The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Vintage Harrison 24-series Console Consoles
Old 27th October 2010
  #1
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

Vintage Harrison 24-series Console

We just finished a restauration of a vintage 24c-series Harrison and must say it sound absolutely stunning! But it didnt sound like that before the job though...

What was done:

-Full recap with higher value LE (220uf and 22uf instead of 100uf and 10) caps.
-Six (!) times cleaning all the switches and pots, it was worth it.
-Rebuilt PSU with Rifa caps
-Resoldering the molex connectors for the daughter boards, more than worth the effort.
-We tried lots of different chips: MC33079, AD797, LM837...but the original HA 4605-5 was still the best.
-Updated the old 74c logic chips

-The desk has Valley people VCA´s that are way better than the old muddy dbx´s.
-Around 70 pieces of Jensen transformers
-It weights more than 300kg though its the "smallest" version with only 28 channels.

The FET switching thing is superb, The EQ and the filters too (same as the Great river 32c but only with 1 mid band) and the overall sound with DAW together with some vintage outboard gear is just perfect...

Worked last week with an digital SSL and today with the Harrison and I must say i´m not missing the SSL at all.
Old 27th October 2010
  #2
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

...and i must add that while ago i was still wondering why did Bruce Swedien chose to work with a 32-series Harrison of all the desks, when he has the possibility to get practically ANY console he wants but still he chose the Harrison.

Well, listening to his work you know why and now after working with the desk i know exactly why.
Old 27th October 2010
  #3
Lives for gear
 

Sounds like a thing of beauty. I still have very fond memories of working on both an MR2 and an MR4. All power to you guys. Particularly being in Finland.
Old 27th October 2010
  #4
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

a pic of the desk during the recap...
Attached Thumbnails
Vintage Harrison 24-series Console-harrison-no-strips.jpg  
Old 27th October 2010
  #5
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ray_subsonic View Post
Sounds like a thing of beauty. I still have very fond memories of working on both an MR2 and an MR4. All power to you guys. Particularly being in Finland.

Harrison makes living in Finland much easier thumbsup
Old 27th October 2010
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Telefunk View Post
Harrison makes living in Finland much easier thumbsup
Priceless Quote. heh
Old 27th October 2010
  #7
Lives for gear
 

So you replaced 70 transformers with Jensens? I'm curious what the original ones are, as I think that's part of the reason those desks have such a big sound.
Old 27th October 2010
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdunn View Post
So you replaced 70 transformers with Jensens? I'm curious what the original ones are, as I think that's part of the reason those desks have such a big sound.
No, i didnt change any transformers! The original ones are JE-115-K-E in the mic pre and JB-499-A-I in LineDrivers, made by Jensen. Correct me if i´m wrong. Anyway, extremely good sounding transformers. The mic pre´s I like more than any Neve i´ve ever heard, but that´s just me.

And Valley People/Allison Research VCA´s were fitted originally at the factory...

Last edited by Telefunk; 28th October 2010 at 01:25 AM.. Reason: transformer model number written wrong: Its JB-499-A-I
Old 28th October 2010
  #9
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Telefunk View Post
No, i didnt change any transformers! The original ones are JE-115-K-E in the mic pre and JB499AI in LineDrivers, made by Jensen. Correct me if i´m wrong. Anyway, extremely good sounding transformers. The mic pre´s I like more than any Neve i´ve ever heard, but that´s just me.

And Valley People/Allison Research VCA´s were fitted originally at the factory...
That makes sense, I've heard some Jensen trasnformers that have a huge low end. Nice console, I know it must be a pleasure for your ears to work on. thumbsup

And yeah, I was gonna say, if you pulled some transformers out of that thing, build some mic pres with 'em.
Old 28th October 2010
  #10
Lives for gear
 

So.....years ago I worked on 2 different 3232's uite a bit. And they were both awful. So I've been confused at the comments by those who love this vintage Harrison stuff. BUT.....I have recently come to understand that there may be a huge difference in the original versions to the later "C" versions. It very well may have been that what I worked on was the first version. Can anyone shed any light on what some of the circuitry differenced might have been? This may explain the difference in experiences with those consoles....
Thanks!

