Pioneer PL-12D

I started my Pioneer PL-12D modification with a bit of hesitation because it was already in a relatively very good condition considering its 45+ year old age.

When I acquired this turntable, the RCA plugs had a bit of corrosion on them them, so I decided to cut them off and replace them with new plugs. I cut back the cable insulation only to find that the corrosion extended down the stranded copper line. And that’s when the modification began.

The Pioneer PL-12D came stock with a wood-looking vinyl wrap. I used a heat gun to remove the wrap and replaced it with a 1/42″ thick Walnut veneer and finished the wood with a Danish oil.

I never liked how the stock 5-foot fixed RCA cables with grounding wire or the 115 volt power cord looked, so I removed them and replaced them with jacks mounted to the back of the turntable.

For the power cord, I wanted to use an IEC C7/C8 combination, as I felt that they look very clean. The power inlet in an Interpower C8 that mounts with two metric screws to the back of the turntable and is wired to an internal circuit board. I bought a 6-foot C7 power cord on Mouser to connect the turntable to the wall supply.

For the RCA jacks, I used rear mounting Switchcraft phono connectors with gold contact plating. The RCA jacks are wired to an internal distribution post that connects to the tonearm cables.

I installed a Keystone binding post with gold contact plating for grounding, but I ultimately decided to ground through the left channel ground – which has worked very well.

For the tonearm, I replaced the Ortofon cartridge that was mounted on the headshell with the Nagaoka MP-110. I wasn’t going to replace the stock headshell cables, but one of the connectors broke off the right channel cable and I wasn’t satisfied with the replacement that I made, so I replaced all four cables with litz wire cables. I replaced the tonearm cable with Cardas tonearm cable from KAB Audio. The tonearm cables wire direct to the distribution post that the RCA jacks also mounted to. I used Cardas Quad Eutectic solder for all the audio solder joints.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *