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Sony TC-230

Stereo Tapecorder (1971)

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Sony TC-230


The Sony Model 230/230 W features a complete stereo music control center with integrated lid speakers as the TC-230, or with the Sony accessory Speaker System SS-23 as the TC-230W.

This compact, but incredibly powerful stereo music control center consists of an amplifier utilizing quality Sony silicon transistors, a precision 4-track stereo tape deck and high performance speaker systems.

Features include three pairs of stereo inputs; tuner, phonograph and microphone that correspond to the settings of the source selector on the front panel, a noise suppressor which removes undesired high-frequency noise, and line outputs and stereo headphone jack are provided for flexibility.

The horizontal styled 4-track stereo tape deck has three speeds, automatic sentinel shut-off switch and retractable pinch roller for easy tape threading.

Model 230 is mounted in handsome carrying case for portability and equipped with lid speakers.

Model 230W is mounted in walnut finish base.


Track system: 4-track, 2-channel, stereo/monaural system

Heads: 1 x record/playback, 1 x erase

Reel size: up to 7 inch reel

Tape speeds: 1 78  3 34  7 12 ips

Wow and flutter: 0.1% (7 12 ips)

Frequency response: 30Hz to 18kHz (7 12 ips)

Total harmonic distortion: 3%

Input: 44mV (line), 0.14mV (mic)

Output: 1.1V (line)

Output power: 20 watts

Semiconductors: 24 x transistors, 4 x diodes

Dimensions: 17 x 9-5/8 x 14 inches

Weight: 39lbs


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Reviewed Nov 07th, 2019 by madhatton

I'm not a very developed audiophile, but I have been using this unit to digitize reel-to-reel tapes in the archive that I work in.

The sound is clear, the speed is consistent, and the options are very nice to have, from a left/right mono switch to a left/right balance knob integrated into the main volume knob- also, if you're really into vintage tech, the fact that this can be used as a stereo receiver is nifty- it even has its own power outlet, and the built-in speakers sound surprisingly decent. If you have speed issues, it will likely be due to stiff rollers inside the machine, since everything is driven by a stepped drive shaft. For me, lubricating them fixed the issue.

I have not tested the recording functions of this device.

Finally, the mechanical pieces of the unit, which can be accessed by taking the faceplate off, are very accessible and easy to work on. Fair warning, if you buy one of these and it's been sitting, you will likely have to lubricate every single mechanism inside. The transport was seized, the pinch roller was somewhat stiff, as well as all the idler wheels inside the machine. Otherwise, I would buy this again.



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