Magnum Dynalab 106T with poor reception...Help

I'm in Amherst, MA, where my car radios pull in a whole slew of stations. My MD 106 T has beautiful sound to die for, but only pulls in ONE station, a strong local NPR. I added a MD whip antenna (ST-2), but all it did was add a few stations with very poor reception. Sure, I had planned on putting up a MD mast antenna outside anyway, in an attempt to get distant stations, but really, shouldn't I reasonably expect to get reception at least as good as a stock car radio?

So, is there a problem with the tuner? Ought it be sent in for occupational rehabilitation?

Also...How does one know when a tube goes bad in a tuner? Static?
The FM signal is line of sight type transmission. Hills between the transmitter and your antenna will effect the signal. Reflecting surfaces can cause multipath distortion (getting the signal from two different directions, for example one direct and one bouncing off a nearby surface such as a large building nearby etc. I'm glad you are planning on an outside antenna - best kind to use is a directional antenna with a rotor so you can point it at the transmitter for whichever station you want to listen to. I would imagine that in western Mass your going to have quite a few problems with FM because of all of the hills (especially if you live in a valley. Your car antenna probably works better as its outdoors and is omni directional and constantly moving - would work well for local stations in any direction. Your situation is not unusual at all.

You can usually tell you have a tube problem as the tone will get dullish, or one channel will get noisy before the other (its possible they could both get noisy at the same time). It might sound like static, more likely snap, crackle & pop.
Living in Ca. where almost every house has a stucco exterior with a chicken wire base you just can't get much radio reception indoors. I built a simple FM dipole antenna and have had great reception. I just mount the dipole under the eve of my roof and the antenna is inconspicious and performs great. Just look-up FM dipole on Google and you'll get lots of help.
There is something wrong with the tuner. First, let's get my general bias out the way: The basic design of these things is rubbish stuffed with a few premium components, like a lot of audiophile gear. The high blend circuit stinks, the distortion is 10x higher than it needs to be, the stereo separation stinks, and the frequency response is godawful. This is a description of an FT101A, but perhaps they've vastly improved the new models. I doubt it. Still, they usually are quite sensitive, on the redeeming side.

Magnums puke and die when confronted with strong signals. They typically do well on weak signal precisely because they use a cruddy front end with very little selectivity and gobs of gain. If it isn't pulling stations, send it back and tell them to realign it. A standard $2.00 dipole from Best Buy will work just as well as the MD whip, and should do as well as a car antenna.

Best option: Sell it and buy an old McIntosh MR78, or any number of quality Japanese tuners. Second best: Send it to someone who knows their stuff to align it and fix it up right. Third best: Send it back to the twits who built it and tell them to fix it.
Ryanmh1,dont sugarcoat it,tell it like it is...Bob
Go to and learn more about tuners. Also on Yahoo groups go to:
and ask questions. These guys know everything there is to know about tuners. I'll say this: A good modded vintage tuner will blow away the Magnum in sound quality and any other way you want to measure it. My tuner sounds like a cd when the broadcast is using a cd or an lp when the broadcast is using an lp. It's a modded Kenwood Kt 7500 that Jim Rivers modded for me with a yagi antenna on the roof. If I hadn't heard this quality from a "radio" myself I'd have never believed it as I've owned many good tuners. For 350 or 400 bucks you can find modded tuners here and on Ebay occasionally. The poster above is being totally honest with you. A friend of mine bought one of those Magnums and disappointed is what he is. It replaced an old Denon he had (paid 40 at a hock shop) and probably sounds worse and is worse at picking up stations. The old analog tuners modded will open up a new world for you.
You would be surprised how good an upgraded FT-101 can sound. By upgrading the power supply, audio output IC and caps, plus better IF filters, and modification of the blend circuit, the newer versions are not any better, perhaps worse. On the other hand, the SAE T2 Six, Luxman T-110 and T-02, Sansui TU 517, McIntosh MR-74, Sony ST-550ES, and a few others with mods are also wonderful sounding tuners -- all without spending $5,6000.