A new Thorens era coming?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by LakeMountain, Jan 18, 2020.

  1. RPM

    RPM Forum Resident

    Location:
    Easter Island
    Like the looks, wish the lid was either crystal clear or tinted black or brown, not blue as it is. Specs are solid enough and it's Made in Germany as a bonus. However, IMHO this turntable is heavily overpriced, considering what you can buy for the same amount of money.
     
  2. BlackHills76

    BlackHills76 Active Member

    Location:
    57701
    True, but I would counter with it is a fully automatic table and that is a very rare thing in the mid to higher price points these days. Many people are just fine with a manual table, but if you do want “just flick a switch to play” your choices are very limited outside of going vintage or a Hanpin built plastic plinth Chinese table.
     
    E.Baba likes this.
  3. BlackHills76

    BlackHills76 Active Member

    Location:
    57701
    That is a good point and one thing I wish they would have upgraded along with aluminum start and stop levers and an aluminum speed control button. The plastic buttons work just fine, but there should be premium materials used at the price they ask. That piece under the tonearm is just a cover so changing it out to better material wouldn’t take much effort. The Thorens model does have a brushed aluminum piece over it with the control markings. That is an improvement over the Dual version which is just the raw plastic with the markings printed on. I emailed Thorens a question and the owner himself Gunter Kuerten replied. Maybe I’ll make that suggestion to him about making that piece look nicer.

    With that said, I am really enjoying the table and I do feel like the new owner really is trying to improve the products in the Thorens line.
     
    LakeMountain likes this.
  4. LakeMountain

    LakeMountain Vinyl surfer Thread Starter

    Location:
    Netherlands
    This may be the price to pay for “Made in Germany”. I wonder if this required for marketing purposes? In this world of automation and robotization to achieve small tolerances the location might not matter anymore as long as there is a robust design and good QC.
    The Chinese manufacturer for Thorens, for example, produces their own top quality TT’s , see my post #125.
     
    BlackHills76 likes this.
  5. BlackHills76

    BlackHills76 Active Member

    Location:
    57701
    I am sure part of that price is because it is "Made in Germany" and production numbers in the tens of thousands vs. the millions adds to it. The Ferenbacher factory these are assembled in is still pretty much by hand assembly vs. automated in the large Chinese factories. It is also safe to assume that the German employees are being paid significantly more then the Chinese workers so that gets factored into the price. With that said, it's still sort of neat that it's "Made in Germany" because anything consumer electronics these days is rarely built anywhere other than China.

    Thorens has introduced the TD 102 A and there is no doubt that model is built by their Chinese manufacturer. No doubt this model will be priced less, however it also appears a little lower end in my opinion when it comes to finish and construction. It is good to see new models in their line though. It means they are actively trying to grow the business. That's good for everyone who enjoys vinyl records as an audio platform.
     
    kt66brooklyn and LakeMountain like this.
  6. The Curator

    The Curator Forum Resident

    Good to see this investment in the future of vinyl. Just a shame that the price of new and second hand records is so high. Not a hobby for ordinary folks these days...
     
  7. ddarch

    ddarch Forum Resident

    Location:
    NH
    One of the best ways to grow your collection is to go to a record show (after Covid obviously) near the end of the show...last 2 hours or 90 minutes. Those fellows who hauled all those crates of records in, are itching to make their load lighter, and will accept far below earlier asking prices. Don't be a jerk though, if they are going to take 20 bucks for ten lps or $30 for 15, don't spend time opening them to check their condition. Of course, this won't be for stuff in high demand, but I've helped a few friends re-populate their collections this way (after they stupidly Goodwilled them at the advent of CDs.) Dave
     
  8. Eno_Fan

    Eno_Fan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Izieu, France
    "...the subchassis has a MDF frame".

    A $3k TT with a plywood subchassis. Disgraceful -- MDF is a material for $300 TTs, not $3000

    Although not nearly as disgraceful as the gouging $14K-charge for the DD '124' clone.
     
