Thread Number: 34811  /  Tag: Small Appliances
Magnavox Console Stereo
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Post# 375756   7/23/2017 at 20:27 (428 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        

I've been wanting a good record player to replace my cheapo all in one lloyds model for a while. But wasn't sure what i wanted... that is until i saw this!!! This here is the beautiful 1969 Magnavox Astro-Sonic in a lovely "mediterranean" cabinet. Im hopefully going to pick it up in August, but the suspense is killing me!

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Post# 375763 , Reply# 1   7/23/2017 at 22:14 (428 days old) by TheSpiritOf76 (Historic Midtown Wichita Kansas. )        
A magnificent Magnovox!

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Good choice! In 1969, there was a lot to choose from in Console Stereos. Each had their own selling points, and good things, and not many flaws.


I know some would boast that Fisher is the only brand to be considered. I tend to think the top two are Zenith an Magnavox. Really even a good top of the line GE and or Admiral was even acceptable as far as quality is concerned.


The thing I do like about Magnavox is the jam free, easy to use, easy to service record changer.  That was originally made by a company called Collaro, then Magnavox bought the design and produced it them selves.  I especially love how you can even use the 16 RPM speed with the automatic function, unlike with other record changers, so you can play a stack of those neat Seaborg background music records on that.  please keep me posted when you get her.  I also recommend that you just buy a fresh new needle, that is not a expensive thing to do, and it will optimize record safety and sound quality.  I have a few reliable sources for that, so let me know, and I would be more then pleased to help!=)

Post# 375786 , Reply# 2   7/24/2017 at 11:35 (427 days old) by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
That was a lot of money

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at the time.

Post# 375794 , Reply# 3   7/24/2017 at 14:45 (427 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        

I will be sure to keep you posted! I also had the seaburg records in mind! Have you seen Thechmoan's video? If not you should, I'll include a link to his channel. Thanks for the tip on the needle.


Post# 375798 , Reply# 4   7/24/2017 at 16:25 (427 days old) by TheSpiritOf76 (Historic Midtown Wichita Kansas. )        
I do know about Technoman.

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I have seen several of his videos.  You will also need to buy a pack of the special Seaburg adaptors for use with those records.

Post# 375839 , Reply# 5   7/24/2017 at 23:19 (427 days old) by Seijun (Portland, OR)        

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I have the "portable" suitcase-style version of this machine, also from 1969. I didn't realize that it could play Seaburgs!

Post# 375843 , Reply# 6   7/25/2017 at 00:05 (426 days old) by Real1shep (Walla Walla, WA)        

We had that console but with the TV in the center and much longer on length. It was a beast. My dad always had the best/top Magnavox TV consoles with stereo. It had a very decent sound, even turned all the way up when the rents were absent. Looking down, it had the record changer on the left (with a lift-up lid), TV center (with sliding doors) and a receiver on the right with a left-up lid....around that same time period '69.  After that one, he got a Sylvania TV console with stereo.....which had a built in cassette deck.


You could actually change out the whole cartridge for something much better and more functional. Just have to find out what impedance the phono preamp is.



Post# 375866 , Reply# 7   7/25/2017 at 12:50 (426 days old) by JustJunque (Western MA)        

Hey Aiden,

Looks nice!
My parents had a Masterwork, probably made in the mid to late 60s.
I remember it having a beautiful sound!
Around the late 70s/early 80s, they had someone rework the cabinet for a more colonial look.
I always imagined that I would take it with me when I got a house.
Well, the house happened about eight years ago. But, a couple of years prior, a family member had decided that the old stereo was in his way in the parents' basement and, with the help of a friend, literally tossed it outside...breaking off one of the legs in the process.
Determined that I was still going to save it, I had a friend help me lug it out to the rickety garden shed, where it still sits to this day.
I'm sure critters have gotten at it, and the dampness has probably destroyed the inner workings.
Between work, and trying to take care of a house and yard, there's just never any time or money to invest in the stereo.
Sorry the story doesn't have a happy ending. I just thought I'd share.


