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Unique Devices

As the Reel2ReelTexas recording collection grew, there were quite a few unusual devices and circumstances involving the evolution of the reel to reel tape recorders. Below is a sampling of some of those items and events.  We've also been given permission to share photos of some unique items that are not in our collection.

Lyrec TIM-4 counter on our Ampex 200A reel to reel tape recorder in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection
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PLEASE NOTE: None of the Vintage Museum items are for sale.

 

Go to Page 1 of the Unique itemsGo to Unique 2 on Reel2ReelTexas.com


Converting mono to stereo reel to reel tape recorders

A Unique Akai Stereo Terecorder AkaiStereoTerecorder in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel tape recorder collection

Akai produced over 100 models of reel to reel tape recorders.  This is one we had not seen previously.  When stereo came along, it looks like Akai created their first stereo recorder by adding a 2 track head, stereo outputs and a second smaller unit to house the second channel electronics and speaker.  This unit has a switchable head to go from Full track to two channel Half track (stereo).  Pretty cool unit.  Interesting styling.

AkaiStereoTerecorder in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel tape recorder collection AkaiStereoTerecorder in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel tape recorder collection  AkaiStereoTerecorder in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel tape recorder collection


Sterapapter to add a stereo head to a tape recoder - ad is in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection  1959 ad for the United Kingdom Gramdeck that turns any gramophone into a  reel to reel tape recorder in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection

Here's another way to add stereo



1958 Ampex Video Flxible Eyebrow Starliner - photos provided by Larry Blomberg

Apparently a number of companies around that time fitted out buses to hawk their wares to bigger companies. I know of another company named Neely who used to do the same with their electrical wares, also in an eyebrow Starliner.
Larry

1958 Ampex Video Flxible Eyebrow Starliner - photos provided by Larry Blomberg   1958 Ampex Video Flxible Eyebrow Starliner - photos provided by Larry Blomberg  1958 Ampex Video Flxible Eyebrow Starliner - photos provided by Larry Blomberg  1958 Ampex Video Flxible Eyebrow Starliner - photos provided by Larry Blomberg


1/4" audio auto-reversing recorder with built in 1/4" black & white video recorder

Rheem/Roberts 1000

   Roberts 1000 reel to reel with black and white video capability    the Roberts 1000 audio and black and white video recorder combination     the Roberts 1000 audio and black and white video recorder combination  1977 ad for Roberts 1000 stereo reel tape recorder with a built in B&W video recording capability in Phantom Productions' reel tape recorder collection

This is the incredible 4 track reversing audio recorder with a built-in black and white video recorder.

  Rheem Roberts B&W video camera and recorder 1050AV ad in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel tape recording collection

Jerry Lewis pictured with Roberts 1000. '69 ad  •  Ad for Roberts 1050AW (note the Rheem Manufacturing address)


Akai • Roberts • Rheem • Califone

Comparison of Akai Rheem Califone & Roberts 500 reel tape recorders relaeased in 1967

early Roberts reel tape recorder logo in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel tape recorder collection.RollsLogoRoberts Recorder logo in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collectionRoberts provided good solid reel tape recorders in the semi-pro class during the late 1950's, 1960's and early 1970's.  They had an interesting evolution including this original Roberts logo (right) which we photographed on one of our earliest Roberts models.  The logo very much resembled the Rolls Royce logo. Here's the first Roberts tape recorder ad we've come across from 1958 using that RR logo.  This one was soon replaced by the crown over the name Roberts. Robert G. Metzner told us in an interview in Beverly Hills, CA on December 11, 2012, that he was contacted by Rolls Royce attorneys about not using the double "R" logo.


More about the Roberts Akai connection:

Akai logoRobert Metzner's relationship with Akai first started around 1953 with a turntable that was brought in for repair to Califone. Robert's brother-in-law, who was working for him at the time said there was a very unusual motor in the player. Robert  Metzner noted the numbers of the motor and found they were registered to Saburo Akai.  Mr. Metzner contacted Akai and said he would like to know if they were making these motors and if not, could he have the tooling to make them.  If they were making them, could he get their distributorship. Akai sent Robert Metzner a brochure about the motors they were manufacturing. A relationship developed and Akai provided motors for some of the Califone products.

