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Tuners FM, HD, Satellite

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  #11  
Old 12-27-2016, 12:08 PM
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Good read. Thanks!
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  #12  
Old 12-27-2016, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintage Pete View Post
Dan.....a thoroughly enjoyable and informative read, as always. I find this tuner very attractive and it's obviously a serious tuner. One look inside makes that very obvious. I've always had a love for tuners, as you know, and consider a system incomplete without one.

Thanks for a most enjoyable review. I expect I'll be revisiting it more than once...I just love a great tuner!
Pete.......Thank you. Your stable of McIntosh tuners is impressive. It would probably be difficult to squeeze a Magnum Dynalab MD108t into any of your five or six systems, although I have little doubt you would enjoy the listening experience.
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STUDIO - McIntosh C1000C/P, MC2301 (2), MR88, Aurender N10, Esoteric K-01X, Shunyata Sigma spdif digital cable, Sonos Connect, PurePower 2000, Stillpoints, Furutech Flux 50, Michell Gyro SE, Michell HR Power Supply, SME 309, Ortofon Cadenza Black, Wireworld, Sonus faber Amati Anniversario
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VINTAGE - McIntosh MA230, Tandberg 3011A tuner, Olive 04HD, Sony DTC-59ES DAT, McIntosh 4300V, JBL 4312A
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  #13  
Old 12-27-2016, 02:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cleeds View Post
Dan, thanks for the comparo. You did a great job with this.

I wrestle with the idea of a new tuner. I've been using a Mac MR-80 since I bought it new decades ago ... back when I was using a biamped Infinity RS 2.5 speaker system. At that time, an excellent tuner was at the heart of virtually every serious hi-fi system. I bought the MR-80 after auditioning a bunch of other top tuners. At the time, it was arguably the best available.

The MR-80 has been serviced a few times over the years and still sounds great, but of course the quality of FM has declined steadily over time. It's not only the programming that has suffered, but SQ as well. The addition of an HD signal contaminates the analog FM signal, imo ... at least to a point, and most FM stations compress their audio much more than was common back in FM's heyday. So while it's always been true that an FM tuner is only as good as the signal it receives, high quality FM signals are more rare than ever.

Even though I still listen to FM, all this makes it very difficult for me to justify the cost of a new FM tuner. I love the look of the Magnum Dynalab tuners and they've sounded great when I heard them at audio shows and - were I to upgrade - I'd also consider another Mac. But to spend that kind of dough just for FM? It's difficult to rationalize here in the third millennium.

Of course, much in our little audio pursuit is difficult to justify, so perhaps it's not fair to single out FM for warranting spending restraint. Since buying the MR-80, I've gone through a few speaker systems, preamps, amps and sources. Every change has resulted in a worthy audible improvement. Would an upgrade from an MR-80 also result in improvement? Quite likely! Would it be worth the thousands of $$$$ necessary to get there? It's a thought I ponder.

This review gives me a little more to consider - so thanks for that, Dan. Perhaps it is fortunate that I have no local dealer or pal to loan me a new Magnum Dynalab. Without the benefit of a direct comparison, the MR-80 still sounds great.
cleeds.......You are welcome, and thank you. I understand the general decline in quality FM broadcasting over the past two or three decades but fortunately it is not a universal fact. There are still some very good FM signals to be received and quality programming. When you have an FM station that broadcasts an uncompressed full bandwidth signal the reception quality is remarkable, presenting an excellent source of music for any high-end sound system. Many audio enthusiasts discount FM tuners, never thinking of one as a legitimate high-end source component. All I can say to those people is, "Too bad for them". Tuners like the Magnum Dynalab MD108t, the McIntosh MR88, the vintange MR78, and a few others deliver exceptional sound on par with other source components in a sound system.

