Zenith X960 Console Stereo

Discussion in 'Solid State' started by Retrostyle, Nov 13, 2012.

  1. Retrostyle

    Retrostyle New Member

    Just finished repairing. It’s a Zenith X960 with a 24XT 24 chassis. The turntable number is 169-292. Turntable speed selector was frozen so I removed all the old grease and re-greased it. Cleaned the finish, re-lamped tuner, turntable compartment and power indicator light and cleaned cabinet interior. LP storage mounting lugs were snapped off but were all in the bottom of the cabinet so I glued them back on like new using ABS glue. It all works great and we’re enjoying it immensely.

    Got this from an 86 year old gentleman that bought it new but over the years he lost the Operating Guide so I’m searching for one. I think this was made in 1966 or 1967 but if someone knows for sure, I’d appreciate any information.



  2. polypetalous

    polypetalous Active Member

    Oh my, the cabinet is beautiful!
    Got some great lines to it!

    Bet the Herb Alpert came with it too...

    I have a no where near as nice magnavox console from '76.
    I love em'
  3. slow_jazz

    slow_jazz AK Subscriber Subscriber

    What a beauty.... Congrat's....
  4. mwelna

    mwelna Active Member

    Excellent work. I have a 960 as well. Beautiful pieces and sound real nice too. The X, Y, or Z stand for the model year but i can't remember which........

    If you do some searches you'll find the thread. I think it was in an antique radio forum / site. I'll do some looking as well.

  5. KentTeffeteller

    KentTeffeteller Gimpus Stereophilus!

    TOTL Zenith. Belt drive changer, Zenith made. The first such changer. Which denotes top of the line. USA made. High end for a console. What more do you need. Cost $900 upwards in 1965 money. Sounds excellent, reliable, well made. Worth love. Enjoy and respect.
  6. mwelna

    mwelna Active Member

    I think Z is 69 which would make yours a 67 as you suspect. The legs on mine are different. I think mine is a Z. Nice.!
  7. mwelna

    mwelna Active Member

  8. mwelna

    mwelna Active Member

    Here are some lousy pictures of my 69, also picked up from the original owner!!!! you can see the legs are different as is the layout inside.

    Attached Files:

  9. mrr1

    mrr1 Just Analog

    Gorgeous. Lamp is the perfect compliment.
  10. Retrostyle

    Retrostyle New Member

    Yours is beautiful. Just a bit different set up but the same basic design it looks like. I like the louvers on them. I think it’s a great mid century modern look. Thank you very much for the links!
  11. Retrostyle

    Retrostyle New Member

    Thank you. The lamp is a kind of a rare Heywood Wakefield. I think it was made in the early ‘50s.
  12. Retrostyle

    Retrostyle New Member

    Ha, ha! Herb’s album was with me before I got the Zenith but he fits in just perfect and still sounds great.
  13. Retrostyle

    Retrostyle New Member

    Thanks! To me it was worth the effort. I think it might go another forty years. More than I can say for me.
  14. Gang-Twanger

    Gang-Twanger Resident Wharfedaliophool Subscriber

    Those fins on the OP's console (in front of each speaker).... Are those adjustable, so as to sort of aim the sound where you want? Just curious (and not sure if it would even work, at least with stereo recordings).

    Is the OP's a solid-state model? Hybrid?
  15. cornwallguy

    cornwallguy Active Member

    Very nice man ! congrats, the top of the line consoles were a real value !
    and to this day sound g r e a t !
  16. mwelna

    mwelna Active Member

    Yes, the louvers are adjustable. More of a design exercise than anything else i think but super cool. In another post about these pieces someone suggested that the louvers were "gimmicky" and the OP was incensed maintaining the the were very useful in directing the sound.

    The unit is solid state.

    The 960 is one of the most sought after solid state consoles due mostly i think to their gorgeous mid century cabinet but i've also heard it said that they are also one of, if not the best sounding consoles made.

  17. HomeBody

    HomeBody Passion not Critisism

    The Whipped Cream LP is an excellent touch!!!! Top Notch Zenith.
    I need my bib now.
  18. Radicool

    Radicool New Member

    I seem to have the same (or similar) model console, fresh off a Craigslist posting.

    Here are some pics.

    As it stands now, here's what I've accomplished:
    • Cleaned exterior dust, but refinishing the scuffed top is likely necessary in the future.
    • I've removed the back panel and cleaned out the vast majority of the dust
    • I've tested some of the components. Radio works, both speaker sets seem to work and the turntable is quasi-functional.
    • Quasi-functional, you ask? It's my first vintage turntable and I'm not exactly sure if I'm the error or if the mechanicals are at fault. The platter spins, the tone arm swings out and finds the record but quits after playing for a few seconds. Tone arm returns and then tries again.
    • The power cord is ever-so-slightly nicked near the plug. It may need replacing. That said, I haven't noticed it getting hot.

    I'm eager to get some input on this project. The end goal is to have a turntable system that sounds great and looks good doing it. I'm not averse to replacing the turntable components outright and getting something that may perform better, but I also don't intend to dump thousands of dollars into this project. Also, how do I identify the specific model? The only legible numbers I was able to find were on a white schematic label inside, which read: Chassis #s 2OZT21, 20ZT21Z

    I turn to you, AudioKarma users, for help and guidance. Thanks in advance!
    Last edited: May 20, 2013
  19. Gnesen

    Gnesen AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Very nice pick up. And I like how the lamp legs complement the legs on the console.

    It's good to know there are folks like you willing to put a little effort in keeping these old consoles going...

  20. orthophonic

    orthophonic Super Member

    Radicool, you don't have a 960,your model is a 930 series and is from 1969.
    This series was a much lower priced console, but shared a similar but smaller cabinet.
    This series does not have the separate power amp, belt drive changer or the
    sealed acoustic suspension speaker system of the 960 series.

    Your model has a VM made changer and the problems you are experiencing
    are due to dried or hardened lube in the mechanism. Changer will need a
    teardown and new lube and probably a new idler wheel to function properly.
    Contact Gary Stork at thevoiceofmusic.com for parts and help.

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