When Akai first sent tape recorder demos to Roberts Electronics, Metzner said they were of very poor quality and he recommended they aspire for the quality of Ampex.  He sent an Ampex 600 to Akai and they actually copied the basic design.  The early Akai and Roberts Recorders had the similar look, however not the electronics and mechanics of Ampex.  VIDEO

Akai, Roberts & Ampex comparison in the Museum of MAgnetic Sound Recording

Roberts Electronics, Inc. negotiated an arrangement with Akai wherein Akai would build the machines to Roberts specs, they would be shipped from Japan to the US where Roberts would inspect every unit before it went out to sales.  Further, Robert Metzner negotiated a contract that enabled Roberts Electronics to be the sole North American distributor for the recorders.  Akai sold the same, or similar models to the rest of the world under the Akai name and paid royalties to Metzner.  This lasted until 1972 when Akai entered the US market.  Robert Metzner learned the Japanese language and made 12 trips to Japan beginning in 1958, forming a strong relationship with Saburo Akai (who founded Akai in 1929) until Saburo Akai's death in 1973. VIDEO 1 VIDEO 2 

1970 ad sponsored by Rheem Roberts to win a trip to the 1970 Japan Expo in the Museum of MAgnetic Sound Recording

 


Robert Metzner owned the Roberts company and its Educational Products Division was named Califone.  These companies were bought by Rheem Manufacturing (which interestingly does not mention tape recorders on its history/about page).  A friend of ours briefly worked at Rheem's NY HQ, but was unable to find any records regarding their tape recording years. This may have been because the recorder component of Rheem was based in CA. Please note the story from Billboard below which details an agreement allowing Akai to market their recorders along with Roberts in the US in 1971.  Prior to that time Akai was not available for sale in the US due to the Akai Roberts distribution agreement with Roberts/Rheem (also note Akai ad below from June 1,1971.)  See also.

We provide some of the many versions of the Roberts/Rheem/Califone logos below.

early Roberts reel tape recorder logo in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel tape recorder collection.  Rolls Royce style logo used on early Roberts reel tape recorders  Rheem Califone logo on reel tape recorder in Phantom productions vintage tape recorder collection   Roberts Duet logo on reel tape recorder in Phantom productions vintage tape recorder collection  Roberts "R" crown logo on reel tape recorder in Phantom productions vintage tape recorder collection    Roberts "Roberts" script style crown logo on reel tape recorder in Phantom productions vintage tape recorder collection  Roberts "Original Design by Jack Davis" logo on reel tape recorder in Phantom productions vintage tape recorder collection  Roberts script letters logo on Roberts Speaker system in Phantom productions vintage tape recorder collection  Simple word "Roberts"  logo on reel tape recorder in Phantom productions vintage tape recorder collection    Rheem Roberts logo on reel tape recorder in Phantom productions vintage tape recorder collection   


   Rheem Califone 73-T reel tape recorderYes...this Rheem Califone 73-T really is from the Rheem Manufacturing Co.   At some point Rheem bought Roberts and distributed the Akai built tape recorders. 1971 Akai ad announcing that they would now be able to

Califone International Inc., 1145 Arroyo Avenue, San Fernando, CA 91340. Founded in 1946 as the educational products division of Robert Metzner’s Roberts Electronics with reel to reel tape recorders.

Rheem acquired a substantial majority interest in Califone Corp., in 1959, and a minority interest in Roberts Electronics, Inc., in 1961, and formed the Rheem Califone-Roberts Division, selling tape recorders, teaching machines, sound systems and other related equipment for the home, schools and industry.

