Audio Asylum Thread Printer
Get a view of an entire thread on one page
|For Sale Ads|
The Viking thread encouraged this. My own saga starts in the mid 1950s and continues today. Big time. In order, with comments. "*" means I still own it.
* Revere T700D, 2-track mono. This was in pre-stereo days.
* Viking 88, as noted below, my first stereo deck, tubed.
* Magnecord 1020, one of whose features was that it took 8 1/4" reels (try to find one).
* Teac 3300SX, a quality machine, first one I owned that could take large reels.
* Teac X1000R, bought new in 1984 out of the trunk of a car in the NSA parking lot, from a GI who had bought it in an Okinawa PX for resale when he returned stateside. True story.
* Teac A2300SD* (Dolby), bought to play my Barclay-Crocker tapes after 3 or 4 outboard Dolby units (Teac and Nakamichi) proved deficient or died outright.
* Otari MX5050 BII-2*, an outstanding deck with great sonics, made greater by modding to accept a deHaviland 222 tubed tapehead preamp.
* Revox A77 Mk. IV Dolby, an utter disaster/lemon (caps exploded, caught on fire), bought to replace the Teac A2300SD, which I bought back after giving up on the Revox.
Most recent tape purchase, a supposed "safety master" of a Chet Baker trio album that competes for best-sounding tape in my collection.
Nakamichi DR1 (still have it, still looks less than a minute out of the box, never use it).
Nakamichi CR5 (bought used in 1998 for $350, sold it ten years later for $380)
JVC TDV-541 (+10db on a TDK AR without breaking sweat or saturating. Virtually peerless speed stability)
Yamaha KX-500 (great features, decent overall sound, poor w&f)
Yamaha KX-340 (great value, well executed HX Pro)
JVC KDD4 (great features, meh sound)
I still own a Nak BX300 and a Pioneer CT7R. I'm getting a Dragon
Philips Radio Recorder RR322 22RR322,
Revox A77 MkIV 2-track,
Revox A77 MkIV 4-track,
Revox A77 MkII 2-track,
Revox A77 MkIII 2-track,
Revox A77 MkIV 4-track Dolby (current setup)
Nakamichi Cassette Deck 2 (stored),
Nakamichi Cassette Deck 1 (current setup)
JVC KD-D4 (great features, meh sound)
Yamaha K340 (big improvement in sound over the KD-D4, and HX Pro)
Yamaha KX-500 (superb features, sound not much better than the K340, minor flutter issues)
JVC TDV-541 (surprisingly good sound, rock steady transport with superb wow & flutter. Very high record levels on even Normal tapes TDK AD90s went up to +10 without saturation. Very refined and amazing value)
Sony TCK-611S (dolby S deck with decent performance, but still sounded a little too ordinary. Nice features, lacked dual capstan mechanism)
Nakamichi DR-1 (Oh my. This is big league performance. A rich, svelt sound with so much musicality. Love it. Still have it!)
Nakamichi CR-5 (bought used, worked brilliantly for ten years before selling it. Better sound than this could only be found on the original source, but there wasn't really anything in it. Only the ZR-9, the CR-7 and the Dragon offered superior sound, but it was very difficult to imagine how).
My first good decks were a Sony TC-366 and a Sansui cassette deck. I've also had a TEAC A360S (great deck) and a TEAC A2300SD, which I loved. There have been several NAKS, including my current CR3A and a couple TEAC X decks, an X7 and an X10. Best r2r I owned was a Revox A77 and the worst was a Tandberg, which sounded fantastic but was less reliable than a YUGO.
I estimate that I've owned maybe 25 decks since I bought my first in 1973.
if we include cassette machines?
circa 1966, a Philips portable cassette deck. As a teenager I used it for mischievous things.
