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"off duty" 1970 - 1997 - eine Werbezeitung für's US Militär

Die in diesem amerikanischen (Freizeit-) Shopping-Magazin angeprie- senen Produkte waren auschließlich amerikanischen und kanadischen Militärangehörigen ausserhalb der USA zugänglich - also zu kaufen - vor allem zu ganz ungewöhnlich (verblüffend) niedrigen US $ Military-Preisen. Zu der einführenden "off duty" Seite geht es hier lang.

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Über die Chicago's "Consumer Electronics Show" Juni 1972

In den USA der 1970er Jahre gab es jede Menge an "Electronic"-Shows. In den großen Städten sowie in Las Vegas buhlten die großen Hotels um diese Shows mit allen nur erdenklichen Methoden. Eine solche "Show" verhieß ja nicht nur Publicity, sondern auch Umsatz mit den Besuchern und den Restaurants. Jeweils in der CES Winter-Show (die gabs aber erst ab 1973) und in der etablierten Sommer-Show wurden zudem Neuerungen und neue Produkte vorgestellt. Hier in diesem Juni 1972er Report aus Chicago wurden auch Firmen- Informationen eingeblendet, wie zum Beisipiel, daß die Firma "ONKYO" in 1972 relativ neu auf dem Markt war und eine Tochter der "Mitsubishi International Corp." ist bzw. war.

Hier werden die sogenannten "Stateside list prices" genannt, die in den Military Audio-Clubs deutlich preiswerter waren. Die Listen der Military Preise sind bei den "annual surveys" (Marktübersichten) jeweils angehängt. Dieser CES-Report ist wegen der Fülle in 2 Teile gesplittet.

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Caught in the Middle (CES Bericht Teil 1)

Two audio giants - CBS and RCA - drag the customer into the matrix-discrete systems battle at Chicago's Consumer Electronics Show (June 11-14 1972) - published by WALTER B. RI0S - in Off Duty / Europe/ August 1972.

Mit 4-Channel geht es aufwärts - glaubt man in den USA ....

Chicagos Messe Hallen - McCormick-Place am Lake Michigan

FUEL WAS ADDED to the 4-channel fire as manufacturers unveiled new audio products for the fall season at mammoth McCormick Place Exhibition Hall on Chicago's lakefront in June 11.-14. 1972. Plenty of brickbats were thrown along with the bricquets, because feeling runs high when RCA and CBS decide to fight.

Now in a classic industry-wide imbroglio (they've been known to disagree before) over the relative merits of discrete and matrix 4-channel systems, the radio-TV-recording giants have equipment manufacturers and their dealers - not to mention their customers -caught in the middle. And the debate rages.

Das ist also ein "annual stand-by-stand roundup" ........

In this annual stand-by-stand roundup of late-model audio gear shown at CES (trade jargon for "Consumer Electronics Show") I'll touch on and try to explain the new features, circuitry innovations and styling departures evident in the new product lines, all of which adds up to a trend or two that will influence your purchasing decision when time comes to select new stereo (or 4-channel) equipment for your home.
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  • • If you opt for a 4-channel system in any price range, you get a matrix. That doesn't mean the manufacturer is an ally of CBS. He's just being practical, since no matter who wins there are sure to be matrix-encoded quad records on the market for a long time to come, and you need a matrix to play them.
  • • The matrix will claim to enhance the sound of your present stereo records, tapes and FM-Stereo broadcasts. In other words, once you've invested in a 4-channel amplifier and speaker set-up, you expect to use the entire system, not just the front channels, when playing non-quad music. With enhancement, produced by some kind of synthesizer, some sound is siphoned off to the rear channels.
  • • What you get depends on the matrix built into your sysiem. And, if one thing was made clear by CES, it's that the matrix picture is most unclear. There are matrices and matrices and you will hear claims and counterclaims in the coming months as to their relative merits and accuracy.
  • • Nor is it as simple as Sansui/EV vs. CBS/SQ. Each of these systems has its variations, depending on the amount of circuitry built in. Since transistors are expensive, it figures that the sophisticated matrix circuitry goes into the more expensive equipment while in budget-grade 4-channel gear one settles for simpler circuits.
  • • There will be controversy over the "logic" circuitry needed for decoding CBS on records to the fullest extent, as its effectiveness depends on the bandwidth covered and whether it operates on all four channels or only front-to-rear. A broadband "full logic" SQ decoder is still quite costly to produce.
  • • Decoders of all types will be available as adapters, making it easy for the owner of stereo components to convert to 4-channel when he's ready. Some adapters combine decoder circuitry, master level and balance controls with a stereo amplifier to drive the rear channels.
  • • As RCA's discrete quadradisc records come on the market, so will the necessary CD-4 demodulators to decode them, in the form of outboard adapters connected between the phone cartridge and the amplifier or receiver inputs. It will be a while before a CD-4 demodulator is a built-in feature in most stereo components, because of its cost -but when the circuitry is standardized and mass-produced as a silicon "chip" (integrated circuit), adding it to existing preamplifiers will present no problem.
  • • Easing the transition to 4-channel is the development of amplifier outputs that can be "strapped" or bridged at the flick of a switch. Thus, most new 4-channel components play in stereo without "wasting" the rear-channel power as it can be combined with the front-channel amplification to yield higher wattage in 2-channel operation.
  • • Power as an amplifier specification is now treated with more respect, on the eve of a U.S. federal trade commission ruling that will put teeth into stringent new standards of measurement recommended by an industry-wide committee. "Music Power" is disappearing, replaced by RMS (continuous power), which should specify the bandwidth covered and the maximum distortion allowed in the measurement. It also makes a difference whether the rating is made with all channels driven simultaneously or one channel at a time, and the manufacturer must specify which. It makes the technical descriptions in this report a little more wordy but - take heart - it's for the consumer's protection.

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Admiral (eine Firma, die bei uns nahezu unbekannt war)

Moving with the trend set in the fast-moving audiophile market, the "majors" in the consumer electronics industry are adding the "Component Look" to their big lines of package stereo sets and consoles. Typical is Admiral's new STD981 4-channel component system, a control center with AM-FM Stereo radio and 8-track cartridge player. It has four discrete channels of amplification for playing Q8 tapes, plus a built-in matrix that enhances stereo program material for playback through four speakers. Jacks are provided for connecting turntable, headphones and tape recorder if desired. Each of the four speakers, included with the set, contains a 6" woofer and 3/2" tweeter. Stateside price, $269.95 for the whole system.

Admiral's latest stereo console is a 3-unit system in Mediterranean style, the Trieste (KS688), with two speakers in separate enclosures (air-suspension type), each containing one 8-in. and two 3/2-in. drivers. The control center includes an 8-track cartridge tape player, stereo phonograph and stereo FM-AM radio. The three units can be grouped together or separately, with each speaker up to 12 ft. away. U.S. list price $449.95.
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Akai

While fans of open-reel tape have evermore-elaborate semipro models to choose from, most of the Stateside action in tape machines is now in cartridge and cassette.

Akai's new GX-370D is typical of the open-reel-with-everything stereo tape deck - three motors, solenoid controls, magnetic brakes, bidirectional recording and playback, the latest in glass-and-crystal-ferrite recording heads, and a top-of-the-line Stateside price of $699.95.

The medium-priced part of Akai's line features several unique combination units - open-reel-with-cartridge, open reel-with-cassette and an open reel model with both cartridge and cassette built in. Newest is the GX-1900D open-reel/cassette combo with Akai's focused-field GX recording head employed in both systems. Stateside price for the deck, $499.95.

In its new cassette machines, Akai claims to have developed a distortion reduction system that sharply cuts intermodulation distortion at high frequencies. Called ADR, it is a method of varying the recording equalization according to the signal level.

It's built into two new cassette decks, models GXC-46D and GXC-65D, which also have Dolby noise-reduction circuitry. The GXC-65D is an auto-reverse model employing Akai's "Invert-O-Matic" system of automatically flipping each cassette for bidirectional operation.

Another new cassette model, GXC-40T, includes an FM-stereo tuner on a slanted top panel, with inputs for magnetic cartridge so it can be used as a complete control center - it's a recorder model with amplifier built in. Available also as a deck (model GXC-40D) without the built-in tuner-amplifier, this series does not have Dolby circuitry but provides a tape-selector switch for use with chromium dioxide as well as low-noise tape formulas.

On the 4-channel front, Akai offers discrete-type open-reel and cartridge, plus a combination of both systems in models 1800-SS and 1800D-SS. There is also matrix circuitry in its latest 4-channel receiver, model AS-8100S. The matrix decoder is available too as an outboard accessory (SS-1) for use in combination with Akai's stereo components, such as the new AA-8080 stereo receiver, when making a conversion to 4-channel.