1968 United Kingdom Akai reel tape recorder ad in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collectionOther references - Billboard July 3, 1971 - "Akai America will introduce a full line of tape players Sunday (27) at the Consumer Electronics Show,  The Califone-Roberts division of Rheem Manufacturing Co. has entered into an agreement with Akai Electric Co., Ltd. of Japan that will allow certain tape products to be sold in the U.S. under both the Roberts and Akai brand names.  Under terms of the agreement, Roberts will continue to market the major part of the Akai made products under the Roberts lab on an exclusive basis. "The benefits to both parties this new agreement are numerous and mutually desired,." said Roberts president C.R.Phillips (from 1974 to 1985, Mr. Phillips was Executive Vice President and Director of Akai America, Ltd., a 1971 ad for Akai reel to reel tape recorders reflecting that Akai could now sell their tape recorders in the US after an agreement with Roberts Recorders expired.  Ad is part of the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel to reel recording collectionconsumer electronics company. Prior to that he was President of Califone-Roberts Division of Rheem Manufacturing Company. Mr.Phillips received a B.A. from Pepperdine College, Los Angeles, California with emphasis on Business and Speech Education, in 1956.).  The agreement enables Akai America, the U.S. subsidiary Akai Electronics, to market tape equipment which has been denied under a previous Akai-Roberts contract.  Akai has been limited to marketing its 1/4 inch videotape player.  The ad to the left shows Akai tape recorders available in 1968 in the United Kingdom.

1929 Akai founded, audio manufacturer of reel-to-reel tape recorders, tuners, audio cassette decks, amplifiers, video recorders, and loudspeakers

Last reel tape recorder the GX-747 was produced 1981 to 1983

1984 Akai Professional division founded to manufacture electronic musical instruments
MG1212 – The world's first integrated 12-track recorder/mixer
AX80 – Eight-voice analog synthesizer with unique user interface

Here's some units sharing the same configuration and different name and model number.

Akai Terecorder 1958  •  Roberts Duet 191  (61) $289.50

Roberts Duet and Akai Terecorder designed after the Ampex 600

'61 catalog listing  $289.50  1960 Roberts 90

'58 Ad for earlier version (note the Roberts original Rolls Royce looking logo!)

 

Roberts 770X  •  Akai M-8

      1965 Akai M-8 tape recorder ad in Phantom Productions vintage reel tape recorder collection

'66 ad  More pictures

'67 McGEE catalog listing  $349.95

'67 Lafayette catalog listing  $359.95

'68 catalog listing $349.95

'65 AD  '66 AD

Akai X-300  •  Roberts 5000X

   Akai X300 and Roberts 5000X

This recorder was produced in 1967 under the Akai, Rheem and Roberts names.  In the above picture, that's our Roberts on top and the Akai below. 

 

Roberts 400 1963   •  Akai 345

    

Roberts 4000X   1965 $795    •    Akai X-355

'65 Directory

   Roberts 400X with remote    

 

Roberts 333X 1970 - 1973 $549.95

   Roberts 333 reel, cassette and 8 track unit 

Roberts 333 reel, cassette and 8 track unit. Movie of Roberts 333X working  - RealPlayer  Ad  71 catalog listing

Akai X-2000SD  $549.95

'72 ad

1973 catalog listing On sale $495

1973 directory listing

Here's the Akai version of the Roberts 333X

Akai X-2000SD version of Roberts 333X

Not in collection

The Roberts iPod reel to reel tape recorder conversion

Speaking of Roberts...how about this conversion of a Roberts 997 to play an iPod by W. B. Morton

Roberts 997 reel tape recorder  iPod conversion Roberts 997 reel tape recorder  iPod conversion  Roberts 997 reel tape recorder  iPod conversion

(summary from ebay listing used with permission from W.B. Morton)  Here is a Roberts Model 997 Reel to Reel deck that has been repurposed to play music files via a universal iPod docking station.  Past meets present!  Plays loud enough for a small office, dorm room etc.  I played an iPod and CD player through the mic inputs and everything sounded fine although there is some distortion if the volume is turned all the way up.

The Roberts 997 tape transport and record/play heads were in terrible shape, so the following was done to put the separate right and left single ended amps to work (and make the resulting case look better):

