I have an 70's style turntable/radio console.

It is a large floor model with a flip up center which houses the turntable and radio. How can modernize it?

Brand: Admiral AM/FM Stereo Multiplex

I will be replacing the turntable, what do you suggest about the radio?




Picture of I have an 70's style turntable/radio console.
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xaenon1 year ago

Most 1960s/1970s stereo receivers are fairly easy to repair; capacitors seem to be the big issue, and to a lesser degree, transistors. As for the turntable, they are on eBay all the time. You might get lucky and find a same make/model changer to replace yours, or you can often install a different make/model changer without too much trouble.

Most console stereos of this era have an auxiliary input, which is ideal to hook a Bluetooth audio receiver to. You can alternately hook a CD player to the aux-in connections.

I have a 1967 or 1968 Magnovox console stereo made with hard rock maple. It is almost scratchless and the radio works. It is a beautiful piece of furniture . A few years ago the arm was broken in half and the wires in the arm were torn apart. Otherwise it was a very good, loud sounding stereo. It was the first piece of furniture I ever bought . Some people tell me I can't get a new arm to play the old records or have have an arm and wires restored. If I cannot fix it, I would like suggestions on how I could show this piece of furniture off because I am moving into a new home soon. Thanks for any help.

Ok, so it's D-E-A-D, dead. You have 2 options in order to keep it around as a console stereo.

1.) Repair it to where you can at least use the tuner/amp section.
2.) Gut it and put new "bits" inside.

For #1, if you know how to troubleshoot electronics, you have a good shot at fixing it and it would be the preferable thing to do as the amp section was designed for the cabinet. First thing to do is open up the back and look at the board to see if there are any obvious burned or defective components. With that done, start at the power cord and follow it to the transformer. Check the leads with a voltmeter (on both sides of the transformer) to verify that it works. After that should be a diode bridge to convert the stepped down AC to DC. Verify voltage there and also check to see if it is present after the filter capacitors. Just keep following the voltage paths until it disappears. That's about all I can help you with unless I have the stereo in front of me.

Now, if the Electronics Gods have smiled on you and let you resurrect the amp/tuner section, the next part is easy. Go to MCM Electronics and look for part # 50-7240, called a Phono Input Attenuator ($12.99). This will let you plug your Ipad into the phono input with the appropriate Ipad cable. Next look up part # 50-6220, an A/B Input Source Switch Box ($10.49). You plug the attenuator into one set of the "IN" jacks while you plug the turntable into the other set of "IN" jacks. Then you plug the output of the switch box into the jacks where the original turntable was connected. Press the button to select between the Ipad or the turntable. Of course, if the new turntable is USB, you can plug that directly into the IPAD and leave out the selector switch. Finish the inside as desired.

For #2, open the back of the cabinet and remove the guts, leaving the main wires for the speakers. What comes next depends on what YOU do, but the basics are - install new amp with controls in accessible spot, connect Ipad and turntable, hook up speakers, finish as desired.

Amps come in many forms - preassembled or kit - plain amp or with a gajillion bells and whistles. Whichever type you choose, make sure you have enough inputs for your needs (Phono and Auxiliary) along with a Volume control and at least a Tone control, preferably Bass and Treble. Go for at least 10 watts, maybe 20-50 watts max, depending on what the speaker ratings are.

Lastly, when you remove the original turntable, take note that it is most likely mounted on springs. That is to help keep the vibrations caused by the speakers out of the turntable itself. You might want to make a spring mounted "table" or "platter" for the new turntable to sit upon. Otherwise the aforementioned vibrations can reach the turntable itself and cause all kinds of nastiness, auditory or physical.

Good luck,
Qa
Oops, I just realized that I kept saying Ipad but you said Android. Same basics apply.

Qa
iceng6 years ago
Have one of us older nerds ( probably has vacuum tubes in it ) help you fix it
and maybe install an iPad / iPod link for you. I see a 45 RPM spindle on the
side wall.

This thing is gonna be a COLLECTORS item worth $$ $oon don;t devalue it.
You've been a member as long as I have and you like Bernstein's April in Paris.

A
As an article in a woodworking magazine recently pointed out... If the choice is devalue it and keeping it in use, or trashing it, devaluing it may be the lesser evil. But be aware of the trade-off.
orksecurity6 years ago
Either repair it, or retrofit something new into that space. It would be nice to keep as much of the old appearance as possible, though that may be difficult.

An alternative, of course, would be to sacrifice its musical function entirely and refit it entirely as a storage cabinet. Again, I'd be inclined to keep the existing appearance as much as possible.


I have my grandfather's old console, a generation or two before yours. Tubes, mono, definitely not "hi-fi". Still works, though the tuning calibration is off a bit and the turntable died. I'd sorta rather keep it as working heirloom than gut it for reuse.

You *may* also want to check what someone would offer you for it. There were enough of these and it's recent enough that it probably isn't worth anything, especially nonworking, but you might find someone who has a bit of nostalgia for 'em.
000000robot (author)  orksecurity6 years ago
Don't want to get rid of it, I want use if for the same function . . . Music - I just want it to be more modern with a mp3 player and modern turntable.
MP3 player input can be added fairly easily. If it has a line-level input, that will do the job; if not, one can be patched in (typically, by adding another option at the source selector switch.)

Modern turntable: Check the specs on the one you've got. It may not be all that bad. Remember, turntables were the hi-fidelity medium of the time, and whoever bought this was willing to pay for elegant; they might have paid for good too.
000000robot (author)  orksecurity6 years ago
The turntable is missing weights, and it is just a mess.
OK; if it's dead, it's dead. Was worth a sanity check.
orksecurity6 years ago
Suggestions about the radio... Depends on how much work you're willing to do. It would probably be possible to "rack-mount" a new amp into that position. Or it might be possible to extend a new tuner's controls to be operated from the existing front panel -- though you'd probably have to figure out how to use rotary momentary switches in place of most of the existing knobs, move the shaft encoders across for other knobs, and potentially sacrifice the old tuning indicator in favor of the the new tuner's display (though I'd be tempted to try mounting the display behind the old indicator's glass -- potentially annoying when in use, but when turned off it might look much like it used to).

Another approach, in lieu of altering the new amp, would be to rewire this panel as an IR remote control and have it talk to the new amp that way. Arguably safer... again, you'd want to change the knobs to behave as switches or shaft encoders to trigger the remote's actions.

Could be a fun project. Let us know what you do and how it works out!
What do YOU mean by "modernise" - redecorate, or repurpose ?

Steve
000000robot (author)  steveastrouk6 years ago
I want to keep the console looking on the outside as-is. I think it is beautiful

I am going to replace the turntable but I was thinking of putting in a Android Tablet that will play radio, my converted CD collection and stream internet radio.

I am wondering if anyone has done this, I want the outside to look 70's but flip up the lid and there is a modern turntable with a Computer Tablet.

I want it to look built in - I am open to suggestions.
seandogue6 years ago
Unless you're ridding yourself of the radio, I'd say clean it up and use it. There's nothing wrong with 70's radios. They're not as flashy as new units, but they're still serviceable (ie, usable)
000000robot (author)  seandogue6 years ago
It doesn't work anymore. Not the turntable or radio.
Oh. I see.

Well, if neither work, have you checked the fuse? That's often the source of failure on these old units, a power surge in the grid that blows a fuse. Although it may be something else, they are generally tough as nails compared with the shiny garbage produced by Asian manufacturing since ~1985.

If they are truly "dead", then I suppose you could install an automobile deck to replace the radio, which would likely also provide you with a CD player. You'll of course need to add in a 12V DC power supply sufficient to power it if that is done.
Then it sounds like the audio amp has failed - it wouldn't be TOO hard to replace that.

Keeping a vinyl option would be a neat plan, even if you put an Ipod base in the top !