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Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

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Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby tom6to1 » 02 Oct 2017 21:44

Hi folks. I have a line on an SP-10 that was likely used in Australia in broadcasting (deduction from the tonearm on the plinth). It has the correct power supply for the model. It is known that the strobe does not work. Is there anything in particular I should be looking at before saying yes to the purchase?
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby JaS » 03 Oct 2017 07:23

I'd check that all speeds work, are stable and that it starts/stops/changes speed very quickly. If the platter takes more than a second to stop it may have had the brake disengaged/removed (the mechanical brake is solenoid operated so expect a little 'thunk' noise when pressing stop).

When running it should be very quiet, but a worn/damaged/badly adjusted brake belt can cause 'rubbing' noises when spinning.

Old transformers can become noisy so I'd listen for excessive 'buzzing' from the power supply.

The main bearing is durable, but if it's been transported without the clamp, or with the platter attached there's a small possibility of damage. There shouldn't be any lateral play in the bearing, or any noise when running. It's worth adding a drop of oil straight away if you buy it.

Short of stripping down the main bearing or getting an oscilloscope on the main board, I can't think of anything else? I've had one with a noisy brake and blown strobe bulb, but otherwise they are very reliable IME.
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby tom6to1 » 04 Oct 2017 02:59

Thanks JaS. I will be going to take a look later this week.

Next question (mostly to other Canadians posting here): If I buy the SP-10, I feel it prudent to have it serviced; certainly the power supply electronics could probably use refreshing. Does anyone know of someone in the Greater Toronto Area or nearby that does this sort of work and would you recommend them?
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby Alec124c41 » 06 Oct 2017 16:11

I have had several pieces of equipment serviced by Drago, and am very happy with his work. He is located in the west end of the GTA.
Drago1146@yahoo.com
What arm will you put on your SP-10, and which version is the SP-10?
I have the first one, with a Jelco SA-750E mounted.

Cheers,
Alec
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby tom6to1 » 07 Oct 2017 16:34

Hi Alec

Thanks for the contact, I will look them up if the sale goes through. The one I am looking at is a MK2A. I have not decided what to mount. It comes with a broadcast arm designed for "high-compliance" cartridges. Closest I have is an Ortofon Blue, so we will have to see how that works. If I replace the tonearm, I would love to use an EPA-100, but that might be a touch difficult to find. Perhaps I will look at fitting a Jelco. I am interested to see what Technics will use when they create the new SP-10 package (with plinth and tonearm). Will they try to recreate the EPA-100? I can wait and see.
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby tckmet » 07 Oct 2017 17:43

3 on eBay all in same auction they came from a studio
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby tom6to1 » 08 Oct 2017 02:23

Purchase complete. One SP-10 MK2A on an MDF plinth with a Syntec S-220 tonearm. The bearing is solid, speed sounded accurate when playing a record. Start and stop were brisk with no funny sounds from braking. Does the power supply hum? I can't really tell but probably not. I need to give it a close listen tomorrow. Syntec S-220 is described as high-compliance but no effective mass is provided. Only cartridge I own that comes close to "high" is the Ortofon Blue, so that is the match for now. I will need to follow the process for calculating effective mass (there is a detailed post about this somewhere (TNSilver on AudioKarma referencing a post on Vinyl Engine that I cannot find). I need to adjust the tracking force and listen for a while. Tonearm does not provide anti-skating, so I need to decide if I care. It needs a dust cover, so that is the next item to look for.
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby cafe latte » 08 Oct 2017 03:11

JaS wrote:I'd check that all speeds work, are stable and that it starts/stops/changes speed very quickly. If the platter takes more than a second to stop it may have had the brake disengaged/removed (the mechanical brake is solenoid operated so expect a little 'thunk' noise when pressing stop).

When running it should be very quiet, but a worn/damaged/badly adjusted brake belt can cause 'rubbing' noises when spinning.

Old transformers can become noisy so I'd listen for excessive 'buzzing' from the power supply.

The main bearing is durable, but if it's been transported without the clamp, or with the platter attached there's a small possibility of damage. There shouldn't be any lateral play in the bearing, or any noise when running. It's worth adding a drop of oil straight away if you buy it.

