Technics today unveiled the new SL-1200MK7 Direct Drive Turntable (European model is the SL-1210MK7). The new model inherits the traditional design of the same series and maintains the same operating ease, reliability and durability, while newly adding a coreless direct drive motor and other sound-enhancing technologies. It also features new DJ play functions, such as reverse playback. The SL-1200MK7 is launched as the first new standard DJ turntable in approximately nine years.

The SL-1200 was launched as a popular direct drive turntable in 1972, becoming a best-selling model with cumulative sales of 3,500,000 units for the series. It was supported by powerful torque, easy operation, and high durability. It became greatly admired by both audio enthusiasts and DJs who helped to unleash the DJ culture in areas such as electronic dance music. The series is still highly acclaimed by DJs worldwide today.

The direct drive system uses a slow-rotating motor to directly drive the platter. This system has various advantages. It offers high performance, such as rotation accuracy and powerful torque, does not require replacement of parts and maintains high reliability over a long period of time. However, the direct drive system was said to on occasion produce a rotation irregularity called cogging. For the SL-1200MK7, a new coreless direct drive motor was developed. This motor employs a coreless stator. The removal of the iron core from the stator eliminated the root cause of cogging. Furthermore, the magnetic force of the rotor magnets was improved to the highest possible level, and the gap between the coreless stator and rotor magnets was optimised, thus achieving high torque performance equalling that of the SL-1200MK5. Boasting smooth rotation and powerful torque, this motor reproduces sound accurately and faithfully from the groove on an analogue record.

The tonearm, which is responsible for accurately reading the signal by tracking the groove on the phonorecord, is a static-balance universal S-shape tonearm, another Technics tradition. The tonearm tube is made of lightweight, high-rigidity aluminium. The bearing section of the gimbal suspension construction tonearm consists of a machined housing and high-precision bearing to assure excellent tracking performance with minimum stylus jumping, even in harsh playing conditions such as scratching.

The platter on which a vinyl record is placed features a two-layer structure with deadening rubber on the entire back surface to eliminate unwanted resonance in the aluminium die-cast platter. The platter offers high rigidity and outstanding vibration-damping characteristics to prevent harmful vibration from being transmitted to the record and delivers clear sound.

The chassis, an essential part for reducing external vibrations, inherits the audio quality enhancement technology fostered through the development of high-end turntables. The aluminium die-cast chassis is rigidly integrated with a special material consisting of ABS mixed with glass fibre to achieve a two-layer construction. The combination of this special high-rigidity material and a metal chassis raised the rigidity and vibration-damping performance to higher levels, realising a robust cabinet for beautiful sound reproduction. The insulator is comprised of a spring and rubber to provide optimal frequency characteristics. This not only assures high sound quality and superb howling resistance, but also effectively shuts out external vibrations under high sound level conditions.

The power and phono cable terminals allow detachment of the cables. The phono terminals are gold-plated to minimise sound quality degradation. Since the terminals allow disconnection of the cables, maintenance of the cables is easier, and your favourite phono cable can be connected to let you enjoy the change in sound quality resulting from a different cable. The SL-1200MK7 employs the newest motor control technology refined through the development of Blu-ray disc products. Utilising a microcomputer, this advanced motor control technology ensures high performance in normal rotation and also responds accurately to a wide range of DJ play styles, such as scratching. The starting torque and brake speed can be adjusted individually to suit the user’s preference.

The rotation speed can be set to 33-1/3 rpm, 45 rpm or 78 rpm.* The pitch control function allows fine adjustment of the rotation speed within ±8%/±16%. This function achieves accurate and stable pitch control thanks to full digital control with improved tracking performance and accuracy. The platter rotates in the reverse direction when the speed selector button and Start/Stop button are pressed simultaneously. The stylus illuminator features a new push-type structure and employs a high-brightness and long-life white LED. The illumination area and intensity were reviewed to provide improved visibility of the stylus tip compared to previous models even in a dark environment.

The SL-1200MK7 sports black buttons and a black tonearm while retaining the SL-1200 Series’ button layout. With the matte-texture black body and black parts, the new all black design presents an attractive, refined appearance. The LED light can be set to illuminate in either red or blue, further enhancing the DJ play environment.

Pricing and exact release date has have not yet been released, watch this space for further info.

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