Petition launched to reintroduce Technics turntables (Update: The SL-1200 is Back!)*

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by englishbob, May 27, 2014.

  1. Tim Müller

    Tim Müller Forum Resident

    Location:
    Germany
    Thank you for your answer.

    Actually, I don't want to dissassembleor re-assemble tonearms...
    I just was curious, whether the two tonearm models are mostly the same, only with these parts different that were needed for the extended antiskating range of the M5G arm, and for the anti skipping weight.

    It seems to me, that the MKII and MK3 to MK6 variants had more in common, than the GAE/G with the GR models. Could this be true?

    Best regards
     
  2. AArchie

    AArchie Member

    Location:
    Colorado
    My impression, from looking at the GR, was that it was Technics attempt to offer something closer to the price point of the original and so I would guess the G is in a higher class and the GR is more like a MK2 ...

    I don't know if I'm in a minority with this opinion, but to me the G's main advantage over the MK2, say, is in it's heft and bulk which I assume helps with vibration control. The lighter GR might not handle vibration as well as the G (but better than the MK2). Side-by-side testing might show I'm wrong though. The MK2 had its faults, many of which could be modified out. Technics likely addressed many of these in both the G and GR while taking the design to a new level.
     
    Tim Müller likes this.
  3. recstar24

    recstar24 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Glen Ellyn, IL
    I'm happy with the price I paid and think it's more than fair for the build quality, sound performance and ease of setup. It's hard to truly express quality with words but when I opened that box it really stops your breath in how perfectly made the thing is and just the beauty of the design. Considering they are essentially hand made by the Japanese in the year 2017 the price is more than fair, especially considering how much crap is out there now.

    I considered a used technics 1200 mk5 but a certified refreshed model from some of the reputable Japanese outlets were anywhere $800-$1000 depending on condition. I wanted a mint one and for the price, it made sense just to get a brand new one as offered in the year 2017. All of my buddies have VPI but their product line is so darn confusing and always being revised and updated, and the VPI tables I saw for a similar price of a 1200 GR I didn't feel like they had much to offer me.
     
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  4. Tim Müller

    Tim Müller Forum Resident

    Location:
    Germany
    Hello, thanks for your reply.
    Until now, I was not aware of these faults. Would you mind to point these faults out to me?

    Best regards
     
  5. AArchie

    AArchie Member

    Location:
    Colorado
    If you look at the KAB website Kevin has modifications for what he perceives as weaknesses. Tonearm wiring, on-board power supply, strobe light, to name a few. I have one of his modified tables and I got further improvement by putting the table on Isonoe feet and the whole thing on an isolation platform.
     
    Tim Müller likes this.
  6. Tim Müller

    Tim Müller Forum Resident

    Location:
    Germany
    Hello,

    I like to thank everybody who answered my questions.
    I feel, it was a friendly discussion on topics. I liked how you shared your knowledge or opinions. I liked the way you answered my questions.

    I hope, that discussion here can continue in that way. And I hope, everybody will understand my next questions in that very friendly way.

    Personally, I feel a bit left alone, if directed to a web site, without a specific link. I would have to gather and guess the information, what the original poster probably meant me to read. Or not.
    Personally, I would like, if you could shortly describe the shortcoming or faults of the MKII version in your own words. Thanks for that a lot! Thank you! Or maybe, could post a link to the very website, where it is all on display.

    In the meantime, I try to find the website you are referring to. I remember, I was on that website years ago. But, have forgotten the exact www.dot-adress of it.

    Best regards
     
  7. AArchie

    AArchie Member

    Location:
    Colorado
    I googled "KAB" and third down was his website. KAB ELECTRO ACOUSTICS

    Kevin has studied the 1200 for years and anything I say would be a poor representation of what he says. Your time would be best spent going though his site and reading his findings and the various reviews that he links to. I've never owned a stock 1200 so I can't compare my highly modified 1200 MK2 with one of those. I can tell you that putting it on good isolation was a substantial improvement. BTW, if the original 1200 did not have shortcomings, Technics couldn't have improved it which the highly favorable reviews of the GAE/G show.
     