Short of stripping down the main bearing or getting an oscilloscope on the main board, I can't think of anything else? I've had one with a noisy brake and blown strobe bulb, but otherwise they are very reliable IME.

Re buzzing transformer, I had this issue with my sp10mk2. Problem was fixed by replacing caps in the psu. Actually unless you are sure the psu caps have been replaced recently I would change them right away as a couple of the psu caps are prone to failing. Two failed on mine fortunately no damage to the turntable was done.
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby tom6to1 » 09 Oct 2017 18:44

Looking at the Syntec S-220 tonearm mounted to the plinth. Spindle to pivot distance is supposed to be 8 1/16 inches (205mm) according to the mounting template. It measures out to 8 3/4 (222mm). I have to think the tonearm has been mounted improperly, or at least differently from the templates in the guide. It is not resolving nicely in various alignment tools as the best I can do for offset is about 10mm, and the protractor tools seem to require at least 15mm. Very frustrating. I think I may be about to go down the rabbit hole of a new arm, and probably a new plinth since this does not have an arm board so I am stuck with a 7/8 inch hole at 222mm from the spindle. I could "move" the existing arm to achieve he correct mounting distance and of course could drill for a new arm. I have never had to mess with arm mounting before so looking for advise and suggestions?
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby Alec124c41 » 10 Oct 2017 04:48

When I mounted the Jelco 10" arm on my SP-10, which came with an SME 3009 S2 improved, I just put an "armboard" over the hole. It is, in fact, just a piece of black plastic, about 5" square, and 1/8" thick. It covers the hole, and the arm is screwed through it into the wood of the plinth. Looks decent, no gaping holes.
One of the Rega arms, or variants thereof, would drop into that 222mm space. So would a Sumiko Premiere MMT, or FT-3 or 4.

Cheers,
Alec
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby tom6to1 » 11 Oct 2017 02:13

Hi Alec, thanks much for the suggestion on arms and armboards. The Sumiko's are hard to find and I am rather fond of removable head-shells, so that rules out the Rega. Strangely enough, I am now considering a Jelco 750. You say you are happy with the 750E and since this is considered an evolution of the Sumiko, it looks like I am going that way. Any advise specific to the Jelco? In particular, any recommendation for the cable (DIN plug to RCA)?
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby Alec124c41 » 11 Oct 2017 14:05

I am very impressed with the 750E. I opted for the 10" rather than the 9", and the 12" was a bit much.
I am using the red Jelco cable. Audio Sensibility in Willowdale is where I got mine.
If you want to see/hear what I have, PM me.

Cheers,
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby cafe latte » 11 Oct 2017 14:14

Alec124c41 wrote:I am very impressed with the 750E. I opted for the 10" rather than the 9", and the 12" was a bit much.
I am using the red Jelco cable. Audio Sensibility in Willowdale is where I got mine.
If you want to see/hear what I have, PM me.

Cheers,
Alec

You can buy the plugs and make the cable very cheaply, but it is not recommended unless you really know what you are doing with a soldering iron. pins are like a mm apart and wires are thick. I managed the job but there was swearing.
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby tom6to1 » 12 Oct 2017 15:16

Thanks Alec and cafe latte.

Alec: I have been looking at Audio Sensibility and will take your suggestion on the cable as well. cafe latte: I won't make my own cable - soldering replacement caps is on my list of things to learn how to do (electronic repairs in general), but I have no time now, and a DIN cable is probably a very bad place to start.
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Re: Help on Purchasing an SP-10 - What to Look for

Postby cafe latte » 12 Oct 2017 23:57

tom6to1 wrote:Thanks Alec and cafe latte.

Alec: I have been looking at Audio Sensibility and will take your suggestion on the cable as well. cafe latte: I won't make my own cable - soldering replacement caps is on my list of things to learn how to do (electronic repairs in general), but I have no time now, and a DIN cable is probably a very bad place to start.

Very wise, soldering is easy, but soldering a tiny din with connections about a mm apart is a nightmare.
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