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What kind of Legacy quad gear should I get?

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quadanasaziland

500 Club - QQ All-Star
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There has been some interest in the Legacy MultiChannel Sound & Systems section and on the board in general lately in vintage gear. Folks have mention a wide variety of gear over the last couple of months, some of it good, some not so good. Some seem poised to travel the well traveled road that can be very bumpy.
Some want to re-own that quad gear they had back when, their sentimental favorite and some see some thing on eBay that catches their eye. It may look cool or hold a special place in your heart but that doesn’t mean it’s what you should get if you want to get the best surround experience.
Ok so what kind of Legacy or vintage gear should you get?
Well from a decoding, demodulating or source playback aspect which is what it’s all about, here’s what I think is a decent list to go by. Opinions will vary and this is by no means a complete list of quad gear. If some thing you have or are interested in is omitted here it may be for a good reason then again maybe I just forgot to mention it.
Let’s start with …

Synthesizing quad from Stereo.
1. Is the Variomatrix created by Iso Itoh for Sansui. Stand alone units that have been
modified by QuadBob. Like the QSD-1, QSD-1000 ( I will let you all decide which
should come first, D-1000 or D-1) and the QSD-2. For receivers this
would include the QRX-9001 (999), 8001, 7001(777), 6001 and the 5001.
2. Tate 101a/Space and Image Composer set to surround mode.
3. Unmodified Sansui gear mentioned above.
4. Lafayette receivers/amps with built in decoders and Sansui QRX- 7500A/6500A/5500A.
5. The Rest. (Sony, Kenwood, Marantz, Pioneer, JVC, Sansui’s QR & QS stuff so on)

QS
1. Sansui D1000, D-1 and D-2 and the Sansui “01” units and their euro versions (mentioned above).
2. Tate’s in cinema mode.
3. The rest of the regular matrix equipt gear.

SQ
1. Tate 101A/Space and Image composer
2. Lafayette SQW
3. Sansui “01” units, Lafayette SQL
4. Sony full logic SQD-2020
3. Marantz SQA-2B, SQA-2 and the rest of the Sony’s
5. Marantz SQA-1
6. The Rest.

CD-4 Demodulators
This could be dicey!!! Most CD-4 demods are basically the same stuff just laid out differently by the various manufacturers all based on JVC‘s design and lisenced by them for manufacture. I will let you all hack out who’s best to date! Here’s a likely list.

1. JVC CD4-1000
2. QuadBob’s Holly Gail. (cause of the tweaks and cal) , JVC CD4-50
3. Technics SH-400 Lou’s baby, Marantz CD400 and CD400B
2, Lesser Technics units (model #’s escape me right now), Pioneer, JVC, Panasonic and
others. There are some different models made by some of these makers, the owners of
those units can debate where they should fall in the order.

CD-4 Turntables
Well some of you know that I am in the dedicated CD-4 gear camp, meaning low capacitance wiring. Servo or quartz drive is probably better than belt drive. Straight or curved tone arm can be debated. Dual and Sansui had quite a few models.
I don’t know of any Linear tracking tables with low capacitance wiring.

CD-4 Carts
Again I’m in the dedicated gear camp, 100k ohm, high frequency carts with Shibata type styli are what the demodulators are made to work on, this just can’t be argued away!
The AudioTechnica AT20 SLA should head the list followed by the AT 15 and 14 (JVC-4MD20) AT 12. All JVC CD-4 carts were badged AT carts.
Stanton and Pickering also made some good carts that I have played with.
I’m sure there are others that can be added here.

Q-8 decks
1. Akai CR-80D-SS because it will play any thing, built like tanks
2. Technics RS858-US (blue meter), Best looks and output controls for each channel But
they have trouble with some carts. Some think it sounds better than the Akai, I
wouldn’t know since I have never owned an Akai.
3. Technics green meter. Sounds as good as the blue meter but doesn’t hold carts as well.
4. Don’t know much about the rest. Owners of the less used Q8 decks chime in!

