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Pioneer CT-F1000 Recording Problem

I just won a Pioneer CT-F1000 cassette deck on eBay and it plays pre-recorded tapes flawlessly; an awesome machine!
So using my newly downloaded manual, I hooked up everything according to the diagram; pretty much goof-proof.
While adjusting the recording level, the needles in both dB meters were pegging right where the manual says they should be - between -3 ~ 0. Using a freshly unwrapped TDK-SA100, I begin the recording process. Both dB meters still pegging properly. After recording, I listened to the playback and the left speaker (and dB meter) is playing strong but the right speaker/meter are barely putting out any sound/movement.

Curious, I attempted to try this with the receiver as the source. The same thing: recording level check and recording itself looks perfect on the meters, but plays strong/reads strong only on left side. The right side is WAY too weak.

Any ideas on what this might mean? Thanks in advance!


The recording amplifier of the mute channel must be fault.
It could be a transistor or an electrolytic capacitor.
Not to mention that trimmers (that are old and often faulty) should be checked first.
I too have a CTF 1000 and agree on its performances.
Be careful with 2SC458 transistors that often become noisy and need to be replaced.