Oxford Audio Consultants will be having an event at Oxford University, playing a £6,300 lacquer of Sarah Vaughan, Live at Laren Jazz Festival in 1975, that only survives one play. More »

Since its introduction in late 2016, the Essential III from Pro-Ject Audio Systems has been, say Pro-Ject, “a revelation in the affordable turntable market”. Combining looks with performance, they say that the initial market response has been phenomenal. As a result of this impact, the Essential III is beginning 2017 by extending into a range of three turntables at various prices. More »

Pro-Ject Audio Systems has collaborated with George Harrison’s family and UMC on a new turntable. Pro-ject say; “It was always our aim to offer class-leading sound quality for budget and high-end turntables. This and our passion for music is driving our productivity. We are very proud to introduce our newest collaboration with one of the most influencing artists of modern history, George Harrison”. More »

German turntable company, Dual, has relaunched in the UK. Once the largest manufacturer of turntables in Europe, the brand has had a history of producing turntables through the 1960s, 70s and 80s. For 2017 the brand is back in the UK with an initial offering of three new budget models. More »

Mark Levinson has introduced their first ever turntable, the N°515,which they say is “designed for the discriminating analogue music lover”. Created in partnership with VPI Industries, the № 515 Turntable is the first turntable that they say is “worthy of the Mark Levinson name”. More »

Absolute Sounds, the UK importer and distributor of high end audio products, got in touch to let us know about what the brands they represent are showing at CES 2017, starting today and running over the weekend in Las Vegas, USA. Read on for show locations and more details from the likes of Audio Research, Krell, dCS, Dan D’Agostino, Wilson, Magico and more. More »

We reported on the launch of Pro-Ject Audio Essential III Turntable back in October 2016. The Pro-Ject team have just been in touch to let us know that they will be presenting their new turntable at CES 2017. More »

roksponsmallAs the demand for vinyl grows at an extraordinary pace, the VPI team continues to develop its turntables to produce, they say, “a revelatory level of audio reproduction”. After the success of their award-winning Prime, VPI has launched the new Prime Signature turntable. More »

Father and son team David and Rob Stevenson review the entry level Pro-Ject Primary turntable costing £189. More »

roksponsmallCadence Group has just announced it has taken ownership of British engineering and Hifi specialist SME Limited.  Cadence, which already has major controlling interests in other prestigious audio brands, will bring a new level of investment to SME, allowing the company to extend its research and development activities whilst continuing to produce the class-leading products it is globally acclaimed for. More »

Father and son team David and Rob Stevenson review the entry level Pro-Ject Primary turntable costing £189. More »

In Italian Valore means value and at €1495 complete with arm the Valore Plus 425 turntable from Italian manufacturer Gold Note certainly looks to offer a good bang for your buck. Janine Elliot spins some tunes.  More »

In Italian Valore means value and at €1495 complete with arm the Valore Plus 425 turntable from Italian manufacturer Gold Note certainly looks to offer a good bang for your buck. Janine Elliot spins some tunes.  More »

At £2500 the AVID Hifi Pellere Phono-stage borrows a lot of its make up from its more expensive sibling costing £4300, but does it cut the right kind of groove? Janine Elliot finds out.  More »

The new Shinola Runwell turntable will be manufactured in the US and is a partnership between VPI and Shinola. Hifi Pig talks to Mat Weisfeld of VIP.  More »

roksponsmallOctober was a real whirlwind of a month, there were Hifi Shows including Hifi Show Live Windsor and The Indulgence Show plus a huge amount of news and we reviewed gear ranging from £89 IEMs to a £32,000 Power Amplifier.  Just in case you missed anything, here is a round up of what happened last month… More »

Every year Hifi Pig is invited to the Conservatoire de Musique at Saint-Brieuc in Brittany, France for an evening of jazz presented by the association Jazz Angle. It’s always an entertaining and well attended evening and, as relative newcomers to Jazz, it always throws up something new and unexpected that we’ve not heard before…and this year was no exception. More »

AVID Hifi is headed up by Conrad Mas and make a wide range of turntables to suit many pockets. Janine Elliot gets her hands on the British company’s £4000 Volvere turntable. More »

roksponsmallThe 6 Perspex turntable from Pro-Ject Audio Systems has been a staple of the company’s range for many years. Now, the latest version takes the existing design but adds a few enhancements to improve the performance.
More »

Hifi Pig talks to Hifi Pig reader Stuart Armstrong who has an interesting and very accomplished DIY turntable project. More »