I agree with you that the price of admission at the Magnum Dynalab MD108t level and up is steep. An Audio enthusiast only has to consider the price of other system components to determine whether the performance of a high-end FM tuner makes sense in their system. Thinking of an FM tuner as a high-end source component adds perspective to its value. I am one who has always had a quality FM tuner in every system I ever assembled. My tuners are enjoyed regularly and I don't see that changing.
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STUDIO - McIntosh C1000C/P, MC2301 (2), MR88, Aurender N10, Esoteric K-01X, Shunyata Sigma spdif digital cable, Sonos Connect, PurePower 2000, Stillpoints, Furutech Flux 50, Michell Gyro SE, Michell HR Power Supply, SME 309, Ortofon Cadenza Black, Wireworld, Sonus faber Amati Anniversario
LIVING ROOM - McIntosh C2300, MC75 (2), MR85, Magnum Dynalab 205, Simaudio MOON Neo 260D-T, Schiit Audio Yggdrasil, Aurender N100H, Shunyata Sigma USB cable, Micro Seiki DD40, Ortofon Cadenza Blue, Nakamichi BX-300, Sony 60ES DAT, PS Audio P10, Furutech Flux 50, Sonos Connect, Stillpoints, Wireworld, Kimber, PMC EB1i, JL Audio f113
VINTAGE - McIntosh MA230, Tandberg 3011A tuner, Olive 04HD, Sony DTC-59ES DAT, McIntosh 4300V, JBL 4312A

Last edited by jdandy; 12-27-2016 at 04:29 PM. Reason: correct typo
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  #14  
Old 12-27-2016, 02:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GaryProtein View Post
I have an academic interest in how the Magnum Dynalab 108t/109 stacks up against the Accuphase T1100 tuner.

I say an academic interest because the FM quality and available music programming quality in New York is in the toilet and I will probably never buy another tuner.

I know, I had to throw a wrench into the mix.
Gary.......I knew I could count on your participation in a tuner discussion.


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STUDIO - McIntosh C1000C/P, MC2301 (2), MR88, Aurender N10, Esoteric K-01X, Shunyata Sigma spdif digital cable, Sonos Connect, PurePower 2000, Stillpoints, Furutech Flux 50, Michell Gyro SE, Michell HR Power Supply, SME 309, Ortofon Cadenza Black, Wireworld, Sonus faber Amati Anniversario
LIVING ROOM - McIntosh C2300, MC75 (2), MR85, Magnum Dynalab 205, Simaudio MOON Neo 260D-T, Schiit Audio Yggdrasil, Aurender N100H, Shunyata Sigma USB cable, Micro Seiki DD40, Ortofon Cadenza Blue, Nakamichi BX-300, Sony 60ES DAT, PS Audio P10, Furutech Flux 50, Sonos Connect, Stillpoints, Wireworld, Kimber, PMC EB1i, JL Audio f113
VINTAGE - McIntosh MA230, Tandberg 3011A tuner, Olive 04HD, Sony DTC-59ES DAT, McIntosh 4300V, JBL 4312A
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  #15  
Old 12-27-2016, 04:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdandy View Post
cleeds....... ... There are still some very good FM signals to be received and quality programming. When you have an FM station that broadcasts an uncompressed full bandwidth signal the reception quality is remarkable, presenting an excellent source of music for any high-end sound system. Many audio enthusiasts discount FM tuners, never thinking of one as a legitimate high-end source component. All I can say to those people is, "Too bad for them"... Thinking of an FM tuner as a high-end source component adds perspective to its value. I am one who has always had a quality FM tuner in every system I ever assembled. My tuners are enjoyed regularly and I don't see that changing.
Dan, I agree with you 100 percent. The potential fidelity of FM can surprise many listeners and audiophiles.

I see on the popular audio auction site that a dealer has a demo MD-109 up for sale. Coincidence?

Last edited by jdandy; 12-27-2016 at 04:29 PM. Reason: correct typo in quote
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  #16  
Old 12-27-2016, 04:42 PM
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I just logged on to post a comment of that very nature.

First, I think Ivan is a MD dealer. Second, Jim Richards of MD is always willing to have a conversation. I got my 108T slightly reconditioned, after another customer decided that they really wanted the SE after 1 month of ownership. So, I got a full warranty at a good discount. Plus, they often have plain old used units on the site. One of the things that I like about them is the continuing relationship and willingness to provide an upgrade path, etc. When I bought mine, I had purchased an older MD model and Jim also gave me a good trade on it (better than I think I could have gotten on the open market - of course, that's like the trade value on a car, which is ... shall we say ... malleable).

