Vintage Turntable Question (Philips 212)

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by redseed, Oct 4, 2004.

  1. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg
    Hey guys, my first post!

    I've got an important (well, very important to me) question for you all. I've been just ITCHING to hear some of my old records that aren't available in CD (or are in lesser quality), and upon looking into purchasing a new turntable I've decided that it would be best to get a new belt and cartridge for my old one (due to the high cost of getting a turntable of good quality). It is a Philips 212, and judging from a couple of the posts I've seen on here, should have a whole lot of life left in it since it really hasn't been used a great deal in about 20 years.

    What I'm wondering about this old turntable is if it was a pretty decent one back in the day. It was passed on to me from my father, and is from well before my time, so I don't know. Was it a decent turntable? Would I be able to make it sound pretty darn good with a decent cartridge, or would I be wasting my money on a more expensive cartridge since the table is so old, and maybe the electronics in it just aren't capable of sounding that good. I really have no clue here, so I'm relying on your knowledge! Could anybody recommend a cartridge for me? I want this table to reach it's full sound potential without wasting extra money on a cartridge that is just too good for the table. Help! Thanks!
  2. thegage

    thegage Well-Known Member

    Used one for a while, back in the days. Pretty decent of its kind, and kind of cool with its touch controls and suspension. I'd think an Audio Technica or Shure would be a good caqrtridge, but I'll let others here who are more knowledgeable suggest. And welcome!

    John K.
  3. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg
    but there are so many Audio Technica's and Shure's out there! High end or low end? Thanks for the input bro!
  4. Joe Nino-Hernes

    Joe Nino-Hernes Active Member

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    My father uses a Philips 212 in his system. Its really a great table! I recomend a Shure M97xE or an Audio Technica 440ML. I have used them both on the 212 with great results. I tend to prefer the sound of the Shure, its a bit flatter. The AT is a bit bright for my taste.

    I am very sentimental about this table. It was the first table I ever used. I started using my Fathers 212 when I was 5. I used it right up until last year, when I got my own turntable. I really have some fond memories attached to that table.
  5. Rolf Erickson

    Rolf Erickson New Member

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Hi! My friend in high school (1971) had one of those tt's. It worked fine. As long as it still runs well, with no excessive wow, or rumble. (meaning, inaudible in both cases) and runs at the correct speed, and the arm is not sticky with OOOoooollllldddd. lubricants, and the signal wire is in good shape with no hum or "crackle" when the arm moves. (the wire is very thin, and can be damaged through normal use bending repeatedly at the same spot causing an opening in the shield or "hot" leads. If you check for these things I mentioned here, and fix any difficulties encountered. I think you will have a fine time with it.. And the sentimental utility of a "heritage" piece. By the way, there is no "electronics" in the signal path of this turntable, just wires. Also check the contacts in the head shell, they prob. need cleaning, could'ent Hoyt.. Any decent pickup cartridge (under $100) would likely provide satisfactory sound, excessive $$$$ costing units are for FANATICS ONLY! and I don't think you are one........ Long live OLD GEAR!.. RE "Transducergeek"
  6. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg
    Ninohernes! Me too, my first table with great memories, being spun around as a kid about'81-'82 to AC/DC and all kinds of different music, as well as using it myself about the age of 4. ****, I was operating the stereo too young...my Dad went through tons of needles for it after I got to it!

    Thanks so much for the info guys. One more question. If I pick up that Shure cartridge will I be able to mount it on the table without the "jig" that the turntable manual describes? I'm a little worried about this, any more suggestions on how to mount it correctly without the "jig"? Thanks!
  7. Damián

    Damián Forum Hall Of Fame

    Location:
    Spain now
    Yes, you should. I don't know the Philips 'table but the 'jig' is most likely just a way of achieving proper cartridge alignment.

    There are a bunch of protractors on the Internet for one to download and print, that will allow you to align the cartridge correctly.

    One's here:
    http://www.enjoythemusic.com/freestuff.htm

    Here's another one (last page, my personal choice):
    http://www.linn.co.uk/docs/disassemble_remount_instructions.pdf

    (it's a PDF file so do the right click/Save Target As thing)



    Post back if you need help in using them- good luck!
  8. AKA-Chuck G

    AKA-Chuck G Active Member

    Location:
    Washington NC
    I still have my 212 up in the attic. It got heavy use and finally stopped working (the feather touch controls just stopped working--no lights). I used it from about 1976 to 1986 until CD's took over the world. I think it is a better looking table than actual quality table but it should still be fine with a decent cart and a little cleanup like suggested.

    Let me suggest you do a search on ebay for "Philips turntable". Some interesting 212 tables show up. You could get one of these with a decent cart included and have a backup or maybe even a better/cleaner table. Just an idea....

    Here is one for example

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=3283&item=5723560380&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW
  9. PMC7027

    PMC7027 Forum Hall Of Fame

    My first TT was Philips 212. Are you sure that the "jig" being referred to isn't the cartridge holder? There was a cartridge holder to which the cartridge was mounted. The cartridge holder slid into the headshell of the tonearm.

