best Marantz tuners?

I have a Sansui TU-717 tuner and love the sound. However, I love the look and build of the classic Marantz stuff. Some of their older tuners, with scopes for example, look so great. I have a 2250B rcvr and it is nice.
Anyway, I am thinking of going for a classic Marantz tuner.

What would be the short list of their best tuners?
Would it be a step up from the TU-717?


Take a look at this website:

Lots of tuner info (as the url hints), including plenty of Marantz gear.

I like the looks/sound of the Marantz tuners also.

The top tier would be the 10b,20 and 20b.

Next: 125/150. Never heard a 2130 but think it would be here to.

You might check out a 120b. It has a large scope and sounds decent.
The 10B was their best tuner but a modified 717 may well be better. Two of my friends are very serious FM fans and they are both very high on Sansui, one has at least 5 including the TU-X1. I met him when I sold him my second Kenwood 917. If you change it will be for looks, not the sound, not that there is anything wrong with that.
Don't ignore more modern Marantz tuners. I am now using a ST-17 and am growing to appreciate it as much if not more than my cherished Mac MR 80. Just because it is not "vintage" does not mean it is not a first class tuner -- and it is!

I do prefer the looks of vintage Marantz. This is for our living room, formal system so looks are a factor for sure.
I have the Sansui TU-717 right now driving a Nait Naim 5i amp and Paradigm Studio-20 speakers.

I will also try moding the 717 to see how good I can make the sound. Could use a bit more bass.

If looks (and good bass) are a factor, you should check out a Marantz 150; very cool looks including a beautiful oscilloscope and excellent sound overall. If you don't find one you like, let me know - I just might happen to know where you could find one :)
I had a model 150 for about 10 years and thought the sound was merely good. What made me keep it so long was the 'scope. I loved being able to use its auxilary input to check in/out phase, mono/stereo content, channel balance, etc. Using a 'scope for fm tuning is unparalleled with its ability to read signal strength, center tuning, mono/stereo content...well, you scope tuner users know! By the way, the am section was way better than average. But, I'm sorry to say when I went to a Onyko T-9090 Mk.ll there was no contest: the Onyko outperformed the 150 and sounded much superior. Yet, I still miss the Marantz and hope someday to get another scope tuner.

Do you think any manufacturer will offer a new scope tuner? I think there's an audiophile market for it though it would be pricey!
10b is the top, model twenty is next up, still has the scope and is more affordable.
One thing to keep in mind is that each model has some potential - but depending on it's age and how well it has been maintained (in terms of components and alignment) you might or might not hear that potential; I'm pretty sure a Marantz 150 operating at spec would sound very good; I've listened to a Marantz 10B, Yamaha CT-7000, Sony 5130, Yamaha T-2, and the Marantz 150 is a fine tuner if it has been maintained properly.
I'll second and re-emphasize Hi_hifi's comment about condition being a very major variable.

Also, if you are not already, be aware that a 10B in excellent condition will probably cost about as much as the retail prices of your amp and speakers combined. It is also an extremely complex design (the number of small components under its chassis is jaw-dropping), and its performance is likely to not be at or near its best if it has not been worked over in the last decade or two, by someone with the right expertise.

Another important consideration is the signal strength of the stations you will listen to, that you can receive at your location and with your antenna. If the stations you will be listening to are strong, and if you have not encountered significant issues with multipath distortion, I suspect that most of the choices that have been mentioned, and many others, will do well for you.

Before making a decision, I would suggest that in addition to the solid state units that have been mentioned you also consider the 1960's tube tuners that were made by Scott and Fisher, or the McIntosh's if you want to spend somewhat more. You'll find a pretty wide variety of "looks" to choose among, and if signal strength is good, and their condition is good, many of them will provide sound quality that approaches the 10B level.

-- Al