Best products from r/vintageaudio

We found 54 comments on r/vintageaudio discussing the most recommended products. We ran sentiment analysis on each of these comments to determine how redditors feel about different products. We found 222 products and ranked them based on the amount of positive reactions they received. Here are the top 20.

Top comments mentioning products on r/vintageaudio:

u/Uncle_Erik · 0 pointsr/vintageaudio

The electrolytic capacitors aren't as critical in this radio.

It actually has a power transformer and a 5Y3G rectifier tube. Most old radios don't have a transformer and count on the electrolytic caps to rectify the AC. Now, it surely has capacitors that need replacing, but the power transformer indicates that this is a higher-end radio. The three-gang tuning capacitor is a nice touch, too. This is a good radio.

As for restoration, you might want to pick up a book like this one and get a soldering iron.

You can order parts from the usual suspects (Newark, Digikey, Mouser), but they have monstrous catalogs and you'll spend a lot of time sifting through the thousands of options. They cost a little more, but I've had good luck with Antique Electronic Supply.

Do not buy the super expensive audiophile caps. They're not worth it and I don't even use them for my audiophile builds. You want to use Sprague's Orange Drop capacitors. They're more than the absolute cheapest, but I've been using Orange Drops for 15 years and they work great.

Electrolytic capacitors are not hard to find. Looks like there are two of them on the chassis (the one silver cylinder and the cardboard cylinder) and you will be able to find the correct values to replace them. Antique Electronic Supply carries a few can type ones if you want to be completely accurate.

I don't bother with complete accuracy - no one can see the innards and I mostly care about having it work correctly, safely and reliably. It's easy to put new electrolytics onto a terminal strip and secure that onto the chassis with a screw.

You will want to get all of the old resistors out of there, too. Carbon comp resistors suck. They change value as they heat up and eventually stay at the new values. I've never found one that was in spec. Guitarists like carbon comp resistors in their amps because they fuzz out and give an interesting tone. There's no place for that in a radio or in hi-fi. Yank them and go with metal film or wirewound. Those are much, much better.

Do not worry about the tubes. Often, all of them are good. These are pretty common ones, too, and you can find replacements if you need them. Antique Electronic Supply carries all of these.

Then you're going to need to align the radio. That means tuning the circuit with a signal generator and a DMM. You can use an oscilloscope instead of the DMM, too. This is a little tricky, so you might want to find a local ham with the tools to do it.

Finally, you need a good antenna. Can you put one up outside? They're cheap and easy. You can make a nice one for $10-$20 in materials, less if you already have wire. Antennas are half the deal with radios. A modest radio will work well with a great antenna, while a very expensive radio will be lousy with a bad one. This radio has shortwave bands, so you'll be able to pull in all sorts of interesting stuff (check /r/shortwave) if you have a good antenna.

u/neomancr · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

>Wow that's a lot to take in. I'm happy you told me about the whole tweeter position.
> as I was about to try and turn them sideways cause I figured that my ears are up here so why put speakers below where my ears are.
>And your 100percent correct that the human mouth aims at the listeners ears.
>I haven't tried to play anything between 300 or 2000 hurts as yet. Is there a record or download I can get that will help me test that?

just anything vocal heavy. down to the river from "Oh Brother where art thou" the movie sound track is beautiful as is landslide by Fleetwood Mac the demo version or album version.

virtually all of her voice will be emanating not from the tweeter but from the woofer since the human voice tonally peaks before even 1000hz.

think about that. the human voice which is essentially the hardest thing to get right ranges from about 200hz to 1000hz and that's like Barry white and Mariah Carey minus her squeal which goes a bit higher.

and then around 1000-3000 is where lip noises breath the sound of consonants and sibilance are which is why our hearing is actually most sensitive there to allow us to be able to comprehend speech.

that range is such a hot spot that it's also the range of nails on chalk board and why the sound of people chewing with their mouths open cuts through the mix and is considered rude. it sounds louder to us than it really is...

a baby crying it's loudest, belting is what it's technically called, also falls within this range which again makes sense from an evolutionary standpoint.

so the role of the tweeter is really only reserved for the percussive sounds in vocals while tone is all handled by the woofer and tone is richness which is what you want the most of, while clarity on the other hand adds air and dimension / sound staging but is also fatiguing to our ears just like nails on chalk board.

in all music the entire spectrum is basically covered so at any given point you are actually hearing nails on chalkboard but along with other stuff so it doesn't sound as bad but regardless having that range a bit off axis is just more comfortable.