1.  Removed the reel motor and associated drive wheels.
2.  Remove forward/reverse link mechanisms.
3.  Keep the play/record and forward/reverse switches in place for any future experimental tinkering.
4.  Kept the link arm connecting the play/record switch to the sliding switches on the separate amps (again for any future experimenting).
5.  Lock the amp sliding switches in place in order to fix the amps into the 'play' position.  This can be easily undone if the link arm is to be enabled again.
6.  Removed the 6267 (preamp) and 6AR5 (bias oscillator) tubes - not needed for current purposes.
7.  Replaced the 12AD7 dual triodes in each channel with 12AU7 tubes.  The original dual triodes were bad anyway and the 12AU7's work just dandy.
8.  Pulled all of the exterior textured vinyl covering off (no easy task) and covered the exterior with linoleum for a smooth surface.
9.  Painted the exterior and body panels with black wrinkle-finish paint.
10. Painted the interior of the cover with regular black spray paint.
11. Added a hinged fold-down shelf to the front of the chassis (where the reels were).  This is where the iPod dock is placed when in use.
12.  Added a 3-prong power receptacle and moved the fuse to the back panel.
13.  Added a double throw switch to allow earth grounded operation or to simulate historical 2-prong operation.  The 'up' position connects earth ground and power, the 'down' position connects only power, the center position disconnects both power and ground.  The 'down' position will avoid ground loops depending on what other equipment may be used as a source and how that equipment is connected to earth ground itself.
14.  Installed a duplex wall socket inside the chassis to accommodate power connection to the iPod dock via its USB power adaptor and to apply power to the amps.
15.  Kept the internal speakers in place.  Just for fun.
16.  Kept the external speaker connection plate on the right side of the chassis.  Just for more fun.
17.  Kept the external doors for the internal speakers in place as the cavity behind each door is just large enough to hold the iPod dock and remote control when the unit is not in use.
18.  Attached an iPod holder to the inside of the cover (the white thing inside the cover in the pictures).  The sides of the holder are adjustable to securely hold various iPod models.
19.  The front cover door is detachable just as it was when the unit was originally built.

The lucky winner of the auction will receive the repurposed player, a universal iPod dock (Apple part number MB125G/B including USB power adaptor, various cradle adaptors, remote), power cord, and coax cables to connect the 1/4" speaker out jacks to your speakers.  For the input connections, RCA to 1/4" jack adaptors are included.  I will also send the two 6267 tubes (tested marginally ok, each has a rubber damper) as well as the 6AR5 tube just in case further experimentation will be done.   by W. B. Morton


Reel to reel using a card reader (provided with permission from Evan Long and Vince Long)

My son, a software engineer, was raised surrounded by all things analog. Since I love mixing old technology with new technology we did a bit of a project together.

There are credit card readers you can get for your smart phone which are nothing more that a tape head in a small plastic case. We picked up a few from Square (http://squareup.com/) and disassembled one to see what was inside. It's a head and a resistor. We connected it to my guitar amp and slid a credit card through it and, sure enough, we could hear the data on the card. We then held it against a piece of recording tape as it went through an Akai GX-260D and it reproduced the sound on the tape.

The next step was all his. He put together an app for the iPhone that reads the analog data coming from the reader and records it to the phone's memory. We decided to move further back in time so he took pictures of my RCA Model SRT-403 and animated the reels when the app is in record or play modes.

We took the head cover off the RCA to get better access to the tape path. We also had to modify the Square reader a little to reduce the pressure placed on the tape. The original design puts quite a squeeze on the credit card as it's drawn through the reader. The head is mounted on a sort of flat spring and it was a matter of bending things a little to allow a small gap for the tape path.

In keeping with the old-as-can-be analog theme, I selected a big band remote recorded off the air in the late 40s on paper tape. The band was Art Kassel's. We placed the RCA in play and pressed record on the iPhone. The current version of his app does not provide audio output at the same time as recording but the resulting sound, on playback, was pretty impressive considering the time lag between the technologies. He shot video (using an iPad) and dubbed the sound in over it to show what was happening.

The project and the video can be viewed on his web page here:

http://evanlong.info/projects/reeltoreel/

If I was doing this over I would use my Brush BK-401 Soundmirror instead of the RCA. One can't go back much farther in time with reels than that.

BTW, the paper tape I used was out of my collection which I have online here:

http://www.otrannex.com/papertapes/

Vince


Roberts duplicator

Here's another interesting Rheem tape recorder/duplicator (I assume) •  These pics were donated by Nathan Luoto

Rheem model tape machine pictures in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection   Rheem model tape machine pictures in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection

  Rheem model tape machine pictures in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection  Rheem model tape machine pictures in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection 