Hifi Pig talk to Conrad Mas, the man behind the UK based manufacturer AVID Hifi. AVID Hifi are perhaps most well known for their range of turntables and phonostages, but at last year’s Munich High End the company introduced a full range of electronics and loudspeakers…and won the Hifi Pig Loves You Award.  More »

The Peak PT1 turntable has a natural slate plinth and comes complete with an arm for £599. Ian Ringstead takes it for a spin for Hifi Pig. More »

At the end of August Hifi Pig reported the news that the Pro-ject Classic Turntable had won the EISA award and way back in 2012 we also reported their Debut Carbon won the same award. Last year the company’s RPM 3 Carbon won last year’s EISA Award and it’s also been awarded prestigious Red Dot Award for its outstanding design this year…it also won a Hifi Pig Recommended Awardpj-phono-rpm3carbon-white-2msilver-1024x6388online

Ingenious entry to the world of audiophile luxury, is what The Red Dot Award people say about the award! They add that  RPM 3 Carbon utilises evolutionary enhancements to improve the performance of Pro-Ject’s RPM turntable series including: A low resonance chassis holds an inverted platter bearing with a ceramic ball for further reduced rumble. An outboard 15V AC motor is driven by using an ultra precise AC generator with DC power supply for further enhanced speed stability.

A 10 S-shaped tonearm tube is made from carbon fibre, aluminium and resin. Using a complex 3-step process with heat treatment and 100bar pressure, arm tube rigidity is strengthened, internal damping is maximized and resonances are reduced to a minimum. This makes the tonearm also suitable for MC cartridges. Additional features are a magnetic antiskating mechanism and a TPE- damped counterweight.

Congratulations From all at Hifi Pig for your stash of awards.

 

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Reloop HiFi has announced the introduction of their first record player. With decades of experience in the DJ and Professional Audio industry, Reloop have rapidly become a market leader  in the supply of DJ turntables and accessories. But during the German company’s twentieth anniversary year, they have decided to transfer their skills and experience to a new task; producing a turntable that’s been designed for music enthusiasts and sound purists. The result is TURN 3.

Reloop Turn3

Robert Lauterwein, Founder and CEO of Reloop, says of the new venture:

“For as long as I can remember, turntables have always been a part of my life. My father is a passionate music lover and vinyl collector, and my grandfather used to import and distribute Sony turntables in Switzerland in the 1970’s; so it was only natural that I developed my own interest in records and the tools we use to play them. That interest continues to drive me professionally and privately to this day.” He continues, “Twenty years ago, Reloop’s very first product for DJs was a turntable. Since then, turntables have been a core part of the Reloop DJ line, and me and my team constantly strive to ensure we offer the best technology available at an attractive price.”

TURN 3 is a precision-engineered belt-drive record player with a heavy MDF construction and clever anti-vibration feet, which ensure a stable platform for the turntable. The sleek gloss black plinth houses a low-noise DC motor that keeps un-wanted noise and resonance to a minimum. The motor is connected to the acoustically-treated aluminium die-cast platter via a drive belt that loops around the main platter’s inner-ring. The platter then sits atop a smooth-yet-sturdy spindle system.

The straight tonearm was specially designed for TURN 3, and offers optimal tracking. The arm’s premium finish also complements the turntable’s quality aesthetic, while the clearly labelled counterweight and convenient anti-skate dial make set-up effortlessly simple. TURN 3 is supplied with the Ortofon 2M Red cartridge (SRP £89.00), and the use of a special curved headshell makes for easy changing between cartridges with different types of music or vinyl records (i.e. stereo or mono records).

TURN 3 is operated by a master switch on the back panel, and a three-point speed control on top of the plinth. The controller allows for effortlessly simple switching between 33 1/3, 45 and 78rpm speeds with tight accuracy and reliable stability. Then, for further convenience, there is a switchable Semi-Automatic Auto Stop function, which allows the turntable to automatically start when the tonearm is placed in position, and stop again at the end of the record.

TURN 3 is also simple to connect to any hifi system. The turntable is internally grounded, finished with gold-plated connectors and supplied with a set of RCA leads. Thanks to the switchable built-in Moving Magnet phono stage, the turntable can either be connected to a standard LINE or AUX input on an amplifier, or it can be upgraded with the use of an external phono stage. The additional USB output also allows for simple connection to a PC or Mac, providing a quick and easy way to  transcribe your vinyl to digital audio files.

TURN 3 is a stylish, customisable hi-fi turntable that offers a high-quality sound performance from a package that easily fits into any vinyl playback system.

SRP £350.00

The Reloop TURN 3 is available in the UK now.