>Other wise they r great speakers and once I figure out how to get them hooked up to my Bluetooth I should be happy as a clam.

you can find pretty decent Bluetooth adapters with line out for around 20 bucks. just make sure it has good reviews and supports apt x.

>Thanks for your help, I feel good knowing that these are better than 5 pairs of ls50s! (And that must be a lot of speakers)

I like this one especially since it allows you to stream to two devices at once:

Check this out at - TaoTronics Bluetooth 5.0 Transmitter/Receiver, Wireless 3.5mm Audio Adapter (aptX Low Latency, Pair 2 at Once, for TV/Car Sound System, Volume Control)

the advantage is also that it's super compact so I can carry it with me on a plane or something BUT it's range is limited. if you plan on expecting it to work across the house rather than just when you're in the room I'd grab something with actual antennas like this.

Check this out at - 1Mii B06Pro Long Range Bluetooth Receiver, HiFi Wireless Audio Adapter, Bluetooth 4.2 Receiver with 3D Surround aptX Low Latency Optical RCA AUX 3.5mm for Home Stereo System this out at - 1Mii B06Pro Long Range Bluetooth Receiver, HiFi Wireless Audio Adapter, Bluetooth 4.2 Receiver with 3D Surround aptX Low Latency Optical RCA AUX 3.5mm for Home Stereo System

I think they're the same, one I thought was cheaper so I copied tbsh link too so I could check.

added: okay just reviewed my copied and pasted links, yea the last two are the same.

u/c0rbin9 · 2 pointsr/vintageaudio

Just FYI, you can hook this up to your computer or smartphone using the aux input and a cable like this:

Note, ultimate fidelity would be better with a dedicated DAC to connect computer/phone, but even using the adapter cable it will probably sound better than anything you've heard.

Just so you know you're not limited to playing vinyl records or something, which are fun but require a lot more commitment.

One more thing - this receiver is only going to sound as good as the speakers you connect. That doesn't mean expensive - there are plenty of vintage speakers in the $100-$150 range that will blow you away. Look for brands like EPI, Boston Acoustics, ADS, Dynaco, KLH, Advent, or just search "vintage speakers" on your local Facebook marketplace or Craigslist. This was a luxury item when new, and will offer a refined, sweet sound quality that is difficult to find in new equipment.

If you're space limited, I would recommend some smaller, newer NHT speakers or just using it as a headphone amp, which many people do, see vintage receiver thread.

If you decide to keep it, enjoy the beginning of your journey into high quality audio and more satisfying music listening. A MAC1700 is a rare and lucky find, my foray into vintage audio started similarly with finding my dad's old Sansui G-9000 in our attic.

u/Danpaulcornell · 2 pointsr/vintageaudio

Here are some useful links: Link; Link; Link. The Marantz cost about $58 using good quality replacements. I did a H/K 330B for $9.58. The Marantz 2285 I am working on cost about $90 for parts.


You will need a decent soldering iron; solder sucker; desoldering braid; lead solder; flux; and most importantly a multimeter. Here is another gear thread. Most of the manuals are available on Hifiengine. What you can't find there you can check the forums or Sams. Manuals on Fleabay should be an absolute last resort.


I would recommend going to a local thrift store and getting some practice junker units. It will take you some time to good at it and you certainly don't want to screw up your good unit. I still don't know anywhere near enough to do more than replace the parts and do basic troubleshooting. Fortunately for people like us, there are a lot of very helpful and knowledgeable persons on the forums who are always willing to lend a hand. Edit: Forgot about the Dim Bulb Tester.

u/ReallyLegitAccount · 3 pointsr/vintageaudio

For $25 it could be worth it, but you'll probably want to look at it and/or ask for a demonstration first. Like /u/AmadeusK482 said, parts such as the headshell or cartridge make or break a deal, and if they're missing it could cost you a good amount for a replacement (an entry level cartridge like the AT95e costs ~$50 for example). Ultimately it probably is a step up from you're current TT, but before you pull the trigger shop around a little bit and make sure you know you're getting a clean and functional table.

