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Discrete Head Cassette Deck
Owners Manual
The lightning flash with arrowhead
А symbol, within an equilateral triangle, is
intended to alert the user of the presence
of uninsulated “dangerous voltage”
within the product's enclosure; that may
be of sufficient magnitude to constitute a
risk of electric shock to persons.
The exclamation point within an
equilateral triangle is intended to alert
the user of the presence of important
operating and maintenance (servicing)
instructions, in the literature
accompanying the appliance,
Please record the Model Number and Serial
Number in the space provided below and
retain these numbers.
Model Number and Serial Number are located
on the rear panel of the unit.
Model Number: Nakamichi LX-5
Serial Number:
Safety Instructions ...................—.—.—.—. 1
On Cassette Tapes ....................... 2
Precautions..............—.—.. eee... 2
Controls and Features... .................. 3
Connections . 0e 6
Special Features... ........................ 7
Playback ................................. 9
Matching the Cassette Deck to
Various Cassette Tapes... ................ 10
Recording ..................... cc. ...... 12
Tips on Setting Record Levels. ............ 13
Dolby Noise Reduction System ............ 14
Maintenance. ................... coin... 15
Troubleshooting. .......................... 16
Specifications/Optional Accessories ........ 17
You have chosen an excellent cassette deck.
The Nakamichi LX-5 was designed to fulfill the highest aim of a tape
deck —perfectly faithful sound reproduction. This aim is achieved by giving great
attention to basic performance characteristics, while keeping operation of the deck
easy and simple. A micro-processor is employed for tape transport control, which
ensures smooth and error-free operation.
Please take the time to read this manual in its entirety to fully acquaint yourself with
the various features of this cassette deck.
Thank you.
Nakamichi Corporation.
Safety Instructions
The following safety instructions have been
included in compliance with safety standard
regulations. Please read them carefully.
1. Read Instructions — All the safety and
operating instructions should be read
before the appliance is operated.
2. Retain instructions — The safety and
operating instructions should be retained
for future reference.
3. Heed Warnings — All warnings on the
appliance and in the operating instructions
should be adhered.
4. Follow Instructions — All operating and
use instructions should be followed.
5, Water and Moisture — The appliance
should not be used near water — for
example, near a bathtub, washbowl,
kitchen sink, laundry tub, in a wet
basement, or near a swimming pool, etc.
6. Carts and Stands — The appliance should
be used only with a cart or stand that is
recommended by the manufacturer.
7. Wall or Ceiling Mounting — The appliance
should be mounted to a wall or ceiling only
as recommended by the manufacturer.
8. Ventilation — The appliance should be
situated so that its location or position
does not interfere with its proper
ventilation. For example, the appliance
should not be situated on a bed, sofa, rug
or similar surface that may block the
ventilation openings; or placed in a built-in
installation, such as a bookcase or cabinet
that may impede the flow of air through the
ventilation openings.
9. Heat — The appliance should be situated
away from heat sources such as radiators,
heat registers, stoves, or other appliances
(including amplifiers) which produce heat.
10.Power Sources — The appliance should be
connected to a power supply only of the
type described in the operating
instructions or as marked on the
1 1.Grounding or Polarization — Precautions
should be taken so that the grounding or
polarization means of an appliance is not
12.Power-Cord Protection — Power-supply
cords should be routed so that they are
not likely to be walked on or pinched by
items placed upon or against them, paying
particular attention to cords at plugs,
convenience receptacles, and the point
where they exit from the appliance.
13.Cleaning — The appliance should be
cleaned only as recommended by the
14.Nonuse Periods — The power cord of the
appliance should be unplugged from the
outlet when left unused for a long period of
15.0bject and Liquid Entry — Care should be
taken so that objects do not fall and liquids
are not spilled into the enclosure through
16.Damage Requiring Service — The
appliance should be serviced by qualified
service personnel when:
A. The power-supply cord or the plug has
been damaged; or,
B. Objects have fallen, or liquid has been
spilled into the appliance; or,
C. The appliance has been exposed to
rain; or,
D. The appliance does not appear to
operate normally or exhibits a marked
change in performance; or,
E. The appliance has been dropped, or the
enclosure damaged.
17.Servicing — The user should not attempt
to service the appliance beyond that
described in the operating instruction. All
other servicing should be referred to
qualified service personnel.
On Cassette Tapes
1. C-120 cassettes (playing time one hour
per side) contain extremely thin tape which
breaks or snarls easily, is sometimes
subject to stretching and also is of low
sensitivity. Therefore, C-120 casseltes are
not recommended for high-fidelity
2. Do not pull out the tape from the cassette
3. Be careful not to turn the cassette reels
with the fingers, causing tape slackening.
4. Store cassette tapes away from heat, high
humidity, dust, and magnetic fields such as
caused by speakers, TV sets etc.