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The flagship product of ONKK Limited UK, the Cue turntable fuses “ultra modern design, innovative engineering and contemporary aesthetics to deliver superlative, mastertape-like sound reproduction” says the company’s recent press release. We’ve been speaking with the guys at ONKK for some time now and whilst the turntable will make its debut at the National Audio Show this coming weekend, the company are not releasing photographs other than this we found on Twitter. onkk_turntable

This brand new direct-drive turntable employs high precision DSP speed control, a bespoke resonance-damped aluminium plinth, unique pistonic suspension system and a silent ceramic bearing.

Cue offers a choice of three speeds (33, 45 and 78RPM), which can be adjusted in 1/100 RPM steps, memorised and recalled at the touch of a button. This is done by a simple, intuitive and ergonomic user interface.

Meticulous attention has been paid to mechanical vibration isolation, with the specially designed mass-damped cast aluminium plinth and the previously mentioned pistonic suspension system providing immunity from external resonance.

The silent, wearless ceramic bearing is designed to last for generations. Its special material allows a minute contact point which  is said to significantly reduce drag and permits instantaneous motor response to changing load conditions. Speed fluctuations are sensed and adjusted in milliseconds.

Cue is handmade in the United Kingdom and comes with a five year parts guarantee.

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Pro-Ject Audio Systems has received for the 6th time one of the most important awards in consumer electronics worldwide, the EISA AWARD.PJ-Phono-TheClassic-Eucalyptus-Silver-Cover (1)s

Inspired by the classic turntables of our youth, The Classic comes in a wooden frame, with a damped heavy weight aluminium platter, a new carbon/aluminium tonearm and an aluminium counterweight.

The Classic is available with three different wooden chassis (Palisander, Rosenut, Walnut): Recommended retail price without cartridge is € 950,00 and with included Ortofon moving magnet cartridge “2M Silver” it is € 999,00.

 

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The Iota QT Ultra-SP turntable & Satori tonearm is the flagship model in a range of four turntables all of which are designed, manufactured, and hand built here in the UK by Iota Audio Design.iota- audio-design-QT Ultra-SP- turntable

The Ultra SP turntable is built to order, and the final finish options are to each individual customers preferences, from the thickness and profile of the diamond polished granite base board, to the options for fine paint, lacquer or even gold, silver, or other plated metal finish to key components used in the manufacture of this product.

The company’s Ultra SP turntable in “XL specification” offers a larger chassis and baseboard designed to accommodate multiple tonearms of any size or type, but all other aspects of its specification are the same.

The design of The Ultra SP consists of a chassis constructed from anodised extruded aluminium beams with the whole structure being internally damped and then mounted on suspension isolation towers from the high mass granite baseboard below. This ensures the ideal environment for both the iota-audio-design Satori tonearm as well as the the rotating Spindle Platter supporting the vinyl record.

The Spindle Platter on which the vinyl record is placed is made up from 26 individual components, these include a combination of 316 stainless steel high mass peripheral weights, as well as aircraft grade aluminium alloy components, plus natural cork, Acetyl turned components and advanced polymer resin bonding agents.

The aim has been to create a structure that offers high rotational mass, but to position the majority of the mass at its extreme outer edge, therefore to gain the maximum benefit of centrifugal force. In addition whilst the structure is designed so that it supports the vinyl record where it is most required at its outer edge, but also at the centre around the turntable bearing spindle. The addition of a clamp then holds the vinyl flat to this damped area at the centre of the Spindle Platter. However the area of the vinyl that contains the groove will be devoid of any platter reflections or interactions. The interface cork mat is left to do its job, and nothing else, and again as it’s not fixed and the company have alternatives available.

The supplied Satori tonearm is a suspended control point design. This employs a combination of bearing and support techniques as well as materials not previously applied or used in other tonearm designs. The combination of an exceptionally strong Pultruded carbon fibre tube of square/round section for the main arm tube, this is suspended on PVDF ( Polyvinylidene flouride) mono filaments, with the excursion of the tonearm constrained by an upward facing stainless steel control point.iota-audio-design-QT Ultra-SP turntable with satori tonearm

As a standard option the tonearm is supplied with XLR balanced connections and so very long cable runs from the turntable can be used. However, The Iota tonearm can be supplied with standard type connector plugs at no additional charge for use in conventional systems.

The turntable is supplied with the Ultra SP power supply which acts as a mains regenerator. Frequency stability is crystal locked to +/- 30 parts per million. In fact in order to provide both 33 and 45 RPM for the two-speed model specific crystals, ground to exact specification were used. Speed change is achieved by the flick of a switch. The unit is also available for all other international mains supplies & None UK/ EU voltages.