On a side note, if you're concerned about the amount of wear you're putting on your records, you might want to consider investing in a tracking force gauge like this or this. This will let you see the amount of pressure the LP60, or any TT you upgrade to, puts on your records. As general rule of thumb a vertical tracking force of under 4g is considered healthy, but the ideal weight varies according to the specific cartridge.

u/Midgetforsale · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Looks like that stereo only puts out 50 watts total, so 25 watts per channel. That's pretty low, but it shouldn't hurt your speakers. You could use the stereo and those speakers to play cds, stuff off your phone, etc. What you cannot do at this point is use this stereo with your dad's turntable. A turntable outputs at very low power. You could plug it into the stereo aux input, but the sound would be very small. You have two options if you want to use the turntable, first you could buy a phono preamp. I wouldn't spend less than 50 dollars and at that range this one is recommended often. You would plug the turntable into this preamp, and then use rca cables to plug the preamp in to the stereo. That would work.... okay. The stereo will still be your real weak point here. So your other option is to find a different receiver with a built in phono preamp. What did your dad use to power to turntable and speakers? If he has an old receiver left over from the 80s, it could be a real gem! Even if it is a lower end receiver from back then, it will probably produce much better sound than that Walmart stereo. If he doesn't have the receiver anymore, go check out thrift shops. You can almost always find vintage stereo equipment for pretty cheap at thrift shops and flea markets. Look for names you've heard of before and you'll probably be fine. See if they will let you test it first. Make sure it powers on, hook it up to some cheap speakers if they let you and see what kind of noises it makes. Turn the dials. A lot of old receivers will produce static when you turn the dials, but this is an easy fix (spray it with deoxit!). Even if you can find like a Denon or Onkyo or something from the black plastic era, if it has a phono input you'll be better off.

u/madscientistEE · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Dirt cheap, low on features but OK quality:

Avoid the Wal Mart multimeter...I'm not happy to see a non category rated meter from GE of all companies. It's actually a rip off at $20....I've seen similar meters online for $5 and had the unfortunate experience of using one.

The Extech 430 is a good all rounder. It's Cat III with auto ranging and has bare bones capacitance and frequency counting. True RMS measurement allows you to measure AC things other than just 60Hz sine waves. (you need true RMS for checking amp output at 1kHz among other things) I own one and aside from the nasty yellow-green backlight and somewhat short battery life, it rocks. Comes with a temperature probe too, which you'll find useful.

If you're serious and want data logging without going all out on a $300-500 industrial meter from the likes of Fluke, give this a try. It looks cool as heck but possibly has a bit of a learning curve due to the menu instead of a dial. Cat III to 600V too. It does everything the Extech 430 does and more.

Soldering Irons...

The classic pencil tip "fire starter":

You get what you pay for there but I've fixed many things with ones just like this. Larger joints may need more heat, they make 40 and 60W irons for that. Tip life on these cheap irons is poor. Poor tips make poor joints. Replace them if they go bad. Do not sharpen one.

BUT...instead of having 3 low quality irons knocking around the shop, I recommend people go straight for an adjustable heat soldering station like this one:

Buy a couple spare tips if you order a soldering station. Local availability of these is nil. The stations usually have better irons, heat control that actually works and far better tips.

This soldering station and its more expensive digital counterpart, the WESD51 are a bit pricey. On the other hand, they're totally awesome and the gold standard in many shops:

Once you get a station, you'll wonder how you ever got along without one. Good tools make the best repairs.

u/norrom · 2 pointsr/vintageaudio

The built-in speakers will not give you a pleasant experience, but if you *insist*, Numark's portable players are of decent quality in that price range. They are also battery operated, which is cool if you want to take one out in the world.

