I have been away from the forum for several months. I just moved to southern California.
I unpacked my big-boxes-of-DIY and was looking through all the stuff that I haven't touched in over a year.
It had crossed my mind several times over the last several years to post photos like the ones I'm about to share. For whatever reason I did not.
However, I decided "F-it. I put a ludicrous
amount of my personal time + effort into the EQU47 to make it better. Countless protos, samples, trial&error, and pushing the various suppliers to make it simply better."
So, now I'm going to do something it is not in my nature to do—toot my own horn and show some examples of why the EQU47 is great.
This is a headbasket that goes on a Telefunken USA U47
repro that sells for $8,495.
You can buy this headbasket for $349 from Telefunken USA (or whatever they call themselves these days).
I am about 90% certain that this headbasket was made by Cleveland Wire Cloth in Ohio, USA (but I'm 99.9% certain that it's at least made somewhere in the US).
Here is it beside an EQU47 headbasket.
A few things of note.
• The Tele HB looks taller, but that's actually because it is slightly closer to the camera. The dimensions on both headbaskets are identical to within 0.1mm according to my measurements with three exceptions:
1) top mesh corner radius of EQU47 is larger than that of T-funk
2) top ring on EQU47 is 6mm, top ring on T-funk is 5.5mm
3) edge radii of top and bottom ring on EQU47 are smaller than T-funk
I believe the EQU47 to be more accurate in all three cases above.
• The finish/build quality on the EQU47 is just miles above the T-funk in my opinion
. Please formulate your own.
You can see tons of scratch/machining marks in the brass beneath the plating on the T-funk. This means that (a) the raw brass headbasket was not polished well before plating and (b) the plating is thin.
The solder point where the side rail attaches to the bottom ring on the T-funk is quite sloppy.
The T-funk side rail itself is embarrassingly crooked.
I was not able to photograph it well, but the top mesh on the T-funk was under so much pressure during forming that the outermost and innermost mesh layers have become flattened and distorted, squeezing the middle mesh between them like cheese through a grater.
You can also see that the T-funk side rails are just flat bar stock; whereas, the EQU47 side rails are bent to a very large radius just like the originals. *attention to detail*
• I believe that the T-funk middle mesh (the smallest of the three layers) is incorrect. I have measured it to be larger than the original Neumann specimens measure.Will any of this affect sound? Most likely not. What, then, does all this mean?
There are two points I take away from this.
1) The EQU47 headbasket is very well made, and we paid *attention to detail* to get it to that level. Much earlier in this thread there was a comment that the plating quality looked "Chinese." Not to insult the poster, but I find the comment funny, especially considering how the US-finished headbasket above looks in comparison. It's interesting how county of origin influences our opinions. The point is there can be great stuff made in China; there can be crap stuff made in China. There can be great stuff made in America; there can be crap stuff made in America. And the same goes for the rest of the world. I think the poster of this comment was implying that the EQU47 plating quality looked cheap to him. I disagree with fervor.
2) Headbaskets are hard to make. It took us years to get the EQU47 headbasket to this level. Telefunken sells an $8,495 product with what I believe is an inferior headbasket on top of it—they haven't quite figured it out yet. It takes serious assembly process design combined with iteration to get it right. Then it's a matter of pushing & pushing the suppliers to do things better than they ever have before. Again, this is true regardless of manufacturing location.
I guess I am just proud of what I have done, wanted to share, and wanted to plug the product.
I am not trying to slam Telefunken; I'm just commenting on what I see. Again, please form your own opinion and discuss.