Prices from: £5,695.00

The Iota QT Ultra-SP turntable as above in XL specification: £ P.O.A.

Other models start from £795.00

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Project have a well deserved name for producing great products at great prices, but £299 for a vacuum record cleaning machine really does seem to be very good value, at least on paper. Ian Ringstead puts a few of his grimier charity shop finds through the VC-S to find out if it sucks or not!  More »

Devon-based Timestep has garnered quite a reputation for its fully sanctioned modifications of various iconic Technics turntables. Now, designer Dave Cawley turns his attention to the recently-launched SL-1200 GAE deck and comes up with yet more cannily-crafted advancements in the form of the new Timestep EVOke, and we very much like the look of this at Hifi Pig Towers, being the huge fans of the Techy we are.Timestep EVOke 1

Like its predecessor the EVO, the new EVOke takes a brand new Technics deck, makes a number of smart revisions then adds a quality tonearm and cartridge.

The original EVO was a heavily modified edition of the Technics SL-1200 deck and over the past decade it enjoyed considerable success among critics and buyers alike.

Earlier this year, Technics launched a brand new edition of the SL-1200: the SL-1200 GAE. In its native Japan the first several hundred models built sold out within minutes. Although the SL-1200 GAE has only just arrived in the UK, Cawley was already hard at work on Timestep’s measurements and modifications, having been approached by Technics some months ago who invited him to do so.

The new Timestep EVOke is the result. A Timestep-Technics tour de force, its technical measurements almost equal those of the Technics SP-10 MK-III deck.

“The standard Technics SL-1200 GAE, while superb, cuts costs in two areas: the tonearm and the power supply,” says Cawley. “The arm is derived from the SL-1200 MK-IV and while it’s better than some, it’s not what I’d call an audiophile arm.”Timestep EVOke power supply 1

In the EVOke, Cawley therefore replaces the tonearm with an SME IV which, he says, “with its tapered magnesium armtube and silver finish is a match made in heaven”. An Audio Technica AT-33PTG/II moving coil cartridge with gold-plated solid boron cantilever provides the perfect complement to top off the system.

As for the power supply, the EVOke replaces the SL-1200 GAE’s internal switch mode with an external linear PSU designed by Timestep. “While the SL-1200 GAE’s power supply is  very quiet,” says Cawley, “a number of reviews have mentioned a ‘haze’, which our modified supply removes.” Constructed with supreme attention to detail, the Timestep power supply’s cable exits the SL-1200 GAE via a custom-made adapter plate; the gold-plated power connector is made by Furutech while the PSU connectors are both gold-plated Neutrik.Timestep EVOke tonearm 1

Pricing & availability

The Timestep EVOke is available now, either as a fully finished turntable package, or as selected components to create your own modified Technics SL-1200 GAE deck.

Technics SL-1200 GAE turntable £2,700
SME IV tonearm £1,860
Tonearm mounting plate (allows fitting of any 9” SME tonearm) £90
Audio Technica AT-33PTG/II MC cartridge £419
Timestep PSU £495
Total cost of fully finished turntable package (as above, plus £200 fitting cost) £5,764

iota-audio-design have been in touch with Hifi Pig to tell us about their phono stage. The name may be new to you but hey have a company history that goes back more than 25 years and many of their products are being revised, upgraded and improved.

Their balanced phono stages have evolved over a very long time, the original was created in 1995, and now with the 2016-Rev II versions the company say that these “reference grade products” have taken another step forward.

iota Signature Reference Phono Stageiota-audio-design-Signature-reference-phono-stage- front-2.jpeg

2016-Rev II…………..£ 1,495

The iota Signature Reference Balanced phono stage in Rev II 2016 form is now available. These brand new two box units come with a full 3 year parts and labour warranty.iota-Signature-reference-phono-stage-lid -off-back-view.jpeg

iota Median Phono Stage

2016-Rev II …£ 625

iota are offering an opportunity for all existing owners of iota Signature Reference, and the iota Median balanced phono stages to upgrade any previous version of the products to the recently released REV II-2016 versions. The cost of the upgrade is just £240.00. This includes any service or repair that may be required to the phono stage or power supply, and this will apply whether you are the original owner or you purchased the equipment second hand. Following this significant performance upgrade the re-calibrated item will also then benefit from a full one year guarantee, whatever its age.