I need help identifying a Rheem model tape machine.  It is built into a large black metal box, with a large nickel or chrome plated cover over the heads. It has only one lever to engage and disengage the pinch rollers against the capstan.  It does not have transport controls. It appears that it was designed to have four separate tapes stacked and played together.  Spacers to go between reels, four individual heads stacked parallel, and four pinch rollers. There are two level knobs, two VU meters, and two 1/4 phone connectors on the front, and three RCA connectors on the back near the fuse and power cable. The only other control is a power switch and an indicator lamp.I rescued this unit from a pile of scrap/electronic recycling.
-Nathan


Teac Berlant Concertone connection

Another interesting evolution was the Berlant Concertone > Concord > Teac connection

Teac/Concertone 505  1960 - $495

This Concertone was built by Teac. Here's the Teac version. some history 

   Phantom Productions' Concertone 505 reel tape recorder   the Teac 505

More:  In the February, 1982 issue of Modern Recording and Music magazine, James Rayton with the Ascot Recording Studio in Hollywood, CA wrote:

"probably around the early '60s, the (Berlant/Concertone) assembly was moved to Japan, and around the same time, I believe, the company became known, paradoxically, as "American Concertone"; their product emphasis gradually moved into the mid-to-high-end consumer category, (and occasionally appeared under other trade names like 'Concord').  Whatever remains of the company today is perhaps better known as TEAC, who interestingly, continued making the old Concertone 90 at least through the late '60s, with only a change of nameplate (and probably solid-state electronics) and a different model number."

1966 listing of the Concord R-1100 in HiFiStereo tape recorder issue and same recorder released as the Teac R-1200 in a 1968 ad in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection


Teac Concertone Dokorder

As I'm mentioning Berlant and American Concertone, here's photos of one our favorite's, the green with large white buttons Concertone 801 featured in Doris Day and Rock Hudson's movie "Send Me No Flowers."  Link to listing in our collection

Here's the identical recorder which was re-branded by Dokorder

   Concertone 800 Series tape recorder      Concertone 801 reel tape recorder re-branded by Dokorder as the Dokorder Reverse-O-Matic 801  Concertone 801 reel tape recorder re-branded by Dokorder as the Dokorder Reverse-O-Matic 801    Concertone 801 reel tape recorder re-branded by Dokorder as the Dokorder Reverse-O-Matic 801

Concertone 801 on far left and Dokorder rebranded unit and original box on right.  Photos courtesy of "technextdoor"

Concertone 801 reel tape recorder re-branded by Dokorder as the Dokorder Reverse-O-Matic 801


The first Teac reel to reel tape recorder

To add to this interesting group of connections, we have the Teac TD-102.  This was acquired from someone who bought it in Nashville.

Teac TD-102 one of the first tape recorder built by Teac  Teac TD-102 one of the first tape recorder built by Teac

 The picture below actually shows the Teac TD102 on the 25th Anniversary box released by Teac around 1988.

So the Teac TD-102 was made around 1953.  This is interesting because the design closely resembles the Ampex 300 which was released in 1949. 

Teac 25th anniversary box showing  TD1-02    Ampex 300 in the reel2reeltexas.com and Museum of Magnetic Sound Recording vintage recording collection

In regards to the Denki Onkyo tag that is on our Teac TD-102, we received the following from Jerry Norton who worked for Berlant Concertone and mentions the connections between Berlant, Teac and Denki Onkyo/Dokorder.

April, 2012
Phantom Productions received this information from Jerry Norton who worked with American Astro-Systems as they transitioned from Concertone tape recorders to supplying high tech gear to the military.

"You asked about my thoughts on the Berlant/Concertone evolution. Here is the story according to my recollection and personal involvement. In 1962 Berlant sold the Concertone line and rights to the name to “American Astro-Systems” a small Aerospace firm in South El Monte, CA. It was in this time frame, 1963 that I recall American Concertone licensed the rights to manufacture the Model 505 to TEAC (Tokyo Electro Acoustic Company) who as we know continued to manufacture this baseline through 1970.TEAC produced the 505 and some of the early Concertone recorder subassembly components in Japan as well as DOKORDER. However, the final assembly and checkout took place in the US (Culver City and South El Monte, CA)."


3M Wollensak Revere

3M manufactured both the Wollensak reel to reel tape recorders and the Revere reel tape recorders in the same building.  The two brands were very competitive.  Note the similar parts, however different looks in these photos.

