Released around 1977 the Advent 300 receiver was an interesting piece of equipment. It was built to meet an affordable price point which meant that the build quality was not up to high end audio standards. However, the phono preamp stage was designed by Tom Holman of LucasFilm THX fame and is one of the better phono preamps in existence. It can hold its own even today.
The Advent 300 retailed for about $265. As you can see its design is not traditional as it does not have a long horizontal dial face but rather a geared rotary knob for tuning. It only produces 15 watts of power per channel and only has an FM tuner. The tuner gets mixed reviews with some loving it and others less enthusiastic.
As we mentioned the build quality was somewhat dubious. Early models suffered from background hum which was later resolved by adding a grounding strap. The output transistors are also sketchy. Many times if you pull the bottom from one of these Advent 300 receivers you’ll see a number of different colored transistors which means it’s been repaired. Some have said that the 2SB633/2SD613 transistor is a good replacement for the originals.
If you want to see a comprehensive restoration process check out David Reaton’s site. He covers the most common problems with the 300.
Advent also produced a silver face model of the 300 which is much harder to find than the black face model.
Despite its shortcomings the Advent 300 is a nice little receiver. If you have a small room or garage and want a top notch phono stage then this might be the unit for you. You can pick up a restored unit for under $300 and a workable one for around $200.