Akai also has a new 8-track stereo cartridge recorder, model CR-81T, featuring a built-in AM-FM tuner for direct recording from tuner to cartridge.
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Altec

While known primarily for giant "Voice of the Theater" speaker systems in ported enclosures, Altec now produces a series of bookshelf speakers in sealed enclosures which it labels "Dynamic Force" systems.

Latest is the 891A, its woofer a 12" high-compliance type with foam surround and copper voice coil, the tweeter a 3" direct radiator. Cabinet styling features a new sculptured foam grill. Stateside price, $125.00.

The Valencia floor-standing system, which uses the same components as Altec's jumbo A-7, is now available in an unfinished enclosure (model 846U) that reduces its price to $299.00.

The cabinet has also been improved, with new step-mounting of the high frequency horn and driver and a redesigned port to smooth the low end response. A snap-on grill is provided. Costlier fancy-finish versions of Altec's large speaker systems are taking on a sculptured look with the introduction of acoustically transparent grills of expanded foam.

Altec is also broadening its line of electronics. Latest is the 710A receiver, rated at 30 watts rms with both channels driven at 8 ohms, with less than 0.5 per cent distortion from 30 to 20,000 Hz. Stateside price, $349.95. A lower-priced version, model 704A, has a 25-watt rms power rating.
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Bell & Howell

In expanding its foray into the consumer audio field, Bell & Howell of movie camera fame nods politely in the direction of 4-channel while concentrating on smartly styled compact-stereo combinations.

The 3555 CST "Quatrix" keeps cost down to $209.95 (for a complete system with four speakers by relying entirely on matrixing for quad effect). An 8-track cartridge tape player is built in, but it's strictly stereo, rather than a more costly discrete 4-channel/2-channel model. In other words, it won't handle discrete Q8 tapes, but the amplifier's matrix enhances stereo tapes and plays them through four speakers. It will also decode matrix-encoded cartridge tapes, should the recording industry decide to move in that direction (so far, 4-channel on tape is strictly discrete and matrix is used only for disc).

Bell & Howell's quad model does, however, have four channels of amplification and the necessary jacks so that discrete 4-channel signal sources can be added later if desired.

The rest of Bell & Howell's new line is a varied combination of turntables, cassette recorders and cartridge tape players on the same chassis with an AM-FM stereo receiver boasting FET and IC circuitry and slide-type controls. Complete with two separate air-suspension speaker systems, the combinations range in price from $109.95 to $399.95.

Braun

German-made Braun stereo components are making their way onto the U.S. market now that the Frankfurt-based company is a Gillette subsidiary. (Anmerkung : Gillete hat te BRAUN Bereits 1965 gekauft.) Featured at CES was the latest Braun receiver, Regie 510, in a new slate-black finish. It's rated at 50 watts per channel rms at 4 ohms, measured according to Germany's DIN 45.500 hi-fi standard.

Also shown was Braun's TG 1000 tape deck, now available optionally with 4-channel playback head - it uses a plug-in head assembly that converts easily from 2-track to 4-track stereo. Price of the TG 1000 in the U.S.A. is $749.00.

Also in the premium-price class is Braun's new LV 1020 powered loudspeaker, a 3-way system with built-in electronic crossover and a separate power amplifier for each driver - 40 watts for the woofer, 20 watts for the dome-type midrange and 15 watts for the dome tweeter. Any number of LV 1020 systems can be coupled to the output of a single preamp/control center.

Dokorder

In its new line of tape decks introduced at CES, Dokorder has upgraded the electronics while retaining the distinctive "recording studio" styling of its earlier top-of-the-line model.

The Dokorder 9100 sports a pair of recording and playback amplifiers mounted over the slanted tape transport much the same way you would find them on the multichannel machines used by recording companies. Of course, the similarity ends there, because the 9100 is intended for home use, with convenience features such as bidirectional recording and playback, automatic reverse and repeat. It is a 3-motor, 6-head design with such extras as a memory circuit (actuated by the tape counter), built-in demagnetizer, and an additional 700 Hz oscillator for adjusting recording bias to match the characteristics of the tape.

Other new Dokorder decks are model 7500 (3 motors, 6 heads, bidirectional recording and playback) and model 7200 (3 motors, 4 heads, automatic reverse playback). Both have switchable bias for standard or low-noise tape, and new high-density microgap heads.

Also in Dokorder's new line-up is a 4-channel receiver, model MR-800Q, with part of the control panel a pull-out "kangaroo pouch" console. The receiver has a built-in matrix decoder and power rating of 30 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms. Output can be bridged for stereo, doubling the per-channel rating.
For playback of discrete 4-channel tapes, Dokorder offers a 4-channel/2-channel cartridge player, model MC-70A, complete with four speakers.

Dual

Unveiled at Germany's Hanover Fair last spring, the new Dual 1229 made its Stateside debut at United Audio's CES stand. Replacing the previous top-of-the-line 1219, the 1229 has a few refinements - an illuminated strobe is built in, with adjustable viewing angle, so that turntable speed can be conveniently checked and corrected by means of the pitch control.

Also modified is the tracking force dial, now calibrated in two stages - up to 1.5 grams it is adjusted in 0.10-gram increments, stepping up to 0.25-gram increments from 1.5 to 3 grams. Retained is the unique mode selector shift, which adjusts tonearm height for either single- or multiple-record play. Also, the anti-skating system has two scales, one for conical stylus tips, the other for elliptical tips, since each type responds differently as it makes its way across the disc. Stateside price of the new Dual 1229, $199.50.

Dynaco

A new high-power basic amplifier, the Stereo 400, was announced by Dynaco. It is rated at 200 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms, from 20 to 20,000 Hz, at rated distortion of less than 0.25 per cent. The two channels can also be strapped for mono operation (ANmerkung : bridged), to deliver 600 watts rms at 8 ohms. A time-delay circuit, actuated when the amplifier is turned on, eliminates the possibility of a thump being heard in the loudspeakers. Two filters are provided, and the Stereo 400's front panel also features a 5-position power limiter that can be set for 20, 40, 80, 120 or 200 watts, as protection for the loudspeakers where required. The jumbo amplifier will be available in kit form, at a Stateside price of $399.95.

Dyna has added an AM band to its FM-5 tuner, the new component known as the AF-6. Its AM section boasts an RF and mixer section with two dual-gate MOSFETs and FET oscillator stage, for a sensitivity rating of better than 50 uV. Selectivity, says Dyna, is 15 dB at 10,000 Hz and 50 dB at 20,000 Hz. U.S. price of the AF-6 kit, $199.95.

Dyna's latest speaker is the A-35, slightly larger than model A-25. Inside the enclosure are two chambers with a damped slot between them, intended as a special vent to provide damping for the woofer. A simple RC network is used as a crossover, allowing the hemispheric tweeter to take over at 1,000 Hz. A 5-position high frequency control switch is provided. Recommended minimum amplifier power for the A-35 is 15 watts rms; it will handle up to 60 watts.

Empire

The familiar marble top that adorns Empire cylindrical "Grenadier" speakers is bigger now, since the introduction of the jumbo 9500 MII, an extra-wide Grenadier with angled high-frequency drivers to provide more dispersion. It is actually two systems in one, with two horn-loaded 12" woofers that face downward, and two pairs of midrange and treble drivers angled away from one another.

The 6-driver, 3-way system is intended for use as single wide-dispersion system, but the set of terminals in the base also permits a split hook-up as two separate speaker systems. In cramped quarters, a single Grenadier 9500MII can be used for stereo, or two of them wired for 4-channel. Or, in a three-speaker arrangement, a 9500MII can be used for both rear channels. With the twin systems in parallel, Empire's new Grenadier has a peak power handling capacity of 250 watts. Automatically resetting circuit breakers are built in to prevent speaker overload. The 9500MII is 30 in. wide, 20% in. deep and 28 in. high. Stateside list price, including marble top, $349.90.

Fisher

The trend toward sculptured grills is evident in Fisher Radio's latest loudspeakers. Three of the familiar XP series will soon arrive overseas with snap-on brown grills in the new styling -models XP-55S and XP-56S, both 2-way systems, and the 3-way XP-65S. While brown is standard equipment, Stateside dealers who want to give milady (der Ehefrau oder Partnerin) a choice can stock alternate grills for the top two models, in wine red, antique gold and midnight black, asa special-order option for a little extra bread.

Behind the grill, Fisher engineers have devised a new method of high-frequency dispersion and built it into a premium-priced speaker series called the Studio Standard 500. Each model has a soft-dome midrange driver that operates from 600 Hz to 5,000 Hz.

A special feature is the angular mounting inside the cabinet of the system's complement of midrange and treble units. There are three systems in all - models ST-500, ST-530 and ST-550 - with the top model ($349.95 Stateside) also having an extra set of soft-dome drivers mounted at a particularly sharp angle.

