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 Post subject: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 11:40 pm 
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Victor III
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I'm Getting Ready for my Mother In Law
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2009 1:52 pm
Posts: 780
Location: the Adirondacks
Make: KINGS-TONE
Model: NOVAPHONIC (maybe)
Serial # SERIAL= none identifiable
Year(s) Made: Guess-timate late 1928-1931
Original Cost: COST= a mystery
Case/Cabinet Size: 31x24x22
Turntable/Mandrel: 12" turntable
Reproducer/Sound-Box: aluminum alloy diaphragm, cast body
Motor: Double spring GARARD
Horn Dimensions: 24" inches long, square exponential, 100% metal
Reproduction Parts: NONE
Current Value: No idea. $500?
Interesting Facts: This thing is SMALL and sound like a warm AM tube radio!


This tiny, tiny floor model is only scant of 31" tall, and roughly 24" wide and 22" deep. Surprisingly well designed, with an all-metal horn, super smooth double-spring motor, and the superlative Novaphonic tone arm & reproducer combination. The 24-28" tone arm lends to a very interesting amplification experience. It sounds more wholesome and warm, like a 1930's tube-amplified radio, without lacking depth, and without distortion. Any distortion heard in the videos below is from the weak microphone on my digital camera.

Image

A multi-media presentation! First, the video intro:

(Double-click the video above or click this link to watch the video on YouTube in high quality.)



Demonstration of an acoustic Columbia 78. Notice how well the timpani and low notes of this acoustic record are reproduced powerfully, and with vibrancy:

(Double-click the video above or click this link to watch the video on YouTube in high quality.)



Demonstration playing an electric Orthophonic recording:

(Double-click the video above or click this link to watch the video on YouTube in high quality.)

-Antique Phonograph Reproducer Restorer-
http://www.EdisonDiamondDisc.com
Taming Orthophonics Daily!


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 Post subject: Re: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 12:18 am 
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Victor V
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:21 pm
Posts: 2511
It certainly sounds good. It looks like they copied the tonearm idea from Gilbert in the UK, except they've turned the main part on its side.
The sunburst grille design is great. Very deco :)

*Actually, after checking the Gilbert site, it looks like the whole thing is a copy of the Gilbert Model 60. Could it be a relabelled, updated Gilbert?
Both use a Garrard motor & needle bowls. There seems to be a definite connection.

http://www.gilbert-gramophones.co.uk/model-60m.htm

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 6:13 am 
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Victor Monarch
I have good days...this might not be one of them
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 5:23 pm
Posts: 4034
Location: Albany NY
Very nice indeed! Similar to the Gilbert arm, but not the same- this is a fairly conventional arm with a stationary wound section attached at the back. With the Gilbert arm the whole wound unit moves.


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 Post subject: Re: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 12:56 pm 
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Victor III
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I'm Getting Ready for my Mother In Law
Joined: Sat Feb 28, 2009 1:52 pm
Posts: 780
Location: the Adirondacks
Shane, I looked under the cabinet, and there is an "80" painted on the underside. Did Gilbert produce an 80?

gramophoneshane wrote:
It certainly sounds good. It looks like they copied the tonearm idea from Gilbert in the UK, except they've turned the main part on its side.
The sunburst grille design is great. Very deco :)

*Actually, after checking the Gilbert site, it looks like the whole thing is a copy of the Gilbert Model 60. Could it be a relabelled, updated Gilbert?
Both use a Garrard motor & needle bowls. There seems to be a definite connection.

http://www.gilbert-gramophones.co.uk/model-60m.htm

Image
-Antique Phonograph Reproducer Restorer-
http://www.EdisonDiamondDisc.com
Taming Orthophonics Daily!


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 Post subject: Re: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 3:35 pm 
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Victor O
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Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 6:38 pm
Posts: 52
Location: Twin Cities
This is certainly an interesting tone arm design and it sounds great! I just saw this "Minster" phonograph on ebay that seems to have a similar tone arm.
http://cgi.ebay.com/Minster-Victrola-Ph ... 7C294%3A50

Do you suppose someone licensed or sold the mechanics to others that put them in their own cabinets and sold under their own brands?
Scott


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 Post subject: Re: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 6:36 pm 
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Victor V
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:21 pm
Posts: 2511
Wyatt,

There's no model 80 listed, but there's a 77, 78, 79 & 85.
Gilbert did make another cheaper range of gramophones, but they're branded as "Geisha". Whether there was a Geisha Model 80 I don't know. I doubt yours has anything to do with the cheaper range though, because it's a pretty high end Garrard motor in your machine.


