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Author Topic: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?  (Read 11003 times)

Offline docb

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Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« on: March 18, 2009, 06:55:41 PM »
We've pretty well worked out our Otari MX-5050BII/BIII shipping box and we're ready to take machines in for modification. We will do our tape path mod, which is composed of replacing all of the guides under the head block and the tension arms with ball bearing guides with ceramic edge guides, check the brakes tension and reline them if necessary and carefully align the machine. The tape path mods turn the Otari from a prosumer quality machine to a machine with transient snap and dynamics that are closer to the big studio machines. We also rewire the playback heads to direct output for use with an outboard preamp. Price is $600 for the tape path mod and alignment, and $100 for the head rewire (free if you buy a tape head preamp from us). We can also send your heads out for relapping at (I think) $85 each, and there may be an extended response head upgrade available soon for $650. We can also install new pinch rollers from Athan if necessary. The new packing box uses some more expensive cushioning material than we have used in the past, and the deposit for the shipping box will be $85. It's a good solid double wall box with a foam lining that is more absorptive than the previous material. The direct head out mod uses existing XLR jacks on the back, so you will need an XLR to RCA cable to connect the Otari to one of our preamps. We've been using some from Monoprice that are inexpensive, well made and sound quite good.

If you are ready to have your Otari taken to the next level give me a call and we can discuss the mods and arrange to get a shipping box sent to you - 360-697-1936 M-F 10-5 PT
Dan "Doc B." Schmalle
President for Life, Bottlehead Corp.
Managing Director - retired, The Tape Project

Offline ironbut

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2009, 09:07:12 PM »
Excellent news Doc! Considering the bargain basement prices these machines sometimes go for,  this could be the audio bargain of the decade. I can't wait to hear one.
steve koto
 Sony scd 777es(R. Kern mods)> Vpi Aires>Dynavector XX-2mkll>Bent mu>CAT ultimate>CJ premeir 140>Magnepan 1.6qr(Jensen xover)Headphone Eddie Current Zana Deux>AT ad2000,HD800 ,Metric Halo ULN-2 (battery powered),
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Offline jcmusic

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2009, 12:07:44 AM »
Hi Doc,
Yes this is great news, what about us who want to do this our selves. How much for a kit to do these mods?

Jay
Redpoint Model D TT/Soundsmith Sotto Voce Cartridge Otari MX 5050 BII/BH Tube Repro deHavilland Model 222
 Ah Njoe Tjoeb 4000, Rogue Magnum 99, Korneff 45 SET Amp, Klipsch K-Horns Bass Bins/2" Tractrix Horns 2" BMS Drivers, Vintage Tubes.

Offline docb

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2009, 09:13:25 AM »
Hi Jay,

I imagine we should be able to do up a good manual after we do two or three more machines and work out a good sequence for the mod and subsequent realignment of everything. It will be a kit for folks who know how to properly align a machine and have the proper equipment to do so, like a good scope. There are a couple of tricky steps and we want to make sure that we have the instructions well worked out for various versions. I know that to most it seems like it should be easier to just sell a kit of parts than set up to do the work for customers. But in fact writing a comprehensive manual is a royal PITA.

Dan "Doc B." Schmalle
President for Life, Bottlehead Corp.
Managing Director - retired, The Tape Project

Offline bobschneider

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2009, 07:13:57 PM »
Doc, will you also be including Athan's stainless steel tension arms?  I'd expect it would be a lot easier to keep a deck in alignment with these, than with the soft stock arms.
Bob Schneider

Offline docb

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2009, 08:53:55 PM »
Yes, we will offer them as an option. They really do help with keeping the tape properly aligned in andout of the pinch rollers. When we reduce the friction of the tape path as much as we do with the ball bearings this becomes more critical.
Dan "Doc B." Schmalle
President for Life, Bottlehead Corp.
Managing Director - retired, The Tape Project

Offline jcmusic

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #6 on: March 19, 2009, 11:02:24 PM »
Hi Jay,

I imagine we should be able to do up a good manual after we do two or three more machines and work out a good sequence for the mod and subsequent realignment of everything. It will be a kit for folks who know how to properly align a machine and have the proper equipment to do so, like a good scope. There are a couple of tricky steps and we want to make sure that we have the instructions well worked out for various versions. I know that to most it seems like it should be easier to just sell a kit of parts than set up to do the work for customers. But in fact writing a comprehensive manual is a royal PITA.


Hi Doc,
Sounds good I am looking forward to seeing this happen, I will wait for your next post on this.

Jay
Redpoint Model D TT/Soundsmith Sotto Voce Cartridge Otari MX 5050 BII/BH Tube Repro deHavilland Model 222
 Ah Njoe Tjoeb 4000, Rogue Magnum 99, Korneff 45 SET Amp, Klipsch K-Horns Bass Bins/2" Tractrix Horns 2" BMS Drivers, Vintage Tubes.

Offline anatta

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2009, 08:24:30 PM »
Plan to offer a Mod Kit for us Do-it-Yourselfers?
Also a good way to save on Packaging and shipping.

Offline jcmusic

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2009, 01:50:03 AM »
Hi doc,
What's the latest on the Otari mods?

Jay
Redpoint Model D TT/Soundsmith Sotto Voce Cartridge Otari MX 5050 BII/BH Tube Repro deHavilland Model 222
 Ah Njoe Tjoeb 4000, Rogue Magnum 99, Korneff 45 SET Amp, Klipsch K-Horns Bass Bins/2" Tractrix Horns 2" BMS Drivers, Vintage Tubes.

Offline analogfan

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first? ANY UPDATES???
« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2010, 08:41:33 PM »
Any more word on the OTARI roller bearing guides and stainless steel roller bearing swing arm kit?

Thank you Analogfan/Bob Edwards

Offline Listens2tubes

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2010, 01:47:35 PM »
I would be interested in the tape path mod as a kit. I don't think I'll be rewiring my 5050.
Neal - Ampex Fineline F-44, 3 - Otari MX5050BII-2, Revox A77 Mk II , Teac A 4010s, 4070, Sony TC102A, Magnecord 1020, Systemdek IIX/Dynavector Karat 17D2MKII, CEC CD3300 CDP, K Works NanoMax DAC, Van Alsine Transcendence Eight+ tube preamp, Dynaco MkIV amp pair, Paradigm Reference Studio 100 v1

Offline Listens2tubes

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Re: Otari MX-5050 mods - who will be the first?
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2011, 08:01:58 PM »
Just struck a deal on a Seduction! Are the 5050 mods kits in the works or better?
Neal - Ampex Fineline F-44, 3 - Otari MX5050BII-2, Revox A77 Mk II , Teac A 4010s, 4070, Sony TC102A, Magnecord 1020, Systemdek IIX/Dynavector Karat 17D2MKII, CEC CD3300 CDP, K Works NanoMax DAC, Van Alsine Transcendence Eight+ tube preamp, Dynaco MkIV amp pair, Paradigm Reference Studio 100 v1