With Fisher's second-generation 4-channel receiver, the 601, already available in overseas audio clubs, a third-round design previewed at CES is due later in the year. Called the Studio Standard series, it features a front-panel 2-channel/4-channel switch that straps the four discrete amplifiers automatically into 2-channel mode for conventional stereo operation.

The top-of-the-line 504, for example, is rated at 40 watts per channel (160 watts) in 4-channel mode with a 4-ohm load, 32 watts per channel (128 watts) at 8 ohms. Switch to stereo mode and the amplifier puts out more wattage at 8 ohms - 90 watts per channel (180 watts) - and rather less at 4 ohms, where rating is 50 watts per channel (100 watts total).

Fisher's ratings, by the way, are now strictly rms (continuous power) with all channels driven throughout the power bandwidth of 20-20,000 Hz, at rated harmonic distortion of 0.5 per cent. Using the old IHF music power yardstick, measuring only at 1,000 Hz, the 504's rating would be 320 watts.

Front-panel changes on the new Fisher design include a "joystick" master balance control and slide-type tone and level controls. In addition to an SO. matrix decoder, Fisher now provides a special jack for connecting the necessary CD-4 demodulator for playing new discrete 4-channel discs. The Studio Standard series also includes the 112-watt-model 404 and 80-watt 304, similar to the 504 in styling but with fewer front-panel features.
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General Electric

To promote its new line of "component-type" audio equipment, giant GE has signed Sammy Davis Jr. for a series of TV commercials due to break on Stateside airwaves this fall.

The gear he'll be publicizing includes two discrete 4-channel systems with 8-track cartridge players handling Q8 tapes or regular stereo, the latter automatically enhanced for surround sound by means of a built-in synthesizer circuit.

Model SC4200 has a stereo tuner-amplifier with EIA music-power rating of 5 watts per channel (20 watts total). The speakers are air-suspension type 2-way systems with formed cloth grills. Model SC4000 omits the tuner and is supplied with smaller air-suspension speaker systems. Both feature a joystick balance control for all four channels, which GE has labeled Quadra Balance.

Some of GE's new stereo sets now provide jacks for conversion to 4-channel, and a rear-channel amplifier (model QA40) is available as an accessory. It includes a matrix decoder to unscramble matrixed records or broadcasts as well as a synthesizer for deriving surround sound from conventional stereo.

To complete the step-up to 4-channel, GE offers two speaker systems as accessories, models SA70 and SA30. Both are 2-way systems, with 8" woofer and 3" tweeter, in air-suspension enclosures, the larger SA70 having two tweeters. Also sold separately is GE's 8-track cartridge player for home use, model TA400, which handles both 4-channel and 2-channel tapes and jacks into any discrete 4-channel audio installation.
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Grundig

The "German look" is gradually disappearing from the line of Grundig equipment marketed in the U.S.A. The German giant's designers are striving for an international styling to their products, while Grundig's U.S. sales organization goes after Stateside dealers more aggressively in order to capitalize on the brand's big reputation abroad.

Among the new items is a pocket-size AM radio, model TR-50, that features a rechargeable nicad battery pack. Recharger, batteries, earphone and wrist strap are all included in the radio's $14.95 U.S. price.

In the hi-fi line, Grundig offers the Studio 2000 receiver / turntable with "4D" output. It's not true 4-channel - the amplifier is stereo and rated at 45 watts (22.5 watts per channel) rms - but it has taps for four speakers, an after-the-amplifier matrix that enhances stereo records and will effectively play the new matrixed 4-channel discs, though it won't handle discrete 4-channel material. The unit also features a multiband tuner and Dual 1215 automatic turntable/changer, with Shure magnetic cartridge. Stateside price, complete with four speakers, $449.95.

Harman/Kardon

The twin power supply design feature of Harman/Kardon's 930 and 630 receivers, first introduced in the luxury-class Citation amplifier, is further expoited in the Harman/ Kardon Multichannel series introduced at CES.

In these new 4-channel receivers, a slide switch on the rear panel converts them to stereo mode, in the event the user has only two speakers - or wants to power two pairs in two separate rooms instead of all four in a quad setup. The switch bridges left front-and-rear and right front-and-rear amplifiers to produce more than twice the power, each half with its own separate power supply.

The top-of-the-line 150 + handles up to eight speakers (two complete quad sets). It has an SQ matrix decoder and provides jacks for adding discrete quad in any form - Q8 tape, CD-4 Quadradisc or FM (when and if). Input/output jacks for adding Dolby Noise Reduction are also provided. Power output of the 150 + receiver is 30 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms, with all four channelsdriven simultaneously, at less than 0.5 per cent harmonic distortion from 20 to 20,000 Hz. With the amplifier bridged for stereo, output rises to 70 watts per channel.

Others in the new Multichannel series are the 100 + with 24 watts per channel in quad (57.5 watts per channel in stereo), the 75+ with 18 watts per channel in quad (45 watts per channel in stereo), and the 50+ budget model with 12.5 watts per channel in quad (25 watts per channel in stereo), the latter without the dual power supply and joystick balance control featured in the higher priced models.

Harman/Kardon's Citation line now boasts a tuner, model fourteen, with built-in Dolby Noise Reduction and 400 Hz calibration reference tone specifically adjusted to help set the recording levels on tape equipment. Another unusual feature is a new-type meter that measures the signal-to-noise ratio of the incoming signal instead of its strength, permitting the tuner to be adjusted for maximum quieting. This new meter, incidentally, is also featured in the 150+ receiver. And it's included as well in the Citation fifteen, a companion tuner with slightly fewer features and a price somewhat less stratospheric than the fifteen's $525.

For playback of quad tapes, Harman/Kardon has a new cartridges tape deck, model 8+, styled to match its receivers. And there is also an elaborate new cassette tape deck, the HK1000, with Dolby Noise Reduction and a tape selector (for standard, low-noise and chromium diocide) that adjusts both recording bias and playback equalization. The new deck's tape revolutions counter features
a "memory" circuit that can be set to stop the tape automatically at a designated spot during fast rewind.

Janszen

The Janszen electrostatic speaker systems, a unique combination of electrostatic tweeters with conventional dynamic woofers, have a new mod styling with brightly colored ex-panded-foam grills. There are four models, ranging from the Z-108 (Stateside price, $99.95) with a single electrostatic element to the Z-412 ($279.95) with four.

The latter enclosure has each of the electrostatic elements mounted at a different angle, to improve high frequency dispersion. The other three models employ a slant-blade refracting lens to minimize beaming of high frequencies. Information on overseas military prices of Janszen speakers is available from Delrama International, 37 Newtown Road, Plainview, N.Y. 11803, or write "Janszen" on the Reader Information Service postcard in this issue of OFF DUTY.

JVC-Nivico

Though firmly committed to the discrete 4-channel disc (CD-4), JVC hasn't built the demodulator for the system into its new electronic components.

It is sold, instead, as an accessory to be connected between the phonograph cartridge and the inputs of any discrete 4-channel amplifier or receiver.

The latest version, model 4DD-5, switches automatically to 4-channel when it detects the presence of a rear-channel subcarrier in the record groove, much the same way as an FM tuner switches to stereo when it detects a multiplex signal.

Thus, new Quadradiscs and regular stereo (or matrixed) discs can be intermixed by the user without manual switching of the controls.

JVC also has a new cartridge, model 4MD-20X, with frequency response from 20 to 60,000 Hz to cover the wide bandwidth required for CD-4 playback. Cartridge and demodulator will be available this summer, either separately or in a conversion-kit package, at about the time that RCA's distribution of Quadradiscs gets under way. Also announced is a record changer, model 4VD-5244, with CD-4 demodulator built into the base.

JVC's components feature a set of five tone controls, called SEA, that split the tonal spectrum at 40-, 250-, 1,000-, 5,000- and 15,000 Hz. On the latest 4-channel receiver, model 4VR-5445 (21 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms, all 4 channels driven), there are separate SEA controls for front and rear, while on the lower-cost model 4VR-5414 (15 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms, all 4 channels driven) the SEA is for the front channels only and conventional bass and treble controls are provided forthe rear.

Both these 4-channel receivers have a plug-in remote control unit for adjusting balance and master volume, available also for JVC's 4-channel control amplifiers: model 4VN-990 (35 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms, all 4 channels driven) with SEA, and 4VN-770 (12.5 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms, all 4 channels driven) without SEA.

All JVC's 4-channel models, incidentally, have a balanced transformerless output that can be strapped into pairs for conventional stereo with higher power. JVC also has several new stereo-only components that can be upgraded to 4-channel by means of the VN-5101 add-on amplifier (with SEA) forthe rear channels.

The adapter includes a socket for remote control of 4-channel balance and master volume, plus JVC's own version of a matrix decoder (included with all JVC 4-channel receivers and amplifiers as well) called, in this case, SFCS - Simulated Four Channel System.