Cassette Tabs
You can protect valuable recordings from
accidental erasure and re-recording by
completely removing the appropriate tab on
the top edge of the cassette. The tab for each
side is located on the top left-hand corner as
you face the side. Use a small screwdriver,
and push the tab down to break it off. Do not
leave the broken tab in the recess. If you wish
at a later date to record over a side for which
the tab has been removed, cover the tab
opening with a piece of adhesive tape.
Insertion and Removal
(1) Insertion of a Cassette
1. Push the eject button to open the
cassette holder.
2. Insert the cassette into the cassette
holder from the top. Make sure that the
exposed tape is facing down and the
label of the desired side is facing you.
3. Gently push the cassette holder back
into the panel,
Break off this tab to
protect Side À or 1
_ from accidental erasure,
Break oH this tab to protect
Side Bor ? Irom accidental
J / 7
(2) Removal of a Cassette
1. Press the stop button
2. Push the eject button to open the
cassette holder.
3. Remove the cassette.
. Make sure that the timer switch (16) is set
to “Off” when the self-start feature is not
. This deck incorporates a special circuit
designed to take up any loose tape inside
the cassette. When a tape is inserted, the
take-up spindle (right-hand spindle) will
make a few rotations. The take-up spindle
will also rotate and the tape counter will
advance by a few digits if: a cassette
containing loose tape is inserted, or the
cassette holder is closed without a
cassette, or the power to the deck is
switched on.
This behavior is normal and not a fault with
the deck.
. This deck incorporates a muting circuit to
prevent the generation of spurious noise
when switching on the power. While the
muting circuit is active, the light above the
stop button (8) flashes and the tape
transport buttons (“Play”, “F.Fwd", “Rew”
and “Pause”) are inoperative.
When the timer function for recording or
playback is used, the respective mode is
entered after the muting interval (when the
flashing of the stop button light has
Controls and Features
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(1) Power Switch
Pressing this button activates the deck.
Pressing it once more switches the power off.
When the power is switched on, the cassette
holder illumination is lit and the tape counter
(26) is reset.
(2) Eject Button
By depressing this button, the cassette holder
is opened for insertion and removal of a
(3) Headphone Jack
Accepts standard stereophone plug. (—p. 6)
(4) Cassette Holder
See-thru cover provides unobstructed view of
the cassette. The cover can be easily
removed for routine cleaning of heads,
capstans and pinchrollers etc. (—p. 15)
(5) Rewind Button
For rapid tape-winding in the reverse
direction. During operation, the indicator on
the top right of the button lights up.
(6) Pause Button
Used for noise-free, short-term interruption of
the tape transport in recording or playback.
During operation, the indicator on the top
right of the button lights up.
(7) Play Button
Starts forward tape motion for recording or
playback. During operation, the indicator on
the top right of the button lights up.
(8) Stop Button
Brings all tape motion to a full stop from any
mode. During operation, the indicator on the
top right of the button lights up.
(9) Fast-Forward Button.
For rapid tape winding in the forward direction.
During operation, the indicator on the top right
of the button lights up.
(10) Record Button
Used for recording and also for the auto play
feature (—p. 7). During recording, the indicator
indicator on the top right of the button lights
(11) Tape Selector Switch
Used to select the EX, 5X or ZX position. For
Nakamichi EX and EX I tapes or other low-
noise/high output ferric oxide tapes, set the
switch to the “EX” position. For Nakamichi SX
tape or other chrome-equivalent tapes, use
the "SX" position. For Nakamichi ZX or other
metal tapes, use the "ZX" position. —p. 10)
(12) Bias Tune Control
Used for fine tuning of the bias current.
(—p. 11)
(13) Eq Switch
Used to select either 70 or 120 microsecond
equalization. (—p. 10)
(14) Tape Start Memory Switch
When this switch is set to “On”, the tape is
automatically stopped at the tape counter
indication “0000" in rewind or fast-forward
(memory feature). This deck also
incorporates an auto play feature. It is
activated by means of the record button and
puts the deck into the playback mode at
“0000”. (—p. 7)
(15) Dolby NR Switch
Used to select Dolby B-Type noise reduction
for a 10-dB improvement in high-frequency
S/N ratio, or Dolby C-Type noise reduction for
a 20-dB improvement. When a Dolby system
is used, the respective indicator (22) lights up.
(—p. 14)
Hinged Panel
The various control switches of this
cassette deck are located beneath a
hinged panel. The panel is opened by a
slight push on the upper right corner.
For protection, the hinged panel is
designed to become unhinged if strong
force is applied while it is open. In such a
case, be sure to correctly re-attach the
panel before closing it.
align and lock
= = =
(16) Timer Switch
Permits unattended recording or pre-
programmed playback in conjunction with an
external audo timer (—p. 8)
(17) Input Level Controls (LR)
Used to adjust the input (record) level to the
deck and the left/right channel balance.
(—p. 12). Fade-in or fade-out can be
performed with the master fader control (25).
