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Thursday, March 13, 2008
R.I.P. $4 Thrift Store Philips 212 Turntable
Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to celebrate the passing on to audio gear heaven of a dear friend, the Philips 212 turntable I paid $4.04 for at the thrift store at least three, possibly five, years ago. I really can't remember.
See, I wasn't looking for another turntable at the time. And the only reason I picked this one up was I had a friend enamored with this particular model at the time. He'd just got burnt on one on eBay, so I thought I'd give him this one. However, he'd already changed his attention to some other make, and I was stuck with the Philips.
Even though it was homely as all hell, with it's chipped and scratched dust cover and missing top part of the head shell, I figured I'd throw a cartridge on there and see what happened.
Well, I actually liked this turntable a lot. It was very easy to use with a great suspension chassis design that held rock sold even in the less than optimal place I was using it (on top of a dresser. And I could open and close drawers while playing records and not have it jump. Nice.)
Eventually I put a better stylus on it, moving up the Grado line. I always appreciated the irony of using a stylus that cost about 30 times more than the turntable, but I actually felt the results were pretty good. I used this deck for tons of needle drops and never had a complaint.
One day, while I was out of town, my upstairs neighbor's bathroom flooded, sending a cascade of water into my room and all over the little Philips. Never had a problem, though the turntable gained a little water damage in the process. I'm pretty sure I've dropped this thing once or twice and still no problems.
Then, not to long ago, it's like the wiring just cut loose. At first, I was missing one channel, then both. Seemed like a short somewhere, but now it's just dead. I almost feel like I should put some effort into finding out what's going on, as this deck is such a survivor, but I just can't justify it.
So, anyway, it's the end of the line for the little Philips 212. $4.04 well spent. If you're looking for a good old school deck for not much scratch (these go for cheap on eBay), I'd highly recommend checking one out.