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My new pride and joy...

Discussion in 'Vintage Analog Gear' started by JesterMasque, Dec 18, 2009.

  1. JesterMasque

    JesterMasque Active Member

    Hey guys! So the other day I sold my M-Audio Profire for $400 and turned right around and bought myself an Otari MX5050 MKIV-2 for $380. It came with the rack and is fully operational. I tested all of the I/O's, pots, functionality of the play, stop, etc. The capstan still seems to be in good working order and still has some resllience left to it. The only thing I hear is that it takes the motor a second or two to get up to full speed on 15ips.

    Cosmetically it looks great. No knobs or anything missing. I do want to find at least one 1/4" Otari reel though. That would be pretty cool to have. I'm going to take the machine to my friend who works down at Electrical Audio Studios here in Chicago and have him look at everything in depth. I am really excited to get this thing. I think it will be a great learning experience for me to learn about all of it's functions and technical upkeep.

    What do you guys think? I'll post some pics very soon, I promise =)
     
  2. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    It will be a great experience as long as it starts out in fairly good condition. Make sure that you work WITH your friend on this machine. When you use it as your recorder you have to clean and align the heads before every session (ideally). There is quite a bit of other daily and monthly maintenance that will need to be learned. If you're up for it, and it is in good shape, you will love it. Stay tuned, Remy will notice this sooner or later and chime in.
     
  3. JesterMasque

    JesterMasque Active Member

    I'm looking forward to her input! And I'm way too eager to learn about. I just downloaded the manual, although it's for a B-2, not an MKIV, but they are identical in function and features. I'm surprised to see a preventative maintenance section! You NEVER see things like that anymore =)

    Oh, if anyone has any info on how to read the serial number I'd like to know the origin and year of my machine. Thanks!!
     
  4. JesterMasque

    JesterMasque Active Member

    Well, I just found a bad problem.. The right tension arm seems to be shaving off mils of my tape whenever I FF or RW. Also, the safety switch doesn't always engage, which isn't a big deal as long as I keep an eye on my machine. But the other thing... It's going to ruin my tape, yeah? Can I just file down the guide edges of the arm so that they aren't so sharp?
     
  5. Thomas W. Bethel

    Thomas W. Bethel Well-Known Member

    Filing the guides is NOT RECOMMENDED. There are still parts for these machines available from OTARI and on EBAY. Some times all that is happening is some tape oxide has gotten wedged in the guide and simple cleaning will get rid of the oxide. Use lighter fluid and a Q-Tip. If that doesn't work use some Acetone but be careful of getting it on the plastic top plate. Best of luck. There is an OTARI users group on line. You may want to check it out. otari_equipment@yahoogroups.com
     
  6. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    Before you get all fired up thinking you just got a cheap dream purchase, your going to quicky find that you will end spending much more than the $380 as time goes by.

    That's a true work horse machine though.
     
  7. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Well-Known Member

    5050's were definitely tough birds, broadcast workhorses during the 80's. You WILL need to learn to keep it C L E A N (as others have said). It is definitely worth the effort to take proper care of it, using Otari replacement parts whenever possible. I used to have (4) 5050s that I used in VO production in the late 80's. The ONLY time I ever had a problem was when some hack represented himself as an "expert" on Otari machines "aligned" mine incorrectly. I had to ship them out of town to get that fiasco fixed. Other than that, they were great.
     
  8. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    You mean pinch roller. The capstan is the steel shaft that drives the tape. The pinch roller holds the tape against the capstan.

    bouldersoundguy.com
     

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