I have the Scratch version, It's basically the same, but has a crossfader (ish) built in. I'm guessing you don't need that. I'm very happy with it, but I wouldn't use the built-in speaker for listening to music. That's just me though :) Good luck.

u/egamble · 2 pointsr/vintageaudio

There are a few ways to do this, the simplest is with a bluetooth receiver and cellphone, I have this one and it sounds okay:

The best way to do this is with a USB DAC, this is the cheapest: and works pretty well. There are lots of different ones with different features, you can spend from 30 to 300 easily.

USB DACs will work with windows and android cellphones with OS 5 (lollipop) and higher. I'm not sure about mac or linux support. Something like this may be useful: if you just want to connect optical or coaxial out from a device.

u/TophatMcMonocle · 4 pointsr/vintageaudio

I'm glad to assist as I'm a fanboy of this type of Technics turntable. I have an old hobby of restoring and collecting Japanese TTs and there's an SL-10 in my collection. I'd love to have an SL-7 too, however I'm falling behind in the "restore" area the last few years.

You will need a phono preamp since the SL-7 does not have one built in, and neither do your Miccas. The sky's the limit on phono preamp prices, however they're a rather simple beast so even the cheapest ones work pretty damned well. To keep things simple for now I'd recommend this one for sixteen bucks.

Assuming the SL-7 is good to go and has a cartridge/stylus with some life left in it, that'll be all you need to make music. Your Miccas have amplification built in, so that's it.

If you do need a new P-mount cartridge, this one is very good for the $27 it costs. It's what I have on my SL-10 because I can't afford high-end carts on everything. Be aware there's a small screw that holds it in place on that little tonearm and it must be completely removed first. It's hard to see, so people have ripped off the entire arm trying to pull the cartridge free.

Last thing I should mention, there are two plastic ears on the SL-7 that are a failure point, since all examples of this turntable are very old now. They latch the lid to the lower portion, or plinth. Treat them very gently as there are no replacements for them.

u/jollyandy · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

What's your budget for a TT? Are you looking for something new? Would you like something that matches the era of the rest of your setup? There's quality in every era and something decent in a lot of price ranges with tons of opinions all over the place.

Personally I'll recommend the Audio Technica AT-LP60BK. It's from a respected brand, audiophile reviews are glowing, and the thing is built solidly. There's not much of a better value for something new at $100. You can be up and running in a couple days.

That said, the joy of vintage is finding something old and special for a steal. If you're patient, you can almost always get something better than what you can buy new, and even with all the advances in electronics over the last 45+ years, I still like the sound of my old pioneer TT that I got for $60 over a new one that cost $300. But that kind of find takes time. All depends on what you want.

u/TH3_P1R4T3 · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Yeah i really like the true vintage look and sound. I picked up a HomeSpot NFC-Enabled Bluetooth Audio Receiver for Sound System for my AUX needs, works pretty good $15 although i haven't found a way to make it so i don't have to unplug it and plug it back in every time i want to use it lol. I have seen those stands around and they seem pretty popular. I was thinking either those or maybe some wire stands like these ikea ones i like the stance of the speakers, but these stands don't seem to be around anywhere. Anyone know of any that look like that or know where i can snag a pair?

u/theides81 · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Do you need speakers too, or just a record player? If you need both, I'd recommend this setup. I have the same record player but a slightly older version of these speakers. It's nothing fancy, but it's all ready to go right out of the box & in my opinion it sounds great. I'm not a hardcore serious audiophile, so I'm sure there are much better options out there, but they're gonna cost you way more than $200.

u/bongklute · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

angros-official is correct; but i would add that you can use a paintbrush along with the hose attachment to a vacuum cleaner. hold the hose close to where you're working and there all the dust goes.

before spending any real money on this thing, get a can of deoxit and clean all the knobs and switches with it.

something as dirty as this, i would not be surprised if both channels were mucked up just at the pots and switches level.

i'd like to add that this receiver is a beauty and should clean up well. 70 watts per side was a whole hell of a lot in 1976. definitely worth a little time and money.

u/Alan-anumber1 · 3 pointsr/vintageaudio

I personally use the Shure M97Xe phono cartridge, on a 1970's vintage Technics SL-1200 MkII turntable hooked up to the phono input of a 1970's Marantz 2230B receiver. I use a Focusrite 2i2 for analog to digital conversion, hooked up to the Marantz's tape out. I capture and edit in Audacity.