Q-4
I’m not going to put an order to this as there could be as much debate as there is for CD-4. Some would say the Akai’s like the GX-400, GX-630, GX-280 are great due to the glass heads. The Teac’s are very popular and built like tanks Tascam 34B , Teac A-3440, A-3340S and the A-2340R. I have a Sansui QD5500 and a Sansui QD5050.There are many others that are good. Any three head or better deck should do well!

I am not commenting on the sound of your gear. You may love the sound of the preamp/amps in your quad system, I am just talking about the ability to obtain the highest level of surround separation and sound quality from your multi channel sources.

Ok so now your headed down the well traveled road but there are still bumps! This stuff is nearly 40 years old and most of it needs to be restored but the $ you saved from not buying the wrong quad gear can go towards pursuing and fixing the good stuff. I prefer well functioning Legacy gear with caps and wires and the warm dynamic sound that comes with them to modern “neutral” IC driven multi channel equipment of today!

Quad gear I have owned over the years includes Marantz, Kenwood, Technics, Sony, Panasonic, JVC, Fosgate, Technics, DBX, Pioneer, Oppo, Outlaw and of course SANSUI!

Comments, additions and corrections welcome!
 
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Q-Eight

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For a cheap, all around good Q8 deck, look for a Miida. I got mine for free and with a simple belt change, it played great. Virtually no crosstalk and holds speed very well. For best cheapie, go Miida.

SQ decoders, personally, I was more imrpessed by the Lafayette SQ-L than I am by my current SQ-W. Unless my SQ-W is bad, I still don't like SQ.

CD-4 demods: My Pioneer QD-240 (that matched the rest of my Pioneer gear) worked great but needed constant twiddling to keep it right. Then again, My Technics demod is the same way. No two LP's play the same way.

QS: To be quite honest, I prefer the QS setting built into my Pioneer QX-9900 to the composer setting on the SQ-W. I have 3 QS records and they play well through the setting.
 

Q-Eight

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Digital Transfers are nice and I have my fair share, but sometimes it's just nice to throw down the ol' leopard print bean bag chair in the middle of the four speakers, fire up the lava lamp and pop in a good ol' quad tape.

Some thing when I hop in my Javelin AMX or my Gremlin. No modern audio equipment in sight. Speakers might be newer but are hidden under vintage covers.

Scotty, set transporter to oh.... August 1973 if you please. :eek: :smokin
 

quadanasaziland

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None, unless you are into vintage gear.

Stick to digital transfers if you are not.
I have been meaning to get to this debate. For comparrison I auditioned an Outlaw 970 preamp in place of my SANSUI qrx 777 that I use as a preamp, I was excited to compare the two, hoping tha Outlaw would sound better so I could have the ease of use of a modern preamp (I get tired of getting up off my leather couch to adjust the 777) with a remote.

Disapointment would be an understatement! The Outlaw 970 was so dry sounding compared to my restored by QuadBob Sansui QRX 777 as to be unlistenable!

I think the Outlaw 970 was a good midfi choice for the comparison and is representative of modern preamps in general. I sold it on ebay and haven't looked back since. Nothing compares to the warmth of caps, transister and wires of restored vintage gear! The only ic's I want in my vintage gear is Variomatrix!
 

quadanasaziland

500 Club - QQ All-Star
Since 2002/2003
Joined
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Sorry for the slow reply been off the board for awhile. The Tate 101/Space and Image composer is listed. The other Tate's I did not consider because I don't think they rate very high for decoding from what I have heard.
 

MidiMagic

Senior Member
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Messages
293
Don't forget that a Dolby Surround decoder is also an RM decoder. Use either the Pro Logic mode or the Surround mode.
 

as1serge

Member
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Oct 3, 2014
Messages
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Dear Sirs,

please kindly help me to build up a quadraphonic vinyl system.

