Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

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frogblast
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Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by frogblast » Sun Oct 05, 2008 9:28 pm

i've just spent 10 minutes trying to decide where to put this thread, and i still can't decide, so it's going in here for now. (hopefully some helpful mod will make an executive decision and move it to the right place)

anyway, this is a thread for hi-fi equipment that's older, or just uses older technology like valves, tapes or vinyl.
To get the ball rolling (don't worry, i do appreciate that nobody else is going to post in this thread) here is my turntable:
Image

it's the guts of an old Lenco 75 with a metal top plate designed by someone on the internet and a plywood base made by me. it's a bit different from most turntables in that it uses an idler drive system rather than a belt. there is a lot of disagreement about the merits of belt/idler turntables, but for me the main thing is that it was very easy to take apart and to fit to a new plinth and that the platter is really heavy (spins for over 3 mins after i turn the thing off). i think it sounds great, but i don't have anything decent to compare it to.

however, the main reason i'm starting this thread is that i've just bought an old reel to reel tape deck on ebay.
IMGP3142.jpg
IMGP3142.jpg (35.74 KiB) Viewed 16931 times
i can't really express how little i need a reel to reel machine. (i don't even have anything to play on it). when i woke up this morning i certainly didn't plan to start buying reel to reel equipment on ebay. but they just look so damn good. this one is only a cheap machine - only takes up 7" reels and probably needs a bit of servicing, but it's more for fun at the moment. i'm sure i'll be tempted to get something better at some point.
i'm wondering if it will be any good for recording stuff with. my flatmate was just asking me today what the best way for her to record herself singing would be, so it might be fun to try any play around with recording stuff on it. anybody have any recommendations for a microphone to go with it? (i'd probably better wait to see what connections the tape player has -- i don't want to have to start messing about soldering plugs onto microphone cabes).

i have a valve amp as well, but i'll save that for another day…
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Contravene » Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:21 pm

Is that an Akai 4000DS?

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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by frogblast » Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:26 pm

Contravene wrote:Is that an Akai 4000DS?
close, an Akai 4000D
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Contravene » Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:27 pm

The microphone inputs are those two 1/4" sockets on the right of the photie, one socket for left, one socket for right.

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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by frogblast » Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:39 pm

off to ebay then.
hmm, most stuff seems to be XLR, and more importantly - bloody expensive (at least for pissing about with)
this beyer M55 is a bit gorgeous though:
Image

there's no rush, so i shall research this whole microphone thing a bit more
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by frogblast » Wed Feb 25, 2009 9:56 pm

this video of a french man making a vacuum tube/valve is literally awesome. every time i watch it i'm left with a strong desire to go and make something REAL and useful.
http://paillard.claude.free.fr/
(video at bottom of page)
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Uncle Ants » Fri Feb 27, 2009 12:05 pm

If valves, vinyl and general HiFi nerdery are your thing, there quite an interesting event going on over in Melton Mowbray this Sunday:

http://www.hifiwigwam.com/show/

Unlike most HiFi shows which are pretty boring events attended by people trying to sell you HiFi, A large group of HiFi enthusiasts have taken over a country hotel and are setting up their systems in the hotel rooms (apparently about 40 different setups). Lots of weird HiFi to be seen. If you like that sort of thing, should be fun. If you don't like that sort of thing it's probably hell on earth.
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Uncle Ants » Wed Mar 04, 2009 11:50 am

Sunday was great. A total Nerdfest. I didnlt take any pics but here's a couple:

These mad valve amps (those big valves are about the size of a larrge beer can:

Image

were driving these huge Tannoy speakers (nice wardrobe sized things)

Image

This guy had a nice selection of button festooned Japanese decks - some of which (if they still worked) would allow you to track select witha remote control, just like a CD.

Image

This was his proper rig - the deck's an old Garrard 301 and was gorgeous, the speakers old Ferrographs - nothing much to look at but sounded fantastic:

Image

No tapes that I saw but a lot of valves and record players
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by frogblast » Sun Mar 08, 2009 12:48 am

nice. although i'm very curious what that turntable in the second picture is/was (the high up one)

i would love a garrard 301 - they look so amazing
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Concrete » Sun Mar 08, 2009 11:28 am

frogblast wrote:i would love a garrard 301 - they look so amazing
Is that guy in Lambourn still making modern versions of Garrard decks? I know he bought the name "Garrard" off whichever far eastern company bought the original company, but I've not heard about him in ages.

Edit: apparently he's still doing it. It wasn't a far eastern company though, it was a Brazilian company. http://www.garrard501.com

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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Uncle Ants » Mon Mar 09, 2009 6:25 am

The deck in the second picture is a Kuzma. They are made in Slovenia. Expensive though. That's their "budget" model and it's still over a grand.