I use the Marantz with a pair of '80s vintage DCM bookshelf speakers in nearfield fed audio from my desktop computer's soundcard into the receiver's tape monitor circuit.

The Marantz was a thrift store find that I cleaned, adjusted and replaced the capacitors in. The DCM speaker's woofers were refoamed with Simply Speakers refoam kits as well as the capacitors replaced in the crossovers.

The Technics turntable has a modern cartridge installed as most vintage phono cartridges would be a downgrade. Fresh manufacture is your friend here as the rubber suspension would be suspect on a new old stock cartridge and the diamond styli wear out, ruling out used cartridges with unknown use and wear (my vintage records are more important!). I also replaced the cue light on the Technics and repalced the DJ style platter mat with a more appropriate Technics OEM mat.

For my time and effort of restoring my vintage gear, I find it sounds better than entry level audiophile gear. It also is easier to service (for me) and looks just cool (IMHO).

u/TripJammer · 2 pointsr/vintageaudio

this seems like the kind of goodwill find that allows you to pass the love of vintage on to someone who will fall in love with it and continue the hobby. Buy it, do some cleaning, gift it. Get them some similar grade speakers and one of those bluetooth receivers from Amazon, and you will have done some good in the world.

u/smckenzie23 · 3 pointsr/vintageaudio

I love my vintage gear, but there is nothing wrong with his amp, and there are a ton of decent cheap phono amps out there.


It will be hit or miss finding decent vintage equipment for $200, unless you are lucky or know what you are doing, & his Yamaha should put out a clean 80 watts per channel. I'd suggest a cheap amp for $20. He could easily wind up with a downgrade in sound by blindly picking a $200 vintage unit.


u/Mundus_Vult_Decipi · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Yep, all inherited, along with a Shure SFG-2. I didn't know how to use it, but it was pretty evident after reading the manual. I think I scaled it to about 1g or so, anyhow lower than what the manual said. Both of my cartridges still had the original packaging and documentation that cam along with them. One is a Micro-Acoustics 2002e and the other is a Grado Series "8". :)

u/Eisenstein · 3 pointsr/vintageaudio

Well, if you can use the lab and it has a scope in it then you just scored big time.

As far as $100. I would get:

(amazon links for convenience, use any supplier you wish)

  • DMM (digital multimeter) - must have diode check, DC volts, AC volts, Ohms, and continuity. Extech EX330 ($50) or Equus 3320 ($20)

  • clip leads for the meter such as these - these are important because you will need to take values while the amp is on, and you don't want to be poking around a live amp

  • variable power/temp soldering iron - cheap one good one better one

  • 60/40 leaded solder - I like this kind

  • desolder braid

  • rosin flux

  • contact cleaner

  • (de-oxit d-5)[]

  • flush cutters

  • solder sucker

  • shrink tube of various diameters

  • 92%+ isopropyl alcohol

  • windex

  • q-tips

  • paper towels

  • needle nose pliers

  • nice set of phillips head screwdrivers

  • standard screwdriver

  • miner's headlamp

  • digital camera for taking many many pictures before and during disassembly

  • printer for printing service manuals

  • heat gunor hair dryer

  • canned air

    EDIT: Light bulb socket, 100W + 60W real light bulbs (not the hippy engery saving kind), electrical outlet - these are for making a dim bulb tester.

    All I can think of right now.
u/NonNisiTe · 2 pointsr/vintageaudio

That metal tube I believe is the AM Antenna. What you can do is buy something called an FM Antenna. It looks something like this. That is American side, I do not know the UK equivalent. I would recommend just going into your generic audio parts shop (Whatever the UK equivalent of radio shack is and getting help).

Second you need to fix your speakers. Put both on A Speaker Right and Left. Or B Speaker R + L but not as it currently is B Speaker Right and A Speaker L. A + B speakers are there for you to hook up two sets of speakers and allows you to change from A to B speakers via dial or you can use both A + B speakers together although the volume will be a little less overall since you are trying to power more.

u/Valgrindar · 3 pointsr/vintageaudio

Jim knows what you're looking for, OP.

I've found the parts you'll want to get as well. It's definitely a real budget set up, but it'll get you started.

