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Thread: Sony TTS-8000 Turntable

  1. #11
    Join Date: May 2008

    Location: A Strangely Isolated Place in Suffolk with far away trains passing by...

    Posts: 14,560
    I'm David.


    Obviously one or two must have been sold in the UK, like the 8750, but I seriously don't think it was many more than that, as it came along just at 'the time' when springy belt drives began to rule. Maybe one or two of the larger Sony centres around then had them on display? Certainly Ipswich where you got it from is NOT latterly a HiFi haven for this type of gear and the Linn/Naim/Rega dealer just down the road from me used to tell me his business was almost all out of county...


    P.S. Over the decades, I remember that Sony and other larger Jap companies like Panasonic/Technics have had some real shit amongst the prize products like this one. To stock the brand though, you had to commit to a sizeable chunk of it and this was a problem for UK specialist audio dealers, who didn't want the price-conscious stack systems and (often) tat at the bottom of their range. The smaller dealers able to sell the cheap stuff didn't know what to do about the top level products, although one or two customers may have got to hear about these and ordered blind. The Technics SP10 was different I gather, as many pro broadcast organisations like the BBC bought loads in the UK I gather from friends in the broadcast side at this time.
    Tear down these walls; Cut the ties that held me
    Crying out at the top of my voice; Tell me now if you can hear me

  2. #12
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 10,008
    I'm Oliver.


    Here you go Dave, from the VIntage Knob

    The*TTS-8000*is an*LP*drive sold as such or with several Sony bases.
    As for quite a few high-end Sony audio components, however, "sold" is a sizeable overstatement : it was*not*exported, was advertised for*very little*and got relegated to the catalogs' back pages*very quickly.

    The only local Sony to have imported the*TTS-8000*was that of the*UK*: a country where Sony never was neither strong sales-wise, nor particularily "respected". I guess several top executives there badly wanted one.

    Even more surprising is the fact the*Sony SDL*did*not*import any, despite the fact that Germany always was Sony's strongest european market where oodles of*TTS-3000, TTS-2500 and*TTS-4000*were sold. Obviously the work of one german marketing genius who thought he knew better - and missed many easy sales.

    The*TTS-8000*was quite obviously somewhat overshadowed by the*PS-X9*masterpiece but despite appearances managed to sell rather well even if only in Japan.
    One can wonder why Sony picked a consumer tag (PS-X) for its professional deck and a professional tag for this last "audiophile & consumer" deck (TTS) - typical Sony ;-)

    The Drive
    Technically,*TTS-8000*was partly derived from the*PS-8750*but as it uses a different motor/rotor and a more streamlined electronic design, all that came strictly untouched from the*PS-8750*is... the platter !
    The overall engineering theory and*X'Tal Locksystem are the same, though :*barium-ferritemagnetic strip on the platter, two*8-pole*reading heads,*brush-less & slot-less*DC*Servo*motor with multiple dividing circuits and phase comparators.

    The important*neon stroboscope*is commanded by the 3.932.160Hz*X'Tal oscillator through a divider and its own rectified and regulated power supply straight off the transformer.

    The Platter
    The platter is damped with a yellow-ish compound on its underside (like that of the*PS-X9) which can be found elsewhere in the multi-ribbed and round*SBMC*chassis.
    The big transformer is suspended on 3 springs with fairly elastic rubbery surrounds and the bottom cover is damped with something that looks like bitumen - needless to say, none of this rings or resonates.

    As in all 1974-1982 Sony turntables, the magnetic imprint on the outside rim of the platter must remained intact : the X-Tal lock system will otherwise not function anymore and speed locking will become erratic. And unrepairable.

    The first production batches, up to about s/n #201400, sported either*clear strobe dots*on a painted black background or the opposite scheme (black dots on a clear/natural aluminium background) with a predominance of the former. All later ones were delivered with the latter version, which was a way back to the PS-8750's original design.

    The Functions
    The controls under the flap are*pitch controls*for each speed, the speed selector and the*X-Talswitch which disables the former.
    The stroboscope, feather-touch start/stop and power-on button are on top ; in between are three red*LEDs which indicate which speed is selected and if the X-Tal lock is active.
    Two primary speed adjustment pots are located under the drive and they must be set with the X-Tal lock turned*off.

    The Mat
    The*OL-2K*mat was very special and*quiteeffective : it contains a micron-thick plastic "skin" itself containing a very thick*oil.
    The problem that may arise with prolonged use is that the oil ends up concentrated at the periphery of the plastic skin, thus making the mat not flat.

    Due to this, many*OL-2K*mats have had their exterior plastic holder disformed by that prolonged concentration... Maybe some heat treatment can return them to flat status ?
    But without that, this*OL-2K*is the best and most neutral mat made, short of the AT600 Audio Technic ceramic powder 600g. mat/slab.