Circa 1970. A Sony TC127 Cassette deck for my humble stereo. (it eventually died)
After that....a Dual C-939 Cassette deck with auto-reverse. (it suffered a fate no better)
The Otari MX-5050 BII 2 (I'll get it working one of these days)
Revox A77 (hasn't caught fire yet!)(but it isn't working anyway)
It's mostly Lps over here, but I have a modest collection of commercial tapes, almost all exclusively 7-1/2ips 4-tracks. And one odd-ball 2-track.
"R2R: The Otari MX-5050 BII 2 (I'll get it working one of these days)"
Do it. Ya ain't gettin' any younger.
" Do it. Ya ain't gettin' any younger. :)"
Right you are. I think what I need to get the ball rolling is to put together a kit tape head preamp. When I have the promise of having as good a signal chain as my vinyl rig, then I'll get to it.
Adding to that list...about 20 items in front of it.
If you get the tape head preamp, you'll have to mod the Otari to allow for direct tape head output.
It's well worth doing :-)
Wow, this might take some head scratching. My first deck was a Roberts (Akai) SS stereo deck, of which I do not recall the model (1055 maybe?). Got that when I was 15 or so. Since then, hmm, lessee,
Some SS Ampex that followed those tube consumer models, don't recall the model #
early 60s AEG small tube mono, don't recall model#
ditto some slightly later small Telefunken consumer grade tube deck
Somewhere around six to ten RS1500/1520/1700s including a red J-corder
three or four, or maybe five various MX5050 types
Nagra T-audio, my current demo deck
Ampex ATR104, was 1/2" 4 track. Now running as a 1/4" 2 track slave at our duping salon and named Curly
Studer A80 1" 2 track, waiting for daddy to buy new heads
Then to expand beyond decks owned solely by me - at the studio we have three or four more 1/4" and 1/2" ATRs besides Curly (including Moe and Larry, our other full time slaves), a couple of 1" ATRs, an A80, an A820, an Otari MTR-20, a Tascam 32B and whatever else Paul has snuck into the storeroom this month.
That's all that comes to mind at the moment. I'm sure I've missed a few.
lSony TC 150 or 250, etc, Cant remember now.
Tandberg 3600 (3641) with crossfield heads, Dolby, 3 speeds. An absolute killer. After 30 years I wore it out and couldnt find anyone to fix it. Threw it away and all my tabes - about 150 of them - TDks mostly recorded by me from lps. I got damn good at it.
Brush BK-401 (bought used for $15 in 1957)
Ampex A-121 with amp/speakers (bought used for $400 in 1959)
Revox A-77-IV (bought new for $600 in 1974)
Revox A-700 (bought used for $15 in 2003)
Sony TC-850 (gift in 2006)
Revox A-77-III (bought used for $15 in 2010)
Tascam 22-4 (gift in 2008)
Pioneer RT-1011L (reel to reel)
My current deck is a Nakamichi 480 ...my 5th one.
Needless to say, I like it.
reelsmith's axiom: Its going to be used equipment when I sell it, so it may as well be used equipment when I buy it.
My first RTR was a Tandberg (model ? - 9000 series?) that I purchased back in about 1974. I thought it was great - onboard Dolby B, crossfield head recording, peak limiting meters....great bells and whistles. Unfortunately, as the Tandberg service center guy told me, it was built with what he described as "beer cans" and it didn't hold up to my use of it. Replaced it with what I could, a Teac 3300, which was also a good deck, but lacked onboard Dolby. That unit died in the early 80s...and I exited the RTR world until I found out that eBay had brought an active market into being.
So a maybe ten years ago I acquired a very nice ReVox A77 (always wanted one) to play my existing tapes, and then a Technics RS1520, which is dedicated to Tape Projects tapes.
I would still love another Tandberg, with onboard Dolby.
I cant remember them all. I will do highlights. A Sony TC-250 my first, not much. A Teac 2300. Otari MX-5050 BII-2. A neat Hitachi made Reslistic branded cassette with three heads adjustable bias and calibtateable doubly Dolby. I described it because I dont remember the model number.