Among conventional stereo components from JVC is a not-so-conventional digital readout tuner, model VT-900. This type of tuning is also built into a new SEA receiver model, VR-5660, rated at 80 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms with both channels driven. As an added fillip, the receiver's digital readout circuit also tells the time.

On the cassette front, JVC is fighting what looks like an uphill battle against Dolby, since virtually all other Japanese manufacturers have now succumbed. Built into JVC's CD-1668 and CD-1667 cassette tape decks is a rival noise reduction circuit called ANRS (Automatic Noise Reduction System) which the manufacturer claims is quite similar to Dolby and less costly to produce.

KLH

In a broad departure from its familiar bookshelf designs, speakermaker KLH introduced a floor-standing model at CES that utilizes the rear walls for reflected sound. It is a two-way system with three 10" woofers and three tweeters, one each projecting toward the front and the others angled toward the rear.

Under a hinged panel in front are a "projection switch" and a 3-position control for each tweeter so the amount of reflected sound ("modulated feedback") can be varied to fit the characteristics of the listening room or personal taste. The new system, called BMF, has an expanded foam grill that KLH says is acoustically transparent. It will be available from mid-September; Stateside price, $249.95. An optional swivel base will also be offered.

KLH has broadened its line of stereo components with the model 52 receiver rated at 30 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms with both channels operating. On the way is a lower-cost model with similar styling but more modest power rating of 13 watts per channel rms. Also announced was a new 4-channel receiver, model 54, which will deliver 25 watts per channel rms on all four channels, or 70 watts per channel when strapped for conventional stereo operation. The 54 includes an SQ matrix decoder and joystick balance control.

Kenwood

There is heavy emphasis at Kenwood on more rigid technical specifications, and the manufacturer also senses a trend toward separate tuner and amplifier components as audiophiles move up to more elaborate multichannel systems.

Instead of all-in-one 4-channel models, two adapters were introduced by Kenwood at CES, styled to match a new series of separates. Of these the leading model is the KA-6004 stereo control amplifier with new direct-coupled output circuitry and 40 watts per channel rms power rated at 8 ohms with THD less than 0.5 per cent and both channels driven from 20 to 20,000 Hz.

At lower cost, model KA-4004 promises 18 watts per channel from 50 to 20,000 Hz, again strictly an rms rating at 0.5 per cent harmonic distortion with both channels driven. Each of the new amplifiers has a matching tuner component, the top-of-the-line KT-6005 boasting an IHF sensitivity of 1.5 uV. Kenwood's specs also include details of the tuner's quieting slope -55dB noise suppression with a 3uV signal, improving to 65 dB at 10uV and reaching a maximum of 70 dB quieting when the FM signal is 50 uV.

Kenwood's KSQ-20 adapter for 4-channel has an illuminated front-panel selector switch for discrete 4-channel, SQ matrix, conventional matrix and regular stereo. It provides a master volume control but no amplification - you need two stereo amps and four loudspeakers to complete the conversion.

Model KSQ-400 is a combination of the adapter with a stereo amplifier (12 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms, both channels driven) for those needing a rear-channel amplifier.

Conversion to 4-channel can, of course, be made with virtually all stereo receivers now on the market and, like most other manufacturers, Kenwood still considers the receiver its bread-and-butter line. There are four new models, headed by the KR-7200 with 55 watts rms power at 8 ohms from 20 to 20,000 Hz, rated with both channels driven at 0.5 per cent THD. Features include a midrange tone control and a front-panel microphone mixer.

The tuner front end employs 3 FETs, one a dual-gate type, for 1.6 uV sensitivity on FM, and specs include details on the quieting slope. Lower-priced models in the restyled Kenwood series are the KR-6200 (45 watts per channel) and KR-5200 (30 watts per channel), both rated to the same yardstick as the top-price model. More modest is the KR-2200, with simpler front-panel styling and 8 watts per channel, also an rms rating with both channels driven into an 8-ohm load, but with THD of 0.8 per cent and the measured bandwidth narrowed to 50 to 20,000 Hz - which reflects the high cost of delivering distortion-free power in the extreme bass.

Koss

With 4-channel components now sporting separate headphone jacks on the front panel for front and rear channels, 4-channel headphones are coming on the market in a rush. They have twin drivers in each earcup, wired to a pair of phone plugs so all four signals can be monitored with a single headset.

Koss has added three new models to the K2+2 introduced last year. Known as the PRO-5Q, KO-747Q and K-6LCQ, they have smaller and lighter pressure-type elements. A stereo/4-channel switch makes them compatibles with regular stereo, and all have volume controls. The PRO-5Q and KO-747Q have liquid-filled ear cushions, foam-padded adjustable headbands and rotary controls, while the lower-cost K-6LCQ uses foam earcup cushions and slide-type volume and balance controls.

Koss also has a new lightweight stereo-phone, the HV-1, which represents a design departure since the foam cushions are intended to rest lightly on the ears instead of acoustically isolate them as with Koss' other phones. The HV-1 uses a high velocity, ultra-lightweight driver element. Koss calls it a "hear-through" headphone since, with this design, the listener continues to hear the sounds around him.

JBL

A new "mod" loudspeaker from JBL, the Prima 25, features a molded enclosure of an expanded plastic material called "Acousti-form" that will be produced in a variety of colors. The ribbed enclosure is designed to interlock with shelves and storage modules that can be assembled in any desired combination. Inside the Prima 25 enclosure is a 2-way system (10-in. woofer, 1.4-in. tweeter and dividing network at 1,500 Hz), with a ducted port, folded inside the cabinet, which the designer says has resulted in unusual smoothness at the low end. It's a high-efficiency 8-ohm system suitable for use with any amplifier from 10 to 60 watts rms. Stateside price, estimated at $126.00.

With JBL's L100 Century having definitely started a styling trend in loudspeakers - it was the first with a sculptured foam grill - the new look is being extended to other parts of the line. Latest is the 88 Plus, a restyled version of the Nova 88 with 12-in. woofer and 1.4-in. tweeter. An extra feature is JBL's M12 Expander Kit, consisting of a 5-in. midrange unit and additional dividing network, which can be added to the 88 Plus with only a screwdriver. This conversion to a 3-way system makes the 88 Plus virtually identical to the higher-priced L100 Century.

Marantz

Bursting upon the 4-channel scene with five new quadradial components (two receivers and three control amplifiers), Marantz hedges on the matrix controversy by providing an
under-the-chassis pocket for optional plug-in decoder modules.

Two such accessories are already listed by Marantz - an SQA-1 with front-rear logic and a more sophisticated SQA-2 with full-logic circuitry for all four channels. Another option is a remote control unit governing balance, volume and loudness control; it plugs into a socket on the rear panel and is actuated by ront-panel switch when desired. Top model of the new series, Model 4430, is a receiver rated at 30 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms with all four channels driven from 20 to 20,000 Hz at less than 0.3 per cent distortion. FM section has an IHF sensitivity (30 dB quieting) of 1.7 uV, with a quieting curve that slopes to 55 dB at 5 uV, 60 dB at 10 uV and 65 dB at 50 uV. Stateside price of the 4430 receiver, $599.95. The lower-cost ($399.95) Marantz quadradial receiver, model 4415, has a 15 watts-per-channel rms rating.

The Marantz 4100 quadradial amplifier has styling almost identical to that of the Marantz receivers, a set of four illuminated level meters replacing the tuning scale. Power rating is 25 watts per channel, to the same rigid rms yardstick. An extra feature is a rear-panel amplifier mode switch converting it to stereo, where it delivers 60 watts per channel. U.S. price of the 4100, $499.95.

A less elaborate 4-channel amplifier without the front-panel meters, offering 15 watts per channel rms at 0.9 per cent distortion, is priced at $299.95 (model 4060). Finally, there's the model 2240 adapter amplifier, also $299.95, which provides 4-channel controls and level meters but only two channels of amplification (20 watts per channel rms at 0.3 per cent THD), for converting a stereo amplifier or receiver to quad.

All five of the new Marantz 4-channel models feature a "Vari-Matrix" decoder with continuously variable dimension control for adjusting the amount of enhancement on synthesized surround sound.

The Marantz line of stereo components now includes a budget receiver, model 2010, with 20 watts per channel rms from 20 to 16,000 Hz at 8 ohms, with 0.9 per cent THD. Stateside price $199.95.

At the other end of the spectrum, there's the model 500 basic amplifier, with 500 watts per channel rms at less than 0.1 per cent distortion. Stateside price $1,200. New items in between include the model 1120 control amplifier (60 watts per channel rms at 0.2 per cent THD, for $395,00) model 105 and 115 tuners ($149.95 and $249.95) and a more modestly scaled basic amplifier, model 240, offering 125 watts per channel from 20 to 20,000 Ht at 8 ohms with less than 0.1 per cent distortion and priced Stateside at $395.00.

