Introduced in 1980 the Marantz SR-1000 was a budget minded receiver that produced 20 watts per channel. It retailed for $275. Superscope sold the Marantz brand to Philips Electronics in 1980, so the SR line may be the first one produced under Philips although most of the design must have occurred under Superscope. Build quality was definitely on the downswing at that time and the SR line reflects that. Still, they’re not bad considering the quality of audio products (from almost all manufacturers) that came in the years to follow. And, they were made in Japan.
The SR-1000 receiver, and SR line in general, essentially signified the end of the dominant Marantz era and ushered in the eventual decline of Marantz as a high end brand.
Despite questions about its build quality the SR-1000 looks great. It still has the classic Marantz look with the silver face and Marantz gyro touch tuning wheel. The SR line has an interesting dial indicator in which the pointer is part of a larger clear plastic square. It has treble and bass tone controls, loudness and muting buttons and a headphone jack.
The Marantz SR-1000 has power meters for both the right and left channels. This was definitely a marketing idea because with only 20 watts per channel there isn’t much need for power meters. But, they do look cool.
The Marantz SR-1000 was at the bottom end of the Marantz lineup at the time. Also, available were the SR-2000 at 46 wpc, SR-4000 at 73 wpc, and the SR-6000 at 91 wpc. The SR-6000 was basically double the cost of the SR-1000 at $550.
The cabinet for the SR-1000 reflects the deteriorating build quality. It is made of masonite (particle board) with a faux wood vinyl veneer.
According to owners of the Marantz SR-1000 it is a great sounding receiver. Here’s what some had to say about it:
- This is a very nice sounding 20WPC receiver that would make a great entry level unit for those just getting into vinyl.
- The looks are absolutely gorgeous for an entry level unit, ignore what little is said about this unit on other audio sites this receiver is very open and full, the bass, mid range and treble are spot on along with the imaging.
- The sound is silky smooth and reveals its best in the mid-range which is rich and warm in harmonics. It works well with acoustic instruments and voices. It makes most things sound good and is never fatiguing.
The next step up in the SR lineup, the SR-2000 gets you an additional 10 watts per channel and a midrange tone control.
The transformer in the SR-1000 isn’t very big and the unit also utilized STK modules which can be problematic. Over time the thermal paste under the module can deteriorate causing it to overheat. Sometimes just replacing the thermal paste can remedy any issues. Also, one owner noted that there are two versions of the SR-1000, one with the STK 463 module and one with an STK 461.
- Tuning range: FM, MW
- Power output: 20 watts per channel into 8Ω (stereo)
- Frequency response: 15Hz to 40kHz
- Total harmonic distortion: 0.09%
- Damping factor: 36
- Input sensitivity: 2.7mV (MM), 160mV (line)
- Signal to noise ratio: 84dB (MM), 96dB (line)
- Output: 580mV (line)
- Speaker load impedance: 4Ω (minimum)
- Semiconductors: 7 x IC, 8 x transistors, 13 x diodes, 1 x FET
- Dimensions: 18.3 x 6.1 x 13.4 inch (466 x 140 x 323mm)
- Weight: 16 lbs (7.3kg)
On the back panel there are connections for 2 sets of speakers, Phono (turntable), auxiliary, and a Tape player.
Although the build quality is not as high as the 22XX series, the Marantz SR-1000 still has all the hallmark signatures and styling of the earlier Marantz products. A 22xx receiver is a better choice, but if you don’t want to pay that kind of money for a vintage stereo but still want the cool look and at least decent performance, then the SR line from Marantz may be a good choice.