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VANA, Ltd. has announced that the European Audio Team C-Major turntable, the company’s first complete analogue playback solution, is available now through a carefully selected network of US dealers. The C-Major turntable has been engineered and manufactured in Prague to deliver superb performance with a sleek “super-flat” industrial design and comes ready to play right out of the box—complete with tonearm, cartridge, record clamp and dust cover. US MSRP is $2495. Hifi Pig’s Janine reviewed it here. c-major w dustcover - BL

The foundation of the C-Major turntable is a low-profile floating chassis made from carbon fiber laminated MDF, which gives the C-Major it’s slender profile. The chassis rests on a conical TPE (thermo-plastic elastomer) suspension system along with damped adjustable feet that together provide superior isolation. The tonearm and platter are mounted on a separate suspended carbon fiber/MDF platform, with the platter spinning on a hardened bronze bearing mated to a Teflon® plated, polished brass housing. The C-Major utilizes a proprietary ultra-low noise AC motor and high precision power supply for speed stability. The platter and sub-platter are made from a rigid aluminum/magnesium alloy.

The C-Major employs a light yet rigid carbon alloy 9-inch C-Note Tonearm with a hybrid Cardan/Unipivot design that combines extremely low bearing friction. This configuration is not prone to wobble like many Unipivot designs, and there is almost no measurable bearing play in the lateral plane. Adjusting and maintaining consistent cartridge azimuth and anti-skate settings is an easy task based on this design. All key features for cartridge alignment and adjustability are available on the tonearm, including VTA/SRA, VTF, azimuth, anti-skate and a slotted headshell for overhang and offset angle optimization. In addition to the C-Note Tonearm, the C-Major comes equipped with the highly regarded Ortofon Quintet Blue cartridge along with premium-grade gold plated RCA outputs.

“The C-Major is really a turntable for vinyl enthusiasts who want a superb high-performance product that comes with everything you need,” explained Vana Director of Business Development Stephen DeFuria. “Each component of the C-Major was chosen specifically so that the sum of its parts outperform everything in this price category. As an example, the 9-inch C-Note Tonearm is a smaller version of the arm found on E.A.T.’s $8500 model. This is an all-inclusive truly high-performance turntable that is ready to play your most cherished vinyl collection right out of the box,” DeFuria said.

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For the first time ever, the Clearaudio Statement v2 turntable will be gracing the demonstration room of a UK audio dealer. Catch it while you can at Dorset-based Stone Audio’s very special Clearaudio event on Friday 1st & Saturday 2nd July.

Originally launched in 2006, Clearaudio’s cost-no-object, flagship Statement is a “masterpiece of engineering that genuinely advances the state of the art” says their recent press release. You can read all about the turntable here. Clearaudio Statement v2 - 1

Where: Stone Audio, The Axium Centre, Dorchester Road, Poole, Dorset BH16 6FE

When: Friday 1st July, 6pm & Saturday 2nd July, 10.30am-5pm

Tickets: Entry is free but please book your place in advance.

 

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Pro-Ject’s first vertical turntable is now available in the UK.We caught a glimpse of it at Munich and it indeed very cool.

“The VT-E is a lifestyle product that still employs hi-fi principles to deliver a great sound from such a striking record player” says the company’s press release.

Retail price is £229.00 in all three available finishes. At launch we will only have access to the Right-handed version, and until the end of June VT-E will only be available through a select network of hi-fi retailers. From July 2016, VT-E will be available through the whole Pro-Ject authorised dealer network.

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The vinyl revolution shows no signs of retreating behind the barricades and here in our second look at vinyl at high end Munich 2016 we see a number of innovative and pricey vinyl spinners…and some not to expensive of course. Part 1 can be found here. Sperling Audio, Rega, AMG, Acoustic Solid, Clearaudio, Trans Rotor, WE Audio Systems, Well Tempered Lab, Audio Deva, Pro-Ject, SPEC Corporation, Acoustic Signature, Gpinto, Kuzma, Sibatech, Acoustical Systems More »

 

TEAC’s best-selling range of analogue turntables has now been joined by the TN-570, a new flagship model that aims to deliver the highest audio fidelity yet, the brands latest press release tells us.TN-570-View-12 (1)

The TN-570 belt-driven turntable combines a clear acrylic platter, an AT100E Moving Magnet cartridge, an all-new, height-adjustable S-shaped tonearm, all mounted on a dual-layer composite black marble/high-density MDF base.

