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ELAC Miracord TT -share all about 'em

Discussion in 'Turntables' started by illinoisteve, Aug 30, 2011.

  1. illinoisteve

    illinoisteve Super Member

    Messages:
    3,102
    In a recent thread I started titled "What other TT makes/models do 'Dual idler lovers' recommend?" ELAC Miracord turntables were mentioned slightly more than any other. The Miracord 10 H and Miracord 50 H were specifically mentioned, the latter it was suggested might be a step up from most Duals. One poster said maintenance and service intervals were similar to most Dual idler drives. ( here's a link to that thread : http://www.audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=389282 )

    All of this makes me more curious about Mircacord TTs. I'd like to hear more of what AK members might have to say about them (whether they are Dual owners/fans or not). I looked up a little background about this make online (here's a link to vinylengine's page for them: http://www.vinylengine.com/library/elac.shtml ), but those sort of resources don't really provide much about users' experience with them or personal judgements about how they fit into the spectrum audio history.

    Also, if someone wanted to begin shopping for a first Miracord, what additional background or questions should they have in mind? Are they or parts for them problems in parts of the world where AKers live?
     

     

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  2. HTHMAN

    HTHMAN Super Member

    Messages:
    3,513
    Location:
    St Louis, Missouri, USA
    I had a Dual 1009F that I bought new probably in the late 60's and also bought a new Realistic branded Elac Lab 60 about 10 years later. As far as performance, I found them to be just about equal. The changing mechanism on both worked very well except for the occasional overly thick or thin album that would cause either to either drop 2 records or not drop at all. The motor on the Dual finally burned up but the Elac is still running. Except for periodic lubrication, it has needed no maintenance. The only thing I liked better on the Dual was the cuing. The Dual was viscous dampened and the Elac is not. The Elac has a built in strobe for speed adjustment.

    [​IMG]
     
    Bill Ashton likes this.
  3. Phototone

    Phototone Super Member

    Messages:
    1,845
    Location:
    Van Buren, AR
    I bought a new Mirachord 50H in about 1965 or so, and continue to use it (off and on) today with zero maintenance. It never fails me, and is quite a bit more robust than the dual I have. I can't speak for newer models of Mirachord. I do know that the 50H has a better motor than the average dual. It also completely pulls the idler wheel away from the motor shaft and turntable rim when stopped, so no chance of flat spots. It has removable head shell inserts (so to duals), and a screw adjusted overhang with a point on the base you raise and align the stylus to to get proper alignment, and this adjustment is on the inserts, so you can have several carts in inserts all pre-aligned, all that is required then is rebalancing the counterweight and setting the skating. The 50H has a much heavier turntable than the dual I have (but I don't know the model number just now of the dual), but does not have a fine speed adjustment.
     
  4. Brian

    Brian An Old Geezer

    Messages:
    16,354
    Location:
    Toronto On Canada
    IMHO, the 50HII was the best of the changer designs. While thought the arms were not as good as with the Dual or PE, they worked well with high compliance cartridges, as well as the 1229. The last changer I owned was a 50HII that looked like it had just come out of a sealed box. While I do not miss it as I am not a changer person, I do wish I had not sold it.
     
  5. illinoisteve

    illinoisteve Super Member

    Messages:
    3,102
    Phototone, I know that the Dual 1219 and 1229 move the idler wheel away from the motor pulley. I personally am not absolutely sure that it is completely out of contact with the rim at that point. Of course if the old lube gets sticky the idler might not pull away from the motor pulley, so somebody finding an old one from somebody else's closet could get a flat-spotted idler.

    HTHMAN, that ELAC LAB 60 is pretty, and looks pretty heavy.

    Brian, what is it about the tone arm on the Miracord 50HII that made it not as good as a Dual or PE tonearm. Do you think it was because of ELAC's idea for how to make a changer tonearm? Could you put a short spindle on those and use them for single play, as I do with my Dual 1229?
     
  6. Brian

    Brian An Old Geezer

    Messages:
    16,354
    Location:
    Toronto On Canada
    I'm sorry, I missed a qualifier, "others". Looking at the arm it looks more massive than the big Duals and PE arm and hence they draw a conclusion that it can not track as well with high compliance cartridges. However, like the Garrard Lab 80 arm, looks can be deceiving. There is a short spindle for the table to make it a single play semi-automatic or automatic turntable. Years ago, I was thinking about buying a broken one and gutting the changer mechanism and seeing how far I could take it as I think it has potential as a poor man's Garrard 301 or 401.
     