(18) MPX Filter Switch
When this switch is set to "On", a filter cuts
off the 19-kHz multiplex carrier signal used in
FM stereo broadcasts. Remains of this carrier
might otherwise interfere with correct
operation of the Dolby system. This switch
should be set to "Off" when recording
anything else than FM broadcasts.
(19) Output Level Control
Controls the output level of the deck as well
as the headphones listening level for both
channels simultaneously.
(20) Peak Level Meters
Provide exact indication of peak levels in the
wide range of — 40 dB to +10 dB. (—p. 13)
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Lock back into place by pressing
hinged panel and hinge together.
(21) Monitor Switch
For playback of a tape and for off-the-tape
monitoring during recording, set this switch to
“Tape”. For record level setting etc. set this
switch to “Source”.
(22) Dolby NR Indicators
When a Dolby NR system is used, the
respective indicator lights up.
(23) Rec Mute Indicator
Lights up during rec mute operation.
(24) Master Fader Indicators
Display the condition of the master fader
(25) Master Fader Control
By means of this control, fade-in or fade-out
during recording can be performed easily at
the touch of a button. There is also a choice
between two fading speeds. The master fader
indicators (24) display the condition of the
master fader control. (—p. 7)
(26) Tape Counter
Digital LED indicators count from “0000” to
“9999” in the record, playback and fast-
forward modes (“plus count”), and to “— 999”
in the rewind mode (“minus count”).
(27) Rec Mute Button
By depressing this button during recording,
the input signal can be temporarily cut off.
During operation, the rec mute indicator (23)
lights up. (—p. 7)
(28) Counter Reset Button
Pressing this button returns the tape counter
indication to "0000".
(29) Input Jacks (Left and Right Channel)
(30) Output Jacks (Left and Right Channel)
(31) Remote Control Jack
Accepts the respective plug of an optional
remote control unit for operation of the tape
(32) Power Cord
(33) Voltage Selector
AC voltage is factory-set for the country in
which you purchased your LX-5. The voltage
selector permits re-setting of mains voltage in
case the deck is to be used in a different
Safety regulations in certain countries prohibit
inclusion of a voltage selector. This feature,
therefore, may be absent from your deck.
Connection of Amplifier and Remote
After checking the instructions for your
amplifier or receiver, use the shielded cables
with RCA plugs (provided with the deck) to
securely connect this deck’s input jacks (29)
with the “Rec Out” terminals on the amplifier
and this deck's output jacks (30) to the “Tape
Play" terminals on the amplifier. Be careful
not to mix up left and right channels. While
making connections, the power to the deck
and to the amplifier should be switched off.
Remote Control
The optional remote control unit RM-200
permits operation of the deck's tape transport
functions (excluding the rec mute function)
from any convenient location.
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Standard stereo headphones may be
connected to the jack on the front panel of
the deck. Low-impedance headphones of 8 to
16 ohms are recommended.
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Connection of Microphone Amplifier
As the LX-5 possesses only line input
facilities, it is not possible to directly connect
microphones to the deck. When microphones
are to be used, a separate microphone
amplifier such as the optional MX-100
Microphone Mixer from Nakamichi's BlackBox
series (PS-100 Power Supply required) is
MX-100 Microphone Mixer
For microphone recordings, we recommend
the use of the MX-100 Microphone Mixer.
This unit provides three inputs (left, right and
center “blend”) which can be mixed freely.
For detailed instructions, please refer to the
instruction booklet supplied with the MX-100.
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DC power cord (supplied with °
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Special Features
1. Master Fader Control
This feature permits smooth and easy fades
during recording simply by pressing a button.
Fade-in is performed by depressing the
“Up >" side of the master fader control (25),
and fade-out is performed by depressing the
"Down <1" side.
You can choose between two fading speeds:
Depressing the button strongly (two clicking
sounds of the switch) and keeping it
depressed causes the fading process to be
performed in about 2 seconds. Depressing the
button lightly (one clicking sound of the
switch) or releasing the button after one push
causes the fading process to be performed in
about 6 seconds.
The respective fading mode is indicated by
the relative brightness of the indicators (24).
In ordinary music recording, slow-speed
fading may be more desirable, while high-
speed fading can be used effectively for
example to eliminate noise when the cartridge
is lowered onto a record, etc.
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one click
Pushing lightly or releasing the button after
one push: fading speed appr. 6 seconds.
two clicks
Pushing strongly and keeping the button
depressed: fading speed appr. 2 seconds.
2. Auto Play Feature
This feature is operated by means of the
rewind button (5) or fast-forward button (9)
and the record button (10). “Auto Play” means
that the tape is stopped from rewind or fast-
forward at the counter indication “0000” and
the deck automatically starts playback from
this point.
(1) Press the counter reset button (28) at the
beginning of a recording or playback to
return the counter indication to “0000".