TEAC TN-570 – KEY FEATURES

  •     Belt-drive turntable with electronic speed change
    ·      New static-balanced S-type tonearm
    ·      Clear acrylic platter
    ·      Dual-Layer composite artificial black marble/high density MDF plinth
    ·      Platter Rotation Sensing Servo System (P.R.S3)
    ·      Built-in phono stage (moving magnet)
    ·      Optical digital output (192kHz/24-bit max) and USB output (48kHz/16-bit) for transferring music from vinyl records to your Mac or PC
    ·      Supplied AT-100E moving magnet (MM) cartridge

The new S-shaped tonearm features a light alloy universal headshell (to allow easy cartridge swapping) and is height adjustable, to compensate for cartridges that are greater in height than usual.  In another break from the norm, speed selection between 33 1/3rd and 45 RPM speeds is achieved electronically, rather than requiring the platter to be physically removed in order to move the belt.TN-570-Rear-view-14

TEAC has also developed a ingenious Platter Rotation Sensing Servo System (using an optical sensor) to deliver a rotation precision that’s almost the same as you’d get with a direct-drive.

And the same goes for the combination of a clear 16mm acrylic platter and massive Dual Layer composite artificial marble ‘Onyx Emperador’/MDF base (secured on a honeycomb structure bottom cover). The materials have been chosen, after extensive listening, for their ability to help minimise unwanted resonance.!

Maximizing the TEAC TN-570’s versatility, a built-in MM phono stage is also included, along with an optical output (up to 192kHz/24-bit) and USB output (48kHz/16-bit), allowing owners to convert their vinyl to the latest digital formats (a version of the TN-570 without the digital output stage – called the TN-550 – will also be available in certain markets).
Price (only in black, available now)

TN-570 – £749

TN-550 – £599

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Bryston has announced the introduction of the BLP-1 turntable, a belt drive design housed within a mass-loaded chassis engineered with critical features and innovations to please vinyl enthusiasts. The Bryston BLP-1 will become available through Bryston dealers beginning July, 2016 with an MSRP of $3995 including tonearm and custom Bryston power supply. bryston_turntable_vinyl

“Each feature of the BLP-1 represents an effort to deliver remarkably accurate vinyl playback by holding precise speed stability while minimizing resonances” says the company’s latest press release. The BLP-1’s 33 ⅓ / 45 RPM low speed / high torque motor is driven by a proprietary Bryston-designed and manufactured pulse width modulation (PWM) power supply called the BTP-1 (included with turntable). The 35mm thick Delrin® platter with integrated record mat is mated to a hardened carbon steel spindle and ultra-hard bronze modular bearing system polished to 0.02mm tolerance. The unique vented plinth is said to both eliminate platter turbulence and prevent unwanted vibrations from reaching the bearing. The seven-segment titanium tonearm features tungsten steel bearings and an arm tube integrated to the headshell. The Bryston BLP-1 also comes with a removable tonearm cable, adjustable brushed aluminum feet and a hinged high-mass dustcover to complete the package.

“As we set out to design the newest Bryston phono preamplifier models BMC and BMM, the wide bandwidth and low distortion of our new gain stages reminded us of how breathtaking and fresh high- resolution vinyl playback could be,” explained Bryston’s James Tanner. “With the BLP-1, we have created a turntable that represents premium performance to supplement our lineup. Going forward, it is our objective to identify an array of cartridges that will ideally match our turntable and phono stages (impedance, loading, capacitance, gain requirements etc.) to provide customers with the predictability of a plug-and-play solution if so desired. Of course, dealers and enthusiasts will also have the option to select their cartridge of choice independent of our recommendations,” stated Tanner.

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Last month I looked at a turntable design from Garrard that if it had taken off might have meant no need for CDs at all, allowing as it did the possibility of up to 5 hours playing from an LP. Alas its lifetime was little more than my interest in MiniDiscs. This time round I conclude my look at turntables and arms with other ideas that could have changed the fortunes of vinyl before its revival (or should that be revinyl) in the 21st Century. More »

Pro-Ject Audio Systems has announced The Classic turntable which utilises a simple and elegant “frame” design, which bears a notable resemblance to some of the most famous turntables of the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s. Hifi Pig managed to have a dem of this at the recent High End show in Munich and it looks great in a retro kind of way (see first picture). Speaking of the design, Heinz Lichtenegger has said:

“In my first year as a hi-fi dealer, working out of my mother’s petrol station using her trade license, I sold 50 Thorens 166 MK 2. In a town of 2000 people, I made everybody into a hi-fi believer…
Later I expanded to some Linns, Aristons, Heybrooks etc. Today Pro-Ject is the leading company for hi-fi stereo turntables and sooner or later I simply had to produce what I once loved…”project_classic_turntable_munich

The Classic’s design is more than just aesthetically pleasing, it also combines proven hi-fi technologies with the simple set-up so often associated with Pro-Ject turntables, so you can get down to enjoying your music as soon as possible.

