All that glitters

$_57This receiver is a current auction offered on Ebay. The original wood case and documents are a real plus for a vintage piece like this. Things to be weary of?  “Just serviced” is a term used loosely to describe…well not much really.  Cleaning controls and contacts hardly represents a true “service”.   A well cared for piece of equipment is a good place to start but be prepared to do a true service if you plan on using it for the long term.  This receiver will last many more years if properly checked by a professional. Maybe our resident stereo electronics expert can weight in here with few thoughts. What do you think Mike?

2 thoughts on “All that glitters”

  1. Hoooo-boy this ones a touchy subject for this hobby. There are so many interpretive terms used in the vintage audio world that can be radically different from person to person. A few of my favorites… serviced, technician, restored, recapped, rebuilt, mint, cleaned. Serviced can mean anything from cleaned the face to a full on rebuild.

    Recap is one of my favorites because to me that means you replaced all of the electrolytic capacitors in a unit. Some others feel it means replace “out of spec” caps. How do you know of they are out of spec? You need to pull them and test on a capacitance and ESR meter. For the $0.50 or less for a new quality audio cap doesn’t it just make sense to replace? Then there are folks who feel just the signal path caps should be changed and the filtering caps can be left. Some purists feel leave all caps until failure, yikes costly opinion.

    Buying gear like this on eBay I have one thing I truly look for, cosmetics. This receiver looks great and looks in great condition. That makes a huge difference. You cannot repair scratches or missing items. There is no component level work done to that unit in the auction, it is all original and in excellent condition. That is how I would market it. It is possible he had it “serviced” and the “tech” made sure controls were clean, amp worked properly, and lamps worked. There was nothing preventative done for future reliability.

    Old audio gear is like old cars, they are a whole lot of fun but reliability is shaky. You can do lots of preventative work which is helpful and will save you money long term. Just like cars, new is more technical and advanced but there comes a point when failure occurs the cost to repair far exceeds value. Vintage holds better value and their simplicity make repairs affordable.

    I like this topic and think I will make a large blog entry on it. Link to come.

  2. Hey, thanks for the insight Mike! Its fantastic that these audio classics are still around to enjoy. Its also nice to know that with a little investment in a true servicing, you can feel confident that it will perform well for many years down the road. Now that’s recycling!

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