Post# 375970 , Reply# 8   7/26/2017 at 22:11 (425 days old) by dartman (Portland OR)        

I always liked Zenith stuff before I became serious about sound and started buying receivers and components. I did have a HUGE Magnavox 27" b/w TV with a stereo/phono built in. It had huge old fashioned 15" woofers and horn tweeters and sounded pretty nice considering it was probably mid 60s at the latest. I had to replace the CRT and messed around with it too much and finally gave up after trying to tune up the TV part and making it worse. I parted it out and my buddy ended up with the speakers out of it and built one cabinet for one side. He thought they sounded awesome but even in the early 70s the speakers were pretty out classed sound wise.
It of course was all tube and made when a huge b/w tube and loud stereo built in was very cutting edge and impressive. It certainly wasn't built as nice as my preferred Zenith stuff but it was impressive just in its huge scale of picture and sound.

Post# 375975 , Reply# 9   7/27/2017 at 08:04 (424 days old) by s31463221 (Frenchburg, KY)        
Speaking of Console Stereos

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I came across one yesterday at a used furniture store and was quite excited to even find one! This one is an RCA VZT111L with a date of 1974 stamped on the back of it. The guy had it priced at $50, which seemed reasonable if everything worked. The cabinet is in absolutely BEAUTIFUL condition, so I pulled it out and plugged it in to see what it would do. Much to my disappointment, the ONLY thing working was the AM band portion of it. I couldn't get the turntable to spin, the 8 Track would light up, but nothing more, and the FM band, in either mode (regular or stereo) does absolutely nothing. Needless to say, I was totally disappointed that such a great looking stereo was barely working.

The guy that owns the place, told me, well I didn't test it when I got it, so I just assumed it worked good, anyway, you came here to get it, have your truck here....if you want it, you're leaving with it! He gave me that stereo for free, along with a vinyl record and two 8 track tapes (which will play very nicely in my 78 Lincoln Town Car!) So even though the electronics aren't working well at the moment, I plan to tear into it and see what, if anything, I can do to try and make it work again! I'll put some pics of it up when I get the dust all cleaned off it! If any of you have any schematics of it, SAMS Photofacts, etc. that you would care to share, I would GREATLY appreciate it! An online search I made doesn't show much about it except a few 1974 ads where it was priced at $269 new!

Post# 375993 , Reply# 10   7/27/2017 at 16:58 (424 days old) by electroluxxxx (Syracuse, NY )        
since we are on the subject

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there so happens to be a Magnavox astro sonic at the local thirsty shopper, while solid state isn't my thing nor are consoles I have been thinking about it because it is in really nice condition. the unit is priced at a whopping $75 and for anyone who knows me, that is kinda rediculous for a thrift store so I will let it sit for a bit and then see about grabbing it for 20. As of now I am in the process of making a 1964 Zenith tube console with louvered shutters my own by sealing up the left and right cabinets, replacing the speakers with something to my liking adding a crossover creating tuned bass ports and then having the amp and pre amp gone through for the man cave or my office. my dream console is a 1963-64 fisher ambassador with the louvered shutters since it goes rather well with the mid century/Danish modern theme.

Post# 376000 , Reply# 11   7/27/2017 at 22:16 (424 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        
Picked up some records

I was super EXCITED to find these! I LOVE Kenny Rogers and i just can't wait to play these on my new maggie!

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Post# 376026 , Reply# 12   7/28/2017 at 13:23 (423 days old) by S31463221 (Frenchburg, KY)        
As Promised.......

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I FINALLY got my RCA cleaned up! So far, the record player is working again, and I have a new needle on the way for it; the 8 track just needs a new belt, trying to source one of those currently; but I just can't get that darned FM or FM Stereo band to work! Oh, I also tested the input jacks and it plays beautifully, so I'll soon be ordering a Bluetooth adapter so I can connect my phone to it and stream audio that way!

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Post# 376037 , Reply# 13   7/28/2017 at 15:36 (423 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        

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To find a belt, try The guy who owns the business is Bob Topper and he's very knowledgeable. If anybody can find the proper belt for you, he can. I got a belt kit for a 1978 vintage Pioneer cassette deck from him a year or so ago.