Micro/Acoustics

After getting its start with a tweeter accessory (four tiny cones mounted at 45-degree angles) designed to enhance high-frequency dispersion with bookshelf-type speakers, Micro/Acoustics Corp. is moving into the full-range speaker field by adding a woofer. The new Full Range Microstatic speaker is a bookshelf model with an array of five tweeters radiating 180 degrees into both vertical and horizontal planes. It will be priced Stateside at $139.00.

The original Microstatic tweeter, priced at $58.50, is now available at special military discount to personnel stationed overseas. Details are available from Micro/Acoustics Corp., 8 Westchester Plaza, Elmsford, N.Y. 10523. Or write "Micro/Acoustics" on the Reader Information Card in this issue of OFF DUTY, and we will forward your inquiry to the manufacturer.

Motorola

While separate components grab most of the spotlight at today's audio shows, there are still plenty of customers for fancy-furniture stereo - the all-in-one package console. To please them, Motorola has two innovations in its new line - a "customized" program where the dealer can choose both the cabinet style favored by his customers and select the components to go inside and the up-to-date sound of 4-channel ... in one cabinet.

It's done by mounting rear-channel the midrange and treble speakers on the back side of the console, angled upward and outward so the sound will reflect off the rear wall. The rear-channel woofers radiate out the left and right sides of the console, while all front-channel information radiates directly toward the front. The 4-channel effect is best when the console is positioned 2-3 in. from the wall. The innards of the new series, called Quadramode, is discrete 4-channel with built-in matrix decoder and synthesizer to enhance conventional stereo material. A jack is provided for adding discrete FM 4-channel sound when the transmission method is approved by the FCC. Cabinets for the new series are in Early American, Contemporary and Mediterranean styles.

Motorola is also in the components market and broadening its 4-channel line with two receivers. Model FH411JW, priced Stateside at $199.95, has slanted-front styling and illuminated indicators for discrete 4-channel, matrixed 4-channel, enhanced stereo and mono modes. Jacks are provided discrete 4-channel FM and Quadradiscs, both of which will require adapters when available.

Model FH480JW is the same receiver with the addition of a built-in 4-channel/2-channel tape cartridge player. Complete with four speaker systems. U.S. price, $359.95. There are three speaker systems in Motorola's new line, ranging from a 2-way system (6-in. woofer and 3/2-in. tweeter) at $69.95 for a pair, to a three-way system (10-in. woofer, 5-%-in. midrange and horn tweeter) at $179.95 for a pair. They are 16-ohm systems, matched and balanced to Motorola's audio equipment, and supplied complete with 20-ft. cables.

Onkyo

A newcomer on the U.S. scene, the Onkyo division of Mitsubishi International Corp. premiered two new stereo receivers and two speaker systems at Chicago's CES.

Model TX-666 is rated at 60 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms with both channels driven at 0.5 per cent THD. Its features include front-panel microphone mixing circuitry. The tuner section, with FET front end and ceramic filters in the IF stage, has FM sensitivity of 1.8 uV and stereo separation of 40 dB (at 400 Hz). Signal-to-noise ratio of the tuner is rated at 60 dB. The rear panel has provision for two pairs of speakers and two tape decks. Stateside price is $429.95. A lower-powered model, TX-555, has identical styling and most of the same features and is priced at $349.95.

Onkyo's Model 100 speaker system is a floor-standing consolette with 14-in. woofer that sports a ported cone cap. The enclosure, however, is tightly sealed. Midrange and treble drivers are both sectoral horns, each with 5-position stepped controls at 700 and 7,000 Hz. the latter mounted on 5-deg. sloped front panels behind the removable grill. U.S. Price, $499.95.

A 3-way bookshelf system, model 15,is offered at $149.95. It features a 10-in. woofer that is molded, rather than pressed, and has a ported cone cap. The midrange unit, a dome with Duraluminum diaphragm, takes over at 1,000 Hz, while a dome tweeter handles frequencies above 7,000 Hz. Power rating of the 8-ohm system is 10-40 watts rms. A 5-step controls for midrange and treble drivers is on the rear panel.

Onkyo also announced that it would soon introduce a 4-channel line, and issued technical details on its decoder, called Auto-Matrix System, which features sophisticated full-logic circuitry.

Ende von Teil 1 der Firmen/Geräte-Übersicht

Einführung/Vorwort für den Teil 2 des CES Besuchsberichts
"Die Chicago Consumer Electronics Show" vom June 1972

In USA gab es mehrere konkurrierende Ausstellungen ähnlich unserer Hannover Messe CEBIT oder der IFA, der inernationalen Funkausstellung meist in Berlin. Die Hersteller oder Importeure versuchten, sich mit mehr oder weniger aktuellen Neuheiten gegeseitig die Schau zu stehlen, also nicht zu ernsthaft zu stehlen, sondern auf die eigene Produkte umzuleiten. In USA waren das nämlich alles immer Shows.

Der Chefredakteur und Herausgeber der "off-duty", Walter Rios, war drüben in den USA und "berichtet". Da "off-duty" quasi ein Verkausblättchen war, hat er natürlich seine Interessen - nämlich die Attraktivität "seines Blattes" für seine Anzeigenkunden - besonders herausgestellt.

Bei genauerem Lesen der einzelnen Hersteller-"Verlautbarungen" kommt eine ganze Menge Unsinn heraus, Quadro mit 2 Verstärkern usw. Zwischen den Zeilen liest man aber auch, daß SHURE den ganzen Sinn oder Unsinn der 50kHz CD-4 Abtastung Infrage stellt. Aber lesen Sie selbst.

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U.S. Audio Makers Wear Scrutable Smile (CES Bericht Teil 2)

Off Duty / Europe / September 1972 - Our final report (also der 2. Teil) from Chicago's Consumer Electronics Show - By WALTER B. RIOS
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ANOTHER TREND

ANOTHER TREND evident during our tour of manufacturers' exhibits at Chicago's Consumer Electronics Show (June 11-14 1972) was the aggressively up-beat attitude of U.S. producers, who find they can now compete with Japanese-made audio on much better terms, since the dollar-yen reevaluation. To the consumer, this means a lot more than somewhat higher price tags on foreign-made goods - look for quality to go up, too.

Here's why:

In recent years, American manufacturers of high fidelity equipment were in deep trouble, because prices of home-grown products were way out of line. So they went abroad in large numbers to find suppliers in Japan, Taiwan and Hong Kong, who could deliver low-price merchandise. And they put their brand names on them, in order to compete with the imports.

This not only cost quite a few jobs in the States, but also slowed down the advance of audio technology. That's because a large majority of audio circuitry refinements are developed, not abroad, but in the space and computer industry laboratories in the U.S.A.

Thus, when a new-fangled transistor or Integrated Circuit is developed, American audio manufacturers usually get first crack at it, giving them a temporary technological jump on foreign competition. In manufacturing abroad, they often sacrifice this small but significant competitive advantage.

Die Vorteile einer amerikanischen Produktion

A "U.S.-made" high fidelity component is still more expensive to produce than a foreign product of comparable quality, but with this gap narrowed substantially by the currency realignment, it is no longer priced out of sight.

So most American manufacturers have taken another look, many of them returning home determined to pack their product with sufficient extra technology to make it worth a few extra bucks to the consumer.

In addition to speeding the development of sophisticated new circuitry, U.S. producers are using advanced labor-saving tricks such as plug-in modular construction (inherited, again, from computer technology) to reduce production cost and deliver more for the money.

Über die Vergleichbarkeit der Fernost- Produkte

Another bonus that accrues from the currency re-evaluation is more innovation in design, becausethe manufacturer who produces his own line can better afford to risk a small production run on something new and different, whereas ordering from abroad usually involves a major long-range commitment.

It is no coincidence that many pieces of popular-priced merchandise in the consumerelectronics field, manufactured so deftly by armies of nimble-fingered Orientals on miles-long production lines, often come out all looking alike, no matter whose brand name is put on.

With the home industry laboring under a severe competitive disadvantage, it couldn't afford to take chances. But the cry, "If you can't beat 'em, join em!", is being heard less frequently today. The new spirit of competition promises to make it a more interesting season for audio.

by WALTER B. RIOS

Hier beginnt Teil 2 des CES Juni 72 Besuchsberichts

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Panasonic - 4-channel systems

The 4-channel systems unveiled at Panasonic's giant CES exhibit fall neatly into two groups - the "now" productsare moderate-priced matrix types, while the "later" category puts the Panasonic label squarely in the discrete camp.

As a division of mammoth Matsushita Electric, Panasonic is a sister company of JVC, whose CD-4 discrete-type record has been adopted by RCA.

Thus, Panasonic promises to join them in the mass-marketing of record playing equipment with the necessary CD-4 demodulator built in. The first such model, shown at CES, is an automatic record changer, model SL-800, to be priced Stateside at $199.95.