1965 Wollensak 1580 reel to reel tape recorder in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection1961 revere reel tape recorder   

Wollensak 1580 (1965) • Revere (1961)

1965 Wollensak 1580 reel to reel tape recorder in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection  1961 revere reel tape recorder

No ads for Revere were found after 1961. 

Last Wollwnsak reel tape recorder information we found was available in the 1972 review of the 6364

   1961 Revere reel tape recorder ad in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection  


Teac created R2Dr and 3CPO for Star Wars

   R2D2 Replica (complete with sounds.  Teac 80-8 was used to record te sounds of R2Dr and 3CPOin the Star Wars movie     R2D2 Replica (complete with sounds.  Teac 80-8 was used to record te sounds of R2Dr and 3CPOin the Star Wars movie    Teac 80-8

R2D2 Replica (complete with sounds). Teac 80-8 was used to record the sounds of R2D2 and 3CPO in the Star Wars movie


Webster Chicago

   Webcor signWebster Chicago control unit for wire recorder

Webster Chicago Amplifier Mixer 2L25 in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection Webster Chicago Amplifier Mixer 2L25 in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection

Webcor store sign (working)  • Webster Chicago control unit for wire recorder • Webster Chicago 2L25 amplifier and it tubes


Electro Voice microphones appeared under a variety of other brand names including; Ampex, Rauland-Borg & RCA

Ampex H-1390 matched pair

   factory matched pair of Ampex microphones

 

Ampex Slimair

   Ampex mike

 

Rauland-Borg 1248 BL

probably made by Electro Voice as similar to their Cardyne series

(1948 EV catalog listing1949 ad

Electro Voice Cardyne clone

      RCA SK-1001 - Electro Voice 664

Electro Voice 664 sold as the RCA SK-1001 in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection   Electro Voice 664 sold as the RCA SK-1001 in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection

Electro Voice 664 sold as the RCA SK-1001 in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection

RCA SK-1001 with the gray EV 664 and an EV 665

     

HeathKit Ampex & Magnecord

Heathkit AD-22 1965 $149.00 very similar to the Ampex 600 and was mounted in a samsonite case (note head cover record button and layout). '65 ad

  Rare Ampex clone sold by Heathkit in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage tape recorder collection  Rare Ampex clone sold by Heathkit in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage tape recorder collection  Rare Ampex clone sold by Heathkit in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage tape recorder collection

Heathkit Speedwinder SW-1

HeathKit Speedwinder to quickly wind 10.5 inch reel of recording tape in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording colection

Heathkit Speedwinder in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel tape recorder collection

Speedwinder handles 10.5 inch reels, has two motors (one for fast wind and one to provide drag on the other reel) and auto cutoff.

1966 HeathKit/Magnecord reel tape recorder kit ad in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection

In 1966 HeathKit joined with Magnecord to offer this 1020 kit

 


More unique items

Brand new Electro Voice 664 in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage reel 2 reel tape recorder collection (not for sale)

Electro Voice 664 (unique in that's it's brand new in original box) NOT FOR SALE

Sony CR-4 wireless microphone $250 1960  '60 ad '62 ad  '60 ad #2  Manual   Specs

   Sony CR-4 wirless microphone system  Sony CR4 wireless microphone specs     Sony CR-4 wirless microphone system 

   Sony CR-4 wirless microphone system     Sony CR-4 wirless microphone system 


Sparta Broadcast Radio station console in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel to reel tape recorder vintage recording collection

Sparta radio station broadcast console

Sony store sign in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel to reel tape recorder vintage recording collection

Sony store sign with working rotating color tape


Sony 555-A with matching speakers  '58, '59  $595.00

Sony 555 reel tape recorder in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel to reel tape recorder vintage recording collection   Sony 555 reel tape recorder from 1959  in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel to reel tape recorder vintage recording collection   Sony 555 reel tape recorder from 1959 in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel to reel tape recorder vintage recording collection  Ad for Sony 555 reel tape recorder from 1959 in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel to reel tape recorder vintage recording collection

'58 picture   '58 Ad  '59 ad $595.00 


 Ampex tape splicer

Ampex tape splicer (by Robins) & Ampex microphone (by Electro Voice)

Bell & Howell 2297  '68 - '70 $264.95

Unique in that it loads tape using a vacuum motor. An engineer visiting Phantom's studio said, "I can just imagine the Bell lab techs sitting around discussing placing a vacuum cleaner motor in a reel tape recorder."

