Throwdown Records



The Nakamichi LX-5 cassette deck adds the Dolby-C noise-reduction system to the discrete three-head, dual-capstan technology used in a number of the company’s recent models. The separate Crystalloy playback and record heads of the LX-5 have gap widths (the distance between their pole pieces) of 0.6 and 3.5 micrometers (23.6 and 137.8 millionths of an inch), respectively, and have been so miniaturized that both will fit within the center opening of the cassette shell. Both have etched slots at the points where the top and bottom edges of the tape pass across the heads so that any wear will remain even. Additionally, the playback head is fitted with a special tape guide that also pushes the pressure pad of the cassette out of the way in the interest of lowering scrape flutter.

The dual-capstan transport uses capstans and flywheels of slightly different sizes to regulate the pressure of the tape against the heads and to eliminate the possibility that wow-and-flutter would be magnified by having two comparable masses rotating in unison. While the transport controls of the LX-5 are microprocessor-controlled, the usual solenoid operation of the tape gate and brakes has been replaced with the gentler action of a motor and cam, ensuring that shock will not endanger the head alignment. Cassettes are inserted, tape openings downward, into slides on the back of the cassette-well door. The door is removable for routine head cleaning and demagnetization. While the cassette well is illuminated (to show how much tape remains on a side), the viewing angle is rather narrow and precludes reading the label.

Most of the controls of the LX-5 are normally hidden behind a push-to-open panel. The usual transport-operating pushbuttons are immediately accessible, of course, as are source/monitor and record mute switches, along with a two-speed automatic master fader, which permits smooth fade-in and fade-out of predetermined record levels. Behind the panel are knobs and pushbuttons for selecting output level, left-and right-channel record level, timer activation in either record or play mode, the memory rewind/replay options, and Dolby-B or Dolby-C noise-reduction systems. Bias adjustment and equalization controls are also provided to compensate for the requirements of different tape brands, but there are no internal facilities for optimizing the adjustments.

Mint condition, plays like new, INCREDIBLY clean.

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