Yeah the guy who bought the Garrard name has a company called Loricraft. The new ones are ludicrously expensive though. Apparently he's The Man if you want an old one made like new and that's a bit cheaper to do. Personally I think I'd go the Lenco route if I wanted to revive an old heavy idler. Much cheaper, much bigger support community and just about as good. I think I may do it.
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by frogblast » Mon Mar 09, 2009 12:56 pm

Uncle Ants wrote:The deck in the second picture is a Kuzma. They are made in Slovenia. Expensive though. That's their "budget" model and it's still over a grand.

Yeah the guy who bought the Garrard name has a company called Loricraft. The new ones are ludicrously expensive though. Apparently he's The Man if you want an old one made like new and that's a bit cheaper to do. Personally I think I'd go the Lenco route if I wanted to revive an old heavy idler. Much cheaper, much bigger support community and just about as good. I think I may do it.
do it! i love my Lenco. unfortunately any Lencos seem to go for crazy prices on ebay these days. back when i bought mine there were loads for £30-£40

unfortunately the best lenco forum, lenco lovers, has closed. (i'm not sure why - the other members who set up a replacement board were not very clear about what happened). it's a real shame - there were threads full of interesting information, particularly about old cartridges and tonearm

a new replacement board is here: http://www.lencoheaven.net/forum/index.php
most of the knowledgeable members from lenco lovers are there now. this is the thread that describes the top plate that i used for my lenco re-build
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Uncle Ants » Mon Mar 09, 2009 1:16 pm

frogblast wrote:do it! i love my Lenco. unfortunately any Lencos seem to go for crazy prices on ebay these days. back when i bought mine there were loads for £30-£40
A man at that show told me a trick for buying used Lencos. Apparently a lot of old 1970s Dynatron music centre/radiograms were fitted with GL75s. Often when they are listed on ebay they are listed as "Dynatron Music Centre" or some such with no mention of what the deck actually is. When people search Goldring or Lenco they don't get picked up in the list and sell for peanuts. I shall find out in an hour or two, I have one in my sights. Don't you dare bid on it :)
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by frogblast » Mon Mar 09, 2009 1:27 pm

Uncle Ants wrote:A man at that show told me a trick for buying used Lencos. Apparently a lot of old 1970s Dynatron music centre/radiograms were fitted with GL75s. Often when they are listed on ebay they are listed as "Dynatron Music Centre" or some such with no mention of what the deck actually is. When people search Goldring or Lenco they don't get picked up in the list and sell for peanuts. I shall find out in an hour or two, I have one in my sights. Don't you dare bid on it :)
fucking hell! nice find. that's a crazy price. weird that nobody noticed it. collection only in norfolk, but that doesn't usually stop the lenco fiends.

collection is better anyway - they get easily trashed in the post if people don't take the platter off and secure the motor.
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Uncle Ants » Mon Mar 09, 2009 1:33 pm

frogblast wrote:fucking hell! nice find. that's a crazy price. weird that nobody noticed it. collection only in norfolk, but that doesn't usually stop the lenco fiends.

collection is better anyway - they get easily trashed in the post if people don't take the platter off and secure the motor.
I emailed him and he said if I was happy to arrange the courier (which I am) then he would happily follow my instructions for packing. I told him he could keep the speakers. I guess he'll just ebay those separately.
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Uncle Ants » Mon Mar 09, 2009 3:21 pm

Mine for £23.50 :)
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by frogblast » Mon Mar 09, 2009 8:18 pm

Uncle Ants wrote:Mine for £23.50 :)
bargain.

any plans for what you're going to do with it (keep the lenco tonearm? fit new tonearm? whole new top plate? plywood base?)
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Uncle Ants » Mon Mar 09, 2009 9:01 pm

frogblast wrote:
bargain.

any plans for what you're going to do with it (keep the lenco tonearm? fit new tonearm? whole new top plate? plywood base?)
I'm going to keep the top plate but custmise it so it will look more like the early version of the L70.

I'm getting rid of the silvery fascia. The top plate will be bead blasted and resprayed in the light grey colour the early L70s come in and I've been given an L70 speed change plate. Then I'll fit it to a big ply plinth with a long arm on the plinth.

This sort of look:
Image

But probably gloss black on the top of the plinth. I've got a Pro-Ject arm a bit like your one that's going to get a cut and shut to turn it into a 12 inch with a detachable head.
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by frogblast » Mon Mar 09, 2009 9:19 pm

sounds like it's going to be good. i always admired the build in that picture you posted
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Re: Hi-Fi Hardware - Turntables, Valves & Tapes

Post by Uncle Ants » Tue Mar 10, 2009 12:36 pm

frogblast wrote:sounds like it's going to be good. i always admired the build in that picture you posted
Bloke's name is Woody, he lives in Glasgow. I've met him, he's a nice chap with a big collection of old record players and stuff. Some of it's really pretty, like this old amp from the 50s:

Image

Lots of his stuff to look at here
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