Jump to content

A bit of fun - National / Technics SL N25 Linear Tracking with built in Speakers


Recommended Posts

I haven't seen one of these before so I thought I would post on it - paid too much on ebay for this because I was curious. 

 

Its a record size linear tracking turntable, similar mechanically to the Technics SL3. Not one of the high end Technics direct drives - instead its a belt drive system, with plastic body.

 

But what makes this interesting is that it is a mini "console" system, with built in speakers and a headphone amp. This would have been a fun bedroom system for a teenager in the 80s!

 

This deck obviously cannot compare to the higher end Technics linear decks, but pulling it apart I was amazed how excellent the build of the linear arm is - not far from the SL7, SL5 and SL D1 (all of  which I have worked on). Loaded with a new tonearm drive belt, a new platter belt and a Ortofon OM10 P mount, I was very impressed with the sounds coming out of this. 

 

In case you are wondering, yes the in-built speakers sound terrible. But the headphone stage isn't bad at all - it is punchy and detailed. Perfect for late night listening with headphones, or perhaps I can sneak this into work? 

 

04.thumb.JPG.549ba755145f2a3d829a2086fcf5403a.JPG

 

05.thumb.JPG.3eeb39c3fe03c1099122e3053becdde6.JPG

 

06.thumb.JPG.5bc91a44a786bf85aade24c777c605c7.JPG

 

01a.thumb.JPG.e48d24cfaf481807e89fee43175642bd.JPG

 

03.thumb.JPG.fcf5621712f0a20a2d04ef7ee0271ff4.JPG

02.JPG

  • Like 6
Link to post
Share on other sites

Amazing levels of engineering in so much of of this affordable gear. Regardless of how many parts are made of plastic to save money, the simple number of parts that have to work and continue to work so we can enjoy music never ceases to impress me. That we can listen to wobbles and bumps etched into a piece of vinyl and scratched out with a rock that are reproduced as recognisable performances is nothing short of voodoo in my opinion.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, Ooogh said:

That we can listen to wobbles and bumps etched into a piece of vinyl and scratched out with a rock that are reproduced as recognisable performances is nothing short of voodoo in my opinion.

Couldn't agree more.  

 

Yes this  deck  is obviously built to budget,  but engineering and build in that linear tonearm drive is fantastic,  and you can hear it too.  

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites


8 hours ago, audiofeline said:

Does this have an output so it can be plugged into a phono amp and used like a regular tt?

 

Yes,  it has RCA outs at the rear.

 

Though,  after a quick test,  I have a feeling  that it is a line level output - ie. it goes through the in built phono amp.  I haven't quite got to trying properly in in my system yet, though what I have heard so far isn't bad.  

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 10 months later...

Just noticed this thread, cool.

 

I actually own one of these too, have had is since brand new. Mine was purchased from Natsound (which no longer exists) in Melbourne back in 1986.

 

Countless times over the years I thought of selling it, but I've never seen any others like it for sale, so had no idea of it's worth.

 

Anyway it's good to hear that it seems to be of good quality, I always thought it was a pretty decent turntable. The only things its ever needed were the 2 belts you mentioned.

Mine still has the original Technics cartridge and stylus. Still works well today.

 

And yes the rear output is a Line output.

 

 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, shmb said:

Just noticed this thread, cool.

 

I actually own one of these too, have had is since brand new. Mine was purchased from Natsound (which no longer exists) in Melbourne back in 1986.

 

Countless times over the years I thought of selling it, but I've never seen any others like it for sale, so had no idea of it's worth.

 

Anyway it's good to hear that it seems to be of good quality, I always thought it was a pretty decent turntable. The only things its ever needed were the 2 belts you mentioned.

Mine still has the original Technics cartridge and stylus. Still works well today.

 

And yes the rear output is a Line output.

 

 

 

Nice to see someone else has one,  they seem a bit scarce. And amazing you had it since new.  

 

I also didnt know how much to pay.  Though I have got my value since 😊.  

 

Recently I installed an Audio Technica AT 142LP cartridge in mine - this has a line contact / modified shibata tip stylus, and definitely overkill for this deck. But with this cartridge installed,  it was shocking just how good it sounds through headphones - this is a very reasonable headphone stage mated to a well engineered linear drive TT.  Remarkable for what might otherwise be written off as a toy... 

Link to post
Share on other sites


On 22/10/2020 at 9:03 PM, mkaramazov said:

 

Nice to see someone else has one,  they seem a bit scarce. And amazing you had it since new.  

 

I also didnt know how much to pay.  Though I have got my value since 😊.  

 

Recently I installed an Audio Technica AT 142LP cartridge in mine - this has a line contact / modified shibata tip stylus, and definitely overkill for this deck. But with this cartridge installed,  it was shocking just how good it sounds through headphones - this is a very reasonable headphone stage mated to a well engineered linear drive TT.  Remarkable for what might otherwise be written off as a toy... 

 

Yeah, I'll keep it for a while yet. They certainly are rare.

Link to post
Share on other sites

As a fan of linear trackers I would definitely snap one of these up if I saw one reasonably priced. 
 

Find myself wondering how hard it would be to replace the inbuilt speakers with something newer and of better quality - probably unrealistic but would be quite cool to have a portable TT with good sound! 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 29/10/2020 at 9:31 PM, Emsworth said:

 

Find myself wondering how hard it would be to replace the inbuilt speakers with something newer and of better quality - probably unrealistic but would be quite cool to have a portable TT with good sound! 

 

Sadly I think physics is against getting good sound from the speakers in this,  as there is only space for a small driver,  and its clear the internal dimensions / design mean that bass response won't be adequate. 

 

But the line out means this can be plugged into any number of portable boom boxes or a pair of powered monitors,  so there are options I guess.  

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I would think that, it's not practical anyway. Even if if you could achieve better bass response I reckon it would eventually cause feedback from the turntable, the vibrations from the plastic body would cause all sorts of issues.

 

From what I hear, it seems to me like they may have deliberately placed a HPF on the speakers to minimise this?

Link to post
Share on other sites


On 06/11/2020 at 2:27 PM, shmb said:

From what I hear, it seems to me like they may have deliberately placed a HPF on the speakers to minimise this?

 

That makes sense,  I wouldn't be surprised by this.  

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.




×
×
  • Create New...