Bell & Howell 2297 reel tape recorder with vaccum loading  in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel to reel tape recorder vintage recording collection   Bell & Howell 2297 reel tape recorder with vaccum loading in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel to reel tape recorder vintage recording collection

'68 Directory   '68 ad  '70 Directory  view brief RealPlayer video clip 


Tape Timer before reel to reel tape counters

 

Lyrec TIM-4 High Speed Precision Tape Timer $295 (when new)   info Lyrec TIM-4 counter on our Ampex 200A

Lyrec TIM-4 counter on our Ampex 200A reel to reel tape recorder in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection  Lyrec TIM-4 counter on our Ampex 200A reel to reel tape recorder in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection

 

Concertone Tape Timer in wooden box in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection  Concertone Tape Timer in wooden box in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection  Concertone Tape Timer in wooden box in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection   Concertone Tape Timer in wooden box in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection  Concertone Tape Timer in wooden box in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection  1961 write-up on the Superscope tape timer in the Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording collection

Concertone tape timer in original wooden box  and with mounting bracket  • same timer except by Superscope from 1961 - $19.95


   tape recorder accessories        Robins tape timer

Robins Head Demagnetizer with Concertone taper counter  •  '61 info   • Robins tape timer


Novelty radio reel tape recorders

   radio in form of a Roberts tape recorder   redio microphone  tape recorder radio in miniature attaché case

Radio in form of a Roberts tape recorder   -  view video  •  classic microphone (center) and tape recorder radio in miniature attaché -   view video


   Poster for the public auction for the Armadillo World Headquarters

Poster for the public auction for the Armadillo World Headquarters

Ampex black satin jacket with Ampex Grand Master logos in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel tape recorder collectionAmpex black satin jacket with Ampex Grand Master logos in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel tape recorder collection

Ampex black satin jacket logos


   unused RCA studio label

RCA studio label & cup

 

Bell & Howell Bass Boom Box 1970 $79.95

 

1970 Bell & Howell Bass Boom Box cassette player with cylinder enclosure including 5" air suspension speaker in Reel2ReelTexas.com vintage recording museum1971 ads for Bell & Howell's various portable playerscassette1971 ads for Bell & Howell's various portable playerscassette

Bell & Howell Cassette recorder in round container

 

 


   Akai briefcase recorder with radio

picture of Crowncorder briefcase recorder with radio

Click here to see more about the Akai500 and watch a movie of the "reverse!"


Unique Format Ad

   the Garrard Tape Load Magazine

Garrard Tape Load Magazine

Sony used by Nixon from Newsweek, June, 2005

Ampex in USS Growler

US Navy Ampex reel tape recorder

On July 4, 2012 we took the family to the Intrepid Museum in NYC. Along with the carrier, they have the USS Growler, the first nuclear-armed sub, launched in 1958. In the crew cabin was this rack marked "Ships Entertainment System' with an Ampex reel transport (600 series?) front and center.
Photo(right) from Dan Blumenthal - reeltoreel@yahoogroups.com  - click on the photo for a larger view.

 

 

 


Article about adding legs for ventilation of the tape recorder  1959 Shure phono cartridge ad offering a trip to the UK to rceive a Rolls Royce   Shure Brothers offered a Rolls Royce in a national contest in October 1959


IN THE EARLY PART of the 20th century, most Americans believed that American Indians were doomed to cultural extinction. The U.S. government demanded that Indians abandon their tribal languages and religions. Indian's were told to learn "white people ways" and join mainstream America.

With little scientific training, and only a modicum of outside support, the young music teacher from a respectable Midwestern family vowed to preserve the old Indian songs in wax. Frances Densmore spent her life trying to gather up scraps and artifacts of the old Indian ways, shipping them off to the high ground of the Smithsonian Institution before a tide of American progress rose to carry them away.