For those who want to add a CD-4 demodulator to existing 4-channel systems, an outboard model (SE-405) will be offered at $134.95.

Panasonic's current line includes four new 4-channel systems, all with a matrix called Quadraplex that derives a 4-channel sound presence from conventional stereo. Stateside prices, $279.95 to $399.95, complete with four speakers.

Each packs a 4-channel cartridge tape playback deck and AM-FM stereo radio. Jacks are provided for external phono and tape equipment, plus an optional remote control 4-channel balancer.

Panasonic's cassette tape field

In the cassette tape field, Panasonic has gone Dolby in a big way, with five models that have the noise reduction system built in.

Also featured is recording circuitry for chromium dioxide tape, which requires much higher bias current than conventional oxide.

The models start with the RS-263US, priced Stateside at $179.95, with automatic shut-off and a "memory" circuit in the rewind mechanism that will stop the machine at the start of the last recording.

Model RS-271US features the Panasonic HPF (hot pressed ferrite) record/playback head and carries a $249.95 price tag. At $299.95 in the States, model RS-277US offers the convenience of automatic reverse.

The top-of-the-line RS-276 US and RS-279US have the 2-motor solenoid-operated drive mechanism featured on Panasonic's popular RS-275 cassette deck - actually, the new "76" model is the same deck with Dolby builtin.

Ein Verweis auf die Dollarschwäche und die Preisanpassungen

The additional circuitry, plus the effect of last year's big dollar/yen currency realignment, makes for a noteworthy price difference - $249.95 for the RS-275US last year vs $399.95 for the RS-276US today (Stateside "minimum-retail" prices).

So, as cassette tape equipment gets more refined and more costly, the military's big discount overseas looms ever more important.

The RS-279US, billed at $499.95 in the Stateside, is a new high. It's the production model of a prototype shown a year ago, with separate playback head permitting off-the-tape monitoring for the first time in a cassette machine.

A 4-channel record/playback cartridge tape deck

Panasonic now has a 4-channel record/playback cartridge tape deck, model RS-858US, priced at $259.95, and offers a 4-channel control amplifier to connect it to, model SU-3404, with 120 watts IHF music power at four ohms and $289.95 price tag.

A new 4-channel music system, SC-8700A, is actually a hi-fi stereo system with instant 4-channel conversion capability. This $529.95 package comes with two 2-way speakers that can be operated as bi-amplified systems - two of the amps driving the bass drivers and the other two the treble.

But add a 4-channel sound source, such as a Q8 cartridge tape deck or a CD-4 demodulator, plus two more speakers, and the 120-watt amplifier can be switched to drive all four channels. The SC-8700A includes an AM-FM stereo tuner and a record changer.

Look for Panasonic to make a dent in the car stereo market, offering a 4-channel cartridge tape player, model CX-601, and four stereo cartridge models - CQ-880 with FM-stereo radio and CX-880 with tape only, and two versions of an ultra-compact model CX-325. There's also a floor-mounting cassette model, RS-248, with automatic-reverse featured. A novelty feature of the Q8 tape player is a home adapter with four speakers in mod styling.
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Pickering

Will they or won't they? Dealers at CES kept asking whether today's cartridges will play the forthcoming RCA discrete 4-channel discs - because, if they won't, then customers will have to buy a new cartridge when adding a CD-4 demodulator to their systems.

Pickering would say only that it is ready to deliver a cartridge for CD-4 when the market demands, and showed a prototype, the UXV-15/2400.

Thus, there were no 4-channel claims for the new Pickering top-of-the-line cartridge, model XV-15/1200E. Frequency response is given as a nominal 10-30,000 Hz, well below the bandwidth required to pick up the multiplexed subcarrier on the newly announced Quadradiscs.

So the question whether it will or won't is still a moot one. The new cartridge's main feature is a DCF index of 1200, making it the highest-performance cartridge in the Pickering series.

Size of its elliptical stylus is 0.0002" x 0.0007", so it is suitable for use only in top-quality turntables that can track effectively from 1/2gm (= Gramm) to l 1/2gm. stylus force.

Pioneer

Three new loudspeakers from Pioneer eschew the familiar lattice grill in favor of colorful panels in bright red, blue and brown.

An International construction feature of the new "Series R" is the flush-mounting of driver elements on the face of the enclosure.

Another is the use of horn-type tweeters. The magnet structure has a concave center pole covered with a pure copper cap, for which Pioneer claims improved IM distortion characteristics.

The top-of-the-line R700 is a 3-way system rated at 75 watts, with 12" woofer, midrange horn and multicell horn super-tweeter. Model R500, a 60-watt 3-way system, has 10" woofer, 5" midrange and horn tweeter, while the 2-way Model R300, with 40-watt rating, has 10-in. woofer and horn tweeter. All are reflex-type bookshelf systems, with rated impedance of 8 ohms.

Pioneer also advises that, as matrix systems develop and undergo refinement, it will make updated and more sophisticated decoders available at moderate extra cost.

Latest such accessory is the QD-210 decoder with two FETs and front-back logic circuitry, which can be used with any 4-channel receiver or amplifier or with a pair of stereo amplifiers when converting a system to 4-channel.

Pioneer's latest stereo receivers feature direct-coupled amplifier circuitry and twin power supplies. They have two tape monitor circuits, one of them coded for 4-channel connections as a hint that it's easy to convert later on by adding an adapter amplifier.

The highest powered model, SX-828 (60 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms with both channels driven at 1 kHz) has extras such as illuminated speaker indicator lights and a tuning dial dimmer.

Stateside price, $429.95. Lower priced models are SX-727 (40 watts per channel rms), SX-626 (27 watts per channel rms) and SX-525 (17 watts per channel rms). On all four receivers, harmonic distortion is specified as lessthan 0.5 per cent across the 20-20,000 Hz bandwidth.

The latest Pioneer turntable, model PL-61, is a top-of-the-line model with brushless DC servo motor, electronic speed control and belt drive. Features of the tone arm are an oil-damped lifting device, magnetic antiskating control, and low-capacitance cable to minimize high frequency loss if used with discrete 4-channel (CD-4) records.

Also new from Pioneer is a Dolby-type cassette tape deck, model CT-4141, with sloped control panel, slide-type level controls, memory circuit, and bias selector for standard and chromium dioxide tape.

Pioneer's big line of car-stereo equipment, usually seen Stateside with the name Craig, is entering the U.S. market on its own. The cartridge series includes a 4-channel model (QT-444E) and several stereo versions with built-in FM-stereo radio. There is also an auto-reverse cassette model (KP-333). In line with the trend toward using cartridge tape inthe home, the new Pioneer line includes moderate-priced playback decks and home cartridge systems complete with amplifier and speakers. The 4-channel model, QH-666K, has 32 watts of power and four air-suspension speakers. Stateside price, $239.95.

Sansui

With a 4-channel line that already includes four receivers, plus several decoder/adapter units for converting stereo to quad, new-product action at Sansui is concentrated for the present on upgrading the stereo models.

A new series of premium-grade receivers, inaugurated last year with the Model Eight, now has two lower-powered entries, the Seven and the Six.

The specs, like those of the Eight, are to close tolerances - for the Seven, 36 watts per channel rms power (both channels driven) at 8 ohms from 20-20,000 Hz at rated harmonic and IM distortion of lessthan 0.3 per cent each. Model Six, rated the same way, delivers 27 watts per channel.

The tuner section of the Sansui Model Six has 2uV sensitivity on FM, capture ratio of 2dB, selectivity better than 60 dB and harmonic distortion of less than 0.3 per cent in mono (0.5 per cent in stereo).

Stereo separation at 400 Hz is better than 35 dB, signal-to-noise ratio better than 63 dB. The higher priced Model Seven betters FM sensitivity to 1.8 uV, capture ratio to 1.5 dB and stereo separation to 40 dB.

The preamplifier section of the Model Seven has a separate midrange tone control. Both new receivers handle up to three sets of speaker systems. And, as expected, there is heavy emphasis on the ease of stepping up to 4-channel when ready, with jacks and front-panel switches provided for converter/adapter units and, as an added fillip, provision for connecting a noise reduction adapter such as Dolby.

Sanyo

Stereo out of doors, with minimum fuss, is the theme of a new series from Sanyo called Stereocast. It's a way of getting stereo out of a portable transistor FM radio, thanks to the miniaturization of the multiplex decoder circuitry.

The way it works, you get ordinary mono when playing the radio or cassette portable through its built-in speaker. But add the Stereocast accessory and a pair of headphones, and you can listen in stereo. You can also record cassettes in stereo, since the portable recorders have stereo heads and preamps, though their built-in amplifier and speaker are mono-only. At home, they can be plugged into a stereo radio or receiver for full-stereo recording and playback. Alternatively, they can be connected to a car-stereo installation.

