Vintage Kenwood Receiver

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Wayne Ernst, Feb 12, 2004.

  1. Wayne Ernst

    Wayne Ernst Cinematographer

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    During the past few years, I've been doing some house renovation work for a former co-worker of mine. A few months back, she asked if I knew how she could get rid of an old Kenwood KR-2300 receiver. At the time, I didn't have much interest in it. However, a few days back, the conversation on the old Kenwood came up. I offered her some money, but she declined. So, with a Kenwood under my arm, I headed out.

    Tonight, I took the receiver out of its plastic. On the top, a small strip of veneer has come loose - I still have the piece of veneer that I'll re-attach. Also, the volume control has some "static" when making adjustments which I'll attempt to resolve with some tuner cleaner from Rat Shack.

    To quickly get it up and rolling, I connected 75 feet of my 14 gauge speaker cables to the 300 Ohm antenna connection. I plugged in my Grado SR-60 headphones, found a radio station on the FM dial. All I can say is "wow!!" The sound is so good, I don't know if my H/K AVR-7200 can perform nearly as well when using the Grados. I'll have to do an "A/B" test to see.

    Anyway, here's a picture of the beast. Also, if any of you are pondering on venturing into the vintage gear, all I can say is "go for it" - because, there are some nice gems still out there.

    Oh, the owner who gave me this Kenwood purchased it new over 25 years ago.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. LanceJ

    LanceJ Producer

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    Back when radio was still rewarding to listen to, twisting a big heavy knob on a receiver like this Kenwood was......satisfying, I guess is the right word. As you got closer to the station you mentally picked out, there was a mild sense of anticipation, wondering what was playing there: Zeppelin? The Cars? Some remnant from the disco era? Or maybe Grace Slick singing about a white rabbit? And when you finally made it to the station, you had to do a little fine tuning by watching the signal strength meter and the stereo indicator light. If you had one of those center frequency meters it made this enjoyable job easier (and gave your receiver a more hi-tech look too).

    I'm sure younger people who are reading this are probably rolling their eyes and mumbling something about old farts, but trust me, pushing a cold plastic button on modern equipment just ain't the same thing.

    Memories, of the times we used to, uh, blah blah blah..............

    [​IMG]

    LJ
     
  3. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Many of the upper-line models also had dual power meters as well. The ultimate high tech look – a row of meters above the dial! [​IMG]

    Those were the days! This one appears to be an early 70s entry-level model.

    Yes, many of the receivers from those days are still highly sought-after and just as highly regarded for their excellent sound – Yamaha, Marantz, Pioneer and Sansui, to name a few. I’ll have to say Marantz was my favorite in the looks department – very sexy!

    It’s fairly common these days to hear considerable background noise (hiss) and/or crosstalk when you turn a receiver all the way up (with no input selected) and put your ear near the speaker. Back in those days that kind of stuff was an indication of inferior design.

    I still have a 1976 vintage Marantz integrated amp that was practically dead silent when turned up all the way, and it was a bottom-of-the-line model. It was rated at a mere 30 watts per channel, but the specs on the rear panel says 220 watts! Compare that with the rated power/consumption of a modern receiver!

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  4. Scott Kriefall

    Scott Kriefall Second Unit

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    [​IMG]

    It's about as old as I am, and still works -- although the tuner dial calibration is about 1MHz off above 100MHz or so. The left/right channels would occasionally drop out, but a quick cleaning of the knobs and switches with Caig Deoxit cleaner/lube fixed that.

    Now I just need to find some use for it...
     
  5. Dean_S

    Dean_S Second Unit

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    I have that same Marantz receiver. My father purchased it when I young (like 4). I've had it since 1986 and it still works. It's not being used right now, but when I buy or build a house with a study this receiver will power some nice bookshelf speakers maybe even my beloved vintage Celestion SL600s???
     
