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SL1200 tech tips Part one: "How to play your records in reverse like Patrick H.A.F." or "get in touch with Satan"

From month to month we will be supplying you with all the information you will need to field strip and re-assemble your Technics SL1200's blindfolded... To start off this month you'll be taken through the steps of one of the more advanced and interesting turntable skills - allowing you to hear Satans' words without having to push the record around backwards manually.

To perform this task you will need the following equipment:

  • 1 * SL1200 turntable
  • 1 * roll of gaffer tape (or similar 2" wide roll of tape) - gerbil optional!
  • 1 * vinyl platter of your choice (preferably with vocals)

I should start this tech note out with the standard disclaimer - this information is provided for your amusement only, and dj.com.au does not suggest you go out and try to perform this trick (although it does work). Don't come crying to us with stories of trashed tonearms, fused 1200's or a big scratch in your favourite Snoop Doggy Dog EP. 'Nuff said - you have been warned.

The first step on the road to pitch perfect reverse spinning involves inverting your headshell. Just release the headshell locking ring, flip the headshell - so the stylus if facing up - then stick it back in it's housing and tighten the locking ring again. If you have problems visualising this process - just follow our handy photos...



Next you should place your roll of gaffer tape as close to the center of your slip mat as possible. A correctly centered roll of tape should not have any side to side movement when the platter is rotating.

Lay your chosen record on top of the roll of tape (look through the hole and try to line it up with the spindle. Again there should be no side to side movement as the record spins.


Next you have to back your weight as far back on the tone-arm as it will go. This will result in the tone-arm pivoting up, so the headshell is floating. Once you have completed this, your turntable is set up and ready for use.

Hit the start button, select your desired speed and place the stylus on the record - remember, the record will be playing in reverse, so start on towards the middle of the record.

Amplifier : Communications
Pitch Shift : Infotainment
Equaliser : Technical Info
Stylus : The Music
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Equaliser will be bringing you more useful technical stuff from month to month... let us know if this tech tip was useful or interesting, or what topic you might like to be covered in future Equalisers, or if you hear any intersting messages on your records...

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