Kept it a few years and fixed the amplifier. Sold it after a while. I was able to get my money back. Not being a smart ass or trying to be disrespectful (everyone hears differently or there would be no need for so many different models of equipment ( but I really did not care for the sound of SPEC equipment. I also try and run all American made stuff. Looking back I have wished that I had kept it and totally restored it. Then I would have known exactly what it sounded like.
I think this was the 3rd. best deal I ever scored. I did not try to talk him down as I was speechless . It was his Dads and his wife said get that out of the house right now ! $75.00 (not a misprint)
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Jim: It seems you are trying to keep in the same vintage and model series as your Pioneer receiver. That doesn't seem to be a bad price, if it's an original-owner-deck.
I don't have experience with the 500, but I do have a Pioneer CT-F550. It's a good deck in playback and recording. It was produced in 1980-81 and is metal capable. I have a few videos of it, I can upload, later.
Now, my love for Teac is strong, so a silver face A-300 (or similar) might be a nice idea to pair with it. I think any metal capable deck would be too new, but I don't know the manufacture year of the SX-580...
I'm looking at a few eBay Pioneer cassette decks. Anything with the fluorescent display would be too new, so I can discount some pretty quickly. The F7272 (for example) seems well-appointed and can be had for round about $200. I know very little about the Pioneer line.
Since you know the line so well, what would be a decent, not TOTL, 1979 cassette offering to compliment it (if I don't go Teac)?
And I'm planning to go through the unit today. It sounds fine but I found an overhaul video on YouTube and it was pretty basic. In that particular unit, distortion on one channel was cured by tightening the mount screws of the heat sink (which is the ground for the Darlingtons I believe), and the scope trace sharpened right up. Since it works fine, I'll just clean the pots and tuner variable capacitor; deox the ground traces of the same, wash the pots out and add some D100, and check the heat sink screws. None of the pots are making noise (today), but no reason not to go through it, while the hood is open. The "wood" (vinyl) finish is rough so I'm contemplating some real wood veneer to replace it. Maybe rosewood, if the price is reasonable...
All knobs will get the usual ultrasonic bath in 90% isoporpyl to remove THC and corona.
underside of the boards gets washed down and all screws tightened (these weren’t bad)
Face and glass (in and out) cleaned. Final step on the glass is lens cleaning wipes, which really make a difference.
before (play) and after (the rest) on the RCA connectors.
Inside cleaned up; all original bulbs work! I don’t like the look of LEDs in this old gear. To harsh looking, even when dropped down in brightness.
Knobs (that I could remove) after cleaning. Push buttons didn’t want to come and I didn’t want to break them (or the switches), so they got cleaned in place.
tuning in with a spool of hook-up wire for an antenna. Looking sharp; meters dancing, and all lights work.
View from the top. I’m glad I took a few extra minutes detailing inside, because you can see Everything! Just washing it down didn’t help with the baked-on tar/dust cement…
A couple things I found:
Although the heat sink was pretty tight to the board, the screws holding the Darlingtons against the heat sink were quite loose. I could see the split lock washers were not flat. I took a screwdriver bit in a box wrench to tighten them without removing the front panel.
It’s a humble unit but a handsome one I think!
listening with headphones, it is dead-quiet between stations. That video I watches pointed out cleaning the ground wipers on the tuning capacitor (VERY CAREFULLY) avoiding the fins. I sprayed D100 onto a piece of glass and applied it with a small stiff paintbrush. Oxide/sulfide came right off.