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Trident 80c
Old 19th June 2005
  #1
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clip6's Avatar
 

Trident 80c

Sometimes I get tired of waiting for the right SSL deal to come along. I saw a 80c in Canada at Odyssey Audio for 25k. It made me think........

Can you guys sound off about the 80c-values-known problems-issues-experiences......

Thanks
Old 19th June 2005
  #2
member no 666
 
Fletcher's Avatar
If they've been well maintained they're excellent desks... the only weak spot is their power supplies which can be easily rebuilt/replaced [when we had an 80 series desk we were running API 650A power supplies... the lowend response of the desk improved dramatically]
Old 19th June 2005
  #3
Lives for gear
 

I have a Trimix, which reportedly has the same pre's and similar eq as the 80. The pre's are very very nice on drums and just about anything. The eq's are unique and have there own sound, but are totally usable IMO. Based on what I hear in the Trimix, I'd say the 80c is a very serious tracking/mixing console. Of course Tridents usually have no automation if that's what you're looking for in the SSL. $25K seems a bit high in this buyer's market, unless the board is completely recapped/refurbished w/ upgraded supply, etc.......better than new, basically.
Sean
Old 19th June 2005
  #4
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Fletcher- what are the values at this time? Also who is the tech guru in the USA when it comes to an 80c? Also when did Johnathan Little say the new pre's would be ready?
Old 19th June 2005
  #5
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Fletcher's Avatar
The mic-pre's in the "Tri-Mix" [or as we used to call them, the "try to mix"] and the mic pre's in the "Flexi-Mix" are worlds different from the pre's in the 80 series and 70 series. If anything they're closest to the pre's in the 65 series, which were also nothing to write home about.

As for the value of the desk... I dunno. To me, having worked on many a Trident 80 series over the years and understanding how good they sound as well as their capabilities... I'd say that $25k was a fine deal [if it were in tip-top condition... if there are maintenance issues then all bets are off]. I've seen 80B's going for as low as $15k [again, I don't know their condition]... however, the 80C was the made well after the 80B. 80C's [if I'm not mistaken] were built from like '89 to like '92... which as "old boards" go makes them not that old.

Also, you get a full 32 inputs [80B's with EQ on the monitor section were only 30 inputs], with full EQ on the monitor section, with a choice of A or B inputs. While the choice of A or B inputs on the juke box doesn't really give you 48 monitor returns in practice, it will allow you to have a whole lotta stuff normalled to your desk and available at the hit of a switch and the twist of a knob [which can/will speed up your work flow in no small way].

As for the Littlelabs "LMNOpre"... I dunno. When it's available. I stopped asking manufacturer's when things were going to be available ages ago as it's all fiction until the product is actually released. Every product will have a "target" date... every product will also have half a dozen or so "aw****z" from "production proto-type one" to final release. My take on these things is that they'll come out when they're ready... and until then it's probably a good idea to give the designer space and let them struggle with getting the product right rather than hitting a date made up by some marketing mook... though I have to say that after looking at the "LMNOpre" in Barcelona... I'm hoping it comes out sooner than later.

Peace.
Old 19th June 2005
  #6
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subspace's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fletcher
The mic-pre's in the "Tri-Mix" [or as we used to call them, the "try to mix"] and the mic pre's in the "Flexi-Mix" are worlds different from the pre's in the 80 series and 70 series. If anything they're closest to the pre's in the 65 series, which were also nothing to write home about.
That's strange, as the Series 70 actually used the same input module as the Trimix.

http://geocities.com/tridentaudio/Se.../brochure.html

http://www.geocities.com/tridenttrimix/brochure.html
Old 20th June 2005
  #7
Lives for gear
 

Yeah, the Trimix uses the same input module, buss module, and master module as the 70. The Fleximix mic pre uses the same mic input transformer as the A Range, as do the mk 1 channels stips on the Trimix/70. Mk 2 stips used a different transformer(not as nice IMO). The Flexi was the first console Trident designed with IC's. I'd say the pre's in the Fleximix are more similar to the 80/70 than to a 65 series which in all fairness, were pretty decent themselves.
Sean
Old 20th June 2005
  #8
Gear Nut
 

Trident 80C

Hello, I maintained 2-Series 80 consoles in Vancouver from 1980 to 1991. We bought the first 32x24x24x2 brand new for $55K. We bought the second one in 1982 for $35K used. Apparently, it was used to record "Blinded By the Light".

The Series 80 were used on sessions from Vancouver Punk Rock to Classic Rock to Classical Piano to Television Post Production to Radio Jingle Production.