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 Post subject: Re: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 7:24 pm 
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Victor V
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:21 pm
Posts: 2511
Scott,

The Minster pictured also has a Garrard motor, and Garrard supplied the motors to half of the off-brand manufacturers in England & Australia.
By the looks of the Soundwave article Wyatt posted, the Novaphonic was available as an upgrade, so probably any manufacturer could have thrown it & a Garrard motor into a cabinet & called it what they liked. Judging by the position of the tonearm, I'd say it's original to the Minster & not just a replacement.
There's no 4 door console in the Gilbert range that closely resembles the Minster, although a couple Gilberts use a very similar fretwood applique on the doors.
I can't say I've seen these appliques on any Australian machines, so whether a certain cabinet factory was doing it, or if it was just the fashion in England during the late 20's and early 30's, I'm not sure.
Some of us probably recall Freddyboy's "Lost treasure of Paramount" having a similar applique combined with Wyatt's Garrard motor too :ugeek:


Last edited by gramophoneshane on Sun May 03, 2009 9:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 7:32 pm 
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Victor II
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Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 9:05 pm
Posts: 315
What an neat and unusual late orthophonic era phonograph. I can honestly say I have never heard of it until now. Great hands on demonstration as well, very nicely done. That is the great part about this hobby, just when you think you've seen everything, something else turns up. A very special great sounding and uniquely designed phonograph. Thanks for sharing it with us.


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 Post subject: Re: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2009 4:44 am 
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Victor I
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Stomp off, let´s go !
Joined: Sun May 03, 2009 3:38 am
Posts: 192
Location: Germany
Hello,

than I saw your new phonograph, I had to register (after I only read here...) - I just bought a similar grammophon - maybe this will help each of us, because I also didn´t knew much about my new item......

Because my new buy is not near my hometown in Germany, I will pick it up not until some weeks. Till that I have only two (bad) images of the gramophone, but maybe it works. I asked the seller about some better images, then they reach me I will post them.

Here the infos I got from the seller:

Manufacturer (as by sticker): NOVAPHONIC
Tone arm: Gilbert Sheffield, England, 1931, All Bearing
Sound box: Songster, Made in Sheffield, England

http://www.box.net/shared/3ygdm243lp
http://www.box.net/shared/c16xb1q2h7

No mention of Kings-Tone anywhere......

There is a Gilbert Model No. 47 with a similar grill like mine:
http://www.box.net/shared/aomnrzfor0

As I understood, Gilbert stopped phonograph producing in 1931.
Maybe our two gramophones are made out of the remainders of
the Gilbert Company?

Your article of the tone arm mention the producer as "Taylors - Huddersfield".
From the Gilbert webside:
"From 1931 to 1936, company documentation confirms that the company had radio and electrical distribution depots in Bolton, Hanley, Newcastle-on-Tyne, York, Grimsby, Nottingham, and Huddersfield."

Anyway, it seems there is a close connection between Gilbert Gramophones, Kings-Tone and Novaphonic.
Maybe we should contact the owner of the Gilbert Gramophones website?

....I hope the inserting of the pictures works, if not - please open the links...


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 Post subject: Re: Featured Phonograph № 16
PostPosted: Sun May 03, 2009 8:45 am 
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Victor V
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:21 pm
Posts: 2511
Well, it's looking more & more like there's some sort of connection between the Gilbert & Novaphonic companies.
Your Novaphonic not only shares a similar grille to the Gilbert 47, but the cabinet design looks loosely based on the model 73 (pictured below).
My "guess" would be that your machine was made before the introduction of the Novaphonic arm & soundbox, and used the Gilbert arm until 1931 when Gilbert stopped making accoustic machines, and designed their own arm using Gilbert principles.

http://www.gilbert-gramophones.co.uk/model-73.htm

Image

I don't think the Songster soundbox would be original to your machine, but most likely started off with a Gilbert "Tone Reflector" soundbox. These soundboxes aren't too hard to come by because they were also sold separately as an upgrade. Ever though they don't look like anything special apart from the mother-of-pearl mask, they sound quite good due to the painted metal (not aluminium) diaphragm.
I'd suggest contacting the website owner. He may know something about the Gilbert/Novaphonic/Kingstone story.

Image


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