Kirt Shearer
Old 28th October 2010
  #11
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kbshearer View Post
So.....years ago I worked on 2 different 3232's uite a bit. And they were both awful. So I've been confused at the comments by those who love this vintage Harrison stuff. BUT.....I have recently come to understand that there may be a huge difference in the original versions to the later "C" versions. It very well may have been that what I worked on was the first version. Can anyone shed any light on what some of the circuitry differenced might have been? This may explain the difference in experiences with those consoles....
Thanks!

Kirt Shearer
Paradise Studios
I'm not familiar with different revisions, but the OP probably is. I've not mixed through one either. We used one to monitor a multitrack session though, and I remember thinking that every channel in the mix had tremendous size and weight to it. I mean, it wasn't the most hi-fi thing I've ever heard, but it had that vintage quality in spades.

Who knows, maybe listening to playback on those big monitors fooled me.
Old 29th October 2010
  #12
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

32 and 24 series revisions

I´ve never worked with a "A"-series Harrison but the difference between the "B" and "C" is really dramatic in my opinion (but I have not been able to compare them with the same monitoring so...)

The difference is mainly in the VCA´s and IC´s and the mic pre´s. Also the design of the channel mainboards is different.

Biggest difference sonically are the VCA´s:

-"A" and "B" has DBX 202´s (Black ones), although it works nicely in limiters etc. it´s quite bad in this design. Very dark, muddy and noisy, not good.

-Some later "B" models has DBX´s in a gold colored box, should be much better but I havent tried those.

-Then because of all this Harrison decided to design it once more and this time with the new Valley People/Allison Research VCA´s and those are absolutely the thing. Most of the classic records made with 32/24-series Harrison are made with this model: Abba, Thriller... and some of the ones that didnt have them originally had them retrofitted bit later. And that procedure was quite telling: When the new VCA´s were fitted there was huge amount of other mods required because the old VCA´s disguised lot of grounding problems etc.

The 24-series was designed the same time with 32B, so there is no 24A, only B and C. Also the very first 32A´s had HA4741 chips in the audio, not good! Later HA4605-5´s were a huge improvement, and I actually like them more than any other ones i´ve tried...

Lots of other differencies too like transformerless micpre´s, "C" model meter bridge was 36 segment leds...but basically amost of the classic Harrisons have had some mods to them: bigger caps, the PSU, new chips, almost everybody has changed the HA911 (3500) in the mic pre (I kinda like'em), some mods to mixbus (for example J. Hardy 990´s, though NE5532´s work just fine unless you have more than 40 channels)...

All these things have a big impact on the sound, so I can understand if somebody didnt like the 3232A but its hard NOT to like the C-series boards because they do sound amazing when properly maintained.
Old 29th October 2010
  #13
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

oh, and the way to tell which version you are working is the monitor channel version:
a-series has two separate monitor strips, control room and studio. Later B and C has them in the same monitor strip. And many times one desk can have different revisions combined because those desks were still handbuilt to meet the buyers needs...

EDIT: Actually, because my 24c was built originally for a broadcasting company, they had wished that the desk would have transformers in the mic pre. Normally C´s would have the transformerless micpre built on a separate daughter board.
Old 29th October 2010
  #14
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

Here's few pics of the 24c. There's the 36 segment led meters and the 24-series eq with only one mid band and then the superb Valley People ECG-101. Also the color of the wooden parts are typical of the 32c and 24c.

Also funny detail is that there is one channel that says surround intead of the normal quad pan...? I wonder what's that all about... It used to be the spare channel.
Attached Thumbnails
Vintage Harrison 24-series Console-out-channels.jpg   Vintage Harrison 24-series Console-valley-people-egc-101.jpg   Vintage Harrison 24-series Console-p1010438.jpg  
Old 30th October 2010
  #15
Lives for gear
 

Wow...THANKS for that detailed info. That really clears some things up. I MUST have been working on the earliest console, from your description. I hope to give Harrison another chance and take a spin behind a "C" version. Thanks for the explanation.....


Kirt Shearer
Old 30th October 2010
  #16
Lives for gear
 
Matti's Avatar
Telefunk, where in Finland?

