Saturday, 25 August 2012

Sony PS-4750 Turntable

Now here is an interesting turntable and a gem of a turntable.  Apparently, the PS-4750 is not too common, which can be a good and a bad thing.  I take it as good as this turntable is quite nice, well made and looks cool to boot!

I have never seen anything like this before and I've had quite a few Sony turntables before.  Like with all Sony's product they are equipped with their latest and patented technology.  The PS-4750 has the SBMC (Sony Bulk Mould Compound) material in it's base (plinth) and platter to help with absorption of vibration.  As well, Sony's air filled cushions on the platter and rubber feet to help with vibrations.

It also features a stylus overhang gauge, a nice low friction tone arm and an extra auxiliary weight in case you have a heavier cartridge.

Really, it's an over engineered turntable, which is a nice.  However, while it's not one of their TOTL turntables, it's still an incredible turntable.  You can also use your own RCA cables in the back in case you want to use something of higher quality, like silver wiring.

It's a direct drive, 2-speed, fully manual turntable and more importantly when paired with this Grado ZT+ or Grado Black, it's a phenomenal turntable that sounds great!

Did I also mention it looks pretty damn cool?  It's one of those turntables you have to see and appreciate in person.

Technics SLQ2 Turntable

Following our deja vu moment, here is another Technics SL-Q2 turntable.  We sold one before and I thought I would never get another.  These are excellent tables and better built in comparison to other Technics' turntables.  While this is not a SL-1200-1800 turntable, these are much better built to their belt drives and their other consumer level direct drive turntables, like the SL-D2, SL-D202, DL-D3 and those in that particular series.

Generally, Technics are really no brainers when it comes to choosing a turntable.  But, you do have to be careful at times as not all Technics are completely reliable.

It's direct drive, with quartz lock, 2-speed and semi-automatic.  It's well built with a nice heavy platter and large rubber feet for dampening vibration.

Comes with an Empire TC-40 cartridge with new elliptical stylus.  Excellent cartridge and sounds great.  Too bad Empire cartridges aren't discussed very often as they made great cartridges and too bad Jico of Japan doesn't make SAS stylus for them or they'll give Shure their run for the money.

Freshly serviced, and overall it's in great condition.  Like the previous one before this one, it will make it's new owner happy and will provide endless hours of music! 

Hitachi PS-48 Turntable

We're having a deja vu moment here as we bring you another Hitachi PS-48 turntable.  This is a great table, well made, heavy, great arm and more importantly its sounds great!

It's a direct drive, semi-automatic, 2-speed turntable, big rubber feet for dampening and featuring Hitachi's uni-torque motor.  The plinth is wood and wrapped in rosewood vinyl finish.  Add a smoked dustcover and you get a classy looking turntable.

It's been freshly serviced and comes with a brand new Audio Technica AT-3600 cartridge that has been aligned and ready to play.  Also has a nifty headshell that makes alignment a breeze as the finger lift acts as a slider.  It's pretty cool.

Lots of information on the internet:

Everyone knows I have a soft spot for Hitachi as they're well made, underrated, and they make great audio equipment.  This turntable, however, was probably made by CEC, who is a huge OEM Japanese company, which still exist today.  They have made tons of turntable for various companies such as Marantz.  But, this was designed to Hitachi's specifications.

Overall, it's a great table and in very good condition and ready to give its new owner a lifetime of music!

Monday, 13 August 2012

AR48s Speakers Are Alive!!!

Finally, I've finished this project!  Foams were quite difficult to find but, now it looks like Audioless Winnipeg Group has another foam supplier of high quality USA made foam, next to Rick Cobbs.

The AR48s are a 3-way speakers with 1" soft dome tweeter, 4" midrange driver and 10" woofer.  Woofers foam still need a break-in period as they've only been played recently.  Currently less than 2 hours on the foam.

They sound really nice, tweeter has nice dispersion and clarity.  I enjoy 3-ways due to the additional midrange driver.  The additional driver makes vocals a bit more prominent and full.  Good bottom end from a 10" woofer.  Overall, a clean and balanced sound, typical of the late AR speakers.

They are in excellent condition.  Grills are "mint," badged are present and all drivers are original.  Cabinets are also in excellent condition.  However, they're vinyl wrapped rather than veneer.  The only real flaw is that one midrange driver has a slight dent.  While it will not affect the sound tonally, it's still a slight cosmetic flaw.  We did not do this, it was done prior to our owner ship.

If you are wondering why one midrange driver has different surrounds, that is because the one on the right has rubber surrounds while the left one had foam.  I found it a bit weird that AR would do such a thing.  But, I'm not the only one who had such an odd experience of just re-foaming one midrange.  Guess AR just put in any midrange driver that was available at the time.  I did re-condition the rubber surround. 

There will be no difference in sound between the 2 midrange drivers, for those who are wondering.  These drivers have hardly any excursion when played, therefore all the surrounds are used for is to keep the cone centered and prevent rubbing of the voice coils.