(2) After recording or playback is completed,
press the rewind button (5), lighting up the
indicator above the button, and then—while
keeping the rewind button depressed —
press the record button (10). The tape will
now be rewound to the “0000” indication
and playback will automatically start from
there. The auto play feature can also be
activated while the deck is already in the
rewind mode; just press the rewind button
once again and then press the record
The above description is an example for
the rewind mode, but the auto play feature
can be operated in the same way in the
fast-forward mode also.
— The operation of the master fader control
can be changed from “Up” to “Down” or
from “Down” to “Up”, but it can not be
stopped midway.
— The master fader control is operative only
in the record and record-standby modes.
In other modes, the setting is automatically
— Depressing the record button to activate
the auto play feature does not light the
record button indicator.
— When auto play is used, the deck starts
playback а! “0000”, also when the tape
start memory switch (14) is set to "On".
3. Rec Mute
By pressing the rec mute button (27) during
recording, the input signal is cut off for as
long as the button is being kept depressed.
This can be used to insert silent spaces on a
tape or suppress unwanted portions of a
recording source. The rec mute indicator (23)
lights up while the signal is cut off. When the
monitor switch (21) is set to “Source”, the line
output and the headphone jack are not muted,
so that it is possible to continuously monitor
the input signal.
The rec mute indicator (23) is set to display
the condition when the recording signal
current is cut off. Therefore the indicator
lights up not only during rec mute operation,
but also in the record-standby mode.
When entering the record mode from the stop
mode, the rec mute indicator lights up for an
instant, because the muting is activated until
the heads touch the tape.
4. Punch-in Recording
Going from the playback mode directly into
the record mode without pressing the stop
button is called punch-in recording. This
can be used to immediately start a recording
from playback or to later insert another
recording source on silent passages left in a
previous recording, etc. Also, with this deck
the record-standby mode can be entered
directly from the pause mode without using
the stop button.
In the playback mode, while depressing the
play button (7), press the record button (10).
In addition to the play button indicator, the
record button indicator also lights up and
recording starts without the tape motion being
To enter the record-standby mode from the
pause mode, press the record button (10)
while depressing the pause button (6). The
record button indicator flashes for about 2
seconds and then lights up continuously,
indicating record-standby.
Playback mode—Record mode |
Play > mm — F.Fed >> mm
Fira << mm
Pause mode—Record standby mode
Rew << mmm
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5. MPX Filter
In the transmission of FM stereo broadcasts,
a 19 kHz multiplex carrier signal is used.
When recording from FM stereo broadcasts
while using the Dolby noise reduction system,
possible residues of this 19 kHz signal can
cause malfunction of the noise reduction
circuitry. To prevent this, the MPX filter cuts
off any remaining carrier signal. Therefore,
when recording from FM stereo broadcasts,
set the MPX filter switch (18) to “On”. The
switch should be “Off” when recording
anything else than FM stereo broadcasts.
6. Timer Recording or Playback
This deck incorporates a self-start feature
which enables you to make unattended
recordings or start playback at a pre-selected
time with the use of a timer.
(1) Make connections as shown in the chart.
I |
— If the tabs on the rear of the cassette are
removed, it is not possible to enter the
record mode.
— For punch-in recording, always press the
play button (7) or the pause button (6)
before you press the record button (10). If
the record button is pressed first, the
operation cannot be performed.
(2) Insert the tape for recording or playback
and turn on the power to all components.
(3) For timer recording, set the recording level
to suit the expected signal. For timer
playback, set the output control to the
desired level. Check if all components are
set up properly.
(4) Set the On/Off button (left button) of the
timer switch (16) to “On” and the Rec/Play
button (right button) of the timer switch to
the desired position (“Rec” for unattended
recording, “Play” for timer playback).
—— Timer
On Rec
г. Off Play *
any position
Timer Recording '
li rl
Timer Playback Timer Off
(5) Adjust the timer to the desired starting
(6) At the pre-selected time, the timer will
supply power to the components and the
LX-5 will start recording or playing.
— When the timer recording or playback
feature is not desired, be sure to set the
On/Off button of the timer switch to “Off”.
7. Head Configuration
In order to obtain the best parameters for
each function and to extract the utmost from
every tape, this deck possesses completely
separate erase, recording and playback
heads. The monitor switch permits instant off-
the-tape monitoring during recording.
(D) Confirm that the On/Off button (left button)
of the timer switch (16) is set to “Off”.
Turn on the power to the deck by
depressing the power switch (1).
(2) Press the eject button (2) to open the
cassette holder (4).
(8) Insert the cassette tape into the holder
with the exposed tape facing down and the
desired side facing outwards. Push the
cassette holder back until it locks into the
(4) Set the monitor switch (21) to “Tape”.
(5) Set the Eq switch (13) to 120 us or 70 us,
according to the tape used. (—p. 10)
(6) When playing back a tape which was
recorded with Dolby B-Type noise
reduction, set the On/Off button (left
button) of the Dolby NR switch (15) to
“On” and the C-Type/B-Type button (right
button) to “B-Type”.
