Technics SL-1900 turntable repair & review

A 40-year-old turntable that I got for under $50 which has better specs than new turntables costing over $1000 — but it has a common problem of the tonearm getting stuck in the raised position and not lowering. I show you how to fix it.

Vinyl TV’s comprehensive video on how to set up a turntable and tonearm:

Animated 3D model of how the SL-1900’s mechanism is assembled and works:


Ben Miler says:

I own an SL-2000 which is basically a non-automatic version of the SL-1900. It looks very similar with some obvious exceptions. I bought mine used in 2011 and I was experiencing similar problems. The turntable platter kept fluctuating, never keeping steady speed. The great thing about the SL-2000 is if you only need to clean the pots, you only need to remove the metal plate on the base to get to the pots. I bought the same CRC electronics cleaner spray, cleaned the pots and switches and it now plays beautifully! I can now listen to my vinyl off this turntable and not worry about the speed suddenly changing on me.

Brett says:

Thank you! Was having the same issue and didn’t know where ttoo start. You da man

Andre Rousseau says:

I have the exactly opposite trouble.. My tone arm fall on the disc.. Even worst on 45rpm.. what could I do?

Giantcappuccino says:

Nice video! I had that turntable for a while and do regret selling it.

Mike Drölf says:

Thank you mate. I broke my Pro ject DB3 (accidently ripped the cables in the tonearm out after I wanted to change the cart). Wanted to buy a Technics SL1210 MK5. I wasn’t aware that Panasonic had other tt’s beside the 1200 and 1210 family. Bought a brand new SL-3210 for 200 bugs quit. It’s direct drive as well and it also has a automatic tonearm return. You, sir, saved me like 1300 bugs. Subscribed!

Anil Kumar V says:

Share me the mechanism parts for sansui turntable vintage model P-1000

Mondasian Cyberman says:

audiophile approved

Space Ghost says:

this turntable looks so nice

tinmaptd says:

I found one on craighlist for 150 dollar, seem to be completely functional and look fine. Do you think it’s worth it at that price?

Luanne McCard-Wheless says:

Will you do a video on reinstalling a belt?

Leon thepro says:

Buying vintage is always better, for almost any product, IF you know what to look for. Inexperienced buyers just dont have the confidence and knowledge to pick out good gear and check if its working correctly.

bbarrera86 says:

if you set the speed between the 33 and 45 dont you get 78? just wondering

SpooferJahks Domain says:

Nice dig at Vinyl Eyezz. Also great video, would love to get my hands on a turntable like this to eventually replace my Orbit, which is actually a nice little new turntable in my experience. Though I will say it does not touch the best of the old school by a long shot.

ParagonVideo says:

I was able to repair my SL-1900 exactly as you described. Thank you! Also there is an adjustment screw in the lifter that will adjust the height that the lifter raises the arm.

Norman says:

I have Technics SL D2, the problem is there is no damping. Cuing up and down is ok but no damping, just drops like a rock. my question is the tonearm assembly the same? i know i need to put damping fluid on the lift rods, just cant find a video how to.

M Schildgen says:

THANK YOU for making this vid. If i had this knowledge or confidence years ago i would have this exact deck today. I had to force the tonearm down and i also convinced myself automatic players were not what you should have. Sadly i didnt know what i had. At that time i didn’t even realize you could take these apart. I didn’t even realize i had one of the better turntables you could get. I was also getting divorced and moving and in a selling frenzy and i think i let it go for $90…. i have already been looking for one for a couple years and passed up one with this cueing fault. Not any more!

Timmer Klotz says:

Plus my arm doesn’t not seem to want to go down….help please??

MeadioKringus says:

I think the rocking back and forth you got with the audio technica was the circles placement not the motor actually being inconsistent, as I have the same thing happen with mine and the rocking is always exactly the same and the circles always show up in the same place every time

Jose Lacera says:

sir thank you for this great instructions can you please show us how to hook up the wires on the cartridge if blue goes with red or how that goes on the SL- 1900 thank you again.

Mark Gray says:

What do you think of a Technics SL-D 202…I picked it up at Goodwill for $10

Tomanista says:

The used one I got a few years back has no problem lowering the arm, however, if I choose “start” the arm barely moves towards the record and then just returns back and the record stops. Is this a also a symptom of old grease or something else?

Aidan Standing says:

if you were to use the headphones im currently using you would think you have gone deaf in your right ear

laurco says:

Thank you so much for this! My tonearm was stuck in the down position…same solution though. Also cleaned up the anti-skate mechanism which was also frozen due to the solid grease. BTW you can adust the height of the tonearm with the little screw on the damper bar. No more rushing to catch the tonearm before it drags across the record!

Primož Črnčec says:

Awesome videos, man! I don’t miss any. Love your honest commentary.

– about this turnatable, 45$ only with actualy no error ! Never here in Slovenia,.. no chance :D.. it is Auuudioophillle aprooved :))))
I have techics tt 3210 semiautomatic, also great one.

Thanks for videos! 😉

Timmer Klotz says:

Well, what needle do you have?

Ken Choo says:

I thought these type of turntable exist in late 2000s or early 2010s because it looks like the recent ones

Dave B says:

All you need for the *best sound is a technics 1200 and an ortophone concord cartridge. No audiophile person can tell the difference in that and anything that’s more money. I would buy the cartridge new though around 180$. A new technics is 499 but used ones are just as good. Doesn’t matter one year old or 30 all of them are rock solid.

GJYee888 says:

What a great DIY video. I also have a Technics SL-1900 turntable, which I purchased new in 1977, but have not used it for at least 10 years. I have the exactly the same problem you described in your video and checked with several turntable repair shops in my area. All wanted anywhere from $100-$125 to fix this problem excluding parts, if required. I went on several websites that mention that the lubricant in dampening mechanism is probably frozen and needs to be cleaned, but nothing addressed how to actually fix this problem. Then it dawned on me that I should check YouTube. Eureka! I was able to repair the turntable myself at no cost since I had all the necessary supplies. It works like new now. Thanks for posting this video. You did a great job putting it together and explaining clearly each step required to make this repair.

James Ferrier says:

Thanks for posting this tutorial, you just saved me a trip to the repair shop. Had exactly this issue, surprisingly easy fix.

TheTrueDecepticreep says:

Thank you for calling out Vinyl Eyes on his hipster BS. I think he’s shitty for the vinyl community as he just shames people.

Jason B says:

that expensive new turntable has a wow and flutter 0.15% and my old turntable is 0.03%! I always assumed those new expensive turntables would be way better then my RadioShack turntable lol.
My stereo system is all vintage and I wouldn’t have it any other way,

Backlight says:

Nice video! You can adjust the arm lift height, btw. It doesn’t have to go up that high.

Your turntable was made on 31 January 1978.

Davey Wiggers says:

Had the same problem with mine, took it apart, cleaned it up and away it went. I used silicone grease instead of lithium, but they work the same. Now to build a pre-amp….

John sweda says:

You should always remove the counter weight when you doing anything like this or even moving the turntable, it causes unnecessary stress on the tonearm

 Write a comment


Do you like our videos?
Do you want to see more like that?

Please click below to support us on Facebook!