Scott

New-product emphasis at H.H.Scott is on the internal construction of two new receivers. Brorrowing from the aerospace and computer fields, designers have eliminated over 95 per cent of discrete point-to-point wiring - all the wires, in fact, except for the power transformer and dial lamp connections.

All circuit modules plug into a printed glass-epoxy masterboard, with plated-through holes, designed to carry both signal and power circuits. Thus, all audio and rf signals travel only along printed-circuit paths, instead of wires.

Scott claims that the technique virtually eliminates wiring errors and cold- or open-solder joints, achieving greater uniformity of performance. Servicing, too, is greatly simplified.

The two receivers employing the new technique are the 554 and 525. The latter is a stereo model rated at 100 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms (both channels driven) from 20-20,000 Hz with less than 0.5 per cent harmonic distortion. It boasts two separate powersupplies. FM sensitivity (IHF) is 1.7 uV.

On the front panel, styled in deep blue, there are extras such as a tape dubbing switch and a preamp sensitivity control for precise matching of phono cartridge output.

Model 554 is a 4-channel receiver with provision for strapping front and rear channels for conventional stereo operation if desired. Power rating is 25 watts per channel rms at 8 ohms, with all four channels driven at rated distortion of 0.8 per cent. In stereo mode, total power is greater, reaching 60watts perchannelatthesamestandard of measurement.

Sherwood

While virtually every stereo receiver on the market permits easy step-up to 4-channel when you're ready, a new "Stereo/Dynaquad" model from Sherwood Electronic Labs has an interesting extra, a built-in matrix for playing matrix-type quad records with four speakers but without adding a rear-channel amplifier.

It's done with a simple wiring trick, controlled by the front-panel switches for main and remote speaker systems. The rear-panel terminals for two pairs of speakers are wired internally for plus-and -minus matrixing after the power amplifier, according to the system introduced by engineer David Hafler (formerly of Dynaco) that we've described in OFF DUTY on several occasions.

It's a way of getting a 4-channel effect at minimum investment. In other words, hook up four speakers to the Sherwood Stereo/Dynaquad unit, using the "main" terminals for front channels and "remote" for the rear, and you're all set to play matrixed records.

For discrete 4-channel, of course, an additional stereo amplifier is needed, and this can be added through the extra tape monitor circuit provided for the purpose, along with more sophisticated matrix decoder if desired.

The Sherwood S-7900A stereo receiver with this Dynaquad feature is rated at 60 watts per channel rms (both channels driven) at 8 ohms, from 20-20,000 Hz with rated distortion of 0.3 per cent.

The AM/FM tuner has ceramic IF filters and microcircuits, and its FM section is rated at 1.7 uV sensitivity, 65 dB selectivity, 1.9 dB capture ratio and 60 dB AM rejection and 0.15 per cent distortion (in mono).

There is an FM-only version of the receiver (Model S-8900A), and the Dynaquad feature is also built into a control amplifier, Model S-9400, rated at40 watts per channel rms (8 ohms, both channels driven, 20-20,000 Hz at 0.8 per cent THD).

Shure

Pressed for a statement on 4-channel cartridges - that is, the kind needed to pick up a CD-4 modulated signal in the 20 kHz to 45 kHz range - Shure Bros, chief engineer Bernie Jakobs pointed out that the objective had to be to do it without degrading quality.

While the best stereo cartridges track comfortably at one gram, CD-4 models introduced thus far would appear to require a minimum of two grams tracking force to do the job.

"The problems can be solved," said Jakobs, "but we don't want to take a step backward to solve them." And so, forward to the drawing board.

Meanwhile, the latest cartridge from Shure is the M91ED, which falls in price and performance between the top-of-the-line V-15 Type II Improved and the M91E. Like the others, the M91ED has 0.0002 x 0.0007" biradial elliptical stylus, and tracks at 3/4 to 1 1/2 gm. There is also a spherical-stylus version, model M91GD, with 0.0006" stylus tip and the same trackability rating but somewhat lower price.

Sony Electronics

While Sony's tape recorders held forth at the Superscope stand at McCormick Place, the rest of the Sony line was on view at a downtown hotel.

  • Amerkung : Aus US-gesetzlichen juristischen Gründen mußte SONY seinen Bandgerätevertrieb an ein US Unternehmen übertragen, und das war Superscope. SONY wandte nach ca. 15 Jahren viel Geld auf, um diesen 25 Jahres-Vertrag von Superscope zurückzukaufen. Mehr steht auf der Superscope/Marantz Seite.


The emphasis, predictably, was on SQ quadrophonics. There will soon be a new and more costly full-logic decoder, model SQD-2000.

In addition to front-and-back logic circuitry, it features a "waveform comparator" which Sony says will maintain correct level relationships for soloists anywhere along the front or rear of the room. Controls on the unit include rear-channel volume, bass and treble, so all that's needed to complete the quad set-up is a basic power amplifier for the rear channels.

A new 4-channel receiver, model SQR-6650, includes both SQ circuitry and standard matrix decoder. The output can be strapped for conventional stereo - rating is 8 watts (in Worten acht Watt !!) per channel rms at 8 ohms in 4-channel or 25 watts per channel rms in stereo. FM sensitivity is 1.8 uV.

Also new is Sony's TA-1150 stereo control amplifier, rated at 100 watts IHF music power at 8 ohms, with jacks and switches for connecting 4-channel equipment; a model ST-5150 tuner with slightly fewer features than the top-of-the-line ST-5130; and a tuner-preamp, model STC-7000 that packs all the control features of a receiver but omits the power-amplifier section.

Sony / Superscope Tape-Recorders

At Superscope, the latest Sony tape deck is model TC-377, in a slanted walnut-finish cabinet that gives it a "console" look in both vertical and horizontal operation. It features molded Ferrite and Ferrite heads (a new extra-hard compound) in a 3-head configuration for off-the-tape monitoring.

A tape selector switch provides correct equalization for either standard or low-noise/high-output tape. There is also a microphone attenuator that automatically cuts input level by 20 dB to reduce distortion on extreme peaks; it can, however, be switched out of the circuit if desired. The shut-off mechanism of the TC-377 automatically disengages the pinch-roller, turns the motor off and returns the mechanism to "stop" position attheend of a tape. Stateside price of the 3-speed deck, $289.95.

Sony, too, has gone Dolby with its cassette equipment - and the announcement has more than a little significance, since a year ago the company was one of the big holdouts against this patented noise-reduction system.

Now that virtually all the majors have joined the fold, the Dolby method can be considered truly universal. It won't be long at all before all good-quality cassette recordings are Dolbyized.

The new Sony-cum-Dolby unit, model TC-161SD, features a closed-loop dual-capstan tape drive, a memory-type counter mechanism for quick rewind to the desired starting point, and a peak limiter to prevent accidental overload.

The tape selector switch adjusts the electronics for either standard or chromium dioxide tape. The record/playback head is of the new Ferrite and Ferrite type. Stateside price of the TC-161SD, $299.95. There is also a moderate-priced model, TC-134SD, which includes Dolby but employsa conventional capstan-drive tape-transport system.

There are three new models in Sony's group of electret-condenser microphones, which feature a built-in IC/FET amplifier powered by a small battery pack.

Model ECM-64P (omni-directional) and ECM-65P (uni-directional) are priced Stateside at $179.95 each. They feature a double-windscreen to reduce popping noise during close miking and are designed to handle a sound pressure level of up to 137 dB with less than one per cent distortion, which makes them suitable for hard-rock groups. Model ECM-54, also uni-directional (cardioid), doesn't have the special double-windscreen and ispriced ata less piercing $134.95.

Superex

To show off the separate woofer and tweeter in its headphone design, Superex displayed a transparent lucite "see-through" version at CES that proved so eye-catching that it will soon be available as a separate model.

Internal construction is the same as the new Pro-B VI, featuring an acoustic chamber for the woofer, a coaxial tweeter and a modified crossover network. Replacing the Pro-B V as top-of-the-line dynamic headphone from Superex, the new Pro-B VI is priced Stateside at $60.

There is also a new budget model, ST-V, priced at $30, which features individual volume controls for each ear.

Superex offers an electrostatic headphone, model PEP-71, priced at
$120 complete with a console that will power two pairs of phones, either self-energized or AC-powered, and includes level controls for both channels. Now the same headphone is available with a simpler console without AC power supply or control panel, reducing price of the system to $85.
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Superscope (- Billigprodukte)

Already known as distributors of Sony tape recorders and manufacturers of Marantz components, the Superscope people now have a budget-price line under their own name.
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  • Anmerkung : Superscope wußte zu der Zeit bereits, daß die Taperecorder- Vertriebsvereinbarung mit SONY auslaufen würde.

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The opening group of products includes two stereo receivers, a 4-channel amplifier, two stereo amplifiers and a tuner.