There were days when the console would be working for 20 hours and was never turned off. Rock sessions would go to the wee hours and the Jingle sessions would start by 9:00 am and TV Post production by 8:00 am. It performed flawlessly and can only remember one or two times were we had to delay a session because of a maintenance issue.

Like any good console that is 15 years of age or older there are probably capacitor issues. It is not hard to change out the capacitors. All the pots are wire linked and easy to replace and are still available. I would order custom made A&B or Bourne pots for replacement. If you buy pots in lots of 100 the price will come in around $10 each for good ones.

If the console has been well maintained and there are spare pots and switches then you may be able to put off this expense for some time.

The console has transformer coupled preamps that sound very good plus there are some modifications available I believe which make the preamps a little quieter
and the frequency response a little more stable as the impedance of the microphones preamp circuit varies a bit with different gain settings.

The IC's are all on sockets and the stock IC's do not need to be upgraded or even the output IC's changed. The slew rate of the stock IC is probably about 7v/usec as compared to 17v/usec for reasonable priced replacement IC's but because the IC's are not being asked to deliver a full output into a 600 ohm load then this slew rate is more than adequate for HiFi audio. Since all the output IC's in the Series 80 are coupled into a discrete class A/B output amp that provides an output impedance of 50 ohms which is not effected by a 600 ohm load. Check and make sure the Series 80C output schematic is the same as the Series 80b.

I modified both of our Series 80 consoles to swap the Group faders for the Monitor pots. This way when we used the Monitor section we had faders for the level. Most times the Group Levels are just set and left. We could still use the faders to control a Group level in the Mix. We also changed out the gain pots on the two sweepable EQ's on all the channels with pots that has a pull-up switch. In the up position the "Q" of the EQ was lowered from "2" to "1.5" this emulated a more broader NEVE/API EQ curve.

The Series 80 is a very flexible console and the signal routing is not only logical but comprehensive. We had some problems with the TT jacks in the patchbay and they are not compatible with ADC. However, as a last resort you can replace defective jacks from ones in the OUTBOARD GEAR location and add a couple more rows of new jacks with any external outboard gear. There are lots of work abouts in the patchbay.

I always found the Aux sends to be a bit noisy on the Series 80 but never got around to addressing this issue but with digital effects "in the box" there is far less analogue processing being send from the channel Aux sends. It is very easy to set up a stereo headphone mix from the Series 80. It also has a really neat automute function and VOLATILE SOLOING feature which is really handy once you figure it out. It mutes everything except what is in Solo mode. This means you can solo in place or Solo the vocal and the vocal effect or the Vocal and the background vocals or just the drum tracks etc...with everything being soloed in stereo.

It is probably a good idea to make sure the Power Supply is up to the job. The Series 80b has two power supplies. The Series 80b also has some series filtering inside the console as the there was a 20' cable feeding the power supply.

Best regards, Dave Thomas (Advanced Audio)
Old 20th June 2005
  #9
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subspace's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by drtaudio
The IC's are all on sockets and the stock IC's do not need to be upgraded or even the output IC's changed. The slew rate of the stock IC is probably about 7v/usec as compared to 17v/usec for reasonable priced replacement IC's but because the IC's are not being asked to deliver a full output into a 600 ohm load then this slew rate is more than adequate for HiFi audio. Since all the output IC's in the Series 80 are coupled into a discrete class A/B output amp that provides an output impedance of 50 ohms which is not effected by a 600 ohm load. Check and make sure the Series 80C output schematic is the same as the Series 80b.

Best regards, Dave Thomas (Advanced Audio)
By the time the 80C was out, Trident had jumpered out all the discrete transistor pairs with NE5534's used as output drivers instead.
Old 20th June 2005
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by subspace
That's strange, as the Series 70 actually used the same input module as the Trimix.

http://geocities.com/tridentaudio/Se.../brochure.html

http://www.geocities.com/tridenttrimix/brochure.html

As I review the schematics on the Trimix modules I'm working on, I see that the mic pre's are nearly identical to the 80 series. Small variations in the size of coupling caps is about all I see. The transformers are in different sized cases, they may be different internally as well. Both could be improved by converting the first opamp into a non-inverting configuration as I described here before.

As to power supplys, the stock one's are crap and should be junked. Use a couple of Power One 24v 12 amp supplies trimmed down to 17 volts and you won't need to worry about it again.

