Empireal (Crown) 1955




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This is an American example of an early recorder boasting a powerful 30 watts power amplifier designed to be used for P.A. This recorder has been around the world with 3 travel stickers slapped on its side, most probably used by a travelling band. The recorder is mono, half track and records at 7 1/2 or 15 ips depending where the drive belt is. (Which you must manually move by opening the machine) Unusually, this recorder has no brakes. Instead it feeds DC into the servo motors causing them to lock (eventually). One bad design of this recorder was the record system itself, if you were to leave the machine in record mode, you would wipe the tape if you tried to rewind or wind it, something which they sorted out on their later models, this recorder was designed to be used in different counties, for instance, the capstan motor had s flywheel system, to change speeds, you changed the belt position manually, there are 4 grooves on the drive pulley, two different speeds, but a second selection for 50 or 60Hz mains.

Era 1955
Customer Professional
Cost when sold Unknown
Control type Mechanical rotary control
Max Spool size 11 inch reels or platters
Speeds 15 and 7.1/2 ips
Motors Two spool motors, one belt drive capstan motor
Heads Erase, Record and replay
Track configuration 1/2 track Mono
Frequency response Unknown but around 50Hz - 12KHz
Other tech data 30Watt amp to cover 3000 people with sound (Manual)
Special features DC breaks, no pads or clutches to slow reels down


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