Technics today unveiled, at Berlin-based tech jamboree IFA 2017, a prototype of what will be its flagship, reference-grade, broadcast-quality, you-can't-afford-it vinyl turntable (or 'record player', if you're over 30).
With an all-new, coreless direct drive motor and a platter that weighs a faintly ludicrous 7 KILOS – yes, Kilos – Technics is describing the Reference Class SP-10R as its 'most premium analogue, direct drive turntable to date.' To put that in context, last year's SL-1200G was hardly cheap at around £3,000.
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The headline boasts are 'the world’s best signal-to-noise ratio and rotational stability', bolstered by 'Technics’ most advanced digital and analogue technologies'. For those of you who appreciate the more arcane points of turntable shopping, the signal-to-noise is 92 dB, with wow & flutter rated at 0.015%,
The SP-10R takes the same two-sided rotor drive system as the SL-1200G, but then adds stator coils on both sides of the rotor, 'for a more powerful and accurate sound.'
The platter's awesome girth is built up from three layers: one each of brass, die-cast aluminium, with sonically deadening rubber on top – again this follows the template laid down by the SL-1200G.
'By optimising the natural frequency of each layer,' Technics assures us, 'external vibrations are thoroughly suppressed resulting in a beautifully clear and crisp audio experience.'
As you'd expect, the switching power supply is both separate from the main body of the turntable, and designed to be as near to silent as is scientifically possible, suppressing unwanted hum and vibrations.
The SP-10R is slated for launch in 'early summer 2018'. It succeeds 1975's SP10MK2 and 1981's SP-10MK3 as Technics contribution to the world of turntables aimed at professional broadcasters. A matching tonearm 'and other components' will also be made available.
Pricing has not been announced but I'll tell you this: you will wince when you see it.
Now why not check out the rest of our coverage from IFA 2017