    Tim Müller likes this.
  8. Tim Müller

    Tim Müller Forum Resident

    Location:
    Germany

    Hello,

    well, I hope, we don't get into a silly but useless argument here.

    I like the original 1200 MKII, and probably like all the improvements upon it. So, peace here.

    The question is, can you hear it, on a regular pressed record...?

    We all know, factory pressed records have some shortcomings with them, especially wow and flutter, surface noise, rumble, and frequency response.

    I've read an article about the record making in the 70s, where record makers of Deutsche Grammophone said, they make their quality control with some Dual 12XX-something. Because, the record quality as from the press, is limited to that record players abilities.

    I feel, record making has not much improved in the 80s...
    So, I have the impression, that the SL-1200 MKII is somewhat above record quality, and improvements on the drive or so, won't make an audible difference any more.

    The tonearm, still, is a pivot type, so we have offset angle all the way across the record.
    A linear track tangential arm could make an improvement, I think.

    Best regards

    P.S.: I have the impression, the tone of the discussion got worse. I don't know why, I didn't want to. I will take a rest from this thread for a while, to allow you to recover from my probably but not meant like this, intrusive questions or posts.
     
  9. RPM

    RPM Active Member

    Location:
    Easter Island
    Shortly - nothing wrong with MK2-6 out of the box for the (more than) average consumer. There's room for improvement IF you want to, but nothing too much necessary.
     
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  10. Classicrock

    Classicrock Forum Resident

    Location:
    South West, UK.
    Forget about the 1200 specifically. Generally better engineered turntables will improve the sound of any but the worst mastered records irrespective of vinyl quality. Some flaws may sound worse but improvements in the deck/arm / cartridge and phono pre amp (read more expensive) will give you a more defined sound with a darker background /less prominent surface noise. Maybe if you have an old 1200 improve the isolation and invest in a better cartridge and phono pre amp. Then consider the new Technics models or an up market belt drive. I only heard the GR briefly in Technics system so can't say how big an improvement it is. However it is really at UK price not so much more than the old 1200 in terms of hi-fi price inflation. The old deck had actually become cheaper in real terms over the years and must have become uneconomic to manufacture.
     
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  11. AArchie

    AArchie Member

    Location:
    Colorado
    I know that some claim to hear the most subtle changes in their system. I tend to have a hard time defining improvements in mine. On a first pass I can put in my old Pioneer PL-10 with it's low end MM cart and think it sounds just fine. For me, changes seem subtle and it's when I'm casually listening and doing something else and I am caught by something I've never heard before coming from a recording I've listened to dozens of times that I know a change is for the better. (But if you want to hear something stark, if your speakers aren't on isolation platforms, try that first. It might blow your mind! And I don't mean spikes -- which are a coupling mechanism and not an isolation mechanism.)
     
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  12. costerdock

    costerdock Forum Resident

    Location:
    Prescott, AZ, USA
    I agree. The changes are very subtle - but fun to do. Here are the changes that I've made and the findings - keep in mind the sl1200 is an excellent platform/table.
    • External DC power supply. I bought this with my M5G because it is a good idea - and not that I was expecting much out of it. Kevin at KAB said it wasn't necessary - I said - ok - let's just doit. Findings: I went a couple weeks before using the power supply -then I switched over to it. I used headphones and power on power off tests before and after - I couldn't notice any difference - the table is black/dead silent to begin with. So if your table is noisy - then I'd give it a shot - otherwise - nice to have - I like the idea - but really not necessary.
    • Silicon Damper - this is worthwhile. Really helps with tracking and warps - I have a few records that only play with the damper in place otherwise there is a skip - so I'm happy with the damping and recommend it. I've added liquid Damping to my VPI Classic - and now can track those same albums (two in particular) on the VPI whereas before it would skip. I'm sold on damping.
    • Isonoe Footers. They look beautiful but they are also very functional. If there is heavy traffic near the turntable - I have to use the technics otherwise the VPI will skip - the Iso feet convert the table to a suspended chassis and handle foot stomps and vibration really well.
    • Bearing. Likely not necessary - and if your old bearing is shot for some reason - just get a factory new one and oil it periodically. I have the best bearing money can buy - the thing is a work of art - heavy - stunning - and medical equipment grade, captive oil bath. I went with the Mike New Bearing because I got a good deal from Mike on it - and it to me made sense as the table is mechanical and the bearing plays a huge part (platter rests and spins on the bearing)- so I sprang for it. Like Archie said - hard to notice any immediate difference but with everything in place - the table sounds great - on par with my VPI - which is my primary table.
    If I had an older 1200 - I'd upgrade and dampen the tone arm wire and RCAs - since that is a simple upgrade (not necessary on M5G) - easy to do. If I could detect motor noise (which I absolutely couldn't with the M5G) I'd look into extern power supply (heck it is good for the SP10). Damper is an easy one.

    Good luck.
     
  13. AArchie

    AArchie Member

    Location:
    Colorado
    I totally agree on the silicone damper and Isonoe footers.

    At a certain point you start chasing very small improvements but I don't see the harm since small improvements also add up. I asked Kevin about the shrink tube on the tonearm and he didn't think it was necessary but I did it anyway. I don't know if I "heard" a difference but it looks cool and I now see Kevin offers an inner liner for the tonearm that does basically the same thing. I recommended the speaker isolation above since as we improve one component, another may become our "weak link" in the audio chain.
     
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  14. costerdock

    costerdock Forum Resident

    Location:
    Prescott, AZ, USA
    All these beautiful pictures of the new Technics inspired me to hook mine back up - I'm really enjoying it with my OM30.
     
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  15. johnny q

    johnny q Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bergen County, NJ
    Is the Sl-1200gr available for purchase in the US yet? I see some websites have reviewed it, but no online dealers unless I am seriously missing something.
     
    recstar24 likes this.
  16. Yes, I believe so. Here are the US dealers.
     
  17. johnny q

    johnny q Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bergen County, NJ
    Yeah - I just shot the company in Scarsdale, NY an email asking if it is available and ready to ship/purchase. I may be needing a new Technics as the one in my avatar has apparently given up the ghost :-(
     
  18. recstar24

    recstar24 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Glen Ellyn, IL
    That's where I got mine from, I was lucky enough to get mine on their first allocation at the beginning of august. Highly recommended and Robert is a great guy!
     
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  19. MadCajun

    MadCajun Active Member

    Have you heard back from them? I just sent them an email asking the same thing.
     
  20. johnny q

    johnny q Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bergen County, NJ
    So my Technics SL-M3 has risen from the dead, so I am not pulling the trigger on the 1200G just yet, but as you will find out when they reply to you - I certainly could have!!!! :) Unless things have changed in about 1 weeks time...ya never know.
     
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  21. MadCajun

    MadCajun Active Member

    Cool, thanks!!!
     
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  22. MadCajun

    MadCajun Active Member

    Outstanding! I'm on the list for one scheduled to arrive at the end of the month, looking forward to getting it. I've been using my current table since 1984-85 and I need another that will take care of me for the next ## of years.
     
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  23. SamS

    SamS Forum Legend

    Location:
    Texas
    Which model?
     
  24. Classicrock

    Classicrock Forum Resident

    Location:
    South West, UK.
    You need to listen to some expensive TTs. Whatever quality a pressing, improvements in arm cartridge and deck design improve sound and if done right will actually make pressing flaws less intrusive. I don't know if minor mods to an SL12oo make night and day improvements but the new designs should as they actually have little in common with mark II to VI. Apart from some really badly mastered or seriously flawed LPs each improvement I have made to analogue front ends over the years has resulted in better SQ and a more enjoyable listening experience. So better decks are not 'too good' for well cared for old pressings in general.
     
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  25. MadCajun

    MadCajun Active Member

    The 1200GR
     
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