Pioneer SX-880

The Pioneer SX-xx80 series came after the SX-xx50. This Pioneer SX-880 is a classic example of that generation of Pioneer receivers and was the last of the 800 series. It premiered around 1978 and retailed for about $425 at the time.

The main aesthetic difference between the two series are the dark faced meters with white lettering. This change was made to improve visibility. The SX-880 produces 60 watts per channel with total harmonic distortion at 0.05%. It can handle a speaker impedance of 4 Ohms.

The tuning section utilizes a 3 gang variable capacitor tuner. Other features include:

  • Bass and Treble tone controls with tone defeat.
  • Low cut filter which cuts out ultra low frequency noise below 15Hz (like low pitch rumble from a turntable)
  • Independent left and right power meters
  • FM Muting
  • Stereo and Mono modes
  • Two tape in/outputs
  • One phono input
  • One Aux input
  • Duplicate switch
  • Loudness switch

The general consensus is that the xx80 series does not have quite the same quality build as the xx50 series did. As an example the Pioneer SX-850, which the SX-880 replaced, weighed 42 pounds (19.1 Kg) while the SX-880 weighs in at just 27 pounds (12.2 Kg). The SX-880’s dimensions are 19″ x 12.75″ x 5.5″.

Another issue with the SX-880 is that Pioneer used a number of IC’s in the design. Many of these IC’s are not easily found today so when one goes bad it can be difficult to replace.

While the Pioneer SX-880 has a few weaknesses it is still a very nice receiver with classic vintage styling and plenty of features. The 60 WPC is enough to fill most any room with sound. The SX-880 is also cheaper to buy than the SX-850. The SX-850 sells for around $500-$1000 while the SX-880 comes in at around $300-$600.

Available on eBay

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7 thoughts on “Pioneer SX-880

  1. Del Groves
    I just got this one from Ontario, Canada. It’s pristine in the original box with the owners manual. Not a scratch. It’s definitely an attractive receiver and I’m going to try it with a set of Bose 401s.

  2. I just carried one down the stairs to look at, trying to thin the herd up there. Looks great and powers up. The FM meters detects a signal and moves. I have not connected speakers to it. The only thing I see is the wood is stick on plastic and peeling along some edges. I thought about trying to use superglue but I’ll leave that to someone else. Worked years ago but has been collecting dust for 20+ years. Free if someone is serious about collecting and restoring. I won’t ship and I’m in Oklahoma. I’ll check back later for any replies.
    Really a great looking piece of history that needs a good home.

    1. Hello sir
      Do you stilL have Your SX-880? Im interested and I’m in Wichita Falls, where in Oklahoma are you located? Thanks for your time.

      1. Edmond, just north if OKC. I still have it, tried it with headphones and the preamps work, though a little scratchy in the pots.

      2. OK I got bored and found some decent speaker wires. Hooked up some JBL 2600s and it sounds really good. Very loud and strong but you have to work the crackly pots around to find the right spot. Apparently, it is wearing out it’s welcome on the dining room table and I don’t want to carry it back up the stairs. I forgot how heavy this old stuff can be.
        The face plate is near flawless, lights all work, no bent shafts or switches. Just that cheap vinyl stick on wood peeling in places. It’s all there if you can figure out how to glue it back down. Let’s figure out a way to get it to Texas.

        1. Bill
          Is your SX-880 still available? I have an SX-450 since new in 1977 and have really liked it.

          I’d like to add a Pioneer receiver between the SX-750, 780, …. up to SX-1050 range with my vintage Infinity pair.
          If you still have the SX-880, I’d appreciate contact from you. I’m from Pittsburg KS so not a far drive for me to pick up.
          Thanks,
          Steve M.
          (Retired)

          1. Steve, is there a way I can contact you? We shouldn’t post stuff like that here. I still have it.

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