Mar 182010

Review Preview.

For the last six months I have been gathering as many Japanese Hi-Fi tuners as I can, in order to conduct a large scale comparison of classic Japanese tuners ( so far 20 in total), for future editions of Adventures in High Fidelity Audio and it is my hope to be able to present the first in this series of in depth reviews very soon.

However to make it a more manageable task both for me to do and for you to read, I will be presenting this epic in small bite sized chunks. These will normally comprise no more than four tuners per article. This will either be based on year of release, or a comparison between a number of tuners from the same brand. For example one review might feature Sony, Pioneer, Akai and Kenwood tuners from say 1973/74, and another review might comprise, say four Sony tuners compared from 1970 to 1978. At this stage I have still to decide how I am going to conduct and present this mega review. However all the contestants are in and ready to go.

As a small taster of what is to come, I present at this time a gallery of photos of the Kenwood KT 8005 tuner.  This particular example I had to take apart upon receipt to check and clean. Like many of the vintage tuners I have picked up for this test, the state of cleanliness they come to me in leaves a lot to be desired. Unlike some (Sony in particular) this particular tuner did not require a complete removal of its tuning scale, only the removal of the front fascia, to allow cleaning.

For some reason bar the Sony 5000F (its tuning scale is sealed) all the other Sony’s I have obtained have been so dirty behind the tuning scale that these have needed to be removed to facilitate cleaning. This is easy to do, if you know how but should be done with care so as not to erase the tuning scale legends and the position of the scale should be marked before removal so you can avoid putting it back in the wrong position.

Sadly this particular sample while working fully before shipping to me, has arrived with the tuning VU meter bulb now dead, though the meter thankfully is still fully functional; just now very hard to see working.

I have 4 Kenwood tuners lined up as part of the review(so far), the KT 8005, KT7300, KT3050 and the KT5020….

The front of the tuner with the fascia removed, showing the tuning scale, illuminated pointer, Tuning and Signal strength VU meters, function indicators, and the exposed shanks of the various buttons and knobs.

The fascia, with various knobs and button tops.

The inside of the tuner powered up, showing the back of the display with the various bulbs lit.

The front fascia of the tuner powered up.

I will save photos of the fully assembled tuner until the review proper…. watch Adventures in High Fidelity Audio for much more, very soon.


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