When playing back a tape which was
recorded with Dolby C-Type noise
reduction, set the On/Off button (left
button) of the Dolby NR switch (15) to
“On” and the C-Type/B-Type button (right
button) to “C-Type”. The respective
indicator of the Dolby NA indicators (22)
lights up. When playing back a tape which
was recorded without Dolby noise
reduction, set the On/Off button to “Off”.
a — | —
B-Type NA =”
Playback with
C-Type NR - „=.
Playback в апу
without Dolby NR ~ position
— nary Dolby-encoded tapes, which
were not recorded with Dolby C-Type
noise reduction, are to be played back
at the “B-Type” position.
(7) Press the play button (7).
(8) Adjust the output level control (19) to the
desired level.
© For short-term interruption of playback,
press the pause button (6). To resume
playback, press the play button (7) again.
(9 To stop the tape altogether, press the stop
button (8).
(1) When the tape end is reached, the tape
transport is shut off automatically.
— The transport of this deck permits going
from any transport mode into any other (i.e.
from play to rewind, from rewind to fast-
forward, etc.) without having to use the
stop button.
— While the tape is in motion or in the pause
mode, the eject button is inoperative and
the cassette holder does not open even if
the button is depressed. While the
cassette holder is open, logic circuitry
prevents operation of all transport modes.
— During playback, the deck's peak level
meters display the level recorded on the
tape. Readings are not affected by turning
the output level control.
Matching the Cassette Deck to Various Cassette Tapes
There are many brands of cassette tapes,
which can be generally classified into three
types: normal tapes (ferric-oxide
formulations), chrome-equivalent tapes, and
metal tapes. When recording such tapes with
this deck, the tape selector switch (11) and
the Eq switch (13) must be set according to
the chart below.
In order to fully realize this deck's potential,
you should use tapes from the list below,
whenever possible.
Tape Selector Switch
This switch serves to select the appropriate
bias amount and record equalization for
different tape types. If bias current is too low,
high-frequency response rises but distortion
also increases. If it is too high, high-frequency
response as well as distortion decline. This
deck's tape selector switch provides three
positions: EX (normal tapes) SX (chrome-
equivalent tapes) and ZX (metal tapes).
According to the tape used, the correct
position must be selected. The position of this
switch is relevant only in recording and has
no effect during playback.
Eq Switch
In order to match the deck to the
characteristics of the tape, besides bias il Is
necessary to select the correct equalization
for recording and playback. This deck
provides two Eq switch positions: "70 us” and
“120 us”. Metal tapes (ZX) and chrome-
equivalent tapes (SX) are to be used with
“70 us” and normal tapes (EX) with “120 us”.
This switch must be set to the correct
position in recording as well as in playback.
Tape Selector Switch and Eq Switch Settings (Recommended Tapes)
HE EX/120 us Position
Tape Selector Switch Eq Switch Brand Name
| EX * > >, 2% Nakamichi EX, EX I
Maxell UD, UD-XL 1, XL 1-5
| | Fuji FR-I
HE SX/70 us Position
Tape Selector Switch Eq Switch Brand Name
I 5х a 70
EX * __ *7X a 120 Nakamichi SX, SX II
Maxell UD-XL I, XL 1-5
L Fuji FR-1
E ZX/70 us Position
Tape Selector Switch Eq Switch Brand Name
sx a 70 В
ex. * >. a 120 Nakamichi ZX
Maxell MX
1 Fuji FR-Metal
Note: —This deck is not suited for use with ferrichrome (FeCr) tapes.
Bias Tune Control
This deck provides a bias tune control (12),
which permits fine adjustment of the bias
current after the standard values have been
set by means of the tape selector switch (11).
When using tapes recommended by this
manufacturer (see list in preceding
paragraph), the bias tune control should be
left in the center click-stop position.
2. If the recorded signal sounds duller (has
less highs) than the original source, turn
the bias tune control to the left
Bias Tune
When using other tapes, the bias tune control
should be adjusted as follows.
The discrete 3-head configuration permits
bias adjustment while instantly monitoring the
recorded signal.
1. Compare the source signal (“Source”) with
the recorded signal (“Tape”).
If the recorded signal sounds brighter (has
more highs) than the original source, turn
the bias tune control to the right
Bias Tune
3. By repeatedly performing steps 1. and 2., ¡f
necessary, minimize the difference in
sound quality between the source signal
(“Source”) and the recorded signal
When wishing to perform an absolutely
accurate adjustment of bias, the prescribed
procedure is as follows.
1. Set the Dolby NR switch to “Off”.
2. Use a test tone oscillator, the Nakamichi
T-100 Audio Analyzer, or a similar device.
3. Connect the oscillator output to the input
terminals on the rear panel of the cassette
4. Record test signals of 1 kHz and 15 kHz
on the tape at a —20 dB level.