The R-250 receiver, rated at 30 watts, and model R-230 at 15 watts, will be priced Stateside at $199.95 and $139.95, respectively. The 4-channel amplifier, QA-420, has a 30-watt rating and includes SQ and standard matrix decoder circuitry. Stereo amplifiers are the A-240 (30 watts IHF music power) and A-225 (25 watts), with a matching AM-FM stereo tuner (T-208) available. Stateside prices, $79 to $99.

A novelty item from Superscope is an FM car radio converter that adds FM to any existing AM radio built into cars with 12-volt negative ground electrical system. Complete with mounting hardware, the CC-1580 converter sells Stateside for $29.95.

Tandberg

In a big departure from its long-established single-motor design, Norway's Tandberg offers a newtop-of-the-line model 9000X stereo tape deck with three motors and solenoid controls featuring logic circuitry.

  • Anmerkung : Auch das hatte viel zu lange gedauert, der Markt war bereits von Revox und den Japanern zu fast 100% übernommen worden.


(In this case, logic means the machine won't permit you to break or spill the tape, even if it's thrown into play mode before the reels have come to a stop.) Also featured is a new tension control on the take-up reels, with servo brakes. Circuitry of the new Tandberg includes 17 ICs, and employs the crossfield recording system, with a separate head for bias (four heads in all).

There are separate peak-reading meters for each channel, and bias is preadjusted for low-noise, high-output tape. Drive motor is of the hysteresis synchronous type, with three speeds in all, and at the highest speed of 7/2 ipsthe maximum wow and flutter is rated at 0.07 per cent. Frequency response is 40-22,000 Hz ± 2 dB, with signal-to-noise ratio (at 3 per cent harmonic distortion) of 65 dB (weighted) or 58 dB (unweighted). Styling of the Tandberg 9000X is also new, with slide-type level controls. There is full provision for remote control operation.

There are three motors, too, in Tandberg's very first cassette tape deck, model TCD 300, which features a closed-loop, dual-capstan drive system and electrical controls. Heads are of the hot-pressed ferrite type, and circuitry includes Dolby Noise Reduction and tape selector for low-noise/high-output tape or chromium dioxide which automatically makes four adjustments: record equalization, record bias, playback equalization and erase current.

Tandberg's signal-to-noise specifications are given separately for low-noise and chromium dioxide tapes, weighted and unweighted, with Dolby and without Dolby. Best of the lot is 63 dB, the weighted figure at 3 per cent harmonic distortion, with chromium dioxide tape and Dolby circuitry switched in - and that's a full 13 dB improvement over the spec with low-noise tape and no Dolby, which speaks well for the advances in cassette technology in just a year or two. Stateside price of the Tandberg TCD-300, $329.90.

TDK

Advances in tape technology in the last 12 months or so have put an end to last year's big argument over the pros and cons of using chromium dioxide formulas in home recorders.

A year ago (1971), some tape manufacturers felt there was still plenty of room for improvement in ferric oxide formulas, so why make a drastic change in the bias current on cassette tape recorders just to accommodate Crolyn (DuPont's name for Cr02)?

But equipment manufacturers wouldn't listen. Because chromium dioxide tape was readily available (it's used in computers), aggressive merchandisers seeking a competitive advantage added a Cr02 bias switch to cassette machines and, in practically no time at all, the race was on.

Now it's a "must" feature on top-quality cassette tape decks, and every tape manufacturer has to offer a chromium dioxide cassette tape, like it or not.

That puts the question of which tape is better squarely in the hands of the consumer. TDK showed up at CES with two new tapes.

KROM-02, the chromium dioxide formula, is available in C-60KR (30 minutes per side) and C-90KR (45 minutes per side). It requires, of course, extra-high bias current, and TDK claims that, when properly biased, it delivers an output in the 10,000-15,000 Hz range that is about 9 dB higher than that of conventional oxide.

There is also a 3 dB improvement in signal-to-noise ratio. The frequency response curve of KROM-02 shows, however, that with conventional bias there is a peak of about 7 dB at 10,000 Hz, an unnatural effect that would be audible on high fidelity equipment.

Moral: don't use chromium dioxide tape on a machine that doesn't have a Cr02 bias selector switch.

Enter the new TDK Extra-Dynamic (ED) cassette tape, which doesn't require special bias. It's an improved version of TDK's well-established SD formula of gamma-ferric oxide, using the same kind of magnetic powder but with higher flux density. TDK claims an improvement in output over SD of 2 dB in the lower frequency range and 4 dB at 20,000 Hz, widening the usable frequency response to 20-23,000 Hz. The new high-performance tape, more costly than the SD series, is available in three lengths: C-90ED, C-60ED, and a new short-program size of C-40ED (20 minutes per side).

Teac

While Teac's open-reel tape recorders are gaining in elaborate features that give them the flexibility of studio machines, it's evident that much of the firm's new-product emphasis is on the fast-growing cassette.

There are three new cassette decks at Teac, ranging from the $249.50 model 250 with built-in Dolby Noise Reduction circuitry, to a no-frills model 210, with similar construction but fewer electronic features, at $159.50. (The prices are fair-traded Stateside retail.)

Model 220 ($199.50) has all the circuitry of the 250 except Dolby. The record/ playback head is extra-hard ferrite, and a bias switch for Cr02 or conventional high-output tape is provided. Design of allthree modelsemploys a 4-pole hysteresis synchronous outer-rotor motor and slide-type level controls.

Teac' low-cost Dolby adapters

Teac now offers a low-cost Dolby adapter, model AN-60, that is suitable for use with any tape machine that doesn't have the noisereduction system built in. Calibration tapes are supplied for both open-reel and cassette calibration. Price Stateside of the AN-60 is $89.50.

Also on view at the Teac stand, but with no price tag, was a model AN-300 Dolby Noise Reduction unit - a 4-channel model - that could be a portent of things to come.

Certainly the ambitious tape hobbyist who makes his own 4-channel master recordings is bound to want Dolby in his system. But full noise-reduction capability on all four channels, in both recording and playback modes, is a major investment - it requires eight Dolby circuits compared to just two in the AN-60. And that's why you don't see built-in Dolby circuitry in fancy open-reel tape decks such as the new Teac 3340 and 2340, 4-channel models with "Simul-Synch" for recording individual channels in synchronization with signals already recorded on other channels.

Since the 2340, a 3-motor, 3-head machine, has a Stateside price of $759.50, the cost of so much Dolby circuitry would raise the price out of sight. (The 3340, a jumbo 10 1/2"-reel version of the same machine, lists in the States for $849.)

But there's new technology on the horizon that will bring the price of Dolby down to earth. An integrated-circuit version of the noise reduction system, under development at Dolby Labs in England, will make possible mass production of the entire circuit at a fraction of its present cost.

So it will be feasible, when the IC is ready, to add eight of them to a 4-channel deck - or a set of four to any good stereo deck with separate recording and playback heads - at a moderate price.

Teac's popular 4010 open-reel tape deck has a few refinements and a new designation, GSL. A pause control button has been added, and the electronic circuitry improved with the addition of new high-density ferrite heads.

There is a bias switch for regular and low-noise tapes. Featuring a 3-motor, all-solenoid electrical tape transport with automatic reverse playback and four heads, the 4010GSL is priced Stateside at $599.50. Also modified slightly, with improved electronics, are Teac's higher priced auto-reverse machines, now wearing the designations 6010GSL, 7010GSL and 7030GSL, the latter two models with IO/2-in. reel capability.

Teac also has a new model that's bidirectional in both recording and playback. Known as the 4070G, it's a 3-motor machine with center capstan drive and four heads, two on either side of the capstan. But each recording head also doubles as an erase head, giving the design full monitoring as with a 6-head machine, since the recording and playback heads are separate in both directions.

The heads are of high density ferrite. Circuitry provides for separately switched bias and equalization. Another design innovation is a pause control that combines with the master volume control to permit fade-in and fade-out if desired. Stateside price, $599.50.

V-M

On view at a Sheraton-Chicago suite away from the bustle of CES at McCormick Place, new products from V-M emphasized 4-channel on a budget.

The Benton Harbor, Mich., manufacturer specializes in record changers. It has packaged its changers in a variety of mod-style combinations with built-in matrix decoder, 4-channel amplifier and four colorful speakers. There's no fancy switching, no debate on how much logic circuitry or what kind of matrix is employed.

Instead, V-M claims to have an ultra-simple universal matrix that'll do the job well enough to turn on the youngsters who want surround sound. And, if it's popular appeal to the important youth market that'll put 4-channel across to the mass consumer, maybe V-M's economy-quad Mellow Yellow, Red Rock and Great Grape are, indeed, right on.
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Das war jetzt ein "nicht Deutscher" Blick auf die Neuigkeiten in USA

Die einzelnen Produkt-Listen finden Sie über die 1972er Ausgaben verstreut.
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