questionscan you help me find a stereo system for my…


PS: Most of these have encoders that would let them record their vinyl and cassettes to MP3 formats to preserve them.


@moondrake: Thank you for the suggestions! I'll definitely look into these. Frustratingly though it seems that none of the ones with remotes have volume control on the remote, and some of them can't even be turned off with the remote! Strange that this used to be a very common feature and now seems nearly inexistent.

As for going to mp3, my grandparents don't own a computer of any sort (which gets really exciting when they want me to use their credit card to buy event tickets, make hotel reservations, or book airline tickets and we have to do the "verified by visa" BS). Hence encoding their music to mp3 adds no value to them - but I could sometime in the future use it to demonstrate for my children what their great-grandparents listened to... :)


@lparsons42: I think your initial description was taken verbatim from the list of features on a little Sharp system I bought 20+ years ago. Too bad it's no longer available.


@lparsons42: Regarding the making of purchases using your grandparents' credit card: if you do this very often, perhaps it would be much less hassle if you can become an authorized user on their card? You'd get your own card, your name and address would be part of the credit card issuer's database (simplifying the purchase process for you), but it wouldn't affect your credit or theirs since you have no legal obligation for payment in any way. If this is an option, usually it can be handled easily by the card owner calling the issuer and requesting the card for you.


@lparsons42: There are several more modern looking systems at both Sears and KMart which might have higher-functioning remotes. I just really likes the vintage look of the ones I listed. I guess I am pretty anachronistic, as up until recently I always turned my TV on and off at the set, even though there was a power button on the remote. My new TV has those invisible buttons where you press random places on a black panel to access various functions and it's just easier to use the remote.


@magic cave: Yep, this is exactly like the Panasonic system I bought about 20 years ago. Good little system. In fact, I'm still using it. Too bad it is no longer available. Sorry I can't help you Iparsons42.


Doesn't have all the features you'd want, you'd have to add some more separates, but the Denon M-39 consistently get's very good reviews:

I'd put it up against systems costing twice the price and more....


@phunsberger: I just looked at the Denon link you posted. It does a lot of things that weren't requested, and is missing some things that were nice, but it's Four Hundred Dollars (which is twice what @lparsons42 was hoping to spend).

I'd been following along on this thread, because I probably share a lot of preferences with the grandparents in question. I do gently point out that an MP3 does not have the audio quality of a vinyl record, or even a CD. While I don't personally care one way or the other about having a remote, I was really hoping that something useful would show up here.

I suspect that the cassette tape requirement may be the killer here. I admit that compatibility with an iPod, or other modern delivery system, holds no interest for me either (I recently gave away my iPod and all its accoutrements). When I searched Amazon Electronics for "cassette and cd player" I mostly found boomboxes. :-(


Look on ebay under vintage stereo systems, we pick up systems at garage and estate sales and resale them all the time, it is a big market on ebay for just what you are describing. you can probably find exactly what they had, tested working.


@themave: Hey, that's a great idea! Looks like there's a lot to choose from. I'm going to keep this in mind for when my stereo system gives up the ghost. Newer is not necessarily better.


Try to see if any older and working units are on Craigslist for you. Might take some digging to find anything right, but usually you can get a decent mix of older electronics on there for dirt cheap. I just searched "cd cassette stereo" and found a few that fit your exact bill with multiple cd, had at least 1 cassette, full function remote, and not boombox for under 100. Then again I am in the Chicagoland so I have a pretty good range I get to search. Just have to ignore the massive 25 year old systems that weigh as much as a person and have their own full cabinet.


@barnabee: I have a Panasonic system myself that meets pretty much all the requirements I described. Unfortunately they haven't made it in a long time and in my family it would be exceptionally tacky of me to give something of my own to a family member, even though it is 100% working and in practically new condition. If they still made the system I have I would have already purchased it for my grandparents :)


@shrdlu: Indeed the cassette is a big tripping point here. Finding anything with a cassette deck in it is hard now. For that matter the rate that retailers are practically tripping over each other to see who can be the first to jettison audio CDs completely makes it difficult to find decent CD players with remotes. Every retailer wants to sell me various connotations of iPod docks, except my grandparents down own an iPod.


Regardless of what system you go with, you may want to consider continuing to use the same speakers from the old 60s stereo. Even if the rest of the system is totally dead, speakers from that era were pretty hardcore and you may get noticably better sound from them than new ones, especially new ones from a bargain stereo. Can't hurt to hook 'em up and give it a try, at least.


Crosley makes many different all-in-one stereos. HERE is their website

Some have different features than others. But many have turntable, CD, radio, cassette! and MP3 players too. Some of them allow you to convert your vinyl and cassette to digital. I haven't seen a remote. But I didn't look too hard.
I'm sure once you take a look you might recognize them from various catalogs.

a quick search found THIS Model for $169.
You may want to look around at their site and pick your model and then go searching. I saw another on the site for $299 that is above your target, but may have more features that you like and might on be sale somewhere or find one on ebay ;-) Most manufacture's sites tend to price higher than stores.
In fact here's a very very quick ebay search

They have a nice look too.


Looks like the Woot PTB read your thread and got right on it
Several to choose from. Nice prices compared to what I saw on the Crosley's on line.

I'm impressed with your connections.


@ceagee: None of the offerings on the "tech plus" page had a cassette player that I could see. More importantly, I own one from Crosley similar to the Juke Box shown as the first offering. It's fun, and all, but I'd bet it's not what @lparsons42 is looking for in the long term.

I like mine, but it lives in my computer room, not the living room. I think that the long term best solution here would be to purchase components (esp the cassette player) and go from there. Pity I don't still have one; I sent a working console with two cassettes (for tape to tape recording) to the land of hazmat reclamation ages ago. I'd have been happy to donate it to the cause.

[As a sidenote, Crosley has one of the worst web sites I've seen in a while...Painful to navigate, and to load.]


@shrdlu: @lparsons42
4 of the offerings on the tech page include cassette, and have all the other features as well:

Component systems are great, but she's not going to get one for $200 or under.

My folks have a Bose Wave that has most of what she wants and /or you can get an adds on for the rest.
They also sound very very nice.
But they are $$$
Might find one on ebay or CL


correction to above, to my statement of "they have all the features"
not sure if any of them have remote

ebay Bose quick search


@ceagee: I guess I gave up on looking for the cassette in the specs after looking at a couple. You're very persistent. My daughter is like that (and she surely didn't learn it from me), and will look at reviews, and check prices, and make sure that all the features she wants in an item are there.

Yeah, I've seen the Bose offerings, and they are expensive. Sadly, I do not find them attractive enough to cost so much. They do indeed deliver on the sound quality though.

I have to say that the twin requirements for cassette and remote will probably keep lparsons42 from finding a system, and I do think that eBay is probably going to be the best bet for any of this.


In case anyone was watching this for ideas, I ultimately ended up buying a system for my grandparents off of craigslist. I did find a couple systems that were pretty close to what I wanted in stores and through online retailers but nothing that quite fit the bill. There was a system at Target for $60 that was close but for some reason the remote had no volume control. This became a recurring theme as I looked at other units currently available; it appears that manufacturers have opted to drop some of the critical remote functions.

I found a Panasonic system used on craigslist for $50. It was very similar to one I had ~15 years ago myself with a really useful remote and everything. Two cassette decks, three CDs, Picked it up, set it up, everyone's happy. I just didn't call it a Christmas present because it's not new and used gifts are taboo in my family.