5. Adjust the bias tune control, while
repeating the record/playback procedure if
necessary, until both signals read —20 dB
in playback.
— This deck is factory-adjusted to give best
results with Nakamichi EX II, SX and ZX
cassette tapes.
— If tapes of inferior quality are used, the
output in the high frequency range may
not increase even if the bias current is
lowered (the bias tune control is turned to
the left); rather distortion only will
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(1) Confirm that the On/Off button (left button)
of the timer switch (16) is set to “Off”.
Turn on the power to the deck by
depressing the power switch (1).
(2) Press the eject button (2) to open the
cassette holder (4).
Insert the casselte tape into the holder
with the exposed tape facing down. Push
the cassette holder back until it locks into
the panel.
(4) Select the correct positions of the tape
selector switch (11) and Eq switch (13) for
the tape in use. (—p. 10)
(5) If a Dolby NR system is to be used for
recording, set the On/Off button (left
button) of the Dolby NA switch (15) to
“On” and select the desired system with
the C-Type/B-Type button (right button).
(The respective indicator of the Dolby NR
indicators (22) lights up.) When the Dolby
NR system is not to be used, set the
On/Off button of the Dolby NR switch (15)
to “Off”.
When recording from FM broadcasts, set
the MPX filter switch (18) to “On”.
— When recording from other program
sources except FM broadcasts, the
MPX filter switch should be set to "Off".
(6) By pressing the counter reset button (28)
to return the indication of the tape counter
(26) to “0000” and setting the tape start
memory switch (14) to “On”, you can
easily return to the starting point after
recording is completed. The tape will stop
automatically at the counter indication
“0000” in rewind.
(7) Set the monitor switch (21) to “Source”
and, while watching the peak level meters
(20), adjust the input level controls LR
(17) to obtain the correct recording level,
(—p. 13)
While keeping the record button (10)
depressed, press the pause button (6) to
put the deck into the record-standby
mode. The red indicator above the record
button and the green indicator above the
pause button light up.
* If you want to start the recording with a
fade-in, press the "Down <1" side of the
master fader control (25) to return the
fader to minimum. (—p. 7)
(9) Press the play button (7) to start recording.
* To perform fade-in, now press the “Up
>" side of the master fader control
(25). The recording level is
automatically brought up to the level
determined in step (7).
(0 To check the quality of the recording in
progress, you can instantly monitor the
playback signal by setting the monitor
switch (21) to “Tape”. In the "Source"
position, the input signal before recording
is heard.
For short-term interruption of recording,
press the pause button (6). To resume
recording, press the play button (7) again.
(1) Ву pressing the stop button (8), the
recording mode is released and the tape
transport comes to a full stop.
* If you want to end the recording with a
fade-out, press the “Down <1" side of
the master fader control (25) to return
the fader level to minimum and then
press the stop button. After the stop
button was pushed, the master fader
control is automatically released and
the level returns to the "Up >" value.
Tips on Setting Record Levels
The LED level meters of this cassette deck
are free of “overshoot” problems and display
peak levels with a high degree of accuracy.
For good recordings, it is essential to maintain
a high signal-to-noise ratio. This is achieved
by putting as much signal on the tape as is
possible without producing distortion. Setting
record levels too low will result in noisy
recordings, while too high recording levels
cause distortion. Finding the proper level
between these two extremes is what good
recording is all about. This task is facilitated
by this deck's level meters which cover a
wide 50 dB range and accurately display
even very short signal peaks. Refer to the
chart as a guideline to set recording levels.
“Normal” (LH) position tape formulations,
“Chrome” position tape formulations:
The meters should be allowed to read as high as +5 dB on short program peaks.
a —
dB —40 « 30 - 20 - 10 5 0 3 5 7 10 + dB
“Metal” position tape formulations:
The meters should be allowed to read as high as +8 dB on short program peaks.
L (= es ms es es es es ss se ss ен = | L
dB —40 - 30 - 20 - 10 S 0 3 5 7 10+ dB
As different tape formulations have slightly
different overload (headroom)
characteristics, the requirements may vary to
a certain degree when using different tapes.
This deck uses the Dolby noise reduction (NR)
system, but with a difference: In addition to
the Dolby B-Type noise reduction built into
conventional cassette decks, it incorporates
the newly developed Dolby C-Type noise
reduction system.
Whereas the Dolby B-Type NR reduced noise
in the high frequencies by about 10 dB, the
Dolby C-Type NR with new characteristics
achieves an improvement of about 20 dB in
the range from 2 kHz to 8 kHz, where noise is
most readily audible.
The operating priciple of the Dolby C-Type NR
is similar to the B-Type, in that it does not
affect high-level signals in recording, but
processes only low-level signals in the mid
and higher frequency range. However, the
operation of the C-Type system starts at a
point 2 octaves lower than with the B-Type
system, and it incorporates new circuits to
prevent encode/decode errors or high
frequency loss due to tape saturation. By
using the Dolby C-Type NR, dynamic range is
greatly enhanced and the setting of record
levels becomes easy and trouble-free.
