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Revox B77 or Tandberg TD 20? a question for tapeheads...

Discussion in 'classic' started by madmike, Feb 21, 2018.

  1. madmike

    madmike I feel much better now, I really do...

    I have been looking for some time now to get hold of a nice Revox b77. I want a reel to reel that does 3.75 ips and 7.5ips and is quarter track. Please don't tell me that half tracks are better quality, I know they are but I want to play all my tapes on a nice machine and they are mostly recorded on quarter track machines.
    I currently have an Akai 4000D and A Teac 3340S which is a bit more than I need as it is a four channel jobbie.

    I recently spotted a Tandberg TD20 which rather caught my eye. I do like Tandberg stuff and have a 2075 receiver which would go well with it. My question is how it compares to a B77 ? Or are they both the same really ?
     
  2. essgee

    essgee pfm Member

    Also look out for Ferrograph machines too.
     
  3. Arkless Electronics

    Arkless Electronics Trade: Amp design and repairs.

    Tandberg TD20A probably the best machine with the Revox B77 a close second. There's loads more B77's around than TD20A's though....

    I'm listening to my TR2055 as I type this (FM. Radio 2) as it's the heart of my system in the workshop along with a pair of Mordaunt Short speakers. A long interconnect goes next door to another PC with a 2496 sound card fitted for FLAC files. It is a fantastic piece of kit! It would be nice to have a TD20A to go with your TR2075.... (I have a few of the cassette decks to go with the receiver but don't use cassette really...)

    I'd avoid Ferrograph if I was you... But if you really like them I can sell you one!
     
  4. toprepairman

    toprepairman pfm Member

    I would also avoid the Ferrograph, but would favour the Revox over the Tandberg. I have a B77 and PR99.
     
  5. Barrymagrec

    Barrymagrec pfm Member

    I don`t know the Tandberg but the B77 is a fine machine and has the advantage of being fairly well understood from a spares and fixing point of view.

    I wouldn`t go for a Ferrograph, the valve machines were very rugged but crude and the later transistor machines have a bit of a mixed reputation.
     
  6. Arkless Electronics

    Arkless Electronics Trade: Amp design and repairs.

    The B77 was well established and had an excellent reputation when Tandberg brought out the TD20A and I guess they were aiming to improve on the B77. It is in some ways slightly better I would say but not so there's enough in it to make the Tandberg the "go to" machine. The ReVox has of course the big advantage of there being vast numbers of them out there... I use a PR99 MkIII ("pro" version of B77 with balanced inputs and outputs and digital tape counter etc) myself and also have other machines including a Ferrograph 7 Series (722). The 7 series is basically just as crude as the 6 series on which they are based and "features" the same naff ideas like idler drive and tape pressure pads. Duff rubber from one supplier means many will have become U/S due to the pinch roller and rubber idlers turning to goo...
    In spite of all this, (and general clunkiness, plus incredible weight!) if OK and set up correctly they do perform well. 7 series can't take 10.5" reels but Super 7 and Logic 7 can.
     
  7. madmike

    madmike I feel much better now, I really do...

    I know the series 7 very well Jez, a few years ago now I bought a logic 7 and replaced all the internal rubber parts after cleaning off all the goo... The best bit was that I sent my wife to pick it up, she was in the area on a trip, and she rang me, "I've got your tape recorder, the man says he has an old amp for another £20 if you want it" so I said ok. She brought home a leak stereo 20, and a logic 7.
     
  8. Arkless Electronics

    Arkless Electronics Trade: Amp design and repairs.

    Sweeeettt!! :)
     
  9. rich46

    rich46 quad rules

    hi mike just copied at the same time a top qual. sacd revox logic guess which won
     
  10. John Caswell

    John Caswell pfm Member

    Hi all,
    I have both, and it really six of one and half a dozen of the other. The both have their good and bad points. I bought my TD20A about 45 years ago and it is still in excellent condition, although it was only available in 4 track when bought. I purchased 2 track heads and converted it. The Revox B77MkII I got from Germany about 2 years ago. It is in very good cosmetic condition, the usual Rifa capacitor failures, replaced with new Evox/Rifa equivalents, and am gradually changing various bits and pieces. I really cannot justify both but until the Ladywife kicks off I am keeping both.

    John
     
  11. Robert

    Robert Tapehead

    I bought a B77 about 20 years ago and still have it.
    As a kid back in the early 80s I did work experience at a tiny local recording studio (mostly reggae bands - Easy Street Studios for those who fancy a google) and everything got mixed down onto a B77.
    Of course seeing all this as a teenager was so exciting, and I drooled over owning a B77. So many years later, before the vintage audio craze really took hold and prices when through the roof I landed a very clean B77.
    Rarely used it but it worked just fine. It now sits on display in my audio room but i need to do some work on it. The pinch roller has turned to goo and likely some of the caps are past best. Easy fix when I get the time and inclination.
     
  12. rich46

    rich46 quad rules

    the simple lines of the 77 makes it look upto date . some of the ones from japan are too busy looking .. biggest problem with the 77s is the fragile switches . hoping to replace phono sockets soon , the distance between them doenst allow decent cables
     
  13. al2002

    al2002 pfm Member


    I, too, like Tandberg electronics, sold my 2075 receiver many years ago and still regret it. However, when it comes to tape, Revox made the best consumer open reel machines. Not only do the Revox transports have very low W&F but they are extremely durable. I know two recording engineers who used the ‘77 for location recording. Furthermore, the ‘77 has separate internal adjustments for setting bias and record eq, thus allowing the user to optimise performance with different tapes. BTW, I still have my A77; bought 40 years ago and still going strong.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2018
  14. rich46

    rich46 quad rules

    teac x10 R is v good condition and felly working and reverse play etc fine too could be for sale if you are interested west yorks
     
  15. PigletsDad

    PigletsDad pfm Member

    The Technics RS-1500 is also well respected, and worth a look if a nice one came up.
     
  16. Ali T

    Ali T pfm Member

    I have a TD20A and also an RT909. The Pioneer is a beautiful thing to behold, but the Tandberg is the better sounding machine, capable of truly superb recordings.
     
  17. rich46

    rich46 quad rules

    just picked up a revox a77 /dolby last model ,great condition ,looks like its been in a bubble . cant really tell any difference b77. is any better other than logic .

    just put a musical fidelity x10 v3 with mu-vista output. on the r2r playback sounds alittle more valve like. also seems to have alittle more volume …….now the a77 is powered up ,anyone interested in A TEAC 10X R
     
  18. 337alant

    337alant Negatively Biased

    The Revox PR99 MK1,2,3 are also very nice R2Rs plenty of them around for spare parts and like all revox machine will benefit significantly from a full recap
    I have heard Ali's Tandberg TD20A and can vouch they are excellent sounding machines

    Alan
     
  19. Pine Marten

    Pine Marten pfm Member

    +1 for the A77. I picked up a minter last year, a mk4, in new condition, barely any use, heads showing v low hours, from a guy in Holland. Did a full recap of the usual suspects. Good price too. They are out there if you are willing to wait for the right one to come up. Lots of info and advice on Tapeheads forum, service sheets and manuals if needed available on HiFi Engine website.
     
  20. rich46

    rich46 quad rules

    very please with latest m/c. a77 . surprising using the dolby is good too, never used dolby ever in the past. just picked up the original manual. the condition is so good you would say it must e new condition awaiting matching fm tuner to arrive
     

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