    I loved this table!
  10. Joe Nino-Hernes

    Joe Nino-Hernes Active Member

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    The Shure mounts perfectly into the slide out cartridge holder. Also, all of the lights are burned out in my Fathers 212, but the feather touch buttons still work. The only thing that does not work is the auto shut off at the end, the bulb that shines on the photocell is burned out.
  11. RetroSmith

    RetroSmith Forum Hall Of Fame<br>(Formerly Mikey5967)

    Location:
    East Coast
    Had one and used one for many years.

    The base fell apart, and the wires in the headshell broke, so I ended up tossingf it, I still wish I hadnt. It was a good turntable.
  12. PMC7027

    PMC7027 Forum Hall Of Fame

    My Philips GA-212 didn't have auto shut off. I bought it in 1973.
  13. Rolf Erickson

    Rolf Erickson New Member

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Hi! I am going to make a guess and say that something in the power supply went south in your "feather touch" system. It might be a fun weekend project to haul it down and tear into it, and make life out of death! Long live Old Gear! R.E. "transducergeek"







  14. Jerry

    Jerry Grateful Gort Staff

    Location:
    Connecticut
    the 212 also plays 78's if you take off the platter, place the belt over the top part of the motor spindle and select I forget which speed. give it a try, but not with a new stylus if it's an old 78...
  15. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg
    Yeah, the lights have been burned out for a long time, and the feather touch buttons don't work...but everything else does work. The cartridge that is in there is mounted right to the frontmost part of the slide out deal (you can mount it farther to the front or the back), so I probably shouldn't just mount it farthest to the front like the last one, I should really use one of those protractors to figure out how for to the front or back right?

    I'm amazed at the depth of knowledge on this board, thanks so much guys!
  16. MikeyH

    MikeyH Stamper King

    Location:
    Berkeley, CA

    If you get the *right* ampage bulbs, the touch comes back. Mine was 'unreliable' on touch with two burned out bulbs, but fine once I'd got all the bulbs in. It seems the electronics needs the right loads to latch on and off. Nothing complex, just high-ish impedance low current flashlight/instrument bulbs. Replace them all.
  17. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg
    The cartridge that is in there is mounted right to the frontmost part of the slide out deal (you can mount it farther to the front or the back), so I probably shouldn't just mount it farthest to the front like the last one, I should really use one of those protractors to figure out how for to the front or back right?
  18. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg

    That could be something to do in the future! Any idea where I'd find bulbs like that and more specifically what kind?
  19. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg
    Bump for more help!
  20. Joe Nino-Hernes

    Joe Nino-Hernes Active Member

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    The bulbs have gotten really hard to find. If your touch controls work with the bulbs burned out (like mine do) don't even worry about replacing them, they are purely cosmetic at this point.
  21. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg
    Hey Nino!
    The cartridge that is in there is mounted right to the frontmost part of the slide out deal (you can mount it farther to the front or the back), so I probably shouldn't just mount the new Shure farthest to the front like the last one, I should really use one of those protractors to figure out how for to the front or back right?
    Thanks again for your info.
  22. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg
    My touch controls don't work, so I'm just wondering if MikeyH could give me a bit of a better idea where I could find the right bulbs. Just sort of like a maglite (flashlight) bulb from Walmart, or what?
    Thanks again guys!
  23. Joe Nino-Hernes

    Joe Nino-Hernes Active Member

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    For most carts, it will end up being right at the front of the slide out cartridge carrier. But always double check it with an alignment protractor.
  24. redseed

    redseed New Member

    Location:
    Winnipeg
    Thanks SO MUCH my brother!
  25. Rachael Bee

    Rachael Bee Miembra muy loca


    Thats funny! I'll tell you how mine did it after this....

    I got the Phillip's 212 in it's first year of production. The original 212 has a heavier platter than the later versions. I don't remember if they attached a V2 or anything to identify the latter models if I ever knew. I had a Shure 91-with some letters, maybe ED...? About 1982 I got a Shure V-15 V II and my table got a whole lot better. I bought a Denon turntable at the flea market in the early 90's and moved the V-15 to it and put the cartridge from it on the Phillips 212. I sold the 212 to some friends. I was at a party there last year and when I walked in the room, the Hot Tuna album I gave them with it, their first record, well, it was playing on the 212.

    I loved the 212 for tape recording. The touch controls were fun. You could cue the record up to a spot and with the needle down on the vinyl push the 33 or 45 button to get a creaky start or push the centre Stop button for a grinding to a halt end.

    After my table got older and one of the little green button lights was burned out, I accidentally discovered that when I held down both the 33 and 45 bottons, the speed went to 78. It didn't do this new, trust me, I tried everything. So, that became fun. I could now have blow out endings where the sound went faster and faster till I paused it, or whatever, and I did alot of whatever.

    Back in '71 the green buttons looked like elevator buttons. They got described that way in an a review I vaguely remember reading. The 212 isn't the highest performing table for nomal use but it's damn good for abnormal use!