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.
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.”
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.
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|
|Total cost of fully finished turntable package (as above, plus £200 fitting cost)||£5,764|