23 April 2022

Is This a Marantz? - Mystery Solved

 

reel to reel tape recorder

I see this tape recorder show up regularly on social media and people are getting excited about this "New Tape recorder" or this "Rare Marantz" tape recorder. Some go as far as comparing this to the genuinely rare marantz model 7700-2 (a completely different machine). Well, it's none of those. This reel-to-reel tape recorder is actually based on an old Soviet tape recorder, the Electronika 004 (Электроника-004) from 1983 which has its origins in the Electronika 003 (Электроника-003) from 1980. As one can see, the modifications are quite substantial and include both the external looks - wood side panels and custom-made front panel - but also technical modification. This deck was originally capable of 19cm/s speed and auto reverse function. Now it has added Quartz control, 38cm/s speed, Bias control, Remote control, Arduinio microcontroller, Time-Meter-Speed with separate red and green digital display, noise reduction and more.

All this is the work of "VJstyle" who also builds his own tube amplifiers and horn loudspeakers all with this striking visual presentation. One can find on the internet two versions of this modified tape recorder, one is labelled Electronika 004 (just like the original is based upon) and one made to custom order, a one off marantz labelled version with marantz engraved side-panels and marantz logo on the front. One more important thing. This is not a Quadro recorder as many thinks judging by the 4 VU meters. Actually, if you zoom in, they are clearly labelled as PLAY VU METER on the top row and REC VU METER the lower two.  


reel to reel tape recorder

reel to reel tape recorder

reel to reel tape recorder

reel to reel tape recorder

reel to reel tape recorder

reel to reel tape recorder

reel to reel tape recorder


16 April 2022

Nakamichi 550 (1974) - Two Head Portable Cassette System

cassette deck

With the Model 550 Dual-Tracer cassette system, Nakamichi extended their revolution in cassette technology to in-the-field recording. The 550 employs Nakamichi's exclusive Focused-Gap head for extended high frequency response and extremely low distortion. Complete with its own self-contained battery power supply, the Nakamichi 550 may also be operated from a car battery or from a standard AC line (with adaptors supplied). Professional 45dB range, peak level meters attest to the unit's extended dynamic range and are especially useful during live recording sessions. Speed control is absolute. A built-in Super Stabilizer prevents power supply voltage fluctuations and a pulse-controlled DC servomotor maintains absolute speed stability. No matter where you are, under the most rigorous field conditions or in the comfort of your living room, the Nakamichi 550 is the perfect companion. The right channel meter of the 550 can be switched to indicate battery condition, while the left channel meter also indicates elapsed tape time during recording and playback. Despite the unusually wide dynamic range of the Nakamichi 550, there are those occasions, especially during live recording, when tape overload may occur. In such instances, you can switch on the built-in peak limiter. It acts, almost instantaneously, to reduce possible distortion. Its action is so subtle that the resulting signal compression is virtually undetectable. 

The 550 in addition to the standard (L&R) mic inputs, a third blend mic is provided. Each input has its own level control, thus permitting professional quality mixing. The blend mic is particularly helpful in high lighting solo instruments and voices. A built-in extra-power headphone amplifier furnishes more than enough power to drive a pair of 8 ohm headphones, enabling the user to monitor the program being recorded. It is completely independent of the rear panel output controls which are used when the 550 is installed in a home music system. The Nakamichi 550 can be programmed to operate for a predetermined period of time by setting a built-in timing mechanism. At the conclusion of the time period, a front panel light (LED) flashes to alert the operator. Specifications: Frequency Response: 40Hz to 17kHz  (Cr02 tape) | Signal to Noise Ratio: 65dB  (dolby B) | Wow and Flutter: 0.13% | Dimensions: 311 x 89 x 350mm | Weight: 5.1kg | Carry bag HC-550 optional | Original sale price: 1380 DM in Germany.

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck



09 April 2022

quadral TITAN (1981) - Acoustic Work Of Art

loudspeaker
quadral TITAN and Peter Hofman tenor

Behind great success is often an interesting story. The TITAN-STORY begins in 1981, when the curtain rises for a sensational speaker, a conceptual sophistication of engineer Helmut Schaper. This dream speaker dominates the entire repertoire: abysmal bass, concise, natural sounding middle and crystal clear and finest details as well as most excellent incisively emphasizing treble. The loudspeaker pair has mirror imaged speaker arrangement. In addition, it had almost incredible performance values: 350 Watt continuous power and 600 Watt peak power handling! Even the immense weight of 115 kg documents that not only a noble speaker, but an acoustic total work of art was created here. In order to realize a fundamental bass reproduction, the TITAN I is using real transmission line principle. Specialty of the construction: Mr. Schaper ordered the bass speaker above the housing on the front side and folded the transmission line channel once on the housing bottom. The rear sound of the woofer could emerge out of the top of the housing cover. To reduce pipe resonances to a minimum, Mr. Schaper damped the sound channels with mineral fiber mats. Of course, the first TITAN convinced not only in the bass range - the specially developed cone midrange shone with exemplary transient response, and for the treble it was used a ribbon tweeter, which can reproduce high overtones particularly accurate in every detail. Also, the crossover corresponded highest quality requirements: extremely low manufacturing tolerances for all components made sure the speakers perfectly matched. With the addition of the quadral PA-01 external amplifier and ACO-01 crossover for mid and high frequency and an additional power amplifier the loudspeaker could be transformed into a active system. The TITAN continued to evolve and the 9th generation was introduced in 2016. Specifications: Type 3 Way | Principle Real-Transmission-Line | Frequency Range 16 Hz … 50 kHz ± 2dB | Crossover Frequencies 400 Hz/4000 Hz | Impedance 8 Ω | Woofer 320 mm Ø, Midrange 120 mm Ø, Tweeter Ribbon | Dimensions (HxWxD) 1500 x 540 x 505 mm | Weight, net 115 kg. (Source quadral Germany)

loudspeaker

loudspeaker

loudspeaker

loudspeaker

loudspeaker

loudspeaker

loudspeaker

loudspeaker

loudspeaker



02 April 2022

PHILIPS N2521 (1977) - The Iconic Front Loading Deck

cassette deck

The N2521 was the top-of-the-line model (High Fidelity International) in the 1977 range of cassette recorders from Philips. Inside this vertical standing front-loading hi-fi cassette deck, we can find a one motor (Tacho controlled DC motor) solenoid-controlled tape transport. This type of transport was called "Magno Control" by Philips. The record/playback head is a "FSX" long life head that can handle normal, chrome and ferrochrome tapes that can be either manually or automatically selected. For tape noise reduction the deck is equipped with both Dolby B circuit and DNL-Dynamic Noise Limiter. DNL is a Philips noise reduction circuit for playback only. Recording level can be manually adjusted while the signal level has individual left and right illuminated meters with LED overload indicator. The front panel DIN standard headphone output has both volume and balance controls. To eliminate unwanted passages from an existing recording the N2521 is equipped with manual post fading facility with lock. (The lock is a safety measure as post fading is performed during playback). The output level of the deck can also be adjusted via line output controls located near the back panel output sockets. Another interesting feature is the head cleaning indicator. This indicator works as a timer, measuring the time the deck has been used, with the indicator warning when head cleaning must be performed. Technical data: Frequency response 30-14000 Hz Normal, 30-16000 Hz Chrome, 30-17000 Hz Ferrochrome | Wow&Flutter 0.15% | Dimensions 360x300x130 mm | Weight 4.8 kg | Original sale price: 950 DM Germany.

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck

cassette deck