Magnum or Fanfare Tuner. Which Sounds the Best?

Of the Magnum tuners in the less than $1600 range including FT-101A, MD-90, MD-100, how do any of these compare to the comparably prices Fanfare FT-1A FM tuner?

Which tuner simply sounds better, Magnum or Fanfare?
They both sound great. I own the Fanfare and chose it over the Magnum because it came with the balanced outputs, remote control, and other ergonomics having little to do with sound quality. I wish that I could tell you that my tuner sounds way better than the competitive Magnum model, but I cannot. I will say that in my system the Fanfare seemed to have better bass than the Etude that I compared it with when I was shopping them both. That could very well have been a function of the Fanfare being able to better capture the station. The Fanfare is the better buy than the Magnum Dynalabs and I would say comprable to the MD-100, better than the MD-90, and better than the FT-101A. Good Luck
I have a FT101A Magnum Dynalab I scored here a while back for $400. Just like new, and sounds great. I haven't heard the Fanfare but most folks who've posted about them are happy as well. I don't think you'll go too far wrong either way. The 101A sounds better than a bunch of well-regarded vintage solid state tuners I've owned.

These may well be so similar sounding that cosmetics would be the sole deciding factor. Marv Southcott of Fanfare was in on the earlier Dynalab designs before jumping ship & founding Fanfare. I bought my FT101 from him right off the floor at a Chicago CES long ago.
you should try the Creek t43 some time. It's easily as good as the above, and retails for a paultry $700...used around $400 or less. Best tuner I ever heard for under several $K. Good luck
One thing you do want to keep in mind that no matter how good the tuner may be, the antenna can make or break it. If memory servers, its been awhile, there are $20,000 bows to go with the 6 figur priced violins or bass'. In fact, a lesser tuner with the better antenna may outperform the better tuner with a lesser antena. Its a generalization, but.... I own the Fanfare ft-1a and it is a nice tuner. But nobody in the area broadcasts well and I'm just using the whip fm-2g since I'm in an apartment, so I don't know its maximum potential. But my instincts sent me towards it instead of the magnums.
Having heard both the MD90 and MD100, I purchased the Fanfare. They all sounded very similar. The Fanfare had a better low end than the Magnums. The tuning quality seemed all the same.

Ultimately, it was the appearance and remote that got my business. I didn't have to pay extra to have a silver face on or silver cabling in the Fanfare FT-1A. It was an extra $100 for a silver faceplate on the Magnum. And you can put any color acetate you'd like to color the display. In the Fanfare manual, it says they are considering manufacturing different faceplates to match the most popular hi end mftr's equipment. I have no idea how this is going. The silver faceplate with black screws matches the Pass equipment wonderfully.

The price was also more "right" on the Fanfare. Either brands should make any FM person happy. I think that either piece is going to surpass the quality that is being broadcast over the airwaves.

BTW, if anyone needs blue acetate for a Fanfare to make it match the Pass X series preamps, let me know. I have plenty of extra. Best Regards, Aaron
I'm leaning toward the Fanfare FT-1A for a couple reasons. I listened to the Magnum FT-101A and it sounds very good but I was a bit annoyed by the 100% analog tuning because I channel hop between commercials. I like the fact that the Fanfare has memory presets and a remote. If the Fanfare sounds at least as good as the Magnum, I'll probably get it. From what I gather, both tuners sound great and its more a matter of features, style, and convenience.

I agree completely with Ezmeralda11 (comments above) about the importance of a good antenna. My Fanfare vertical whip antenna in the back yard is sufficient since all of my favorite stations are fairly local. More signal could do more harm than good. Thanks everyone!
Abe: Dynalab has a remote also - in fact two or three of them as options. Their original remote is a small 6-preset pushbutton box connected via unbilical cord to the tuner; I have two of them. Then they came out with the outboard infrared receiver remote which also plugs into the tuner via an accessory cord. The latest design builds the infrared remote unit right into the tuner.
I bought the MD100 because it comes with balanced outputs standard, and MDs techs said it sounded significantly better that way, so a barely used MD100 at $1100 made more sense than an Etude or Fanfare for a few hundred less.
I softened the bright meters by covering the lower 1/3 of their windows with black electrical tape, and then using acetate film. NOW it looks well-proportioned and softer at night. Surprisingly easy to tune even though fully analog.
Ultraquiet and a bit leaner than I expected, so I find HT Truthlink XLRs just about perfect. Good luck. Ern
Here it is many years later and I learned my lesson. The Fanfare tuner was not for me. It was veiled with rolled off frequency extremes.

I later purchased a used Magnum FT101A which was far superior sounding all around. It was a lot more transparent sounding throughout with good frequency extension in the bass and treble region where the Fanfare was "artificially warm" only because it lacked highs making it seem "warmer" in the mids.

Another very good tuner but much less costly than the Fanfare or Magnum is the Marantz ST6000. It comes with a full function remote and it has excellent dynamics with good frequency extension up and down and especially robust bass (which I kind of like since some FM stations seem to sound a bit "thin" at times).