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Author Topic: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables  (Read 3671 times)

JGreenslade

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After months of rumours, it appears the news is for real this time. It was in the Independent Newspaper last Saturday, and dealers are limiting sales to 2 per client.

 http://www.tokyoreporter.com/2010/10/28/dead-spin-panasonic- discontinues-technics-analog-turntables/

The questions is, is anyone bothered? The cutting and pressing industry scaled back years ago, to the point where those who are left that are any good at the craft are pretty busy. DJs that use vinyl have been a rare species for quite some time now.

Do you see any ramifications, aside from the passing of an era? There are 3 million of the turntables out there - I guess it's no wonder demand slowed down. I don't buy Panasonic's line about having 'difficulty procuring analogue components' btw (as printed in the Independent). They want to focus on stuff like their cameras and blu-ray players. I'd bet that if they sold the rights / tooling to another firm, there'd be a nice business in it for them. I very, very much doubt it would happen, though - however large the pockets of such a firm.

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Gold

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2010, 08:53:10 am »

JGreenslade wrote on Mon, 22 November 2010 08:15



The questions is, is anyone bothered?


Not really. If they were still doing R&D for turntables it would be a loss. There are plenty of players around and small shops manufacturing them. It's no surprise a large corporation wants to get out of the turntable manufacturing business.
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Paul Gold
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Thomas W. Bethel

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2010, 09:08:31 am »

Lots of turntables to chose from

Here is the low end http://www.amazon.com/b?ie=UTF8&node=3003611

Here is the higher end http://www.crutchfield.com/shopsearch/turntable.html

Here are the ones that you have to NOT be a mastering engineer to http://www.audiofederation.com/catalog/turntables/" target="_blank">afford.http://www.audiofederation.com/catalog/turntables/


Lots of turntables for lots of different price points. I don't think we are going to run out of turntables anytime soon.

The SL1200MK5 is currently over $1000 if you want to purchase one.

http://www.amazon.com/Panasonic-SL-1200MK5-Technics-SL1200MK 5-TurnTable/dp/B0000CE6R3

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AndreasN

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2010, 10:33:08 am »

Quote:

On October 20, the company said that it was winding down production of the Technics SL-1200MK6 analog turntable, the SH-EX1200 analog audio mixer and the RP-DH1200 and RP-DJ1200 stereo headphones due to challenges in the marketplace.


Notice that it's the MK6 going out of production. AFAIK, the working horse MK2 is still going to be produced. It's what everyone use and it's what's going to be missed if they decide to quit production.

As for other turntables being available.. You're missing the point. The rock solid performance, ability to withstand weekly soaking in beer etc is all nice. The big point is that everyone have these exact turntables. It's what people practice on at home and it's what they use on when playing the clubs. It's no fun to play on some other turntable, no matter how good it may be, simply because it's not familiar.

Most digital DJ's around here use a hybrid setup with vinyl records controlling the laptop. The vinyl sales are not what they used to be. The use for turntables for performance is largely unchanged.
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Bonati

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2010, 12:34:10 pm »

Not too much to panic about - so many in circulation already and awesome companies like KAB to keep them going. I've had mine (mk3) for ten years and it's never acted up. Even the most low-brow, beer-barfing DJs can't break these things.
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Josh Bonati
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AndreasN

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2010, 12:54:31 pm »

They do need a touch up every odd year, depending on usage. Have been fixing about 100 players over the last decade and seen quite a lot of different faults. Cables, light bulb and pitch always goes sooner or later. In that order of frequency. Then there's the rough treatment leading to broken tonearms, lost on/off caps, smashed on/off housing, buzzing transformers and every odd year, faults in the electronics. When there's too much wrong they end up as parts bins. It only happens as accidents to normal people. Clubs have so heavy usage that may end up replace them every some year as an alternative to constant repairs of old players.

Many disappear without dying, collecting dust. New DJ's pop more often than old DJ's sell their players. And so on.. I see no reason to expect the demand for new production of these players to vanish. It may decline over the years. It'll still be a long time before the need for new ones disappear altogether.

Have seen some 3's and one 5, the rest have been mk2's. They can ditch the rest as long as they keep up the mk2 production! Very Happy


A funny thing is the regional default in the colour. 1200's (silver) is default in America and 1210 (black) is default over here. Often makes the least common one seem more special where it's not the default.

PS: I love these turntables! One of the best pieces of engineering ever. A joy to repair.
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JGreenslade

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2010, 02:54:12 pm »

The whole deal with the SL1200 range in my mind is the sheer amount of engineering you get per dollar invested. Here in the UK it was around $500 USD for the best part of 30 years. It's hard, if not impossible, to think of any other consumer product which offered the same quality and amount of engineering for the price. The point has never been, as Andreas suggests, that the SL1200 is the greatest deck ever made - it certainly isn't. But the combination of abilities at the price give it a worthy place as a design icon in London's Science Museum.

