Akai GX-4000D

This fine little deck first showed up as part of my system in 1981, as the photo here shows. See it in the lower left, sitting on a speaker as I didn't have a place for it in the wall unit. It was purchased by my dad on October 16, 1977 for $264.99 to replace his Sony TC-600D which he had given to me.

My research shows that this deck was made from 1978-1985 and, I think, was one of the last consumer decks on the market. The last, according to the Musuem of Sound Recording, was the Sony TC-765 which was built in 1977-78. I may be mistaken but I think I was talking to my dad about tape decks and how I'd seen the Akai GX-4000D, at a department store of all places, and the next thing I know is that he had one. He'd bought his first serious cassette deck in 1977, a Teac A-170 and, as he and my mom were spending lots of time gone, traveling in their RV, cassettes were handier on the road than reels and I am sure he was transferring much of his music from reels to cassettes in those days.

While he was a music fan, he didn't play his machines for nearly the number of hours that I did, so when he gave the deck to me it was still like brand new. I did use it but with my Akai 202D-SS being my daily player I never did use the GX-4000D very much, especially after I acquired my Tandberg TD20A SE.

Now, 30-some years later, this deck has a place in my system again. It is, likely, the lowest mileage deck I own but not without its own issues. It is mint in appearance but I noticed that after it played for a while the speed was off a bit and I think there is a bit of a rumble in the take-up reel. I have never had the deck open so I suspect the usual items: lubrication, belts, and/or, motor capacitors, all easy fixes. However, as I write this, it is playing a factory-recorded tape of Percy Faith's "Great Folk Themes" and it sounds pretty good. And, yes, it still has the capstan sleeve for making the shift from 3-3/4 ips to 7-1/2 ips. Here is a photo as it sits in my system today.

You can take a look at the owner's manual in PDF here. (17.2 MB)

Update February 2023

I decided to start using this machine but it had a bad rumble in the take-up reel. I took it apart and didn't see anything glaring but did a clean and lube and that seemed to calm things down quite a bit.

Click on an image to enlarge it.

Updated March 2023.