Sunday, 13 November 2011

Philips CD101

I was quite excited when one of these came up for auction, they're not a particularly common player here in New Zealand.  The Philips CD101 isn't quite the very first Philips player, but it's very similar to the CD100 which was number one.  The two players share the same PCBs and the same frame, but the CD100 uses a CDM-0 laser mechanism and the CD101 uses a CDM-1.  The graphics and lid design also differ slightly, but overall they're very similar.




The particular example I bought was ideal; it was being sold by the original owner, was in perfect visual condition and included the owner's manual and box, yet wasn't working so was still inexpensive.  When it arrived I plugged it in and found it had the exact symptoms I expected.  It would power on successfully, spin a CD when one was loaded and the play button pressed, but it wouldn't read the CD.  These players, like most (but not all) radial armed players, will only spin a CD once the laser has successfully focused on a disc.  If a player will spin a disc, the laser and focus servo are probably okay.  However, when it tried to read the table of contents of the disc the player would track and the radial arm would run out of control, often hitting the end stop quite hard (rather funny to watch).  This meant that the radial servo wasn't running properly.  The likely cause is the recurring defect with these players; expired electrolytic capacitors.

The particular capacitors that cause the failures in these players is the five on the PCB directly mounted to the laser mechanism.  Two of these are decoupling for the ICs, the remaining three are part of the laser supply.  Most of these aren't paralleled with any other capacitor and really need to perform well for the player to work.


I replaced all five, and unsurprisingly the player worked perfectly.  I went on and replaced every electrolytic in the rest of the player, but only the five needed to replaced for it to work.  In terms of sound quality, this player isn't too bad, but it's certainly not high end.  This player was undoubtedly the best in its day, far better than Sony's efforts, but CD players have come a long way since.  Please don't buy into the hype, these players are good considering their age, but will be beaten by any half decent modern player.

The big surprise about this player was how easy to service it was.  Everything in the player screws into a large aluminium casting.  The outer casing is secured by five screws, once it's removed most of the player is accessible.  I've worked on other Philips players of the period and they were much more awkward.




I didn't modify this CD player as I want to keep it as original as possible.  All of the above photos show the player after I serviced it, with the new capacitors in place.

Below is the player's original box, as per request.


9 comments:

  1. Anton, i have the same problems with the cd100 model ,could you be more specific re the capacitors you replaced as im desperate to get it working correctly. any help appreciated ,
    regards, tim.
    tim@timnorris.plus.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Tim,

      The capacitors that I referred to are 2140, 2144, 2147 and 2149. All are located on the small PCB attached directly to the laser mechanism. You can replace them with general purpose grade capacitors from a good quality brand, such as Nippon Chemicon, Nichicon, Rubycon, etc. The original capacitors are axially leaded, but I generally use radially leaded replacements as they are more easily sourced and will fit just fine.

      I'll contact you by email with further information.

      Thanks,
      Anton

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    2. Thanks Anton, i look forward to your e mail, the cd100 is pretty rare here in the uk . when they first came out in the uk i placed a deposit at Laskys Hi fi in Preston Lancashire,but then had second thoughts (probably the price !) but i did purchase a brand new cd104 , which i only got rid of last year. Many thanks, tim.

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  2. Hi Anton,
    Is it possible to post (or email me) a photo of the original box of this Philips CD101?
    Never seen one... :)

    Thx!
    Greetings,
    Peter

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sure, I'll post a photo. It's a reasonably distinctive box, with various period CD player logos, such as the one with the CD flying in the sky being shot by a laser (yes, really). Unfortunately it's somewhat defaced with stickers and writing, its been a long road from Bleeker Stereo TV Ltd. in Ottawa to me in Christchurch.

    Thanks,
    Anton

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  4. Hi Anton,
    Can i send you an email? Ik can not find your emailaddress on this website.
    Thx!
    Greetings,
    Peter

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sure, post your email address on your Blogger profile page and I'll get in touch.

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  5. Anton,
    I enjoyed reading your post about the Philips CD101.
    I have a Meridian MCD which I believe is based on the Philips player.
    Mine is exhibiting the symptoms that you describe above.
    (not recognizing or playing discs)
    I tried replacing the capacitors that you suggest, as well as several other ones
    in the power supply.
    The player still does not play discs.
    I was wondering if you might be able to provide any insight as to where else
    I might look in order to restore this deck to working condition.
    Thanks in advance,
    Best Regards,
    Doug

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To be honest, nothing really simple. These players are very complex compared to later ones, but do have extremely extensive repair manuals. In that situation my next step would be to check the voltage and ripple of all the supplies, then start an in depth troubleshoot following the service manual. Possibilties that come to mind are:

      - leaky diodes
      - failed film capacitors
      - mechanical damage (cracked traces and solder joints)

      The good news is that they're usually repairable, it's just finding what the fault is that's really difficult.

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