Daarom ben ik boos!

Geachte lezers,

Sommige mensen maken het zo bont, dat ze zich de razernij van Hififreak op hun hals halen.  Laat ik de tester en schrijver van het onderstaande stuk niet in levende lijve tegenkomen, want ik sta niet voor mezelf in.

Lees en gruwel.


Testing the validity of audio manufacturers' claims about solid-ness etc. is what The Audion is all about. Since staffers agreed some time ago to debunk  Western notions of quality and longevity under unusual circumstances, we agreed to subject some piece of audio junk to some sort of test that would bunk or de-bunk the claim for the junk under question made by the manufacturer. Now it should be noted that a company such as Electrohome never made a tank-test claim back in their golden years. The company over engineered like it was going out of style.

Since there is a profound shortage of such claims by manufacturers outside of our Russian buddies with their demonstrable claims for the solidity of their gear, we were faced with possibility of subjecting a Scott to the transmitter test (where a tuner sits around for years on end in blazing heat or brutal cold while remaining on channel to serve as a rebroadcast tuner, an application that no longer exists in this day and age of satellites and hi-band cable). Since your ed. tested this out a few years ago by placing a tuner on his balcony year-round for a few years with no noticeable drift in what can only be described as a brutal reception area, recreating this test seemed moot.

However, in 1974 Marantz made a bold claim that their 2270 receiver survived a fire, a drop, a subsequent drop, etc., and was then tested by its owner and found to work perfectly. What a test to recreate, we staffers thought. Since we did not wish to run the risk of electrocution from months of sitting in wet carbon, we bypassed the step where the receiver spent months submerged. Engineers only know what a layer of crusty carbon would do to a circuit board. We chose to assume that buddy would have subjected the receiver to high pressure water whilst installing a new power cord.

Here Yugo...

The Tank Test in Pictures


Here your editor is shown subjecting a Marantz 2220B to a controlled burn. The fascia holds up well, as is to be expected with any metal. Apart from the plastic (speaker terminals, switches, etc.) the receiver is impervious to a burn of this type.

Extra attention was paid to the inner workings of the receiver. Because most of the internal wiring is situated below the steel inner chassis and the steel bottom cover, little but heat will affect these critical circuit components. Since most electronic equipment uses wire that is heat rated, this portion of the test had little effect. Further, since the phenolic circuit boards, the resistors and the capacitors are all impervious to heat, it was unlikely that the fire or a heat test would compromise these circuits. This was also true of the semiconductors, especially the TO-3 encased power transistors which have the extra protection of heat sinks which 'wick' the heat away from the transistors.

For kicks, the burn test was conducted on a vacant parking spot which belongs to the uh... 'assistant building manager.' She is never around, so her spot was an obvious choice for the test.


On The Threshold Of A Drop

Forlorn and showing the effects of a 25 foot drop, the Marantz evidenced some of the heat damage that it received during the burn. The midrange control was gone altogether and many of the switches were rendered nonfunctional. The aluminum front panel appeared undamaged and all of the lettering was intact.

"Whazzup?" called Jay Bee from the heights.

"Looks like a hit to me." Your editor reply'd.


Post relocation to the basement for the final portion of our truncated tank test, Jay Bee plugged the Marantz in and, lo, some of the lights came on. The tuning display remained dark, and as if auguring other malaise within the unit's tuner, it didn't look like it would work; the tuning capacitor's plastic drive assembly was a hopeless piece of junk, its dial cord melted.

Satisfied that the Marantz had in the most basic sense physically survived its battle with a pyro (it powered up), we argued that the claims made by Marantz were not consistent with the TAS "in the field" test. To wit:

The fire started on the first floor...

...worked its way to the second floor where my Marantz 2270 was, and finally engulfed the third floor. The floors collapsed and fell into the basement where the Marantz remained buried in debris and water until March when the wrecking company came.

While the men were lifting the debris into trucks I noticed a piece of equipment I thought could be the Marantz. I asked the man to drop the load, and the receiver fell 20 feet to the ground.

Out of sheer curiosity, I brought the damaged receiver up to my apartment and after attaching a new line cord to it, I plugged it in. All the blue lights turned on. I connected a headphone and the FM played perfectly. I then tested it with my tape deck, and finally the turntable and the speakers. They all played perfectly, too.

(Signed) Francisco Espina
Newport, Rhode Island


Marantz then claims that the 2270 still meets factory specifications. Line cord and all.

Test completed, the Marantz 2220B was deposited in its final resting spot, the dumpster.

For those softies who shed a tear at the sight of a Marantz being so abused and disposed of, it is worth nothing that this particular unit suffered from Marantz cancer, having a cheesecaked tone stage, a dreadful amplifier and a hopelessly bad tuner that functioned not in FM, and did so in AM only with the volume cranked to what should have been a stadium level.

This particular Marantz most assuredly did not meet factory specifications before the test, nor have others that have come under your editor's scrutiny. Junk times three.

"Don't cry for me. I'm just a junk 2220B."