Harman Kardon RABCO ST-7 TurnTables

4/5 (15 Reviews)


Product Description

BELT DRIVE LINEAR TRACKING


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Reviews 1 - 5 (15 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Sanford a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: January 23, 2013

Bottom Line:   
To put things in perspective, I have owned an HK ST-6 which I hated due to the end of record pick up mechanism, never worked correctly. The ST-7 and ST-8 are optically triggered which is MUCH better. In my table the roller wheel has not turned to goo yet. I believe the rubber wheel turns to goo due to prolonged use due to the weight of the assembly it must move. I think my unit hasn't been used much before I bought it. I have a ST-5 solid aluminum roller that is waiting to be used if need be. I've seen it said that the chassis rings, etc. I have never heard any noises coming out of the chassis so I think that can be attributed to the snob class of audiophiles. I also have an ST-4 which is a dinosaur by comparison to just about anything else but fun to play with nonetheless. I had to replace the motor (600rpm) which squeaked. I found an original motor but it was too gutless to move the platter let alone the roller. I had an HK ST-5 motor (300rpm) so after some experimentation got it to work good. ST-5 motor with pulley on the 45 rpm speed with 2 O-rings is the correct speed. I still need to fix the pick up circuit, I'm hoping it is the relay. Any info would be helpful, service manual, etc. Interesting reading on Rabco, look up Jacob Rabinow, Mr. Rabco. He was quite the inventor, first hard drive, letter sorting machines and it goes on and on. There's a video on you tube.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   Pre 1995



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Phuzzy a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: July 22, 2010

Bottom Line:   
Aaahhh - an infamous reviewer, spawn from the fuzz that grows on ignorance.

But first.. I am obliged to do a brief review.

I LOVE this table, and I have been up to my elbows in it a few times, having the tracking all apart, so I know what it's about.
If you get your hands on one, fix it up! If you don't know how, ship it to me!! I'd love a spare. ;-)
The sound is beyond reproach, and inner grooves will never sound anywhere as good on a pivot tracking arm. Finicky to set up, yes, everyone agrees, but once you get a few rules down, you're having the time of your life.

Our reviewer 'lesCrooge' says that there is no way that you can get zero tracking angle. Well, you obviously know that the arm is connected to a roller, on a cylinder which turns, and the angle of the roller is the angle of the arm, right? All you said depends on that! But you're WRONGO!!! The tracking roller has it's own adjustment, so that when the arm is at 0 degrees, the roller is angled enough to move the arm at the average speed for an LP track. That exact angle is listed in the owners manual, something you would have probably looked at if you had any real experience with the machine and proper documentation at all. It's as close as you'll ever get to zero angle, and it's user adjustable. Easily. No tools needed.

The arm is dragging across a few grooves? On whose? Even at the lead out, when the arm goes off angle after the music runs out, and the groove takes off to the center faster then the tracking, there is NO dragging at pickup. Not on my, leveled, and properly adjusted machine.

And lastly, rumble. Well, the tracking roller is moving, oh, .25 HZ? .5 HZ? I don't know how your system is but I'd LOVE to see a speaker that could reproduce that 'sound'. You're an audiophile? Whatever. NO rumble here.

You had a unit that needed help, and you tossed it out a three story window. Then tried to beat down its reputation. Shame.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   Pre 1995



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by lesCrooge a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: June 19, 2010

Bottom Line:   
I read with interest all the reviews on the h-k SL7 and the Rabco.
I have owned and used this unit on and off for 30 years.
It is all of the things described, except that it is not a piece of junk, from hell, or anywhere else.
Anyone taking a hammer to a piece of high-end hi-fi kit should start with the hammer on his head, first.
One must remember that the hi-fi appreciation society has no exclusion policy for moroons.

I appreciate all the technical help that I shall need when I reassemble the unit soon.
TVM

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   Pre 1995



Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by CinemaDude a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: March 19, 2010

Bottom Line:   
Ahhh....the infamous Rabco, spawn from the depths of hell and designed by the Belsebub himself.

Let's start with the heart of the turntable, the "linear" tone arm. The idea is that the arm will always be parallel to the record groove like the lath that cuts the master. Only trouble is, this design, while it may look like the arm is lined up, it actually must move by the turning tube that it drives it and there in lies the problem. As the arm is every so slightly moved by the record groove, at angle, albeit slight, is created. The mechanical tube in the back now tries to correct the ever growing angle but kicking the end of the arm back into alignment with the record groove. Problem is, the angle a which the needle contacts the record is at zero error possibly only once -- when it needle is first put down in the groove; from that point on it's a mechanical correcting game AND with all the attendent mechanical vibration from it being transfered directly to the arm itself. It is a disaster.

But there is more. The lift mechanism is designed in such a way that anytime the arm is lifted off the record, the needle is DRAGGED ACROSS 3 or 4 GROOVES! This happens because, as I have stated, the arm is always at a slight angle. When the lifting mechanism raises the arm, that angle is corrected by allowing the from end of the arm to move to zero angle and it does that, as I said, by dragging the stylius across a few grooves and leaving a scratch.

I spend hours and days trying to adjust this piece of crap so it wouldn't drag the needle whenever it was lifted, EACH TIME LEAVING A NEW SCRATCH!! At one point I thought I had finally gotten it would lift the arm straight up and out of the groove without moving the stylus from left to right across the grooves. The amount of groove drag depended on at what angle of crorrection the ass-end of the arm was at -- it could be nearly parallel, and in that state, the needle would raise without crossing any other grooves, but MOST of the time, ti could drag over anywhere from 2 to 4 grooves. As luck would have it after all my adjustments, when I would raise the arm, it didn't scratch. But this I found out, was just hit and miss. So I mistakenly assumed because I was able to raise the arm a few times without it dragging, that I had fixed the problem So I put on one of my precious Schefield Direct Mastered LPs on the turntable and listend for awhile -- I ignored the mechaical rumble and focused only on the fact that I had success with the arm lift mechanism. Then I went to raise the arm. SCRATCH across four gooves. I quietly uplugged the unit, carried it my living room window and threw it out -- three stories was enough to fix that piece of garbage for good.

It did not last long enough in my system to find out if that rumble was inherent or anything I could eliminate. My guess would be that it was part and parcel of the design -- that constantly turning tube that moved the arm along trying to keep it parallel to the groove was direct coupled to the arm no wonder there was rumble levels higher than even the cheapest tables I had prior to this one.

TERRIBLE TERRIBLE flawed design that should NEVER have gotten to the stage that it could actually be put into production.

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Used product for:   1 to 3 months

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   Pre 1995



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Whin Oppice a Casual Listener

Date Reviewed: July 9, 2007

Bottom Line:   
Harman/Kardon Rabco ST-& Turntable. Thanks Audio Review for this forum. Your member reviews enlightened me and helped me troubleshoot my problem. The tone arm was not tracking on account of the tracking roller having disintegrated into a jelly bean like blob after sitting in storage for 25 years. I phoned Alpha Tech in St. Louis as mentioned in a member review and they carry all three rubber turntable parts for the ST-7; drive belt, tracking shaft pulley and tracking roller. How do I get to the tracking roller to get it out? I'll need to send it to Alpha Tech so that they can install a new ring. Thanks.
Whin
whineryop@hotmail.com

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Casual Listener

Product model year:   Pre 1995

Price Paid:    $150.00

Purchased At:   from friend (origina




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