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Adam 05-30-2016 08:30 PM

1961 Zenith console stereo
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Here's the one with the cabinet that matches my new Zenith SC400 TV. It has the separate amplifier/power supply and tuner chassis, push-pull 6BQ5's, 12" woofers, horn tweeters, belt-drive 4-speed record changer, and some kind of crazy built-in reverberation amplifier (the small chassis behind the tuner, and the reverb springs located on the inner left side of the cabinet). Here's the pics...

maxhifi 05-30-2016 08:40 PM

That's a sweet console, hope you get it going!

Eric H 05-30-2016 09:13 PM

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It looks like the one the Baxters had on the Hazel show.
The show was first aired in 61 I think.

zeno 05-31-2016 11:48 AM

Nice stereo.
We had reverbs in our cars. Real cool but if you hit a big
bump BOING !

73 Zeno:smoke:

Adam 06-02-2016 12:37 AM

If anyone is watching the Twilight Zone on metv right now, there's this same model console in it. Maybe it's the same one they used in the Hazel show? The episode is "A World of his Own" in case anyone wants to go look for it.

jsowers 06-02-2016 12:58 PM

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I saw that last night and thought about you. I bet the cat fell off the TV when you screamed "there it is!" :D

This Twilight Zone was first broadcast in July, 1960 and was the last episode of the first season. Hazel didn't start until 1961. Also imdb says this TZ episode was filmed at MGM studios and Wikipedia says Hazel was filmed at Columbia. So it could just be coincidence or some good product placement by Zenith.

I've been watching TZ off and on since I was a kid in college in the late 1970s and I had never seen this episode, so it was nice to see it and the Zenith stereo. I attached a pic I found online showing the Zenith.

DavGoodlin 06-02-2016 03:33 PM

That is probably the TOTL Zenith HiFi that year.
Most Zeniths covered in my 59-66 service manuals (books Im very happy to have :) ) , including two consoles I have, are single-ended 6BQ5. I can only imagine how great that will sound when restored.

The horns and the reverb amp alone make that special model. drh4683 might have a video on such a console

davet753 06-02-2016 08:28 PM

That's a sweet sounding chassis. I just restored one like it (different cabinet style) last year. I re-capped it, replaced an open resistor, and it came to life.

It has terminals to adjust the bias on the outputs (use a VTVM and adjust for zero voltage). Mine wouldn't quite get to zero, and the B+ was running high.....I replaced all 4 output tubes and brought everything back into line.

Those Zenith's are an oddity, with a stereo amp but a mono FM tuner. I think the '62 models came out with a stereo tuner. I have a tablet hooked to the aux input on mine and use it to stream music, so that's in stereo. The tuners in that model may not be stereo, but they do work very well, and have excellent sensitivity.

davet753 06-02-2016 08:33 PM

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Electronic M 06-02-2016 10:34 PM

Davet: it probably has an MPX adapter jack, so it should be a simple matter to snag an outboard tube MPX chassis and hook it up. Even if it don't have a jack you should be able to hook it in right after the detector....

stromberg6 06-03-2016 11:03 AM

The same console could gave been rented from the same Hollywood prop house, and used in all three shows mentioned here. Wondering if the producers of "Hazel" switched to an RCA stereo prop when they started shilling for RCA color TVs in magazine ads, etc.. :scratch2:

davet753 06-03-2016 07:19 PM


Originally Posted by Electronic M (Post 3163919)
Davet: it probably has an MPX adapter jack, so it should be a simple matter to snag an outboard tube MPX chassis and hook it up. Even if it don't have a jack you should be able to hook it in right after the detector....

No jack, I'm sorry to say. I never thought about it, but you're right...I could use an MPX adapter chassis. I have repaired Magnavox stereos with the adapters, but never a Zenith.

Adam 07-26-2016 05:29 PM

I went and recapped this completely (There's nearly as many of those wax&paper caps and electrolytics in this as in most TVs from the same era - if not more because of that separate reverb amp chassis with its own power supply). Additional problems turned out to be the limiter tube with an open filament, and the RCA plug on the wire going to the output of the reverb spring unit was cracked and giving an intermittent connection. And I kept hearing static that turned out to be coming from intermittent connections at those plugs for hooking in external speakers. I have no plans to hook up extra speakers, so I left the plugs in place but just soldered the connections together permanently on the back of the jacks the plugs went in.

This console just blows away any other console I've had, even my other Zenith. And I still haven't changed the crossover capacitors yet or checked the bias on the outputs, so I'm sure it will sound even better. It'd be interesting to compare this, the absolute top-of-the-line tube Zenith, to it's transistor counterpart. My '66 Zenith transistor console does have the push-pull output, but it's not the super heavy duty amp with it's own chassis. And it doesn't have all the cool extras like the reverberator or the 'presence' control.

Extremely sensitive FM tuner, I'm picking up stations I didn't even know were there with just the built-in antenna. But it is kind of odd to have a stereo amp with a mono FM tuner.

I still haven't even tested the record changer yet. I'm looking forward to playing some records with the reverb cranked up.

Adam 07-27-2016 12:48 AM

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Phono plays slow. I'll work on it tomorrow, if I start with it now I'll easily wind up staying up all night.

Adam 07-28-2016 11:51 PM

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So I took it apart and cleaned and lubricated stuff and it turns now - but no sound is coming from it. I'm fairly certain the cartridge is bad. It's missing the 78 needle, and a piece fell out through the hole where the 78 needle goes when I unscrewed it. I have a sams for the tuner and amp, but it doesn't cover the phono, anyone have a part # for the cartridge?

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