Neat overview of Studer A820 tape deck

Jan 23, 2012
577
0
16
Philly
#3
Great video. Thanks Amir!
 

Ki Choi

Member Sponsor
May 13, 2010
754
8
420
Seattle WA area
#5
Thanks Amir for the video.

I know the person in UK, and we had helped out each other sourcing some Studer parts in the past.

Yes, Studer A820 with its latest (1992) MkII firmware with correct hardware updates, it has more neat features for studio work than any other master recorders I know. As an example, the A820 MkII machine can "skim" the tapes with "print through" problem when small amount of magnetic energy gets unintentionally transferred through the previous layers from long storage. So the skimming function is actually erasing very thin surface portion of unwanted magnetic layer without damaging the good music layer below...pretty cool, I would say.

On the other hand, with its cool features, the machine is very complicated and packed with complexity. Just about everything that moves is related and impacts other movements. Even when the simple bearing in the stablilizer roller (that cover is missing in the video) gets out of spec, it can screw up the transport. I have a friend's A820 in the house for the last few months with relatively simple spooling motor issue that is still kicking my butt...
 
Apr 3, 2010
15,814
9
0
Seattle, WA
#7
Thanks Amir for the video.

I know the person in UK, and we had helped out each other sourcing some Studer parts in the past.

Yes, Studer A820 with its latest (1992) MkII firmware with correct hardware updates, it has more neat features for studio work than any other master recorders I know. As an example, the A820 MkII machine can "skim" the tapes with "print through" problem when small amount of magnetic energy gets unintentionally transferred through the previous layers from long storage. So the skimming function is actually erasing very thin surface portion of unwanted magnetic layer without damaging the good music layer below...pretty cool, I would say.

On the other hand, with its cool features, the machine is very complicated and packed with complexity. Just about everything that moves is related and impacts other movements. Even when the simple bearing in the stablilizer roller (that cover is missing in the video) gets out of spec, it can screw up the transport. I have a friend's A820 in the house for the last few months with relatively simple spooling motor issue that is still kicking my butt...
Hi Ki. Good to see you here. I am not scared of complexity in electronics but mechanical things as you say, can become a nightmare. My worst nightmare was repairing cassette decks as with those, you couldn't even see the mechanism that had problems as the tape would hide it!!!

On a related topic, how about you posting a video or two? Someone had a shot of your room a while back. Would love to see that posted plus any other videos you think are useful.
 

yjwu

Well-Known Member
Jun 28, 2011
64
1
83
Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China
#8
Hello Ki:

I am new to STUDER A820; just bought a non-functioning A820 on May 30, 2014, and revived it after two weeks' struggle.

My A820 probably was a mark-1 machine with 38/86 software. Is it possible to get it up to date to mark-2's functionality through hardware and software upgrade? How about skimming and HX-pro? Do STUDER's FTP site provide enough information on completing those updates processes other than software images?

Thank you for helping me get my A810 working in 2011. Now a step further into A820!

Best Regards!

Yeun-Jung Wu

Thanks Amir for the video.

I know the person in UK, and we had helped out each other sourcing some Studer parts in the past.

Yes, Studer A820 with its latest (1992) MkII firmware with correct hardware updates, it has more neat features for studio work than any other master recorders I know. As an example, the A820 MkII machine can "skim" the tapes with "print through" problem when small amount of magnetic energy gets unintentionally transferred through the previous layers from long storage. So the skimming function is actually erasing very thin surface portion of unwanted magnetic layer without damaging the good music layer below...pretty cool, I would say.

On the other hand, with its cool features, the machine is very complicated and packed with complexity. Just about everything that moves is related and impacts other movements. Even when the simple bearing in the stablilizer roller (that cover is missing in the video) gets out of spec, it can screw up the transport. I have a friend's A820 in the house for the last few months with relatively simple spooling motor issue that is still kicking my butt...
 

yjwu

Well-Known Member
Jun 28, 2011
64
1
83
Taipei, Taiwan, Republic of China
#9
The AD7524's on spooling control might be wrong? I located this problem and fix my non-functioning A820. The value of feedback resistor of AD7524 is also important. I replaced a bad AD7524 and partially fix the spooling problem. After a long diagnostic process, I went back to this chip again because that resistor was 26k Ohm, way up beyond the spec required by STUDER. Replaced it with a AD7524 with resistance between pin1 and pin16 at about 12k Ohm brought my A820 back to normal.

My A820 still suffer unacceptable high wow and flutter at 4.75ips. I recorded a 1kHz reference signal (from Mono/Stereo switch/test generator board; about 1% THD+N) and monitor the reproduced signal at 3.75ips. The best THD+N figure I can get is 7%! (By fine tuning R41) That figure was much better at 7.5ips and higher speed.

Any suggestion?

yjwu

Thanks Amir for the video.

I know the person in UK, and we had helped out each other sourcing some Studer parts in the past.

Yes, Studer A820 with its latest (1992) MkII firmware with correct hardware updates, it has more neat features for studio work than any other master recorders I know. As an example, the A820 MkII machine can "skim" the tapes with "print through" problem when small amount of magnetic energy gets unintentionally transferred through the previous layers from long storage. So the skimming function is actually erasing very thin surface portion of unwanted magnetic layer without damaging the good music layer below...pretty cool, I would say.

On the other hand, with its cool features, the machine is very complicated and packed with complexity. Just about everything that moves is related and impacts other movements. Even when the simple bearing in the stablilizer roller (that cover is missing in the video) gets out of spec, it can screw up the transport. I have a friend's A820 in the house for the last few months with relatively simple spooling motor issue that is still kicking my butt...
 

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