Post# 376082 , Reply# 14   7/29/2017 at 14:48 (422 days old) by Real1shep (Walla Walla, WA)        

If your tuner is out of alignment, it's not a job for the DIYer.....takes instruments. As far as turntable belts, there are a number of very good dealers online that cater to vintage TT's. Be careful of generic belts....meaning belts that are fatter or thinner than the original and also wider. You want the same dimensionality and characteristics of the OE belt. 



Post# 376092 , Reply# 15   7/29/2017 at 18:26 (422 days old) by TheSpiritOf76 (Historic Midtown Wichita Kansas. )        
This Magnovox is NOT

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a belt drive is direct drive.

Post# 376114 , Reply# 16   7/30/2017 at 04:01 (421 days old) by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

Most changer-TTs like Magnavoxes are idler wheel drive-a rubber tired idler wheel rides against the motor shaft-then the other edge of the idler wheel rides on the inside of the TT platter.The rubber tire,motor shaft,inside of the TT platter have to be CLEAN or the rubber tire won't get the proper friction to drive the platter.And if the rubber tire is worn,cracked the wheel will have to be replaced or a new tire put on it.A direct drive TT means the platter is connected directly to the TT motor.Technics was famous for this type of TT.-In fact the platter was PART of the TT motor-the rotor.The stator was in the TT base.

Post# 376121 , Reply# 17   7/30/2017 at 08:20 (421 days old) by kenkart (Mocksville, NC)        
I think

He was talking about the 8 track, not the changer.

Post# 376134 , Reply# 18   7/30/2017 at 11:32 (421 days old) by Real1shep (Walla Walla, WA)        

As was said, that Magnavox changer will NOT be 'direct drive' but a series of idler wheels/tires against a motor shaft. Pioneer and Technics were famous for 'direct drive' TT's. He was talking about the 8 track deck belt(s).



This post was last edited 07/30/2017 at 14:04
Post# 376176 , Reply# 19   7/31/2017 at 02:14 (420 days old) by tolivac (Greenville,NC)        

Yes-old 8 track decks-the belts WILL need replacement-they get streteched and get glazed so they no longer "grip" and turn the players tape capstan.Same problem with bD radio station cart decks.

Post# 376232 , Reply# 20   8/1/2017 at 14:42 (419 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        
Look at this!!

With inflation that's $1800.11!!!!

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Post# 376263 , Reply# 21   8/2/2017 at 07:08 (418 days old) by s31463221 (Frenchburg, KY)        

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I know exactly what you mean! I found an ad for mine as well from 74. It was like $269 or something like that. I ran it through an inflation calculator and in today's money, that would buy you a brand new Aerus Legacy! Mind boggling to say the least! It sort of explains why when you run across these, most of them are in good shape.....they cost so much, the owner took good care of them!

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Post# 376277 , Reply# 22   8/2/2017 at 09:36 (418 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        
My, how times have changed...

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Back in the day, those things weren't just entertainment devices; they were furniture and people cared for them the same as they would a coffee table or a sideboard.

And in 1974, the average new car stickered for around $5,000 and a new Volkswagen Beetle would only run you about half that. People typically financed their cars for three years back then and leasing was unheard of.

Post# 376285 , Reply# 23   8/2/2017 at 13:29 (418 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        
Sad news

Sadly i no longer will be getting the Maggie. The seller started acting very sketchy. However i now will be getting a 63 TUBE model Truetone!

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Post# 376298 , Reply# 24   8/2/2017 at 15:50 (418 days old) by TheSpiritOf76 (Historic Midtown Wichita Kansas. )        

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Was Western Autos brand of equipment. The changer was made by VM The Voice Of Music. Proabably not a bad choice, but the Maggie was defiantly higher end.

Post# 376309 , Reply# 25   8/2/2017 at 20:06 (418 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        

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I think that TruTone is likely a re-badged Admiral. The record changer and tuner look just like the Admiral console my parents had when I was growing up. Dad won it on 'The Price is Right' when he and Mom went to New York for their first anniversary in 1962. I would have liked to have taken it when they moved about 20 years ago but I had no place to put it.

