All posts on December 12th, 2015

Voltage and secondhand gear

Some time ago I blew up a Lexicon PCM70.  Like a lot of great gear built in the USA, it was rated for 110volts.  I had used a step-down transformer for some time and one day, for what-ever reason it was unplugged from the transformer and I plugged it straight into 240 volts.

Bang (sound of voltage resistor blowing), smoke from the fuse and VR … dead.

Thanks to a helpful and relatively local member of Gearslutz, I was given the technical documents and inspired to try and fix it.

Low and behold, the tech-manual says there is a voltage-selector switch!  What!!  And there it is, the item in the picture to the right, with the big blob of silicone – and once revealed this is not a switch of a normal type.

Silicone in the voltage selector switch!

Silicone in the voltage selector switch!


So I’m going to resurrect the PCM70.. so it can take it’s rightful place in the reverb rack – as a key flavour of reverb-y goodness!


Thanks to ‘The Last Byte’ for your help with this!

PCM70 voltage switch

PCM70 voltage switch




Of course, it turns out .. it’s not as straight forward as just flicking the switch, so I’ll keep you posted on how the resurrection develops.





The other bit of news is a new set of taxes which will affect any musician in Australia who’s buying goods from overseas.  Something I didn’t realise was you now have to pay GST on second hand goods.

I recently purchased a top-end EQ, second-hand from someone in Canada.  I hadn’t seen the GST plus fees coming so it was an unwelcome additional cost, which you should be aware of.

More on new gear later.. . but for now, I’m going to get out the multi-meter and see what I can do to fire up the old PCM70…