This deck incorporates both the Dolby B-Type
and the Dolby C-Type noise reduction
systems. When playing back a tape from your
collection which was recorded with the
B-Type NR “on”, the NR switch should be set
to the “B-Type" position. When playing a tape
recorded with the C-Type NR, the switch
should be set to the "C-Type” position.
— This system does not reduce any noise
already contained in the incoming input
signal. You should therefore strive to use
signals as noise-free as possible as a
recording source.
To the ear, the Dolby C-Type NR system
provides a constant noise reduction with any
type of music, during signal as well as during
silent passages. Modulation or breathing
noise has been suppressed past audibility,
and the tape's saturation level is increased by
the action of the so-called “spectral skewing
circuit” to determine pre-emphasis and de-
emphasis, and the “Anti-Saturation Network
(ASN)", etc.
Chart A illustrates the low-level encoding
characteristics for the B-Type NR and the
C-Type NR. Decoding is done with exactly
opposite characteristics, thus achieving flat
overall frequency response. As can be seen
Dolby Noise Reduction System
from the chart, the operation threshold of the
C-Type is two octaves lower than that of the
B-Type, and in the high frequency range,
noise reduction is by 20 dB.
Chart B shows an example of actual
frequency response and noise spectrum
analysis as recorded on a cassette deck. It is
evident from the noise spectrum analysis that
with the C-Type NR, noise is considerably
lower than with the B-Type and that it is
reduced by about 20 dB in the range from
2 kHz to 8 kHz. In addition, with the C-Type
NR the ANS and skewing features etc, serve
to increase high frequency MOL during high-
level recording.
Dolby NR Switch Operation
When a Dolby noise reduction system is to be
used, set the On/Off button (left button) of the
Dolby NA switch (15) to “On” and select the
desired system with the C-Type/B-Type
button (right button).
— Dolby NA -—
a On C-Type
n off B-Type
CL a 4 B-Type NA to be used: a
C-Type NR to be used: .-.
Dolby NA not to be used: A
Low-level Encoding
(— 60 dB)
Chart À
Frequency (Hz)
Chart B
Frequency Response and Noise Spectrum Analysis
Frequency (Hz)
The cassette holder cover of this cassette
deck can be easily removed.
Perform cleaning or demagnetizing after
removing the cover.
In ordinary use, this cover should always be
Head and Transport Cleaning
It is very important to regularily clean the
surfaces of the record head, playback head
and erase head as well as the capstans,
pinchrollers and all other parts which come in
contact with the tape. Tiny particles shedded
from the tape onto these parts, as well as
dust accumulations etc. become the cause of
drop-outs, and severely degrade frequency
response and wow-and-flutter characteristics.
Be sure to always keep the parts shown in
white on the illustration spotlessly clean.
Cleaning should always be performed in the
direction of the arrows in the chart (direction
of tape travel).
Cleaning Procedure:
1. Remove the cassette holder cover.
2. Use the enclosed cotton-tipped sticks
and—with very light pressure—clean the
parts indicated in white on the illustration.
In case of severe contamination, dip the
cotton tip in the enclosed alcohol before
cleaning, or use the enclosed plastic stick
with a sponge tip screwed onto its end and
dipped in alcohol.
Hecord Head
Erase Head
| Tape Guide
Playback Head Pressure Roller
Pressure Roller Tape Pad Lifter
— To easily reach the various parts for
cleaning, turn on the power to the deck
and put the deck into the play-standby
mode (play button and pause button
depressed). The head assembly is now
— Be careful not to apply too much force in
cleaning, as the respective parts are
critically aligned.
— When you have used alcohol in cleaning,
give the cleaned surfaces a minute or two
to dry off completely before playing a tape.
— Be careful not to damage the tape guides
or the tape pad lifter.
— When you have used cotton-tipped sticks,
be sure to remove any cotton strands from
the cleaned parts.
After a longer period of use, there can be a
build-up of residual magnetism in the
playback head, record head and erase head.
Such residual magnetism can induce noise
and partially erase the high frequencies of a
tape being played. To prevent this, you should
demagnetize these parts about once every
50 hours of use with the Nakamichi DM-10
Demagnetizer (optional) or any other properly
designed demagnetizer.
— Always switch off the power to the deck
before starting the demagnetizing
Cleaning the Faceplate
Clean the faceplate only by wiping it with the
enclosed polishing cloth or another soft cloth.
Never use alcohol, solvents, ammonia or
abrasive cleaning agents.
All important moving parts of this deck are
fitted with long-life, cil-less bearings. Periodic
lubrication is therefore not necessary.
Tape does not run.
Probable Cause
1. Power cord is unplugged.
2. Cassetle holder not completely locked.
Plug in cord firmly.