The 2400/65 mic pre's are a 4 transistor set in front of a TLO71 opamp. Redesigning this pre by putting the transistor set in the corrective feedback loop of the opamp can really lower distortion. As can replacing the TL071. Remember kids, this is the opamp that drove up the price of discrete consoles! It could be considered "not ready for prime time" although some love it's distortion characteristics. I'm of course, not one of them.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 21st June 2005
  #11
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subspace's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams
As I review the schematics on the Trimix modules I'm working on, I see that the mic pre's are nearly identical to the 80 series. Small variations in the size of coupling caps is about all I see. The transformers are in different sized cases, they may be different internally as well. Both could be improved by converting the first opamp into a non-inverting configuration as I described here before.

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Which schematics are you using? The original:

http://www.angelfire.com/la3/ssaudio/trimix_input.html

or the Mk II module?:

http://www.angelfire.com/la3/ssaudio...s70_input.html
Old 21st June 2005
  #12
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FWIW, I believe the Mk I strips had Zutt transformers and the Mk II had Sowters. Can anyone confirm this?
Sean
Old 21st June 2005
  #13
Gear Maniac
 

I own an 80C. I purchased it used, and had PAD totally refurbish it. We have had it here in the studio running constantly now for about a year. So far it has worked flawlessly and sounds great. What else can I say. We do all sorts of projects from rock to jazz to commercials to jingles to books on tape to audio post etc...etc...

We absolutely love it.

You can see pics at www.cottonhill.com
Old 21st June 2005
  #14
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subspace's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by ziegenh5
FWIW, I believe the Mk I strips had Zutt transformers and the Mk II had Sowters. Can anyone confirm this?
Sean
The original design mic input transformer on the Series 80, both Trimix revs, and the Series 70 was the Belclere 6701. You could custom order whatever you wanted though, including output transformers.
Old 21st June 2005
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by subspace
It's the Mk II module, same as Flexmix, same as series 80. That first schematic is a real mess with an attenuator in front of the first gain stage, must be another Oram/Toft mistake. How hard is it to design a transformer mic pre anyway? Bill Whitlock of Jensen transformers said it was the worst miss-design he has ever seen and he's seen a lot of them over the years.

Not to say they don't deliver the appropriate flavor of dirt for some. Heck, I like rolling my Jeep Wrangler in the mud, but I do clean it up after I'm done!

Jim Williams
Audio Upgrades
Old 10th February 2007
  #16
Gear Addict
 
jslstrat's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by drtaudio View Post
Hello, I maintained 2-Series 80 consoles in Vancouver from 1980 to 1991. We bought the first 32x24x24x2 brand new for $55K. We bought the second one in 1982 for $35K used. Apparently, it was used to record "Blinded By the Light".

The Series 80 were used on sessions from Vancouver Punk Rock to Classic Rock to Classical Piano to Television Post Production to Radio Jingle Production.

There were days when the console would be working for 20 hours and was never turned off. Rock sessions would go to the wee hours and the Jingle sessions would start by 9:00 am and TV Post production by 8:00 am. It performed flawlessly and can only remember one or two times were we had to delay a session because of a maintenance issue.

Like any good console that is 15 years of age or older there are probably capacitor issues. It is not hard to change out the capacitors. All the pots are wire linked and easy to replace and are still available. I would order custom made A&B or Bourne pots for replacement. If you buy pots in lots of 100 the price will come in around $10 each for good ones.

If the console has been well maintained and there are spare pots and switches then you may be able to put off this expense for some time.

The console has transformer coupled preamps that sound very good plus there are some modifications available I believe which make the preamps a little quieter
and the frequency response a little more stable as the impedance of the microphones preamp circuit varies a bit with different gain settings.

The IC's are all on sockets and the stock IC's do not need to be upgraded or even the output IC's changed. The slew rate of the stock IC is probably about 7v/usec as compared to 17v/usec for reasonable priced replacement IC's but because the IC's are not being asked to deliver a full output into a 600 ohm load then this slew rate is more than adequate for HiFi audio. Since all the output IC's in the Series 80 are coupled into a discrete class A/B output amp that provides an output impedance of 50 ohms which is not effected by a 600 ohm load. Check and make sure the Series 80C output schematic is the same as the Series 80b.

I modified both of our Series 80 consoles to swap the Group faders for the Monitor pots. This way when we used the Monitor section we had faders for the level. Most times the Group Levels are just set and left. We could still use the faders to control a Group level in the Mix. We also changed out the gain pots on the two sweepable EQ's on all the channels with pots that has a pull-up switch. In the up position the "Q" of the EQ was lowered from "2" to "1.5" this emulated a more broader NEVE/API EQ curve.

The Series 80 is a very flexible console and the signal routing is not only logical but comprehensive. We had some problems with the TT jacks in the patchbay and they are not compatible with ADC. However, as a last resort you can replace defective jacks from ones in the OUTBOARD GEAR location and add a couple more rows of new jacks with any external outboard gear. There are lots of work abouts in the patchbay.