Phono preamp

Patch cable (from phono to iHome)

Just plug the turntable into the phono input, then use the patch cable to go from the phono's output and into your iHome, and you're good to go.

u/denoxster · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

I just did this a couple of weeks ago, running Nuforce STA200 paired with Emotiva UMC-200 and Kenwood KD-2070 paired with Sony 7065 powering SVS Prime Towers.
I bought this from Amazon ton make switching between amp faster.
Works great for me.

u/Watermellon53 · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Yeah I'm super excited about it! Quick question, if I want to try and use the SL-7 with a pair of Micca PB42X speakers I already own what would I need? They look like they have phono input, but I'm not sure if I need a phono preamp and an amp or not.

u/weirdal1968 · 2 pointsr/vintageaudio

There are tiny slots in the EQ sliders where you would spray the contact cleaner order Deoxit D5 on Amazon. Use the link below to learn how to use it to clean the volume control.

u/schuylercat · 1 pointr/vintageaudio


What you said: "First guesses? Input differential pair transistors have drifted in gain with respect to each other or you have a leaky coupling cap."

What I heard: : "Blah freaking blah blah la di da blah loo de loo blah transistors yadda yadda whatever gain la de doo blah blah blah coupling cap."

I have far to go.

Also - this is what I was going to get:

$125 CDN. I can do that. I don't wanna, though. My Radio Shack 40 watt station gets terrible reviews, and I think I might upgrade.

I'll look into the little Weller. Thanks!

Oh, then I will ask "what's a coupling cap?" Those the big ones between the PS and the main boards?

u/msuts · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

You can get serviceable speakers very cheap. If you don't want to go through the legwork of buying used: AND

Or just go to a couple of garage sales and buy the speakers + receiver you'll inevitably come across at one of them. Just make sure it has a phono input and you're good to go.

EDIT: I see you already have that amp. You won't need the receiver then. Just a phono preamp and speakers. For the Dayton speakers alone. For $42 with the phono preamp, you're up and running.

u/Fallwalking · 2 pointsr/vintageaudio

You can simply use a pair of wires, other wise there are other compact dipole antennas around that can sit behind it.

u/levicochrane · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Hey everyone. I think I figured it out. Another thing I failed to mention was that it wasn't consistently doing this crackling sound. To better describe it, it would get quieter than the other speaker and it sounded like it had interference. Anyway, I put the back panels back and set them back up. I have some friends over so I put on a vinyl record. No problems at all. Then I connected my phone via this Bluetooth receiver and it started crackling again. I realised every time I've had this problem it's been when I'm using this receiver. So thanks for your help! I'm just stupid.

u/_walden_ · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Good thinking. I put this guy in my cart earlier today. Maybe I'll have to bite the bullet.

u/kingfrito_5005 · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Thank you so much! I am looking at the Audio technica AT92ECD in this link: I dont suppose there is any way you could tell me how to install it in the head? There dont appear to be any holes to screw it in.

u/Hodaka · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

The phono inputs are called "RCA" inputs. I would start there and get something like this.

u/electrictrumpet · 2 pointsr/vintageaudio

Sheesh, actually I just checked and it is like $15 a can now, price must've gone way up. I bought mine like 5+ years ago and it's still got plenty left but I have used it on lots of stuff.

u/doubleclick · 3 pointsr/vintageaudio

It isn't the speakers. If they sound okay with your iPad, they should sound okay with the turntable. If the tt RCA cord is removable, try a different cord. Also, make sure the record you are using is in good shape, or try another one if you can. Another option is to plug some headphones into the amp, and see if that reproduces the crappy sound. Lastly, you can spray de-oxit electrical contact cleaner onto the phono contacts to clean them. Let it dry (a few minutes tops) and try again. If your phono input is dead, you can get one of those external phono inputs and run it through an aux or tape input.

u/mcfandrew · 1 pointr/vintageaudio

Any chance you have a preamp you can fit in the middle of that run? Of course, you'll have to plug into your amp thru the AUX or a tape input instead, since you'll have (more or less) a line-level signal after the preamp.

I use a cheap Pyle preamp with my Kenwood receiver (the phono stage sucks on it).