Post# 376310 , Reply# 26   8/2/2017 at 20:08 (418 days old) by S31463221 (Frenchburg, KY)        

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I'm sorry the first stereo didn't work out for you, but that Truetone looks really nice as well! Do you plan to recap it?

Post# 376313 , Reply# 27   8/2/2017 at 20:26 (418 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        

I'm not sure if i will just yet, my local electronics guy said it probably wont be necessary

Post# 376319 , Reply# 28   8/2/2017 at 21:49 (418 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        

I might still be getting the Maggie!!!!!
Stay Tuned

Post# 376345 , Reply# 29   8/3/2017 at 13:23 (417 days old) by Real1shep (Walla Walla, WA)        

You're such a!



Post# 376353 , Reply# 30   8/3/2017 at 17:51 (417 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        
Well she was delivered!!!

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Post# 376358 , Reply# 31   8/3/2017 at 23:40 (417 days old) by human (Pines of Carolina)        

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Glad you got the one you wanted. Are you still getting the TrueTone as well?

Post# 376388 , Reply# 32   8/4/2017 at 12:06 (416 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        

No the guy who was selling it texted me right before he was supposed to deliver it saying it was gone. Luckily I never told this guy no and we quickly made a deal.

Post# 376400 , Reply# 33   8/4/2017 at 16:10 (416 days old) by jimjimmunster (Hammond, Ind.)        

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If it has the sealed aluminum caps, you shouldn't have to recap it. If it has paper caps or black bumblebee caps, you have to recap it. The old paper caps and bumblebees leak DC voltages across the terminals of the capacitor. This can damage a lot of things within the circuit with prolonged use. Any paper capacitors, even if tested to not leak, are still supposed to only last 15 years. If there in there, get them out.

Post# 376405 , Reply# 34   8/4/2017 at 17:11 (416 days old) by DirtDeviler (Joppatowne MD)        

yes thank you, I belive thats why my guy said it won't be necessary as it has all aluminum caps. Right now though the record player is out being rebuilt.

Post# 376418 , Reply# 35   8/4/2017 at 23:32 (416 days old) by Real1shep (Walla Walla, WA)        

Still should check all the caps, diodes and resistors for correct value. It's a lot to assume that everything is OK electronically after 48yrs!


Stuff made in the 80's-90's  definitely not...those were the decades that electrolytic caps leaked and showed up from the 90's on. Even Nakamichi's top decks suffered 'orange cap disease' and still do to this day unless they are all replaced. Some leak, some don't.  I replace all electrolytic caps with mylar or something better, but the same value & tolerance.


You're not dealing with hi-fi there and finicky op-amps. So you don't have to worry about changing the sound. Gonna sound Maggie mellow no matter what you do.





This post was last edited 08/05/2017 at 01:10
Post# 376452 , Reply# 36   8/5/2017 at 20:35 (415 days old) by texaskirbyguy (Plano, TX)        
Great thread!

I have two solid state Magnavox consoles and one Zenith tube model. IF they weren't so big I would have more!

DirtDeviler -
The chassis and changer in yours looks to be the same as mine. Very reliable, but will need some cleaner in the pots and switches though. A cleaning of the TT idler and a new needle may be all you need. Caps are aluminum and none of mine have failed. Does your post lamp (if equipped) on the changer work? If not I have a fix. Keep this thread alive with your progress - I am curious to see how it goes. If any questions, don't hesitate to ask.

S31463221 -
Have you tried contact cleaner on all of the pots and switches, as in the tuner band selector switches? This has fixed many of my units. If it has a built in tape deck, the switches in it may need cleaning, too, epecially the internal record/play switch (if the deck records).

See my units inside and out here...

My mom's old '73 Zenith TV finally crapped out so I am working on that now. It cost my dad over 700 back then - wow!

Post# 376482 , Reply# 37   8/6/2017 at 13:13 (414 days old) by Real1shep (Walla Walla, WA)        

That one under the cukoo clock looks exactly like what we had in the living room. Then dad went with some kinda Sylvania console.  The Sylvania had a decent receiver that could have been pulled out and used elsewhere....I was gonna do that.



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