The Marantz Model 22, or Twenty Two, was the first all solid state receiver from Marantz. It was also the first Marantz receiver to have an AM tuner. Introduced in 1969 at a retail price of $449 it was near the top of the Marantz receiver lineup. At the time Marantz offered the Model 19, Model 22, Model 26, and Model 27. The Model 19 was the top of the line at 50 watts per channel and a hefty $1000 retail price. The next in line was the Model 22 at 40 watts per channel. The Models 19, 22, 26 and 27 preceded the later, and more popular today, 22xx series from Marantz.
The Model 22 has the classic Marantz aesthetic with its horizontally-mounted tuning wheel on the elegant gold and black front panel. It came in a metal wood grained case but there was an optional walnut wood cabinet (WC-4 or WC-3) available for an extra $25. Some try to use the WC-22 case but I think the face of the Model 22 receiver is slightly smaller than the 22XX series of Marantz receivers so there may be a small gap around the receiver. It would still work though.
The Model 22 has the classic Marantz front panel design with a horizontal tuning wheel for station selection. The top half of the panel has the tuning wheel, dial, indicator lights, and tuning and signal strength meters. The bottom half has knobs and buttons for controls. Overall, the front panel layout of the Model 22 is both elegant and functionally aesthetic.
The controls include a mode selector, balance, volume, bass, and treble knobs. Push buttons allow the choice of left or right channels, high frequency blending, low/high frequency filters, loudness contour, muting, and speaker selection.
There are jacks on the front and rear for connecting tape decks to dub/record. Not a common feature among receivers.
- Power Output: 40W into 8Ω (stereo)
- Frequency Response: 20Hz to 20kHz
- Distortion: 0.3%
- Damping Factor: 35
- Signal to Noise Ratio: 80dB (line)
- Dimensions: 5-1/2 x 17 x 15″
- Weight: 37 lbs
- Year: 1969
- Price: $449
The FM tuner in the Model 22 has a FET front end, and there are three IC’s plus two ceramic filters in the i.f. amplifier. The stereo FM separation of the Model 22 is excellent.
The Model 22 receiver incorporates an interesting “Antenna Tuning” function that minimizes multipath distortion, which occurs when the FM signal reaches the antenna via multiple reflection paths, causing interference and degraded audio. Pressing this Antenna Tuning button temporarily switches the FM circuits to detect any AM signals being picked up. Since a pure FM signal lacks an AM component, any meter deflection indicates the presence of multipath. By adjusting the antenna to minimize both meter movement and audible distortion, you can optimize reception by reducing interfering multipath signals. This clever technique enables “tuning out” multipath simply by observing the meter without needing more complex test equipment or procedures.
The amplifier and preamp in the Model 22 are very good and, when tested, exceeded the rated specifications with very low distortion, noise, and flat response. The driver stage uses a single circuit board with a push-pull symmetric layout. Apart from the input, it employs a direct-coupled design with degenerative feedback for improved performance.
- The rated power output is 40 watts per channel into 8 ohm speakers with under 0.3% distortion – but actual measured performance in tests exceeds the specs.
- Output power increased to 50 watts per channel into 4 ohm speakers.
- Measured distortion was very low – under 0.1% from 1 to 50 watts, only rising significantly at clipping above 50 watts.
- Harmonic distortion remained below 0.14% from 20Hz to 20kHz at full rated power.
- Hum and noise levels are exceptionally low.
- RIAA phono equalization iss accurate within ±0.7 dB.
- Frequency response is ruler flat, within ±0.1 dB from 20Hz to 20kHz.
- Tone controls have shifting inflection points to avoid affecting midrange.
- Filters have gentle 6dB/octave slopes with turnover points at 80Hz and 5kHz.
Decent power and really nicely built. When “tuned up”, the Model 22 is a good unit. One of the more powerful pieces of that era.
The phono stage is very good!
Hi-Fi Stereo Review said this about the Marantz Model 22:
“The performance of this new receiver can only be described as superb. It is the first Marantz receiver to include
an AM tuner, the quality of which seems to be at least as good as any other currently available. However, the FM
and audio sections of the Marantz Model 22 decisively set it apart from other receivers, and prove that, if the manufacturer wants to, it is possible to design an integrated receiver that will match the performance of the most advanced separate components.”
The interior of the Model 22 shows quite a bit of hand built construction as opposed to the later 22xx series receivers.
The rear panel of the Marantz Model 22 has the following features:
- It has one switched and one unswitched power outlet to plug in other components.
- There is a button to reset the protection circuit if it trips.
- It has inputs and outputs for 2 turntables, an auxiliary device, and a tape deck.
- There are terminals for two sets of speakers.
- The speaker and antenna terminals use spring-loaded piano key tabs to clamp wires securely in place without screws that can loosen or cause shorts.
- The antenna terminals work with either 300 ohm or 75 ohm coaxial cable to properly match antenna impedance, though 300 ohm shielded cable is recommended to reduce interference.
The Model 22 was Marantz’s first all solid state receiver, probably designed by Standard Radio of Japan but modified to Marantz specs. It’s not as powerful or finely crafted as later models, but has the quality characteristics of a Marantz piece of equipment at a more affordable price point today when compared to earlier Marantz tube designs or the later more coveted 22xx series receivers. While not outstanding in specifications, the Model 22 established the future direction for Marantz’s smooth, musical sound in solid state integrated amps. Well-constructed with quality transformers, it and subsequent 22xx iterations remain popular vintage choices before Marantz production moved away from their discerning high-end designs. The Model 22 offers a taste of the Marantz sound that defined an era, without the sky-high cost of earlier tube rarities.