Press eject button and then close
cassette holder firmly.
Record mode cannot be entered.
1. No cassette inserted.
2. Cassette tabs have been removed.
Place adhesive tape over tab opening
or use new Cassette.
Excessive playback hiss.
Head is magnetized.
Demagnetize head.
Uneven sound levels, drop-outs,
excessive wow/flutter
1. Heads and/or capstans and pressure
rollers dirty.
2. Faulty cassette.
Clean these parts.
Replace cassette.
Incomplete erasure,
Erase head dirty.
Clean head and pressure roller.
Distorted record/playback sound.
1. Program material itself is distorted.
2. Recording levels are too high.
3. Head dirty.
4. Wrong setting of tape selector switch.
Check program material.
Wide dynamic range permits some
short-term overload, but excessive
recording levels will cause distortion.
Adjust recording levels.
Clean head.
Select correct setting for tape in use.
Record mode is entered, but cannot record.
Cannot playback.
Dull high frequencies.
1. Input disconnected.
2. Head dirty.
3. Master fader control is set to down.
1. Output disconnected.
2. Head dirty.
3. Monitor switch is set to “Source.”
1. Heads dirty.
2. Tape selector switch and/or equalizer
switch not set correctly.
Check connections.
Clean head.
Push the "Up" side of the master fader
Check connections.
Clean head.
Set monitor switch to “Tape.”
Clean heads.
Select correct positions for tape in use.
Hum heard during recording or playback.
1. Strong induction fields near deck.
2. Signal cable or connector grounding faulty.
Keep deck away from amplifier,
transformers, fluorescent lamps, etc.
Replace signal cables.
Specifications/Optional Accessories
Track Configuration............. 4 tracks/2-channels stereo
Heads... 3 (erase head x 1, record head x 1, playback head x 1)
Motors (Tape Transport) ........ DC servo motor (capstan drive) x 1
DC motor (reel drive) x 1
Power Source ................. . 100, 120, 120/220-240, 220 or 240V AC; 50/60Hz
(According to country of sale)
Power Consumption ............ 33 W max.
Tape 1-7/8 ips. (4.8 cm/sec.) + 0.5%
Wow-and-Flutter.............e.. Less than 0.11% Wtd peak
Less than 0.06% Wid rms
Frequency Response ........... 20 Hz-20,000 Hz (recording level — 20 dB, ZX, 5X, EX 0
Signal-to-Noise Ratio ........... Dolby C-Type NR on <70us, ZX tape >
Better than 70 dB (400 Hz, 3% THD, IHF A-Wtd rms)
Dolby B-Type NR on <70us, ZX tape>
Better than 64 dB (400 Hz, 3% THD, IHF A-Wtd rms)
Total Harmonic Distortion ....... Less than 0.9% (400 Hz, 0 dB, ZX tape)
Less than 1.0% (400 Hz, À dB, SX, EX 1 tape)
Erasure............e—eeee eee. . Better than 60 de (100 Hz, О de)
Separation .............—.——.—.—... Better than 36 dB (1 kHz, 0 de)
Crosstalk. Better than 60 dB (1 kHz, 0 dB)
Bias Frequency................. 105 kHz
Input (Line). ...........—...———... 50 mV, 70 k0
Qutput (Line) ................... 1V (400 Hz, 0 dB, output level control at max), 2.2 КО
(Headphones) ........... 12 mW (400 Hz, O dB, output level control at max.) 8 1}
Dimensions. .................... 450(W) x 135(H) x 307(D) millimeters
17-3/4{W) x 5-5/16(H) x 12-1/16(D) inches
Approximate Weight ............ 8.5 kg
18 Ib. 12 07
e Specifications and appearance design are subject to change for further improvement without
e Dolby NR under license from Dolby Laboratories Licensing Corporation.
e The word "DOLBY” and the Double-D-Symbol are trademarks of Dolby Laboratories
Licensing Corporation.
SF-10 Subsonic Filter
Optional Accessories
ZX Metalloy Cassette Tape
C-60, C-90
SX I Super Ferricobalt Cassette Tape
C-50, C-90
SX Ferricobalt Cassette Tape
C-60, C-90
EX O Ferricrystal Cassette Tape
C-60, C-90
EX Ferrioxide Cassette Tape
C-60, C-90
RM-200 Remote Control
DM-10 Head Demagnetizer
SP-7 Stereo Headphones
Nakamichi Corporation Nakamichi U.S.A. Corporation
Tokyo Office 19701 South Vermont Avenue
Shinjuku Daiichi Seimei Bldg. Torrance, California 90502
2-7-1 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo Phone : (213) 538-8150
Phone (03) 342-4461
Telex : 2324721 (NAKAM J)
Nakamichi GmbH
Stephanienstrasse 6, 4000 Disseldorf 1
Phone : (0211) 359036
06405044 Printed in Japan
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