Sunday, September 18, 2011

Vintage Home Stereo Spring Reverbs

For your synthesizer/recording setup.


JVC Nivico Eca-101e (supposedly a re-badge of the Pioneer 101)

Pioneer SR-101 (true stereo, two short spring tanks)

Current pricing on both: $40-150.00


Pioneer SR-202 (stereo summing and input/output but only one spring tank).

Current pricing: $20+

These sound good, the spring is very small, 4" or 5" or so.

Found an example of the 202:

Bucket Brigade

If you're into that simulating reverb, should be fun to mod!
Don't know if it's a dual delay or a single BBD IC with stereo outs.

Pioneer SR-303

Current pricing: $30+

There are also Sansui springs and later Pioneer models (such as the 60) but I have not researched them and can't tell you anything about them. Some sellers on eBay are asking up to $400.00 for some of these and similar. Bwahahaha!

Although lacking in variable damping, no 17" tanks, or other amenities as found on say an Agonizer or the Modcan, here is your source for a DIY spring reverb module. Or two. Add switchable pre- or post- EQ...
I have an SR-101, and it's pretty quiet, but twangy.
DVD player straight into the SR-101- a little level imbalance and more noise than when I used it with the Selector. The source music is Drexciya.Obviously this unit must be modded to allow for wet signal out only:

Oh, and an interesting note found online:
"As a reverberation amplifier, it serves its purpose very well. But for those who just want to add a little "valve" sound to their system, it also works as a tube buffer stage. Turn the "Reverb Time" down all the way (removing the reverb tanks from the mix), and you have a nice cheap way to add a little tube warmth to your system for a pittance. The signal still passes through the tubes and it works out very well."
Davemoog wrote about the 101:
"The pioneer does funny things with the channels. They cross: Right drives left springs and v.v., So right reverb gets mixed with left dry, etc. so if you plug into the right you have to listen to the left out to hear the wet reverb signal. This works OK in stereo but odd with a mono input. It's easy if you wish to simply want L -> L, R->R to rewire the signals going/coming to the tanks."