I always found the Aux sends to be a bit noisy on the Series 80 but never got around to addressing this issue but with digital effects "in the box" there is far less analogue processing being send from the channel Aux sends. It is very easy to set up a stereo headphone mix from the Series 80. It also has a really neat automute function and VOLATILE SOLOING feature which is really handy once you figure it out. It mutes everything except what is in Solo mode. This means you can solo in place or Solo the vocal and the vocal effect or the Vocal and the background vocals or just the drum tracks etc...with everything being soloed in stereo.

It is probably a good idea to make sure the Power Supply is up to the job. The Series 80b has two power supplies. The Series 80b also has some series filtering inside the console as the there was a 20' cable feeding the power supply.

Best regards, Dave Thomas (Advanced Audio)
Great Info and right on the money Dave..How can I reach you about the eq mod you did? Thank You, John
Old 10th February 2007
  #17
Gear Head
 
dtrumfio's Avatar
 

As a newer owner of a 80C, this has been a great thread....tons of ideas in my head!

As for 80C vs. SSL? totally opposites....both have their merits of course. The 80C just sounds more musical and beefy to my ears and its a very simple console. I have enough outboard to cover not having built in dynamics etc... and no total recall is taken care of with a full set of stems on every mix. If the mix is so far off I need to remix the track then thats a total remix not a recall IMO... I really like my 80C. Still a lot less $$$ than a SSL any way you slice it!
Old 11th February 2007
  #18
Gear Addict
 
jslstrat's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dtrumfio View Post
As a newer owner of a 80C, this has been a great thread....tons of ideas in my head!

As for 80C vs. SSL? totally opposites....both have their merits of course. The 80C just sounds more musical and beefy to my ears and its a very simple console. I have enough outboard to cover not having built in dynamics etc... and no total recall is taken care of with a full set of stems on every mix. If the mix is so far off I need to remix the track then thats a total remix not a recall IMO... I really like my 80C. Still a lot less $$$ than a SSL any way you slice it!
dt......You can make the console even more beefy by putting the discrete transistor section on all of the out puts. All over the console. They dropped them on the 80C for a 5534 chip. The spots should be on the circuit boards. Same with ALL of the stereo buss,remix buss etc.....I can take pics later and show you. But If you like it the way It Is...Then just leave It!......I have an 80B John
Old 11th February 2007
  #19
Gear Addict
 
jslstrat's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dtrumfio View Post
As a newer owner of a 80C, this has been a great thread....tons of ideas in my head!

As for 80C vs. SSL? totally opposites....both have their merits of course. The 80C just sounds more musical and beefy to my ears and its a very simple console. I have enough outboard to cover not having built in dynamics etc... and no total recall is taken care of with a full set of stems on every mix. If the mix is so far off I need to remix the track then thats a total remix not a recall IMO... I really like my 80C. Still a lot less $$$ than a SSL any way you slice it!
This Is what Dave Is talking about.........

Since all the output IC's in the Series 80 are coupled into a discrete class A/B output amp that provides an output impedance of 50 ohms which is not effected by a 600 ohm load. Check and make sure the Series 80C output schematic is the same as the Series 80b.
Old 21st February 2007
  #20
Gear Nut
 
Jonsos's Avatar
 

Just a quick interjection . . .

I have a Malcolm Toft Trident MTA intermix rack (the 16 pre jobbie) knocking around the studio - I hav'nt really had time the last few months, to try 'em out properly.

I was told that these are the same pres as in the series 80 consoles ?

. . if not, anyone know what ?

Cheerz

John
Old 26th February 2007
  #21
Gear Nut
 
Jonsos's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonsos View Post
Just a quick interjection . . .

I have a Malcolm Toft Trident MTA intermix rack (the 16 pre jobbie) knocking around the studio - I hav'nt really had time the last few months, to try 'em out properly.

I was told that these are the same pres as in the series 80 consoles ?

. . if not, anyone know what ?

Cheerz

John
. . . anyone ? Thanks
Old 26th February 2007
  #22
Gear Addict
 
jslstrat's Avatar
 

MTA

First you need to open It and see If it has any Mic Transformers on the Inputs?
If It doesnt, than for starters........ no It Is not a series 80 Type. Its a new design I am sure. But they always use the series 80 hype for stuff......Hope thta helps, John
Old 27th February 2007
  #23
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subspace's Avatar
No, they weren't Series 80 pres. They were the pre from the smallest of the MTA consoles... the 924 I believe it was. Transformerless jobbies.
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