Matti
Old 30th October 2010
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matti View Post
Telefunk, where in Finland?

Matti
HKI.
Old 30th October 2010
  #18
Gear Maniac
 

Can anyone tell me the differences in the EQ section from B to C? I don't know what changed in there. I do know the pre's changed from transformerless to jensen transformers.

I have a pair of racked B modules and they are insane! The EQ is so unique and the mid range is really tight and focused.

I'm a massive fan of the 32 series consoles. I'm gonna post a 'greatest hits' list up here soon. So many good recordings from MJ-Thriller to all those awesome sounding ELO records. I had a listen to quite a few records 32 series records today and they all had a common characteristic sparkle about them. A very underrated console. You can keep the fluffy Neves. For what I do the Harrison sound is perfect.

K
Old 30th October 2010
  #19
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

My understanding is that the eq design stayed the same through all revisions only the ic's changed but i dont have schematics here so i cant check that. Only time they changed something was when they designed the 24 series and left one band out. Anyway you can try the mc33079 to your eq and see if you like it. The other thing is that of course the vca version had its mark also on how the eq sounded, naturally... What vca version do you have? Actually the transformer mic pre changed to transformerless not the other way around.
Old 31st October 2010
  #20
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Telefunk View Post
What vca version do you have? Actually the transformer mic pre changed to transformerless not the other way around.
I bought these racked and the vca's were omitted (only the eq / mic pre section is used).

Interesting what you say about the transformers on the mic pre's. I always thought the blue one's "rev C" had the mic pre transformers...
Old 31st October 2010
  #21
Gear Maniac
 
Moatl's Avatar
 

unfortunately, I've never been behind a Harrison console,
but I love the 32C EQ plugin from UA - it is one of the sweetest, musical software EQs I ever heard...


and I also really dig the Harrison Mixbus software...

...so I can only imagine how a real, well maintained 24C console would sound!!

Thanks for the pics - looks beautiful!!
Old 1st November 2010
  #22
500 series nutjob
 
pan60's Avatar
 

sweet!
post some more pics: )~
Old 1st November 2010
  #23
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

Some Harrison pics...

Old 1st November 2010
  #24
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

In those pictures you can see the VCA grouping, the mighty heavy PSU, The VU-PPM Meter Bridge and the 24c-series version of the 32c EQ with 3 bands.
Old 1st November 2010
  #25
Lives for gear
 
LeMauce's Avatar
Damn guys this is just porn... sorry... but it is.
Old 1st November 2010
  #26
Gear Maniac
 
heybub419's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeMauce View Post
Damn guys this is just porn... sorry... but it is.
*drools* heh
Old 1st November 2010
  #27
Lives for gear
 
analogtodd's Avatar
 

so much like an MCI 500 its scary!!!
Old 1st November 2010
  #28
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by monkeyt View Post
so much like an MCI 500 its scary!!!
My understanding is that MCI 500 (like MCI 400) was a Dave Harrison -design and just before it was supposed to go into the market, CEO Jeep Harned "cut some corners" here and there, that pissed off D. Harrison so much he wanted to go on his own and form his own company that would make only the most luxurious consoles... the first one was 32A that wasnt really what it was supposed to be, so they quickly remade it and the 32B finally started to gain some popularity among the big studios in US and Europe...
Old 1st November 2010
  #29
Lives for gear
 

What's that there in the background, a torx socket set? Yeah this thing is like working on my Volvo I bet.
Old 1st November 2010
  #30
Lives for gear
 
Telefunk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdunn View Post
What's that there in the background, a torx socket set? Yeah this thing is like working on my Volvo I bet.
Yep, i tell you it's hell with those inch sized screws here in Europe!

Harrison uses UNC N:4 (US & Canadian standard) with ISO 7380 cap (Italian standard system)...

EDIT: Sorry, ISO is INTERNATIONAL organization for Standardization...
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread
Thread Starter / Forum
Replies
unit7 / High End
74
mike-661 / Gearslutz Secondhand Gear Classifieds
22
Lindell / Gearslutz Secondhand Gear Classifieds
7
Luke_martin / Gearslutz Secondhand Gear Classifieds
4

Forum Jump
Forum Jump