Overall, they're a nice pair of speakers for anyone looking for a balanced sound signature.  Ran them with my HK330c and they sound great.  I will admit, the vinyl wrapped cabinet made it hard to take picture as it's quite shiny in comparison to veneer, so the pictures might seem a bit saturated.  So, they do look at lot better in person than in the pictures.  Maybe I'll try a cloudy day.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Kenwood KA-601 Integrated Amplifier

A very nice amplifier by Kenwood,  It struts a bBrushed aluminum face with big knobs and switches, what more do you want?  It not only looks nice but sounds great too.

It has the Kenwood sound signature.  Crisps, detailed and almost analytical.  Similar to the Hitachi HA-1100 but not has robust or as raw.  But, raw enough when compared to other "warmer" sound signatures out there.  If I had to describe it in one word, it's "clean" or even "neutral" but not boring.  It will match well with a variety of speakers, that's for sure.

It also has some pretty cool features.  5-way speaker binding posts.  It's also DC coupled, or as Kenwood would say on their amps "High Speed DC Integrated Amplifier."  You can also turn on and off the DC coupled if you like.  Also has a mute attenuator and the loudness has 2 steps for it, which is nice and you don't see that very often.

It's also dual powered, according to the faceplate.  While it's not a true dual transformer, it's doubled tapped from a single transformer.  It's similar to the Harman Kardon stuff of the 80s.

It has some good weight, a big transformer, well built and cosmetically it's in excellent shape.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Odyssey MK1 Bookshelf Speakers

These speakers are pretty interesting.  Canadian made!  And sounds pretty nice for a small pair of speakers.  Uses Vifa tweeters and a 6" polycone woofer in a nice well built box and heavy too, each weigh approximately 10lbs.  The boxes are oak veneer and are well designed and look great with the angled look.  It gives it a nice touch of class. 

Tonal qualities.  With the right power source they sound really nice.  Decent bass, with a very nice midrange.  Female vocals are great with these speakers.  Those Vifa tweeters are really nice.  Reminds me of various New England style speakers.

Technics SL-1200MK2 Turntable

Probably one of the most iconic turntable in the world, the Technics SL-1200MK2 turntable.  Loved by DJs and Audiophiles alike.  It's durable, robust, well built and sounds great.  2-speed, direct drive, quartz locked, fully manual with VTA, what's not to love?

This is one heck of a turntable.  Sadly, Panasonic aka Technics are no longer making these well crafted turntables, thus the remaining stock of new SL-1200MK2 has slowly increased in price.  Used values has also taken a slight increase.

If you're looking for a robust turntable that has been well dampened and sounds great look no further. The SL-1200MK2 will suit everyone's need for performance and sound quality.  Don't be swayed by other look-a-like, not many can match the quality of the Technics.

I have put a very nice Empire TC40 cartridge with a brand new quality stylus and it sounds very nice.  Overall it's in very good shape, there are some nicks and scratches.

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Hitachi PS-14 Turntable

Everyone knows I have a soft spot for Hitachi gear.  They are well built, excellent performers, they sound great and you'd be surprised to find that many other Japanese companies used Hitachi components.

However, this is one of the oddest turntables I've seem in quite some time.  This is a Hitachi PS-14 turntable.  It's a belt drive and semi-automatic.  However, it's a 4-channel or quadraphonic turntable with the ability to play in 4-channel or stereo (2-channel).  There are 2 pair of RCA connectors at the back, 4-channel separation attenuators in the front and the ability to select between direct, stereo and 4-channel play back.  Very neat turntable.

It's also fairly large as it has to house several PCB for the 4-channel feature.  But, it's housed in a nice wooden plinth and nice aluminum accents.  It also features a suspended platform, very typical Japanese of the early 70s to help with vibration as well large rubber feet.  Not to mention the original LOD or Hitachi headshell!

It has a new belt and an Empire 5000MKIII cartridge.  That's right an Empire 5000MKIII.  Very nice sounding cartridge.  But, the stylus is meant for stereo playback.  I don't think I have any 4-channel cartridges.  Either way, it's a very nice sounding cartridge and was pretty close to the top of the chain of that series.

Pioneer PL-300 Turntable

Finally got my DSLR camera and took some pictures of this beauty.

The Pioneer PL-300 is a semi-automatic, 2-speed, direct drive quartz locked turntable.  It also features a suspended platform for the platter, to help absorb vibration.  It comes with a Grado MF3 cartridge which is equivalent to the current Grado Black cartridge.

It's a very nice turntable and the cartridge is a excellent entry level cartridge.  Grado has a very nice tonal qualities.  It's has some bite in the bass, nice treble and midrange.  It's a bit forward but it does have that "Grado" characteristics.  It's a really nice Jazz and Rock cartridge.

It's also a very slim line design.  Not as bulky as some other turntables of the same era.