Advent 300

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.

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Kenwood KR-5600

Produced from 1976-1978 the Kenwood KR-5600 was one of Kenwood's mid range receivers. Above it were the KR-6600 and the monster KR-9600. Below were the KR-4600, KR-3600 and entry level KR-2600. The KR-5600 retailed for around $250.00.

The KR-5600's blue lamps and wood side panels make it a very nice looking receiver. It's rated at 40 watts per channel at 8 Ohms. Kenwood had a history of making fine Ham radio equipment so the tuners in their mid to late 1970's receivers are excellent.

The KR-5600 is built well. It has direct coupled amplifier stages and a fully complimentary power output stage. User controls include negative feedback Bass and Treble controls, Loudness control and High filter.

The faceplate is made of brushed aluminum and the large tuning knob is balanced. There are meters for signal strength and tuning.

There are two inputs for phono and tape as well as an Aux input. There are outputs for two sets of speakers.

The KR-x600 receivers were Kenwood's flagship line in the mid 1970s and the KR-5600 fit in at the upper mid range of that line. It's a great receiver for those that don't want to spend Marantz style money and yet get performance at a similar level especially if you're looking for an exceptional tuning section. You can find a nice KR-5600 for around $200.

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