Country of Manufacture:Germany
Release dates:1958 - 1961
Speeds: 3 3/4
Max Reel Size("): 5"
Number of heads: 2
Dimension: 13 x 10½ x 6 in
Head Composition: Permalloy
Head Configuration: Mono - Half-Track
# Motors: 1
Outputs: RCA, DIN
Frequency Response:( 3 dB): 30 - 16,000 c
Wow and Flutter:better than 0.15%
Signal-to-Noise Ratio:Signal noise ratio: better than 53 db
Sound quality rating:5 / 10
Long-term reliability rating: 5/ 10
Weight: 17.5 Lbs.
The EMG9/2 was a medium-priced single speed (3¾ ips) with a push-button tape deck and simplified controls. Elektron claimed their recorder equaled the performance of similar machines running at 7½ ips and that this was due to the high-quality high-fidelity sound heads used. Reels of up to 5¾ in. could be accommodated and the EL84 amplifier produced 3 watts output.
The Elektron was imported into the UK by Technical Suppliers Ltd., Hudson House, 63, Goldhawk Road, Shepherds Bush, W. 12 For a detailed description of this equipment please read the vintage test report reproduced below.
Footnote: The Elektron 9 deck was used by the short-lived UK Chitnis company for
their range of tape recorders in the late 1950s/early 1960s.
From Tape Recording Magazine, November 1959
THERE seems to be such a flood of new tape recorders that it is increasingly difficult to choose a particular model. One of the latest machines in the “invasion” from the Continent is the German made “Elektron.”
This is a medium priced recorder which gives excellent results at its single speed of 3¾ ips. It uses a recording head with a very fine gap width of .00016 in. and gives the extended frequency response which is a common feature of Continental recorders.
The tape deck is pushbutton operated and there are only two amplifier controls, Volume and Tone, The tape slot is easy to load and spools up to 5¾ in. can be used. With double-play tape, this means that a recording time of it hours on each half track is available-sufficient for the longest musical items.
Five push buttons offer a very simple control of all tape movements and amplifier switching. They are clearly marked, and to avoid accidental erasure both record and play buttons must be pressed when recording. Pressing the record button alone merely switches on the volume indicator and changes over amplifier connections.
A single squirrel cage induction motor with an external rotor provides the motive power. This is connected by rubber belts to the flywheel on the capstan shaft and the take-up spool. The motor switching relies on rather delicate sheet-metal work, which nevertheless seems to function efficiently.
On both fast forward and rewind, the tape is lifted clear of the heads to minimise wear on the head faces. Rewinding is accomplished in two minutes by direct contact between a rubber roller and the plastic feed spool hub. Wow and flutter content is quoted as better than 0.15 per cent and was certainly inaudible on all test recordings. The motor runs continuously from the moment the amplifier is switched on and is very quiet in operation.
Correct running speed is reached instantaneously upon pressing the appropriate button. The braking system is efficient and operates at any point throughout a reel without any sign of tape spill. A numerical indicator is provided, belt-driven from a pulley on the take-up spool shaft.
The amplifier has been built around the tape deck, as an integral part of it. This facilitates servicing, as the complete “works” can be removed from the case in one- unit, leaving only the speaker in position still connected. Four valves are used, plus a magic eye volume indicator, and point contact H.T. rectifier in a bridge circuit.
The amplifier is of the conventional record /replay type. The “Record” button on the deck operates a six-pole changeover switch which has long spring contacts, giving positive switching with a minimum of wear. Slight hum was apparent on the model reviewed when the amplifier was switched to playback and a good external speaker connected.
There are three amplifier inputs, microphone, radio and gramophone, selected by a switch on top of the deck. The microphone input socket is conveniently located alongside, but the remaining connections are brought out on a small panel at the rear. There is also a low level output for feeding an external amplifier, and a 5 ohm extension speaker socket. The mains lead is tucked away in this compartment and there is a fused voltage selector offering voltages between 100 and 240 volts.
The tone control is a simple affair across the output stage and provides a gradual dip of the top frequencies above 400 cycles. Although it is operative when using the loudspeaker as a monitor, it does not affect the recorded signal. The low level output socket is already frequency-corrected for a level play-off and is controlled by the amplifier volume.
The three inputs are only operative during recording, so that the Elektron cannot be used in a straight-through condition for playing records. The loudspeaker remains connected as a monitor during recording at a low level, but may be silenced by a switch on the volume control shaft.
No microphone is provided, which helps to keep the price down and leaves the purchaser free to make his own choice of instrument. An, Acos Mic 40 at 35s. can be supplied, or any of the AKG moving coil types.
Recordings were made with a crystal and moving coil on speech and a piano, using Emitape. The results were particularly pleasing and reproduction of the piano was excellent when recorded with the moving coil microphone placed about four feet away.
The frequency response is stated as 30-16,000 cycles, whereas the German-printed instruction book gives figures of 50-11,000 cycles. So a test recording was made from an oscillator in order to ascertain the actual overall frequency response. The recording was played back with the tone control set for maximum treble and measurement taken with a valve volt-meter at the extension speaker socket. Readings showed a response which was flat ±3 dB between 30 cycles and 12,000 cycles, and fell away rapidly at 16,000 cycles although this frequency was quite audible.
There is no superimposing device or trick button and the mixing of two programme inputs within the instrument itself is not possible. There is a separate three way mixing unit available, which extends the scope of the recorder. The plastic head cover is easily removed for cleaning the heads, capstan and rubber pinch roller.
The polystyrene escutcheon is held by three screws, two underneath the control knobs and a third between the spools. This escutcheon is removed to reveal the mechanism, held in position by four wood screws. The deck and amplifier are lifted out as one unit to. provide easy valve replacement and amplifier servicing. All working parts of the deck are accessible and belt replacement is but a few seconds work.
The Elektron carries a twelve months’ guarantee, which ensures against faulty workmanship. The valves, of course, carry the usual three months makers’ guarantee.
Nothing has been added to the Elektron which would complicate its operation. The provision of only one speed is not a serious drawback, and 3¾ ips now very popular. It gives results equal to those obtained from older recorders at 7½ ips.
The case is neatly styled, with a completely detachable lid, and covered with a washable PVC imitation leatherette. The gilt speaker fret extends all around the sides and there is a plastic carrying handle.
This recorder gives a good account of itself, although it has no frills. The internal speaker gives a pleasing reproduction, with an excellent transient response.
Voltage, 100-240 A.C.
Power, 50 watts.
Valve line-up, EF86, ECC83, EC92, EL84. Volume indicator, EM84.
Amplifier inputs : Microphone, 3mV/2M ohm; Radio, 3 mV/ 100K ohm; Gramophone, 100 mV/ 1M ohm.
Amplifier outputs: 3 watts, 5 ohm; 500mV 10K ohms.
Signal noise ratio, better than 53 db.
Bias oscillator, approx. 50,000 cycles.
Size, 13 x 10½ x 6 in.
Weight, 17½ lbs.
Price, £50 (including reel of tape).
Agents, Technical Suppliers Ltd., Hudson House, 63, Goldhawk Road, Shepherd’s Bush, W. 12.