    The drive itself can however handle heavy platter mats like Micro CU-180 or SAECs, plus a heavy record clamp : the*TTS-8000*is a driving*drive.

    The Base(s)
    Besides marketing, this is where Sony was, as ever, Sony : there were*seven*different bases made for the*TTS-8000*!
    Two were the official ones, three were pre-production samples and two were sold but never shown or advertised. And, whatever the base, in chaotic Sony tradition, a TTS-8000 in TB-2000 or TB-1000 base was*not*named*PSE-8000 : it remained a*TTS.

    TB-1000*and*TB-2000, the official ones, are based on that of the*PS-6750*: a massive*SBMCpiece (Sony*Bulk*Mold*Compound) is placed on a supplementary slab of compressed wood particles, the interface between the two being four enormous rubbery cushions with a guide so as to keep the two pieces perfectly aligned.

    The maximum effective length of any tonearm on the*TB-2000*is however set at*27,3cm*- an SME3012 will not fit.

    These official bases did have tiny stickers with serial numbers but the latter often were lost (my own has #140) and a TTS-8000 in its TB-2000 base makes for a hefty*40kg*! The TB-2000 is a*very*rare item as only about 150 were made.
    Dustcovers for it are of the unhinged type, obviously hand-made & hand-glued, and have to be removed*entirely*to play a record. When on, they rest on four rubbery dots set in the base itself.

    The three "unofficial" ones all had a (beautiful) "TTS-8000 cabinet SAMPLE" orange front sticker and kept the dual-base system... with a twist : there is no SBMC but only*wood, matte for the bottom part and shiny for the top ! Beautiful cradle-like shape but the big "I am a pro" handles weren't really worthwhile a visual addition.
    Variations between the three versions are of size and single- or dual-tonearm but none have a dustcover (hinged or not) ; all were in fact pre-production items before the TB-1000/2000 design was chosen... and the SBMC molds ready.

    The remaining two are the smallest bases at 12 kg : SBMC only, no wood sub-base, single-tonearm only, hinged dustcover, "Resinamic Sound" back badge, and available in shiny black or dark matte grey (JP) and lighter matter grey (UK). At least one was also in made in matte black (JP).

    The Armbases
    Apparently not available separately from any of the bases, they are made of SBMC with an aluminium top and are fastened with three (too) basic screws ; they generally weigh 1,5kg*each and are generally 1,2cm*thick.
    They sometimes have a silkscreened centimeter graduation (or not) and were sometimes pre-drilled for SMEs (or not) or with a wide oval/rectangular hole of varying size (or not).

    As a recent experience proved, they are not necessarily interchangeable : some have straight edges (fittng*some*of the bases), some have evased edges (fitting the*other*bases) and overall height isn't always consistent...
    None of this is documented anywhere and this tends to prove the off-center manufacturing of the bases, ie.: not at Sony but by a (small) sub-contractor. And with a clearly wandering product planning !

    Sound-wise the*TTS-8000*is rock solid and very clean from top to bottom : where the*PS-X9*is a tank ŗ la EMT, the*8000*is more subtle and "musical", fluid, laid-back while still clearly being a direct-drive.
    As silly as this may sound, the*8000*is like the best of both belt-drive and direct-drive slants.

    I believe the total production run to have been of*3000*units so they are not rare... but they are.

    As new evidence suggests, about sixty were imported in the*UK, some of which*may*have found their way to the*BBC*broadcasting studios.

    Sent from my VKY-L09 using Tapatalk
    Analogue: Technics SP10 MK2 > Phonomac AT-1010 MK6 tonearm > Ortofon Kontrapunkt b > SIMaudio Moon LP5.3RS
    Digital: Orchard Audio PecanPi with JRiver
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    Price List For SPOTFIRE Cables here:https://bit.ly/2Uxiv3j

    Alternative reading: http://www.audioaddictsforum.com

  3. #13
    Join Date: Nov 2011

    Location: Seaton, Devon, UK

    Posts: 3,083
    I'm Adrian.


    That looks like a rather nice TT, sounds like a good buy.
    Listening is the act of aural discrimination and dissemination of sound, and accepting you get it wrong sometimes

    Pro-Ject Signature 10 TT & arm, Benz Micro LP-S & Michel Cusis MC cartridge, Furutech AG-12-R4 High Performance Phono Cable, LFD MMC special phono stage, Rothwell MCX SUT, RaspberryPi/HifiBerry Digi to Beresford Caiman SEG DAC, Sony 3d blu-Ray for CDs to Caiman SEG, ALLNIC T1500 MKII SET 300B amp, Tannoy Legacy Arden speakers and JBL L100 Century's , Chord Epic speaker leads, & signature links, the Eccose Conductor CA1 cd to pre, I think I am at audio nirvana, but donít tell anyone

  4. #14
    Join Date: Jul 2009

    Location: Hampshire, UK

    Posts: 2,839
    I'm Buriedunderaloadofturntables.