Guys such as Paul on the sharp end of the vinyl business don't seem too concerned, which is a good thing. Major OEMs getting out of the business could create an opportunity to independent players, I guess.

Andreas - I think you'll find it's the whole Technics range of TTs. To my knowledge, they still made cheap BD decks for some territories. According to this press announcement, in a major newspaper, everything vinyl-related is for the chop: http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/new s/out-of-the-groove-digital-age-silences-dj-turntable-of-cho ice-2139197.html

Justin
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dcollins

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2010, 06:15:04 pm »

AndreasN wrote on Mon, 22 November 2010 09:54


PS: I love these turntables! One of the best pieces of engineering ever. A joy to repair.


I just went through our 1200 and I'd never really looked closely at one before.  The parts quality, engineering and implementation are fantastic.  Great sound, durable as an anvil, and remarkably low rumble/vibration sensitivity.  

No wonder they are loathed by audiophiles.

Gave away the LP-12 the same day.


DC

Ben F

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2010, 07:33:02 pm »

I remember saving my arse off to get my first pair of 1210s and made a promise to never sell them!

Just bought Traktor Pro to use with vinyl and works brilliantly!
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Gold

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2010, 07:43:51 pm »

Personally I think we are at the apex of the "vinyl is cool" craze. I was talking to a friend who said he cut the latest Justin Bieber. That will most certainly not be happening in a couple of years.

I think the regular semi underground stuff will be here for a long time. I'm tooling up for the future.
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Paul Gold
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Andrew Hamilton

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2010, 09:29:46 pm »

I thought it interesting that the Ampex list said (about the Technics SL-1200), that any mortal corporation, who must charge a commensurate price where they have no similar economy of scale (to that of Technics's old market), would not be able to sell a similar product of similar quality.   There may be better turntables.  But not at this price.  


I want it today.  I want it free.  And I want it to be top notch.  

Cool


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Adam Dempsey

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #11 on: November 23, 2010, 01:34:00 am »

AndreasN wrote on Tue, 23 November 2010 02:33

Quote:

On October 20, the company said that it was winding down production of the Technics SL-1200MK6 analog turntable, the SH-EX1200 analog audio mixer and the RP-DH1200 and RP-DJ1200 stereo headphones due to challenges in the marketplace.

Notice that it's the MK6 going out of production. AFAIK, the working horse MK2 is still going to be produced. It's what everyone use and it's what's going to be missed if they decide to quit production.

Unfortunately that's not what's said here:   http://studio-lights.com/blog/technics-discontinued-1200-tur ntable.htm
(Maybe that's just Panasonic Australia).

AndreasN wrote on Tue, 23 November 2010 02:33

As for other turntables being available.. You're missing the point. The rock solid performance, ability to withstand weekly soaking in beer etc is all nice. The big point is that everyone have these exact turntables. It's what people practice on at home and it's what they use on when playing the clubs.


There was a thread recently on references/standards... The SL1200 definitely is one. I've done a few restoration projects from a modified one (featuring half & quarter speed for warped discs).

We've had quite a few vinyl projects this year, 12" and 7"... definitely up from the previous year, although typically limited edition runs.
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AndreasN

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #12 on: November 23, 2010, 11:37:32 am »

dcollins wrote on Tue, 23 November 2010 00:15

No wonder they are loathed by audiophiles.


Cool

Adam Dempsey wrote on Tue, 23 November 2010 07:34

Unfortunately that's not what's said here:    http://studio-lights.com/blog/technics-discontinued-1200-tur ntable.htm
(Maybe that's just Panasonic Australia).


Did a search on the internets and didn't find anything useful. There's a lot of web "news" about this and a constant referal to an alliged press statement. Not a single word about it on any of the Panasonic pages or the Technics DJ page. The irksome thing is that this is supposedly based on a press news posted by Panasonic. They have loads and loads of such news on their webpages. Again, not a single word about Technics or turntables in those news sections.

Such rumours have surfaced every odd year. So far, they have been false. Hope it's the same story this time!
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Randyman...

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #13 on: November 23, 2010, 08:58:27 pm »

Rumor has it that converting 1200 manufacturing to become RoHS compliant would make these non-profitable for Technics/Panasonic.  No profit = dead product...

Just a rumor - like the rest  Cool
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AndreasN

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Re: Panasonic / Technics Discontinues Iconic SL1200 line of turntables
« Reply #14 on: November 24, 2010, 10:30:54 am »

Spoke with dealers and they'are are trying to stockpile. They are told they are lucky to get a few ones and then there'll be no more.

As much as I'd like to be an optimist, it does seem this rumour is having unfortunate substance.

Sad

Hope they keep up the parts supply for a long time!
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