Neumann PA2 # 023 from 1958

restoration of the rarest professional turntable

The Neumann PA2 # 023 from 1958, PA stands for "Plattenabspielgerät" (record player in German), is the most rarest professional turntable around the globe, probably not many were made by Neumann, price in 1958 was DM 595,-- and only 15 - 20 pcs. are still existing nowadays. I acquired this Neumann PA2 in the summer of 2019, coming from Santiago - Chile, and is one of the restoration projects for the winter of 2019/2020. During the restoration of this wonderful small turntable I will regularly upload some pictures of the activities and the restoration progress.

Early April 2020, finished some restoration activities, all parts cleaned and polished, new slide bearings placed in the motor, found the right rubber belt etc. so time to run a humble audio test with the unrestored tonearm (needs some work) and a temporarily headshell with a new DENON DL-103 MC cartridge connected to the phono input of my NAGRA PL-P control amplifier.

Mid April 2020 made a humble wooden docking station including rubber suspension studs as study project for coming audio tests, inspired by my NAGR PL-P and NAGRA recorders the mains input and phono/tonearm outputs are located at the left - and right side in stead of the back panel, when I'm satisfied about this concept I will make it from perspex or aluminium.

December 2020, after 8 months of "on hold", due to higher priority of other projects, I've proceed with this special restoration project, first of all I've made a new prototype docking frame with 4 huge rubber silentblocks and second, as experimental feature and reversible modification, I've made a tonearm base extension so this rare legendary turntable now can be used with a 12" EMT 997 tonearm. In my opinion the "strongest" part of the Neumann PA2 is the turntable itself, the "weakest" part is the original short Neumann tonearm (only 6,5"). The result is amazing, much better as with the original short Neumann tonearm. With this extension I have the same tonearm geometry as on the EMT 927 so I can also use the vintage Ortofon tonearms like the Ortofon RF-297, Ortofon RMA-297 and Ortofon RMA-309. 

January 2021, found this alignment protractor at eBay, the geometry of the EMT 997 at the Neumann PA2 is perfect just like it is at the EMT 927D st, will check also an Ortofon RMA-309 and Ortofon RF-297 from my stock.

May 2021, made some progress last months with this special spare time restoration project. For safety reasons (some underneath open parts from the Neumann PA2 deck carry mains voltage) and absorption of background noise generated by the motor I've made a closed - and solid wooden plinth. Further, with and thanks to a fellow Neumann PA2 owner in Switzerland a bunch of reproduction rubber belts were special made in Switzerland, 100% copy of the original and the most perfect to use up till now. Besides the already made tonearm base extension for the EMT 997 tonearm I've also made one for my Ortofon RF-297 so I now can also play mono records with the RF-297 - Ortofon/EMT OFD 25 mono MC cartridge combination.


End of May 2021, next sub project, making a tonearm base extension for a SME 3012 tonearm, at one of the EMT 927F turntables coming from the Swedish Radio in my other blog I found an incomplete SME 3012 tonearm so I started gathering the missing parts and manufacturing a tonearm base extension for this legendary tonearm.

May 2022, my favorite dream team, Neumann PA2 turntable with EMT 997 (banana) tonearm with EMT J-shell - Denon DL-103R combi and Neumann WV2 based phono stage with Neumann BV33 SUT (Step Up Transformer) and Telefunken EF-804S tubes.

May 2024, finally found some time to continue the restoration, first of all the special made tonearm base extensions are black anodized and mounted back to the Neumann PA2 turntables and yes there are two of them now, some time ago I acquired a second one, serial no. 111 from 1958 and coming from the same source in Santiago - Chile so now there are two of these legends in my workshop.

Early June 2024, arrival of a special new 12" tonearm for one of my Neumann PA2 turntables, custom made by Alfred Bokrand in Spain and based on the very rare and legendary Neumann DZT tonearm from the fifties, next step is to complete this Neumann turntable - tonearm set  with an original or replica Neumann DST stereo MC cartridge.