    Glad you went for it - nice one Jamie!

    In addition, just a small point with regard to the text on the Vintage Knob - Axel is a little off here:

    Quote Originally Posted by Bigman80 View Post
    The*TTS-8000*was quite obviously somewhat overshadowed by the*PS-X9*masterpiece but despite appearances managed to sell rather well even if only in Japan.
    One can wonder why Sony picked a consumer tag (PS-X) for its professional deck and a professional tag for this last "audiophile & consumer" deck (TTS) - typical Sony ;-)
    The actual difference between the two model nomenclatures is the Sony used 'TTS' to denote a turntable unit that required mounting into a base - it has nothing to do with consumer versus professional, or indeed cost. Some of the most basic Sony-made decks that they used in their music centres have 'TTS' model numbers.

    'PS-X', in contrast, denoted a complete turntable system of motor unit, plinth and arm.

    As Dave says, it is strange that the UK was a defined market for the TTS-8000 given the prevailing preferences of the time for bouncy wooden boxes with rubber bands. Quite a few found their way over here, though - the one I used to own was a 240V model, as is the one David Price has.

  5. #15
    Join Date: Sep 2014

    Location: brighton uk.

    Posts: 4,429
    I'm jamie.


    cheers adam,im glad i went for it,so thats 3 that we know of then
    do you know a source for the user manual? the service manual is everywhere but not the former.
    also what bearing is used? is it oil-lite type or does it need oiling ?
    Last edited by karma67; 15-09-2018 at 18:07.
    My System
    John Wood KT88 Amp.
    Paradise Phono Stage
    Sony TTS-8000 Turntable.
    PMAT-1010 MK6 Tonearm.
    Ortofon KB with vienna upgrade
    Sony X555ES Cd Player
    Yamaha NS1000m Speakers
    KARMA Interconnects & Tonearm Cable

  6. #16
    Join Date: Jul 2009

    Location: Hampshire, UK

    Posts: 2,839
    I'm Buriedunderaloadofturntables.


    No, sadly, I never found a user manual either.

    Bearing shouldn't need oiling. If it's spinning sweetly, you can leave it alone.

  7. #17
    Join Date: Mar 2016

    Location: Brighton, UK.

    Posts: 1,082
    I'm Mike.


    Looks great, such amazing thought gone into the design. Be interesting to hear your opinion on how it sounds.
    Current system. NAS Interspace, Jelco 750, /Nagaoka MP 200/Graham Slee Era V. CDP - Mission PCM 7000. Amps - Quad 909/306/Croft micro 25. Chario Syntar 100 Tower. QED XT40 speaker cable/Straight wire interconnects.

  8. #18
    Join Date: Oct 2011

    Location: Glasgow

    Posts: 960
    I'm Paul.


    Quote Originally Posted by jamie123 View Post
    so thats 3 that we know of then
    Nice example Jamie. I'm sure you'll be pleased with it. I presume the 3 you know of are Geoff's, Adam's and yours. Make it 4. I've got one too

  9. #19
    Join Date: Apr 2011

    Location: London

    Posts: 3,719
    I'm Robert.


    Quote Originally Posted by hermit View Post
    Nice example Jamie. I'm sure you'll be pleased with it. I presume the 3 you know of are Geoff's, Adam's and yours. Make it 4. I've got one too
    Come on then Paul, tell us about it....
    My System:
    Amplification - Sansui AU-alpha 707 DR
    Turntable - Technics SP10 MK2, Technics EPA-250 Tonearm, Ortofon Cadenza Black moving coil cartridge with Fritz Gyger S re-tip, Panzerholz plinth,
    CDP - Pioneer PD-91
    Speakers - Spendor D7 on Soundcare SuperSpikes
    QED Silver Spiral speaker cable - airloc banana plugs
    Mains - Ultra Pure silver plated un-switched socket, Missing link EPS 500 silver plated plugs with Hi-Fi Tuning gold plated silver ceramic 13 amp fuses

  10. #20
    Join Date: Oct 2011

    Location: Glasgow

    Posts: 960
    I'm Paul.


    Quote Originally Posted by RobbieGong View Post
    Come on then Paul, tell us about it....
    Mine is also a UK 240v model. Actually, I've nearly finished a project with the deck. When it's done I will pop some pics in my Gallery thread. Hoping that will be tomorrow! I've been using it up until now with an SME 310 and a Kiseki Purpleheart NOS.

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