Yamaha GX-70 Mini Systems

GX-70

User Reviews (22)

Showing 1-10 of 22  
E   Audio Enthusiast [Apr 29, 2016]

I was looking for information on the Yamaha GX-70 that I've been using as my primary Home Audio system (Games, Movies, Music, Radio, CDs and Cassettes) since I bought it in 1999. Back in the day, I paid close to $1000 (cdn) for it brand new at the time. It was an upgrade from a terrible LP/Cassette deck. The big selling point on this machine was that it was 'upgradeable' w/ a subwoofer and had plenty of RCA jacks for additional equipment. A year after I bought this system, I bought a Yamaha subwoofer to boost the system. This is by far one of the best (and longest lasting) products I have ever owned. It continues to be a fantastic workhorse).

I have used this system as my primary Home entertainment audio system in my living room for approximately 17 years! The CD player started malfunctioning in 2013 and one of the tape decks became jammed, so I finally brought them into a repair shop and had them fixed for about $100 in 2015.

Unfortunately, once I picked up a PS4 I had an issue; the GX-70 does not have a digital input for toslink cables...because it's almost two decades old! Nevertheless, I picked up a Schiit Audio Magni 2 to connect the PS4's toslink cable and downgrade the signal to RCA cables for full Dolby 2.1 on the Yamaha...worked like a charm and is pretty sweet! We now watch movies on Blu-ray and Netflix with great surround sound...not as good as 5.1 or 7.1 but good enough.

Some might think I am a luddite but I find this little system has been quite the performer. Over time. This little guy has helped me save money by avoiding the constant need to upgrade although I can feel the pull of 5.1 or 7.1 but I am holding out a little longer to pick the best one. I feel that the two main speakers have lost some of their power but the system keeps on chugging along. I can highly recommend this system to anyone on a budget or purusing garage sales looking for a great little surround sound/radio/CD/cassette deck mini system.

Pro-tip: you can plug your ipod by picking up a simple RCA to 3.5mm (Female) cord (which I did several years ago) and boom; you're set for playing back mp3s.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
b   a Casual Listener [Mar 26, 1999]

I listened to a few AIWA models, a couple of Sonys and a coupleof JVCs (mostly 5-speaker DPL). The AIWA, Sony and JVC all had the same
general sort of 'sound type' with the JVC (model 771 or
something) pulling it off the best and a smaller, older AIWA DPL model
'failing to do so the best'. The Yamaha had a different feel to its
overall sound. It had a 'sound type' that reminded me more of
a pricey, high-end seperates system (although clearly not pulled off
as well, if not badly at all considering $500-600 for everything and
very well indeed considering the new $199-350 pricing). It didn't
have the seperated boomy feel that some of the others did. The bass
just seemed to tail off naturally. Although I should say that I'm
anything but an audio expert and haven't had very much experience
with good seperate component systems (I did actually once hear a
$15,000 system for a few hours though but it is hard to recall the
experience in total detail for reference purposes) so... Anyway,
in the treble, violins, trumpets and female vocals seemed to come out
somewhat to radically more clearly and somewhat less screechily
than on the various others. The Yamaha seemed to have noticeably
more detail than the others. At times it just might be a bit duller
sounding than some of the others, especially at low volumes.
However, in the end, it sounds anwhere from some degree to radically
better than the others.
It appeared to be better for all types of music (especially classical)
except perhaps for things along the lines of rap. Sometimes the Hall
DSP mode is very good for classical. Some of the other models have
no bass, treble or manual equalization control.
The AIWAs averaged the least and Sonys the most manual control.
The Yamaha has manual control over five bands. I do
wish they let one adjust it by increments of 1dB instead of only
by 2. I can't seem to quite set it how I want to. The center speaker
seems worse than the front L/R. I think it might be best to use Phantom
mode for DPL unless the center is replaced. Do note that the center
was no worse than for the other systems and probably sounds a bit
better than a good boombox speaker.

So far, Fuji DR-I for type I and Fuji ZII and TDK SA-X for type II
seem to work better than a limited number of other
types of tapes I've tried with it.

The FM tuner doesn't pull in weak signals as well as a seperates tuner.

The controls are highly confusing for the first couple of days but
then seem to make excellent sense.

Someone here said it has an optical out. As far as I can see, it
doesn't.
I didn't get to compare it to
any Onkyo, Technics or Denon mini-systems. Most of the Denon models
got excellent reviews (in the very few places that I could find
mini-system reviews). The two or three postings I've seen that mention
such a comparison (Yamaha to Denon/Onkyo) actually favored the Yamaha.
So who knows?

Although there are a few problems and annoyances, when compared to the
others I tested I'd have to give this the 5 star spot. For parts of
certain recordings it can actually sound amazingly live at times.
I have heard seperate that have sounded worse than my complete system.

