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Sony TC-KE500S

3-head cassette deck with Dolby S

Item # 156TCKE500

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Our take on the Sony TC-KE500S

Make the best sounding cassette recordings you've ever heard with Sony's 3-head TC-KE500S! This single-well deck offers separate heads for recording and playback, so you can monitor — during recording — exactly what your recorded tape sounds like!

You'll get optimum sound out of every tape using its computer-controlled record calibration (complete with test tone generator) and fine bias adjustment. Special 160 kHz Super Bias™ circuitry reduces bias-induced beat frequencies, and promotes extended high-frequency response. To remove unwanted tape hiss, choose Dolby B, C, or professional-level Dolby S for up to 24 dB of noise reduction at high frequencies and 10 dB at low frequencies! Dolby HX Pro extends dynamic headroom for cleaner reproduction of those crucial highs. A smooth 2-motor drive system and Sorbothane cassette stabilizer keep your music flowing with rock steady precision.


  • 3-head design
  • manual fine bias adjustment and recording level calibration
  • 160 kHz Super Bias electronics
  • record monitoring off the tape
  • time counter with memory
  • Dolby B, C, S, and HX Pro
  • full-logic controls
  • multiple music search
  • headphone output
  • record mute
  • switchable MPX filter for recording FM
  • controllable by Sony receiver remotes
  • frequency response (±3dB) 20-19,000 Hz — metal tape
  • signal-to-noise ratio 85 dB (Dolby S)
  • wow and flutter 0.055%
  • 17"W x 4-3/4"H x 12-1/4"D
  • warranty: 1 year
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Hands-on research

Product Research


Front panel: Standard 1/2 headphone plug (gold plated)
Rear panel: Stereo RCA input, stereo RCA output

Special Features

There is a recording level knob and a balance knob to set recording level and balance.

The deck uses a sorbothane cassette stabilizer to reduce the spread of vibration through the cassette shell. A ceramic cassette holder is used to damp resonance around the tape transport mechanism.

Bias and recording level calibration are set by pressing the Calibration button, pressing record to record test tones, and adjusting the bias current and recording level calibration by using the bias knob and the recording level knob.

The monitor button allows you to compare the quality of the recorded sound with the sound of the program source while recording.

The deck has a record mute function.

Memory play allows you to memorize a point on the tape and to return to that point.

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