The two-plinth design utilises Thermo Plastic Elastomers (TPE) to isolate the sub-chassis, rather than the traditional method of a spring-loaded sub-chassis. The layout effectively decouples the motor from the main bearing and the tonearm, reducing unwanted interference between the components.

The idea of reduced resonance transference carries through to the platter configuration. The instantly recognisable dual-platter layout has been chosen instead of the old cast platters. The main platter on The Classic is machined from an aluminium alloy which is lined underneath with TPE damping. The sub-platter/bearing assembly combines a hardened steel rod with a bronze bushing that is lined with Teflon, resulting in a very smooth, low-noise solution. The configuration is similar to that of a Debut turntable, but the tolerances for these components have been improved by a factor of 10 over the Debut Carbon.PJ-Phono-TheClassic-Eucalyptus-Silver-Cover (1)s

The Classic also boasts an entirely new tonearm, exclusively designed for this special anniversary turntable. The conical tube is made from aluminium, wrapped in a layer of carbon fibre. The carbon fibre keeps the tonearm light and stiff, while the aluminium adds improved damping and grounding.

The Classic Tonearm also uses a new bearing assembly with precision-machined, ultra-low friction Zircon bearings. Underneath, a new Japanese-designed ball-bearing allows for easier placement of the tonearm wires and a much freer movement of the tonearm. The new nickel-finished counterweight is also TPE-damped, reducing the amplitude of the tonearm’s resonant-frequency by 50%. Finally, the tonearm also benefits from the usual azimuth and VTA-adjustments associated with all high-end Pro-Ject tonearms.

A variety of counterweights will be available for The Classic, supporting cartridges up to 25g. The Classic Tonearm will also be available for sale separately in the future.PJ-Phono-TheClassic-Eucalyptus-Silvers

To increase accessibility for The Classic, the turntable has been designed with a new set of feet, which effectively allows the turntable to perform as well as possible in a wide variety of installations, even when it’s not placed on an ideal platform. The feet are both dampened and height-adjustable, ensuring the turntable can be adjusted to sit level on unbalanced or imperfect surfaces.

The Classic is supplied as standard with the Ortofon 2M Silver cartridge, which has been designed exclusively for Pro-Ject Audio Systems. However, the ability of the turntable is such that it’s also capable of working with a wide variety of high-end Moving Coil options. The inclusion of a junction box on the back-panel, also allows for cable improvements as and when you improve your cartridge option.

The Classic turntable is available in Eucalyptus, Rosenut or Walnut (shown) finishes. It is supplied as standard with all necessary set-up tools, a fitted dust cover and Pro-Ject’s specially-developed Connect-IT E turntable cables.

SRP £799.00
The Pro-Ject Classic will be available in the UK from June 2016.

Technical Information
Speed: 33 / 45 RPM (manual speed change)
Drive Principle: Belt drive
Platter: 300mm aluminium (TPE-damped)
Main Bearing: Stainless steel (Bronze bush with Teflon lining)
Wow & Flutter: ± 0.03% (33rpm) / ± 0.05% (45rpm)
Speed Drift: ± 0.10% (33rpm) / ± 0.11% (45rpm)
Signal-to-Noise Ratio: -71dB
Tonearm: The Classic Tonearm (9”)
Effective Arm Length: 230mm
Effective Arm Mass: 13.5g
Overhang: 18mm
Included Accessories: Dust Cover, Connect-IT E (RCA) cable Power Supply: 15V / 1,600mA DC
Power Consumption: 5W Max. / <0.5W in standby Dimensions (W x H x D): 460 x 131 x 351mm (lid closed) Weight: 10.2kg (net)

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The continued success of the vinyl format shows no signs of slowing and, judging by the number of turntables on show at this year’s High End, there’s plenty of choice for vinyl lovers when it comes to getting into the grooves.
There were turntables pretty much at every turn at the show with everything from the highly exotic to the more affordable and sober.
Here’s a few of the vinyl spinners that caught our eye on our tour of High End. More »

Ian Ringstead had only ever read about the Munich High End show from afar, but this year decided to jump in with both feet pops his cherry. Here’s what he thought about his first time.  More »

The MAY edition of Hifi Pig Magazine and Gadgety News is out and ready for FREE download.
 