I am in the process of obtaining CD-4 Grundig demodulator (anyone have a manual by the way?). I understand I have to obtain also cartridge with Shibata stylos.

Now the questions:

1. Do I have to use phono preampli for each pair of channels after this (or any similar) demodulator or the cables could be plugged into amplifier directly, i.e. does it act like phono preampli?

2. If I find a MC quadraphonic cartridge should I use an up-transformer(s)?

3. I heard that tonearms for quadraphonic pickup should be more light in weight than averages?

4. Could you advise some vintage shops (in Europe better) where all that stuff could be purchased


Thank you very much and sorry for my naîve questions

Sergey
 

w.a.reid

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"please kindly help me to build up a quadraphonic vinyl system."

i think this should be a new thread

war
 

Doug G.

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Sergey, do you want me to answer here or do you want to start a new thread?

EDIT: Dummy me, if I would have just looked one thread down!

Doug
 

Quadrifoglio

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Location
Helsinki, Finland
Digital Transfers are nice and I have my fair share, but sometimes it's just nice to throw down the ol' leopard print bean bag chair in the middle of the four speakers, fire up the lava lamp and pop in a good ol' quad tape.

Some thing when I hop in my Javelin AMX or my Gremlin. No modern audio equipment in sight. Speakers might be newer but are hidden under vintage covers.

Scotty, set transporter to oh.... August 1973 if you please. :eek: :smokin
Perfect! :)

That's my thinking too, these are time travel machines. Back in the day, I had not even heard of such things as quad.

We did have stereo, which was advanced back then /(over here it was) as my late dad had bought a Grundig TK-245 Deluxe and a Finnish made ASA Stereo Master tuner/amp as well as the couple of "stereo systems" from AGA with a Lenco turntable etc.

I still have most of those, just recently serviced the Grundig before I was able to purchase my first read quad thing: an Akai GX-630D-SS.

I do have modern stuff of course as well and a fellow quad enthusiast recommended the Involve SQSM to me and I am very happy with it.

BUT for the old cars I like to stick to "period sound" so my 1975 Jaguar XJ6C is getting (soonish I have the equipment, but it needs a service, some rebuilding and two more speakers etc.) a 1975 Audiovox FM / Quadraphonic Q8 player with late 1970's Blaupunkt speakers.

The 1972 V12 Jaguar E-type roadster I bought from Germany in 2012 did also have a modern Pioneer stereo with CD's and iPhone adapters and large rear speakers with all kinds of amps and filters, but they are now all on the shelf and the car has the 1972 MONO Blaupunkt Frankfurt reinstalled. Why mono? Well it's a 1970's convertible with a rather loud engine. So when driving with the top down I am hearing the engine and exhaust in surround and I can not hear the radio anyways. BUT I like to have a working period radio so I can listen to the news and music when I am forced to have the top up, when I am stuck in traffic etc. Or when I am cruising slow in the city. I am cheating a bit, as all those old radios had an input for a tape player or something so I have an adapter hidden in the glovebox where I can stick in a 3.5mm miniplug and listen to my playlists from my iPhone. But it's a fact that through that system I can not listen to Kuyss or Soundgarden, as it just does not work. Stuff mixed and masterd in the 1960's and early 1970's however, like Kinks, CCR, The Doors, The Beatles and even Zeppelin, Purple, Sabbath and Pink Floyd, Yes, Genesis, Rick Wakeman all sound just fine.

So once I have the Audiovox working and installed I have even more contrast between the raw sports car and the comfy coupé. :D

I will post pics of the Q8 layers in the appropriate thread and people who like beothings can read about my quest on beoworld. Hifi folks may not like that equipment so much, but as I have studied architecture and design I can not help falling in love with their wacky and complicated Danish designs. I know it will cost me an arm and a leg, but hey, like FZ put it: "Beauty knows no pain!"

Cheers!
 
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