Decks that I have owned or still own were/are:
Luxman K-112 (two of these at separate times)
Aiwa XK-009 Excelia (two of these at separate times)
Sony TC-KA7ES (Still own)
Tandberg 3014A (still own)
JVC TD-R601 or something auto reverse
Luxman K-03 (Still own)
Pioneer CT-F950 (still own)
Pioneer 707 R2R
I'd like to get a Dragon or ZX-9 one day, but that may not happen since I have 4 decks already.
Add ZX-9 to my list. Just BIN'd one.
Cassette Deck: Nakamichi 1000II (owned since mid/late 70's).
R2R: Studer A820 (~7 yrs. stewardship).
(Double deck auto reverse)Denon DRW-695 bought almost new in pristine condition
(3 motor 3 head bought used) Denon DR-M20 being overhauled for 3 years pending repair and might never be fixed
No R2R decks although my late dad had one in the 70s unfortunately gave it to our housemaid long before he passed.
Cassette decks that I used to own
1. Nakamichi RX 505
2. Nakamichi ZX 7
3. Nakamichi 680ZX
4. Pioneer CT F-950
Reel to reels that I used to own
1. Teac X-1000
2. Otari MX 5050B MKII
3. Revox A-77, A-77 MKII
4. Revox B77
5. Dokorder 8140
Cassette deck that I currently own
1. Restored to its original specs, Revox B215
Reel to reel that I currently own
1. Restored to its original specs, Revox PR99 MKII
If a thing's worth doing, it's worth doing well
Revox B77 Mk II
Pioneer RT-707 (x3)
What's been here and gone, that I recall:
"Let there be songs, to fill the air"
1. Viking 88 acquired new in 1965. Reliable deck paired with a Fisher 500C and University 312 triaxials. Typical recording application: FM broadcasts of recorded-live events, not infrequently Arthur Fiedler's rousing Boston Pops concerts. Sold when I bought a...
2. Magnecord 1020 new in the aarly 1970's mated to a Mc MR-67, C-22, 240, and Bozak B-4000s. Great-sounding deck when it worked, but one too many trips to the shop without correcting the problem prompted me to give it to my loved-to-tinker then-brother-in-law. Appreciated its 8.25"-reel capacity and the fact that BASF provided raw tape in that format. After getting rid of it, I...
3. Endured 40+ years in the wilderness until I bought a...
4. Refurbished Crown SX-824 in November 2015. Now my primary go-to analog source feeding a c-j Premier 17LS, MF2500, and Paradigm SE-3s. Plays prerecorded classical, jazz, and film scores scooped up on eBay (and which require frequent head, capstan, and roller cleaning). Shortly I'll be back to recording FM recorded-live concerts off a Mc MR-77 (typically San Francisco and Chicago SOs). This one's a keeper.
Just fyi, you don't have to continually rub it in my face.
Those decks were tits.
Owned or lived with:
Revox A-77 Mk 3
Otari MX5050 B2-II
Braun TG-1000 (best transport ever? It used 3/4-mil green-backed BASF tape on 8.5" reels)
Used when I was a studio assistant:
Studer A80 Mk III 1/2" half-track
Studer B67 1/4" half-track
Studer A800 Mk IV 2" 24-track - a 900-lb jewel. I got pretty good at setting the 96 adjusting screws on the cards at the bottom. The smell of 2" tape is amazing.
"A man need merely light the filaments of his receiving set and the world's greatest artists will perform for him." Alfred N. Goldsmith, RCA, 1922
Teac - ? - late '70 RTR
Sony late '70s RTR
Still have & use occasionally the BX150
Forgot to keep the thread to R2R decks, tho there's nothing wrong with cassettes. I have a working Nak BX-300 too (thanks to regular trips to Willy Hermann), but the others are too numerous to remember. And the Nak (my first one) is in a class above anyway.
"Current" decks are here:
History would be interesting/fun to know.
Post a Followup:
Post a Message!
This post is made possible by the generous support of people like you and our sponsors: