Reprinted from
Equipment
Profiles
This Month:
Crown CX822 Stereo Tape Recorder
AR Stereo Integrated Amplifier
Garrard SL-95 Automatic Turntable
Crown Model CX822 2-track
Stereo Tape Recorder
MANUFACTURER'S SPECIFICATIONSTape Speeds: Three, equalized; 15, 7Va,
33/4 ips. Timing: 99.8% or 1.8 sec. in 15
min. and adjustable to ±0.05% short term.
Wow and Flutter: 15 ips, 0.06%; 7Va ips,
0.09%; 3% ips, 0.18%. (Guar. max. for
record, playback.) Record/Play Frequency
Response: 15 ips, ±2 dB 30 to 30 kHz;
7% ips, ±2 dB 30 to 20 kHz; 3% ips,
±2 dB 30 to 10 kHz. Signal-to-Noise Ratio:
— 57 dB @ 15 ips; —56 dB @ 7Va ips,
—50 dB @ 3% ips. Stop Time: One-half
in. @ 33/4 ips; 1-in. @ 7V2 ips; 3 sec. from
full rewind on 10V2-in. reel. Start Time:
Under 0.1 sec. Wind and Rewind: 1200
ft. in 45 sec; 2400 ft on 10Va-in. reel in
58 sec. Reel Size: lOVa-in. (NAB) max.;
5-in. min. Distortion: Approaches thres
hold of measurability. Inputs: 2 per chan
nel; high-Z mic. or line level. Opt. input
transformers for low-Z mic. Tone Con
trols: Bass, 15 dB atten. or boost at 30 Hz;
treble, 15 dB atten. or boost at 15 kHz.
Outputs: Two per channel, 600-ohm
unbal. One low-Z output (stereo phone
jack) on front panel. Motors: Three. Drive,
1 Hysteresis synch, drive motor; Reel,
2 capacitor-run torque motors. VU Meters:
Two 5-in. professional types with edge
lighting. Bias Freq.: 100 kHz. Monitoring:
Front-panel switch for ea. channel. Dimen
sions: 17V2-in. high, 19-in. wide, 9-in.
deep. Price (basic machine): $1790.00.
The Crown CX822 pictured here
is probably the finest tape recorder
that has been reviewed in these pages.
In addition to delivering phenomenal
performance, it incorporates numerous
features and refinements that place
this machine in a class by itself.
The Elkhart, Indiana manufacturer
has, for example, introduced a com
puter-type logic system to prevent de
structive operations; electronics is
substituted for mechanical mechanisms
in many instances; tape handling has
been made more gentle and faster than
ever before, while tape tensions have
been drastically reduced; editing has
been greatly simplified; construction
appears to be rugged enough to with
stand parachute drops; and Old-World
craftsmanship is apparent at a glance,
quickly substantiated by handling the
well-engineered recorder.
The Crown Model CX822 recorder
is the latest model in the 800 series of
recorders from Crown International.
It consists of two detachable parts: the
tape transport and the electronics as
sembly. Since the tape heads are part
of the tape transport, all adjustments
to the electronics affecting the com
bined performance of the transport and
electronics are performed when the
two are mated. So for descriptive pur
poses, let us consider the CX822 as one
unit, breaking it down functionally,
rather than physically.
To begin with, the CX822 is a twotrack machine which works at three
speeds. This means that the necessary
speed changes (see Fig. 2) and selec
table equalizations are built-in.
(Crown's Model CX824 is a four-track
unit, with high speed at 7J/£ ips and low
at V/s ips.) The machine accepts stand
ard, plastic, EIA reels directly (see
Fig. 3) onto the turntable or 10V2-in.
NAB reels with adaptors, which are
furnished with the machine (Figs. 4
and 5). Each turntable is driven by a
1250 rpm capacitor-run torque motor
with self-aligning bearings. Turntable
braking is accomplished by electric
means, whereby the motors are slowed
by applying d.c. voltage to them. This
contrasts with the solenoid-actuated
mechanical braking system of most
comparable machines. The type of dif
ferential electro-dynamo braking used
here is a patented feature of Crown
transports, whose brakes did not grab,
jerk or need adjusting during our ex
tensive tests, and work extremely well
in bringing the tape to a smooth, gentle,
rapid stop. A positive temperature co
efficient resistance is used to provide
the braking differential.
We tried to make the deck misbe
have by stopping a roll of super-thin
V^-mil tape at high speed by rock
ing the tape back and forth, and by
other tortuous combinations. Not only
did we fail to foil the machine, but
once motionless, the tape at the gate
was limp (not under tension) and no
stretch marks were to be found any
where on the tape. All this despite its
breakneck wind and rewind speed. It
took exactly one minute to smoothly
wind 1800 feet of 1-mil Mylar tape be
tween 7-in. reels. The only apparent
problem with this kind of braking
would occur if there was a loss of elec
trical power during rewind, say. But
the mechanical simplicity, reduction of
maintenance and potential reliability
of the CX822 far outweigh such an un
likely occurence as a power failure at
the precise moment of rewind.
The stainless steel capstan shaft is
centerless ground, hardened and highly
polished. Its tip is of non-magnetic,
chrome-plated stainless steel, and it is
concentrically aligned with a fourpound flywheel of nickel-plated steel.
The assembly is mounted in a %-in.
thick aluminum "tunnel" casting, five
in. long, with self-aligning Oilite bronze
bearings. The flywheel is driven by a
centerless ground-neoprene drive belt
Fig. 2-Drive pulley and capstan flywheel
system shown in 7V2 ips position. The fly
wheel, driven by a seamless neoprene
belt, is mounted on rear of capstan. Note
flywheel bearing support. Belt can be
switched from 7V2 to 3% ips from frontpanel push rod. The 15 ips speed change
is done manually by stretching the band
over the largest pulley. The belt can be
replaced in seconds, without removal of
other parts.