View Full Version : Did Philips ever make a good turntable?


kdryan
06-19-2011, 03:18 PM
I saw one at Goodwill for $20 and almost picked it up. It looked a little better than average, but not like a great one. Should I go back? :)

Kevin

Bob_in_OKC
06-19-2011, 03:22 PM
Did it look like this?

http://www.vinylengine.com/library/philips/ga-312.shtml

ManFromPorlock
06-19-2011, 03:23 PM
Philips 212 and 312 are very well respected.

voltcontrol
06-19-2011, 03:23 PM
Depends which one it is.
If I find a cheap GA202/212/312 I'll take it because of looks. It performs decently too.
And then there are those models that show current 'stylus force' on a digital read out, pretty nifty feature. A lot of models seem to have those like F7215 777 887 867. But beside that feature.. Not that interesting imho.

And something "historical" like a Philips Mignon is interesting as collectible.

But, they never made a great tt in terms of performance that I know of..

mythless
06-19-2011, 03:27 PM
They made some nice tables, but sometimes I think some of their tonearms (GA-212 for example) looks cheap. I am sure they're nice performers, too bad I could never hear mine. However, the tonearm was almost an exact design to some of the 80s BIC turntables I've seen and those were cheaply made.

Overall, sprung platter, good motor, decent arm = decent performers.

Andyman
06-19-2011, 03:29 PM
Yep

kdryan
06-19-2011, 03:30 PM
Did it look like this?

http://www.vinylengine.com/library/philips/ga-312.shtml

Actually, yes. It had a wooden base, though...

JohnVF
06-19-2011, 03:31 PM
I think your assessment of better than average but not great fits very well. The 312 I had was far from a great turntable, but considering its built quality (or lack of), it sounded much better than I thought it would. It sounded very nice for what it was.

Bob_in_OKC
06-19-2011, 03:35 PM
Actually, yes. It had a wooden base, though...

Then it might be worth a trip back to the store.:yes:

kdryan
06-19-2011, 03:40 PM
Seriously? It's too late today, but maybe tomorrow morning, first thing. Why do you say that?

voltcontrol
06-19-2011, 03:54 PM
For 20 bucks, I'd take a GAxx2. :)

Art K.
06-19-2011, 03:54 PM
We had a 212 which sounded pretty darn good sporting a Stanton cartridge.

audiojones
06-19-2011, 03:58 PM
If it's a 212 or 312 it's worth picking up for sure. They have a very nice suspension and an automatic shutoff at the end (arm pops up and the unit shuts off, no arm return). Some of them have issues with the capacitance touch controls, but still worth looking into.

Andyman
06-19-2011, 04:29 PM
And some of them sport nice cartridges too.
I always check the tables for a cart as many times the cart is the better part of the deal.

kermit z
06-19-2011, 05:12 PM
Yup, pretty nice tables :yes: But for 20 bucks, on a Sunday, its probably gone. If not, grab it:thmbsp:

davidro
06-19-2011, 05:50 PM
I have a 202 that needs a belt (awaiting shipment) and it looks lovely which is why I pulled the trigger:

http://pds22.egloos.com/pds/201106/06/37/f0018137_4deca5df7f437.jpg

As others have said above I expect it to sound decent having nice suspension and all. The bugger bit is the proprietary headshell which can cause you good grief. I'm about to sort that out too with the aid of one generous kickass AKer. Will let you know whether I actually like the sound when I get everything in place.

KentTeffeteller
06-19-2011, 08:18 PM
202, 212, and 312 all very nice performers. No Thorens but more than good. Poor man's Thorens was a common nickname. Even I owned and loved a 212 and was happy with mine.

kdryan
06-19-2011, 08:22 PM
So if you all had to put a price on one in good shape, how much? I'm not planning on flipping it, but hey...

kdryan
06-20-2011, 10:34 AM
Ok, so I went back and got it. It's a 212 and I actually kind of like it. It sounds nice and the little touch sensitive buttons are neat. On ly one of them lights up. Does anyone know if it's supposed to be that way or should all three light up when activated? I like the wood base a lot. The platter and tone arm seem to bounce around in the base a lot, but it doesn't affect playing the thing. I think (Yes, I am a noob) it's to absorb the shock. All in all a good little turntable, IMHO. I may set it aside for my first restoration project, if I get that adventurous. That's a reflection on he cover in the second shot, not scratches or anything.

BTW, the album is 'Picture This' by Huey Lewis and the News... :)

http://i20.photobucket.com/albums/b236/kdryan/Misc/Vntage%20Audio/IMAG0161a.jpg

http://i20.photobucket.com/albums/b236/kdryan/Misc/Vntage%20Audio/IMAG0160a.jpg

http://i20.photobucket.com/albums/b236/kdryan/Misc/Vntage%20Audio/IMAG0162a.jpg

kermit z
06-20-2011, 10:38 AM
All the lights are supposed to light up. That is a common problem with the 212. The 312 had LED bulbs I believe. I love the "Touch" controls.Nice table :)

Rygen
06-20-2011, 10:52 AM
They are supposed to light up on the 212 and folks have done led conversions on them. I got my dad a 212 and he loves it. I have the 312 and I like it alot. I do recall the 312 have LED's and mine work flawlessly.

boreas
06-20-2011, 10:54 AM
You did well. The GA212 is a good table and the cartridge you got with it is very good. If I'm not mistaken, it's an Audio-Technica AT13Ea. That's worth the $20.00 all by itself.

