plate reverb restoration

Posted on Feb 6, 2014

Jim took the original EMT 140 design and improved it by using a plate material with a brighter sound, adding modern electronics and higher gain pickups, and providing a substantial discount on the inflated price that plagued the German EMT units. After lugging it down the stairs, we located it under the stairwell outside our recording space. We decided to forego the 3/4` plywood box the unit is meant to go inside,

plate reverb restoration
Click here to download the full size of the above Circuit.

for space and weight considerations. The acoustical isolation afforded by the box is nice, but because it is located outside our recording space it is well isolated as-is. Not to mention, it tips the scales at around 350 pounds when it`s cased. Interestingly, this unit is a prototype Jim built before going to market professionally. Unit #1B is for all practical purposes identical to a production unit. However, years of pillaging and disuse meant that it needed some work to put it back in service. This site attempts to document my efforts in bringing this echo chamber back to life for use in my studio. This is an ongoing effort, and is not yet completed. The Ecoplate needs a power amplifier for the driver mounted in the middle of the plate, and two preamps to get the pickups` output up to line level. When the unit got to the studio, I first wired on some appropriate connectors to the bare wires from the speaker and preamps. I then jury-rigged a power amp using a much too powerful Hafler P3000 150W per channel amplifier. I turned the gain almost completely down on the amp, and it appeared to power the driver at an appropriate level (using a pre-recorded vocal track described below). I then took one pickup`s output and sent it to my Avalon U5 direct box. I had to crank the DI output, but after trying it through two different microphone preamps to no avail (Sytek MPX-4Aii and Ampex MX-10), it was the best of what I had. Not to...

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