     

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  7. davidguilbault

    davidguilbault Perusing the Bargain Bins

    Messages:
    1,010
    Location:
    Seattle
    Dual 1219 and Elac 50. I like 'em both.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2011
    EfeTe likes this.
  8. Blast

    Blast I Wanna Rock Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,804
    Location:
    Kansas City area
    A friend of mine's father owned a Benjamin Miracord in the late 60's, early 70's and I was rather taken with its quality. I was about 14 at the time so they were WAY out of MY budget.

    I was always going to get a Miracord... But, distractions came along and it never happened. Got rid of my albums 10 years ago so I doubt that it EVER happens.

    Brian
     
    Rococo likes this.
  9. bangsezmax

    bangsezmax Turntable Whisperer Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,653
    Location:
    Durham, NC
    I like the 50H. Very solid machines, a lot like the Dual 1219/1229, but a touch heavier duty it seems. Nice motors! The one downside that I've notice with it is hum. It's not a grounding thing because messing with the grounding seems to make no difference. It seems to be a shielding thing. Anyone have any experience like that with theirs?
     
  10. Brian

    Brian An Old Geezer

    Messages:
    16,354
    Location:
    Toronto On Canada
    Are you talking of the 50, 50H or 50HII? I've had the 50H and 50HII and never had the problem. The 50 used a different motor and may have had the issue.
     
  11. bangsezmax

    bangsezmax Turntable Whisperer Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,653
    Location:
    Durham, NC
    It's a 50H. It's not an awful hum, but it's there.
     

     

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  12. KentTeffeteller

    KentTeffeteller Gimpus Stereophilus!

    Messages:
    25,950
    Location:
    Athens, TN
    Re: Benjamin. Their full name was Benjamin Electroproducts, Inc. They were the USA importer of ELAC products including our Miracord changers and the ELAC cartridges. Which were made in Kiel, Germany.
     
  13. jhoyt

    jhoyt Incomprehensible space llama

    Messages:
    6,244
    Location:
    Wichita-ish
    I was a big fan of the 50H when I had one. I even used the original conical cartridge, the STS344. It was VERY well built, and I was lucky to pick mine up in near mint condition. I would heartily recommend it as an idler wheel drive TT. No hum issues, either.
     
  14. Brian

    Brian An Old Geezer

    Messages:
    16,354
    Location:
    Toronto On Canada
    Okay, is the hum electrical or mechanical?
     
  15. Blast

    Blast I Wanna Rock Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,804
    Location:
    Kansas City area
    I was going to ask that question. Between the names "Benjamin", "Elec" and "Miracord", I never saw all three of those names on all products.
     
  16. Amcrebelfan

    Amcrebelfan AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,315
    Location:
    Loves Park, IL
    I want one and hope to pickup a 50 h.
     

     

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  17. davidguilbault

    davidguilbault Perusing the Bargain Bins

    Messages:
    1,010
    Location:
    Seattle
    Not to mention "Miracord Custom Made for Realistic."
     
    KentTeffeteller likes this.
  18. bangsezmax

    bangsezmax Turntable Whisperer Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,653
    Location:
    Durham, NC
    It's definitely electrical. Happens even if the table isn't running.

    My hunch is that a previous owner mucked with the connections. It looks like the ground from both L and R are strapped together in two places. Doesn't look right.

    Could any kind 50H owner do me a huge favor and take a photo of the wiring around the RCA jacks? Everything is kinda bunched together, so it should only need one good shot. I would be very appreciative!
     
  19. illinoisteve

    illinoisteve Super Member

    Messages:
    3,102
    It sounds like seeing "Benjamin" on an ELAC Miracord is kind of like seeing "United Audio" on a Dual.
     
    KentTeffeteller likes this.
  20. illinoisteve

    illinoisteve Super Member

    Messages:
    3,102
    It sounds like that hum was just with your unit, not necessarily a problem with other 50Hs, going by other's reports.
     
    rogert likes this.

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