John

kdryan
06-20-2011, 10:59 AM
Cool! Thanks for the info. I'll clean it up this weekend. I see there are some bulbs on eBay; I'm not sure if I'm up to replacing them though...

flavio81
06-20-2011, 11:15 AM
On the 60s and 70s Philips had a R&D department that was second to none. They invented all sorts of things there, including the basis for the Compact Disc.

I always thought that Philips products of that era were perfectly designed, even if they're consumer level.

voltcontrol
06-20-2011, 12:21 PM
Some of those original R&D facilities still exist (some in use, some not) on what is currently called the 'Philips High Tech Campus' in Eindhoven (then called NatLab), but that aside, cool that you got it dkryan!

Andyman
06-20-2011, 01:18 PM
And some of them sport nice cartridges too.
I always check the tables for a cart as many times the cart is the better part of the deal.

You did well. The GA212 is a good table and the cartridge you got with it is very good. If I'm not mistaken, it's an Audio-Technica AT13Ea. That's worth the $20.00 all by itself.

John


There you go :thmbsp:

FWIW, I've got about 5 or so of these out in the garage in various stages of repair. Usual failures are the lights, the on/off switch and the cueing mechanicals can go wacky too.
I ran one for a couple years as my main table and thought it was fine; the only reason it went is because I scored a Thorens TD-160and a Dual 1229. in fact, the question of which to keep may have been my 1st post here :yes: and

Sandy G
06-20-2011, 01:31 PM
My Objet D'Lust of TTs is one of them uber-sexay Empires w/the wood base & top, but I had a 312 & would NOT be upset to have another...

kdryan
06-20-2011, 05:07 PM
Well, if anyone else wants one...

http://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=8079729

pmsummer
06-22-2011, 05:14 PM
Well, if anyone else wants one...

http://www.shopgoodwill.com/viewItem.asp?ItemID=8079729

:no: Not that one.

Congrats on the 212 though. Excellent deck.

davidro
06-22-2011, 06:05 PM
I got my 202 finally spinning. Some minor issues that I need to think about but it's spinning right, and it sounds superb with M97xE now.

j free
02-17-2014, 07:59 PM
To resurrect somewhat. I just acquired my dad's old GA202. He's had it since new, used to work for Philips in the research lab. It has a Norelco 412 cartridge on it. I assume that's a Shure M97xE you're talking about. Is that a direct fit or mods required? Good results?
cheers

ConradH
02-17-2014, 08:20 PM
If I remember correctly, the touch switch bulbs on the 212 are actually part of the circuit and they have to work for the circuit to work correctly. IMO, it's a very decent turntable. Not the equal of many of the higher priced Japanese and other tables that came later, but it was great for the money. Years ago I think I replaced my AR XA with a 212 and considered it an upgrade, but today one might argue either way.

vintagefanbe
03-02-2014, 08:35 PM
Don't ever believe in brands : just try it out yourself. Your ears are your best guide. Even the best turntable sounds awfull with the wrong element.

Tcomisky
04-06-2014, 12:51 PM
I haven't had a chance to check it out yet, but I just picked up this Phillips 212 at a flea market for $25 bucks! I was a little concerned about the "bouncing around" of the platter and tone arm as another posted said, and I'm releaved to hear it is the way they were made. No cartridge though :(

Anyone know what the best cartridge and stylii would be for this table? Willing to pay $100-$150 if it would make it sound awesome.

Got a lot of cleaning to do first. Plastic is actually in great shape, a lot of dust, but I'd rather have that than swirls from cleaning with paper towels.

mhardy6647
04-06-2014, 12:56 PM
Grados work well in the GA212/GA312.

Brians238
04-06-2014, 01:57 PM
Nice deal! Why can't I ever find anything like this :)

Ohighway
04-06-2014, 02:35 PM
What's the general consensus on the 222 ?

AMPHEAD
04-06-2014, 02:54 PM
I had a Philips GA212 back in the day ( 1975 ) with a Stanton 681EEE mounted on it. Sounded pretty darn good. Like most Philips products, the engineering is good, build quality decent, but the materials are pretty cheap. It's suspension is pretty active so sturdy placement is a must. The tonearm, although it looks light and flimsy, has decent performance. It allowed the 681EEE to track very well.

mhardy6647
04-06-2014, 03:03 PM
The GA-222 was the top of the line in the mid 1970s before the AF-777/867/877 (and, ultimately 887... and beyond) lineup came along.
It's a pretty nice but seldom seen piece.

https://farm3.staticflickr.com/2847/13675854655_cf3ebdd69e_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/mQuk8v)
https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7334/13675895673_ca70639272_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/mQuxjH)

Ohighway
04-06-2014, 04:18 PM
Picked this one up a couple years ago. Had not seen one before that, nor any time since I picked this one up... Seems nice enough.

http://www.audiokarma.org/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=339597&d=1333061599

mythless
04-06-2014, 05:46 PM
I haven't had a chance to check it out yet, but I just picked up this Phillips 212 at a flea market for $25 bucks! I was a little concerned about the "bouncing around" of the platter and tone arm as another posted said, and I'm releaved to hear it is the way they were made. No cartridge though :(

Anyone know what the best cartridge and stylii would be for this table? Willing to pay $100-$150 if it would make it sound awesome.

Got a lot of cleaning to do first. Plastic is actually in great shape, a lot of dust, but I'd rather have that than swirls from cleaning with paper towels.

If you haven't already, make sure it has the cartridge sled/carrier.

janikphoto
04-06-2014, 07:04 PM
Grados work well in the GA212/GA312.

I was about to suggest the Grado line, as well.