It’s packed with Hifi and Gadget reviews of course but this month we have a great interview with the man who discovered Prince and help write his first hit single, plus a special report on the possible effects of a Brexit on the British Hifi industry. Download your free copy now. There’s also great music reviews, fab columnists and more…MAY2016FRONT500SMALL
 
Hifi Reviews
Pre Audio GL-1102N Turntable
EAT C Sharp Turntable and Koetsu Black MC Cartridge
Remton 383 Mk 2 Phonostage
Roksan TR-5 S2 Loudspeakers
Fostex PM0.5d Active Loudspeakers
Questyle QP1r DAP
O2A Quintessence SUBLIM Speaker Cables
Studio Connections Platinum Digital Cables
Atlas Cables Budget Loom
 
Gadgety Reviews
Cubot X17 Smartphone Review
Devil Horns Earbuds Review
Fugoo Tough and Style Bluetooth Speaker Review
iFit Classic Analogue Fitness Smartwatch
Manfrotto Lumiemuse 3 LED Camera Light
Onkyo H500M Headphones
Skullcandy Grind Wireless Headphones
Skullcandy Hesh 2 Bluetooth Headphones
ViewSonic Pro7827HD Projector
 
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This year ELAC celebrates its 90th anniversary and, as well as the first European showing of their Uni-Fi speakers and Discovery and Debut electronics products, the company have two new and rather special products being launched.

First of all is the Concerto, the  new  ELAC  flagship  loudspeaker, launched to mark the 90th anniversary and cement ELACs position in the high end of audio.ELAC HIGH-END SPEAKER OPTION2-1

ELAC HIGH-END SPEAKER OPTION2-2

Price TBA but expected to be approximately 50K to 60K EUR.

Secondly is the Miracord 90 Anniversary where ELAC revisits a golden era with a turntable to mark its 90th birthday.  In the 1970s the ELAC Miracord turntables were well received and this is a welcome return to the turntable market for them.Miracord90_Seite-2

Price TBA, expected to be approximately 2000 to 2500 EUR

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In this months Views Of Stu, Stuart Smith takes us on a rambling personal journey through his relationship with vinyl.View_MFA_Spons More »

The Audio Barn in Old Harlow, Essex got in touch with Hifi Pig to tell us about a great sounding event they have coming up on the 13th and 14th May. It’s a Clearaudio/Larsen open day but with a twist. Clearaudio Concept Wood MC

They’ll be featuring the Clearaudio Concept (Pictured) and Performance DC turntables through Naims SuperNait integrated amplifier, and then through Larsen 6 & 8 Loudspeakers and anyone attending on the Friday evening or Saturday will be entered into a free prize draw!  The winner will be recipient of a Clearaudio Turntable Carekit Professional worth £120!

But it’s not all turntables and loudspeakers as on the Friday evening, Toby Webster of The Black Dog Wine Company in North Weald will be downstairs offering wine tastings. He has been working with small, often artisan-scale winemakers for over 30 years, and will have available to informally taste a selection of half a dozen or so delicious and original wines from his portfolio. Nice! 

On the Friday evening the event opens at 4pm and will finish around 8pm (later if demand dictates) with the Clearaudio Concept, Naim SuperNait and Larsen 8 speakers being the main event, whilst on the Saturday the event kicks off with a presentation of the system previous system with Larsen 6 speakers by Sound Fowndations Chris Green followed by some tech chat and the opportunity for visitors to play their own vinyl on the system.

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Clearaudio have been engaged in ongoing research into moving coil (MC) technology since 1978. Still, their design team found themselves facing quite a challenge when tasked with developing a brand new cartridge that would improve on the existing entry-level Concept MC, but without breaking a key price point, says the company’s latest press release. Clearaudio Essence MC square

Like the Concept MC, the Essence MC’s body is constructed from a high-density aluminium-magnesium alloy, which is then coated with a ceramic layer to minimize resonance.

Meanwhile, the boron cantilever, microline stylus and Clearaudio-patented moving coil generator with its hand-selected high-performance magnets have each been subjected to rigorous scrutiny in order to achieve tighter tolerances. The result they say is “improved dynamic performance, higher resolution and channel matching of better than 0.5 dB”.

The Essence MC will partner with almost any MC phonostage at a price that won’t break the bank. Its angular body shape with centre line at the front makes it easy to align, while threaded holes mean that you don’t have to fiddle with screws and nuts. It comes with a full cover stylus guard.

Technical specifications

 

Construction Aluminum-magnesium alloy with ceramic surface layer;

microline stylus; boron cantilever; OFC copper coils

Frequency response 20 Hz – 40 kHz
Output voltage 0.4 mV at 5 cm/s
Recommended tracking force 2.0 g (+/- 0.2 g)
Channel separation > 32 dB
Channel difference (balance) < 0.3 dB
Compliance 9/9 μ/mN
Cartridge impedance 11 Ω
Total weight 8.0 g
Warranty 2 years (provided warranty card completed and returned to Clearaudio within specified timescale)

 

The Clearaudio Essence MC is available now priced at £795 (including VAT).

 

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