  6. Dave Simpson

    Dave Simpson Second Unit

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    Testify, my brothers! Hearing this talk of vintage goodness does my heart proud. I always promised myself I wouldn't turn into a carbon-copy of my dad until I was at least 60, but here at age 41, I'll say it: they don't make 'em like they used to (and while I'm at it, what is with the teenagers' music these days? And those wacky hairstyles? [​IMG] ).
    I'm just about convinced these days that a vintage receiver (or integrated amp) in good working order will pretty well stomp all over today's HT units (in consideration of bang-for-the-buck) in a two-channel app (natch). I currently own a Marantz 2285 (top of the mid-line, or entry-level high end of the Marantz line, 1977, 85wpc) and two Pioneer SX-650 models (closer to the bottom end, but no slouch at 35wpc). These units make my various speaker combos sing, and I'm always looking for an excuse to set up another(!!) hi-fi rig in a room in the house.



    Scott and Dean,

    You fellas don't listen to redbook CD? Or better yet, vinyl? What are you waiting for?? [​IMG]
    For anybody interested in vintage gear, remember that yard sales, church sales, thrift shops and flea markets are your friends (in a roughly ascending order of prices charged). E-Bay is your source of last resort; those dudes know what they're selling, and the bidders know what they're buying. For more info on vintage gear, visit the Classic Audio Page, and the AudioKarma message-board.
    Cheers, gang!

    DS.
     
  7. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Beautiful, Scott, just beautiful!

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  8. Mike Up

    Mike Up Second Unit

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    I had that same Kenwood receiver. It was in mint condition back in '89 when I got it. However the sound was anything but good. My buddy who had it before me replaced all the blown amplifier transistors with ECG equivilant transistor replacements. That could had led to the poor sound. It was overly compressed, lacked treble response and was anemic on dynamic power output going into clipping much to easy. I replaced it with a '91 brand new Kenwood Dolby Surround (not prologic)receiver that was a lot better but not really all that great to the technics receiver I replaced that receiver with.

    Good luck and only use audio transistors if they ever need to be replaced.

    Have a good one.
     
  9. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    You have to keep in mind that this receiver is low-powered – probably somewhere between 25-40 watts per channel. This was pretty common back then. You started to get into the “higher-end” at about 65 watts!

    So naturally, one of these wouldn’t fly well with inefficient speakers. Even with speakers that are adequately efficient, it would be better suited for music than home theater.

    Still – using non-OEM parts could definitely affect the sound quality.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  10. Geoff L

    Geoff L Screenwriter

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    Aha yes, those where the days.

    Being a audio pack rat, I've kept better than 70% of everthing I ever bought. I have way to much vintage gear, but just can't bring myself to sell an of it.

    My 70's early 80's Marantz stuff, prior to Philips buy out, is my favorite.

    Back then, nearly all the main stream audio players of the mid 70's threw early 80's ~ Pioneer, Kenwood, Technics, Marantz, Sansui, JVC, etc, had something that was excellent back then.

    I think Marantz and Sansui gear still will bring the most $$$ as their are many that collect their pieces from the 70's threw early 80's era. Some main stream vintage pieces (that are rarer than others), will sell for 5 times "plus" easily over their original MSRP of the time. Of course in mint to near condition and if one has the box, manual, and sales documentation, the prices can really get scary!

    Even today, my machined aluminum full Silver faced Marantz gear with their beautiful blue back lighting brings forth the ooos and ahas,,,! Rightly so, their beauty & sound is timeless IMO.

    I still have my mint Marantz 2252B that plays in the work out room. This was my very first receiver & purcased it back when I was a youngster of 17.

    Fun thread guys, the younger people (are like what), but us older farts remember that time very well..!

    Cheers
    Geoff
     
  11. Gerard Martin

    Gerard Martin Second Unit

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    A couple of years ago I was fortunate enough to bid on and win a Marantz 2275 in mint condition. From that day, all other AV Receivers I have are reserved strictly for 5.1, 6.1, 7.1 movies. Its difficult to describe just how clear, clean, warm, wonderful 2 channel vintage radio can be, to miss this experience is to miss one of lifes true enjoyments.
     

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