Marantz vs. Pioneer Receivers


WOULD LIKE THE INPUT OF ANYONE WHO OWNS OR HAVE HAD REAL EXPERIENCE WITH VINTAGE MARANTZ AND PIONEER RECEIVERS, I.E. MARANTZ 2285 VS PIONEER SX-1050 OR MARANTZ 2325 VS PIONEER SX-1250/1980. ASIDE FROM THE POWER DIFFERENCES, WHICH OF THESE RECEIVERS IS THE MORE MUSICAL. THANKS TO ALL THAT RESPOND.
wepratt
THEY SOUND A LOT BETTER IF YOU TAKE THE LOUDNESS SWITCH OFF!

Apart from that, which receiver do you think sounds more musical? That's the one to go with.
Well I don't have comparative experience, but I have a dinged up Marantz 2250, with burnt out bulbs and somewhat scratchy volume and balance pots. But damn the thing sounds great. Musical, powerful, dynamic, warm, tuneful. Really good FM -- decent reception, excellent fidenltiy. Beats up on a couple of NAD untis I have, one intergrated and one rceiver. The wife really likes it alot -- it's the only audio purchase I've ever made (it was a steal at like $75CDN) about which she's never even bat an eyelash.

In teh 70's, for mid fi types, Marantz, above all others, was the dream name. With good reason.

Richard
Marantz and Pioneer both made good receivers, but I preferred Yamaha over either of them. In fact, I still have a Yamaha in my bedroom system.
For direct model comparison, you may wish to do a search in the Vintage Forum at Audio Asylum . Each brand has its fans; especially when it comes to the TOTL model offerings. I currently own/have owned lower powered models from each (Marantz 2240; 2216B; Pioneer 636) and feel that they had about equal tuner and amp sections, with the Marantz preamp being the better of the two brands. If you are considering a purchase, factor in that the receivers, to operate at their best, will need to be thoroughly gone over, and that will usually run at least $200 or so.

Regards, Rich

TOTL examples from ANY of these Manf., are hard to beat. Allowing for periodic cleaning and upgrading, even the new(er) TOTL gear would have trouble getting to the level of quality of the older offerings.
Memory lane. Back in the early '70 in Germany seened everyone in the barracks had a system in their room. I had a Pioneer SX 1090 (I think that was the model), anyway it was a big boy. Beautiful wooden cabinet. Cool tone knob with a graphic display. Loved it, hooked up to an Akai reel to reel, Gerrard TT, and Bose 501s. Had a complete wall empty except the Bose. Others had those sexy Marantz receivers or the separate components. Seems that those were a plush gold. Which sounded better, it was always constant argument but fun. I sold the system when I got discharged but in the late 80's bought the quadraphonic sister model to that pioneer along with two pioneer and two sanui speakers, both with the heavy wood cabinets and wooden grills. Wife hated it but hey. The receiver lasted about ten years sounded great although the pot would need occational cleaning tp rid the static. The stuff I replaced it with was junk, shoulda paid the $100 to fix it.
Marantz are probebly the better built and sounding brand. However if you really want good quality sound reproduction go with either Denon or Onkyo.
the best classic receivers for audio thrills and investment are mac, tandberg, revox
Marantz is much more musical from my past experiences.Pioneer
is somewhat more dry and analytical.I use to own a Marantz
Quad 4400 Receiver,if you can find one of these snap one up.
The FM Tuner with scope sounds incredible.The receiver can be strapped in 2 channel mode at 125 watts RMS.It also has several outputs.A very fine receiver indeed.
I own Marantz imp 6 and imp 7 speakers and a 6200 turntable,
and have a pioneer sx-1080 and a sansui 8080. the sansui sounds better direct and the pioneer with an mxr eq sounds great. I would have gone with a Marantz if the stereo shop would of sold those in 1978. I also had a sansui seven. I bought new in 1974 and it also sounded better than a pioneer.
I agree with Kinsekd although it does not answer your question. I prefer the vintage Yamaha units over either Pioneer or Marantz but Marantz is my second choice if you are not including McIntosh vintage in this comparison.

Marantz was killer when playing back real rock but I always felt it was somewhat lacking with more subtle music. It was sort of either play it loud or forget it. Could have been my mentation at the time.
Marantz hands down.
Jsman is correct
Marantz easily wins
I have both a Marantz 2325 and a pioneer sx-1980 hooked up to a beautiful pair of Jbl 4344's and hpm 1500's. I first had the 2325 and I was stunned in its performance. I then bought the 1980 and it fails on all levels. It's going up for sale and I'll put back the best I've heard..!!!
Only consider the ones made in Japan.
A little belated finding this thread but...

It is difficult for me to prefer one over the other largely because either were manufactured possessing beautiful/handsome esthetics apart from their very decent - even by today's standards - sonic qualities. The Marantz receivers probably inch a smidgen ahead because of the horizontal tuner dial and the cool blue lighting, but the Pioneer receivers to my ears just sound better overall.  IMHO, of course. 

I have two Pioneer SX models, a 650 which is still being used in my girlfriend's bedroom system, and a 1050 which I reserve as a backup in my home system. In my girlfriend's living room we listen on a Marantz 2250b hooked up to a pair of Meadowlark Kestrels, which I think are some of the better speakers I've ever had, especially at the price I got them at -$400 used.  Barely. 

While my current system is superior to either receiver, I continue to be pleased with their sound, their looks, their quality.  If I could relate to them as cars the Pioneers are vintage Chevies, the Marantz are Saabs. I love Saabs. 

I've hooked up the SX1050 to my Thiel CS3.5's and found little lacking.  Were I to find myself having to let go of my current gear I wouldn't be too saddened by having the receiver act as my sole source of music. It's still that good. At 40+ years of age that's saying a lot. 

Pioneer.  Hands down.  Followed closely by Marantz.  None were bad, but they all have their house sound and therefore all have their own adherents.  But the integrity of the Marantz VR's and circuit boards (just one aspect) never seemed to hold up in terms of age compared to the classic Pioneers.  It might mean that there are fewer mint surviving examples of the Marantz TOTL's surviving and therefore might be driving the prices up.  But in my experience Pioneer carried the day.  At that time, they were their own "shop" and not bought and sold over and over.  (Yet...)  ymmv....
Have had both Pioneer and Marantz.  Liked them nearly equally, but I still kick myself for selling my Marantz 2330.  That was the best receiver I have ever heard.