FOR NEARLY 60 YEARS, a prim and opinionated woman from Red Wing, Minnesota conducted a personal campaign to capture Native American traditional music before it vanished from the continent. Setting out in the early 1900s, Frances Densmore traveled to remote Indian villages where few other white women would dare venture. Her tools were a simple box camera and a cylinder phonograph.
ALONG WITH RECORDING the voices of her subjects, Frances Densmore took numerous photos on her trips to tribal lands. She incorporated these still pictures into her lectures and talks in the form of "magic lantern shows" - precursors to the slide shows and multimedia presentations of today.

Interesting Hi Fi Article 

 

 


The following information & photos reproduced with permission from Heritage Auctions/HA.com

Beatles - Portable Reel To Reel Tape Recorder Used At The Star Club, Hamburg, Germany -

Seller's Estimate: USD 4,800.00 - 7,200.00 - listed on ebay to sell on 12/6/14

   


Beatles - Portable Reel To Reel Tape Recorder Used At The Star-Club, Hamburg With a Tape Recording of The Beatles.

This vintage Phillips portable tape recorder is of great importance to the history of the Beatles, for it is the machine on which the album Live! At The Star-Club, Hamburg, Germany; 1962 was originally recorded. The four-track recorder was purchased in Berlin in October 1962 by Ted "Kingsize" Taylor, the leader of the Liverpool group Kingsize Taylor and the Dominoes.

The Dominoes shared a Star-Club residency with the Beatles in December 1962, during the last of the Beatles' extended trips to Hamburg. Taylor had suspended a microphone from the ceiling of the club which ran to the Phillips recorder, and had taken to recording his group - and then others - at the venue. According to Taylor, he approached John Lennon one evening and asked if he had any objections to Taylor recording a Beatles performance. John's reply was that it was fine "so long as you get the ale in" (buy drinks for the Beatles) - which Taylor did, and he also rolled the tape. The exact date of the recording isn't known for certain, but the Beatles residency ran from December 18th through the 31st, which was also the final date of the Dominoes residency.

According to Taylor, he left the tape at his mother's home upon his return to Liverpool, and didn't address the recording again until 1965 when he presented an edited version to Brian Epstein to gauge his interest for possible release. Epstein purportedly replied that due to the substandard quality of the recording there would be no commercial interest, with a purchase offer to Taylor of 20 pounds for the tape.

Eventually the Star-Club recordings were released commercially on the German Lingasong label in the 1970s through a partnership with Taylor and the Beatles' first manager, Allan Williams.

The recordings have subsequently been the subject of various legal proceedings, and at present are currently unavailable.

Despite any sonic limitations, Beatle fans have long cherished the Star-Club recordings for capturing the energy and excitement of the Beatles' legendary early career performances, in the city where the group perfected their craft.

(auction details from December 2014) Offered in this lot are two portable recorders owned by Kingsize Taylor: one, the Phillips recorder purchased in Germany and used to record the Beatles at the Star-Club, and two, a Grundig recorder subsequently purchased in Great Britain, and used by Taylor to create the edited tape presented to Brian Epstein. The Grundig recorder does include a microphone, however, it is not the mic that was used to record the Beatles at the Star-Club. A copy of the edited tape as presented to Epstein is also included.

This tape is not the master used for the Lingasong release, and no copyright is conferred with its purchase. A two-record vinyl copy of the Lingasong release is included for listening enjoyment. Mach Schau!

The above information & photos reproduced with permission from Heritage Auctions/HA.com


Vinyl Record Making: "The Sound And The Story" 1956 RCA 24min


 

Recommended DVDs and books related to music and sound recording - please note that none of these are available for sale on our site

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Tascam book in the Reel2ReelTexas.com reel tape recorder vintage recording collection

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DVD

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Made in Japan book and Sony & Akio Morita

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History of Clockwork-Driven Tape Recorders. The book is written  in English and German languages

NEW Listing! recommended by Phil Van Praag - Federwerk-Tonbandgeräte - History of Clockwork-Driven Tape Recorders. The book is written  in English and German languages - available from German book dealers.

From Downbeat to Vinyl: Bill Putnam's Legacy to the Recording Industry - Bob Bushnell & Jerry Ferree

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Too Hot to Handle

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Chasing Sound

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Temples of Sound

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House of Hits

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Top Record Producers Tell How They Craft the Hits

         

Go to first Unique page •  Go to Unique 2 on Reel2ReelTexas.com

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