1970s GEC Music-Centres

I well remember when these music centres first started appearing in the mid to late 1970’s. A feature in many living room of the period, a fashion that quickly faded in favour of the early 80’s stack systems. For now here are some offerings from the GEC range of 1976.

Models Covered: GEC 2817, GEC 2819, GEC 2820, GEC A4021H, GEC A4022H, GEC A4023H, GEC A5019H, GEC A5020H

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6 thoughts on “1970s GEC Music-Centres

  1. Interesting to note how the photographs of the Mk. IV SP25 fitted to the model 2819 show the two different patterns of head/arm fitted; the same situation arose with the very last Mk. III SP25s. You’d have thought they’d have aimed for some continuity in the brochure though!

    The 86SB was an expensive turntable in its day: GEC pushed the boat out there.

    • Certainly did, the 2820 was the best set we ever made. I had a souped up version of the power amp on my home stereo as well as the deck off one – balanced on 4 upturned whisky tumblers.

      The 5020 replaced it, & was very expensive to make – despite having a cheaper deck. It was a major factor in closing the factory.
      Happy days while it lasted.

      • Good to hear from an former GEC employee, Nigel. I must confess to having a quiet admiration for GEC products; I’m looking at a large radio from 1937 as I type (BC3760). The 5020 sounds an interesting unit, can you tell us a bit more about it?

        • Sorry for the delay – only just saw this.
          The 5020 had a Garrard 125SB deck which had a cheap pressed metal turntable but still the Shure M75 cartridge. It had the same cassette deck as the 2820 & was very similar electronically.
          However it was built into rather complex metal frame, which was then clad in matt black mouldings. It looked great – as long as no one touched it (& it took a lot of assembling). The finish showed every finger mark almost permanently. In the end, the only way a saleable product could be produced, was for all final assembly & test staff to work wearing clean cotton gloves!

  2. One of my long term friends recently found a GEC 4022H which had been the victim of a DIY attempt at a “cut and shut” – the record deck had been removed and the base cut in half to convert it to what looked like a “sawn off” tuner/amplifier (receiver) anyway after some deliberation and the fact that I had a spare BSR MP60 record deck kicking around I thought I might try and resurrect it to very nearly its former glory.

    The wiring had been cut, re-soldered, and re-routed to allow everything to be fitted in to the two halves of the unit and a rather scary attempt at screening some of the signal cable had been made with tinfoil!!

    I really should have taken some pictures of the internals for before and after comparisons but never thought to do so. Anyway the enclosed links show the “cut and shut” before, and the “Frankenstein’s monster” after attempts.



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