BTW, I was wondering how others have the equalizer set. I guess
it does depend upon the room and positioning though. Anyway, I've
been fiddling with all sorts of settings. Currently I'm using
0,0,+1,+1,+1 when used with the Infinity SSW-10 subwoofer I just
picked up ($100 clearance). If it was possible, I think I might
have one or two of the top three bands at +1.5 each instead and
maybe a +0.5 for one of the lower ones. I might not know what
I'm doing though. Could be. :)

And to Miriam, yes, anyone (especially if under 30) who ever listens
to classical music is a hideous, endangered freak... unless of course
they happen to be me, in which case they are just simply godlike.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
A.J. Mesiti   Audio Enthusiast [Apr 28, 2000]
Strength:

Does not sacrifice good sound for louder sound.
Great bass.
Hi-fi Friendly.
Great looking.
Nice tweak.

Weakness:

Bad instrumentation layout.
NOTHING ELSE.

All my friends have similar minisytems, but none compare to this one. The sound stays great even when I pump up the volume. It records great onto tapes. Unbelievable CD and radio sound. It looks great in my room I dred the day when I have to trade it in.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
steven august   an Audiophile [Dec 07, 1998]

system is extremely powerful. great investment for the money. delivers superior clarity and separation. recommend sub woofer. bass response is not great, but is very sharp, and accurate and tight. attractive unit. mid range, even with sub, is still missing, but hey, this is a mini system...one for 500 dollars no less, that offers natural sound, with hometheater and dolby pro logic. must have tweeters at ear level, as it is a bookshelf system. super impressed with the fidelity considering it is a mini system, though it sounds as loud as a rack.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
Nev   an Audiophile [Jan 10, 1999]

Absolutely outstanding performance for a mini-system. I listened to Denons, Sonys, Onkyos, etc...and I always kept coming back to the Yamaha. The front channel speakers are downright incredible: they benefit greatly from the active servo technology. The center and surround channels are weak..but that seemed evident in EVERY mini-system I looked at. I bought this system over 2 years ago (back then it was around $700) and have been extremely pleased. The DSP works excellently, and it has a handy optical digital output which works great with mini-disc players. You just can't beat the sound quality of this unit if you want a mini-system. I recommend a sub for fuller bass (I invested in a beautiful infinity BU-1 which has warm, tight bass).

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
Russ   an Audio Enthusiast [Mar 13, 1999]

I bought this system on past experience with Yamaha. I was not expecting it to sound as good as my seperate components, but I was very disappointed with the sound. It lacked detail and had a soft and mushy quality even in a stereo mode that uses the two main speakers. It may be better than many of the other mini systems from other manufacturers, it looks better, but I took it back after trying to be more forgiving of it for two weeks. Give me two good speakers instead of five cheapos. I am going to take a look at Denon's and Harman-Kardon's small systems.

OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
Adam   an Audiophile [Mar 16, 1999]

I needed a mini for the 'ol bedroom, and these reviews had me curious. And I must admit it's very decent especially for the low price tag. All I need is a Subwoofer for it and should be swell. Of course this is small room material. No doubt the best in it's "CATEGORY" ...at least for now.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
Phil Lindsey   an Audiophile [May 27, 1999]

Absolutely incredible product; nothing in its price range comes even close...I bought mine over 2 years ago and it still sounds _WAY_ better than the Aiwa/JVC crap you get at Circuit city (no offense to owners of the aforementioned). The imaging is precise, and while the bass is not copious it is definitely tight and warm. I added a sub with a broad frequency range and the result is simply astounding. The GX-70 cranks out warm, clean tones that are enhanced by the bass presence of the sub.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
J. Herman   a Casual Listener [Jun 01, 1999]

Now that Yamaha has discontinued this model, in favor of the GX-500, I grabbed up a Best Buy floor model for $225. I found the attention to the tape deck an attractive feature - dolby b, syncronized cd-to-tape feature, high speed dubbing (tape decks often are the weak link in mini-systems, from what I've read). The new GX-500 is just a stereo model, not home theatre, with a bit more power (75 watts per channel), but it sells for $400. Like many of my predecessors here, I think the bass on the GX-70 is a bit weak, but classical music, for example, sounds wonderful. If you can find this model for a good price, and then add a sub-woofer for another $100, it's a great combo for a good value.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
Matthew   a Casual Listener [Jun 04, 1999]

I paid $100.60 for the floor model of my local Best Buy, they had it on sale for $199.95. I am very pleased with my purchase, it is a solid performer and delivers good sound. It does lack bass, but for the price I'll buy a subwoofer to correct that. In this price range many mini-systems are designed to appeal to 17 year olds who measure quality by how many garish lights and gimmicks a stereo has. This unit while not lacking for buttons is not garish and thankfully not silver. I would highly recommend the GX-70 to other casual listeners looking for a small, quality bookshelf system.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
Showing 1-10 of 22  

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