The most likely King of the Yamaha family is the CR-3020 but the Queen is probably the CR-2040. You might get some arguments from owners of the CR-2020 but the Yamaha CR-2040 could probably be considered a “Monster” receiver given it’s size and power output. It 1979 it retailed for $859.00 which was a hefty sum of money back then. Of course the CR-3020 was priced at $1500.00 so I guess it’s all relative. Probably underrated at 120 watts per channel, with less than 0.02% THD, this power hungry receiver can easily power most any set of speakers you can find. Many would say that the CR-2020 is a better looking receiver but that the CR-2040 has a better sound.
Of course this is one of Yamaha’s “Natural Sound” receivers and when one usually listens to one of these receivers for the first time it may sound as though it’s lacking a little in bass. The reality most likely is that other receiver manufacturers “color” their circuitry to emphasize more bass so that’s what many listeners are used to hearing. The Yamaha circuitry does not do this so you are hearing the sound closer to how it is actually supposed to sound.
The CR-2040 has just about every feature and function you could want including:
- Triple tone controls with variable contours for each
- Variable loudness
- Speakers Off,A,B,A+B
- Aux/CD, Phono MM/MC, Tape1, Tape2, AM, FM
- Pre out
- Headphones out A,B (2 sets)
- Meter: Level/Signal
- Filters: High, Low
- Muting – 20 dB
- Rec out selector for all functions
- Phono selector: MC/ MM/33/47/68/100 kOhms
- Adaptor On/Off
- FM Auto/Local
- FM Muting/OTS On/Off
- 3 extra power outlets, switched/unswitched
You might notice in the pictures that one of the CR-2040’s has a “shroud” case where the wood case extends over the edge of the metal faceplate. The other CR-2040 has a case that is flush with the faceplate. The U.S. version is the shroud case while the flush cases were marketed in Europe. Not sure why they made them different but I prefer the flush case. The CR-2040 weighs in at around 46 pounds and its dimensions are 23″ x 16″ x 6 1/2″ so it doesn’t fit in a lot of 20″ wide stereo cabinets.
Since the Yamaha CR-2040 is essentially considered a monster receiver it gets a lot of attention when up for sale. Not as much as a Pioneer SX-1250 or Yamaha CR-3020 but it still can sell for a hefty price.