people seem to care about the quality of the caps, not me really.
Sound wise, I'd say it was crisp, detailed, full ranged, great stereo imaging. Stereo decoder is a great design. the CSL is a bit weird, bit once you program in your settings for each memory, it is fine.
Imagine a digital tuner with no search, one of a kind
I can see lots of places one could use newer component, but I really wonder if I would notice a difference. Like changing the NJM2068S opamps to say a NJM2114L, I doubt it.
All were properly aligned, the L-1000T is a very, very good tuner. This one is also set with the proper de-emphasis cap, some came to the US improperly set with 50uf European de-emphasis caps installed not the 75, which made them sound zippy.
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