So, if you're interested, there may be all sorts of options.
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  #17  
Old 12-27-2016, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cleeds View Post
Dan, I agree with you 100 percent. The potential fidelity of FM can surprise many listeners and audiophiles.

I see on the popular audio auction site that a dealer has a demo MD-109 up for sale. Coincidence?
cleeds.......Yes, I saw that MD109 on Agon last night. The big touch screen display in the middle of the face is a turn off for me. I prefer the tactile experience of touching real switches on an analog tuner and find it far more appealing than tapping on a touch screen, not to mention the touch screen looks ugly with fingerprints showing when it's turned off. The MD108t is it for me.
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STUDIO - McIntosh C1000C/P, MC2301 (2), MR88, Aurender N10, Esoteric K-01X, Shunyata Sigma spdif digital cable, Sonos Connect, PurePower 2000, Stillpoints, Furutech Flux 50, Michell Gyro SE, Michell HR Power Supply, SME 309, Ortofon Cadenza Black, Wireworld, Sonus faber Amati Anniversario
LIVING ROOM - McIntosh C2300, MC75 (2), MR85, Magnum Dynalab 205, Simaudio MOON Neo 260D-T, Schiit Audio Yggdrasil, Aurender N100H, Shunyata Sigma USB cable, Micro Seiki DD40, Ortofon Cadenza Blue, Nakamichi BX-300, Sony 60ES DAT, PS Audio P10, Furutech Flux 50, Sonos Connect, Stillpoints, Wireworld, Kimber, PMC EB1i, JL Audio f113
VINTAGE - McIntosh MA230, Tandberg 3011A tuner, Olive 04HD, Sony DTC-59ES DAT, McIntosh 4300V, JBL 4312A
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  #18  
Old 12-27-2016, 05:10 PM
cleeds cleeds is offline
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^^^^^^ Hmmmm, I'm not sure I should be hanging around with guys like you ... ; |

Ivan, is this rumor that you are a MD dealer true?
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  #19  
Old 12-27-2016, 05:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdandy View Post
cleeds.......Yes, I saw that MD109 on Agon last night. The big touch screen display in the middle of the face is a turn off for me. I prefer the tactile experience of touching real switches on an analog tuner and find it far more appealing than tapping on a touch screen, not to mention the touch screen looks ugly with fingerprints showing when it's turned off. The MD108t is it for me.
For me it would be a trade-off. I like the real switches, too. But the blue face of the MD-109 does have a rather warm Binghamton-type appeal, no?
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  #20  
Old 12-27-2016, 05:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cleeds View Post
^^^^^^ Hmmmm, I'm not sure I should be hanging around with guys like you ... ; |

Ivan, is this rumor that you are a MD dealer true?
Curtis.......I'll speak up for Ivan, yes he is a Magnum Dynalab dealer. This one fact keeps me in constant danger of picking up the phone and placing an order. . . . . . . . . . . . .
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STUDIO - McIntosh C1000C/P, MC2301 (2), MR88, Aurender N10, Esoteric K-01X, Shunyata Sigma spdif digital cable, Sonos Connect, PurePower 2000, Stillpoints, Furutech Flux 50, Michell Gyro SE, Michell HR Power Supply, SME 309, Ortofon Cadenza Black, Wireworld, Sonus faber Amati Anniversario
LIVING ROOM - McIntosh C2300, MC75 (2), MR85, Magnum Dynalab 205, Simaudio MOON Neo 260D-T, Schiit Audio Yggdrasil, Aurender N100H, Shunyata Sigma USB cable, Micro Seiki DD40, Ortofon Cadenza Blue, Nakamichi BX-300, Sony 60ES DAT, PS Audio P10, Furutech Flux 50, Sonos Connect, Stillpoints, Wireworld, Kimber, PMC EB1i, JL Audio f113
VINTAGE - McIntosh MA230, Tandberg 3011A tuner, Olive 04HD, Sony DTC-59ES DAT, McIntosh 4300V, JBL 4312A

Last edited by jdandy; 12-27-2016 at 05:26 PM.
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