  9. tumbleweed

    tumbleweed Kozmik Kowboy

    Location:
    Colorado foothills
    Other considerations aside, MDF is not plywood.

    That material is available with a variety of densities, many grades would be similar in density and stability to cast aluminum (that you might normally expect).

    Machinable MDF is way more cost effective than cast aluminum. TT is still overpriced tho, IMHO.
     
    bever70 and macster like this.
  10. E.Baba

    E.Baba Forum Resident

    Thanks for your review .

    I lost my vintage auto DD Denon in bushfires. Looking to get this as a replacement.
    Do you have any more impressions or commemts since these ?

    It looks good.
     
  11. MikeJedi

    MikeJedi Forum Resident

    Location:
    Las Vegas
    These do look nice. Maybe someday as a companion piece to my Technics. My wife would kill me. Lol. I see Music Direct has these for 4200. Semi auto. Nice platter. Nice arm. Definitely a different sound than the Technics. Not better just different :) I would bet.
     
  12. Cyclone Ranger

    Cyclone Ranger New old stock

    Location:
    Best Coast USA
    Aesthetically... looks like a Linn. But not as good.

    .
     
  13. MikeJedi

    MikeJedi Forum Resident

    Location:
    Las Vegas
    Any more reviews of the 1601 ? It’s seems it’s a decent table. Fremer really liked it :)
     
  14. VintageVibe

    VintageVibe Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Joisey
    The idea of capturing a TP 92 on a more traditional looking plinth was something I was also interested in. Having owned a TD 165 / TP 11 for the last 44yrs, I was looking at my next deck for LOMC's and wanted to stick with a more traditional looking Thorens while snagging the TP92 if possible. Finding the best of both worlds at my price point was the objective.

    Hello TD 148a with its newly designed TP 148 tonearm. Although it's considered the TOTL fully automatic tt out there, it still slots in as a mid priced Thorens built with an upgraded TD 240 chassis / spring combo along with better resonance damping. The new arm however was designed specifically for the TD 148a. The TP 148 uses the same rolled aluminum tube with resonance damping ring as the TP92, but with a different bearing as well as different VTA and AS adjustments via spring loading. But here's where it gets interesting; the TP 148 and TP 92 both have an EM of 11gr. and both shares the same capabilities in terms of accepting the TAS 1600 cartridge or whatever your cart preference is. Does the TD 1600 sound better? Although I haven't compared the two, for the moment let's assume it does, but once you upgrade the cartridge on the TD 148a, perhaps not a $1000 worth of difference. I've certainly been happy with it.
     
    Davey likes this.
  15. Raphael Mabo

    Raphael Mabo Music nerd

    Location:
    Gnesta, Sweden
    It’s made by Yan Horng Electronics in Taiwan to Thorens design and specifications. Fehrenbacher made great turntables, my TD309 was made by them and it’s an excellebt hiqh quality design.
     
  16. Raphael Mabo

    Raphael Mabo Music nerd

    Location:
    Gnesta, Sweden
    It was engineered by Walter Fuchs (Fink Audio Consulting) and designed by Helmut Thiele. They also engineered, designed and developed the TD309, 206/209 and the TD203. Plus the TD9xx series.
     
  17. Raphael Mabo

    Raphael Mabo Music nerd

    Location:
    Gnesta, Sweden
    Well both the TD160 HD and TD350 plus the TD550 and the TD9xx was modern updates to their classic turntables.
     
  18. Raphael Mabo

    Raphael Mabo Music nerd

    Location:
    Gnesta, Sweden
    ?? No the 1600 is made in Taiwan.
    The acrylic Thorens was made by German high end maker Acoustic Signature, they also made the TD350 and TD550 for Thorens. With Acoustic Signature motor, motor control, massive aluminium platter and belt drive. None of them was made by Clearaudio and none of them was direct drive.
     
    Slippers-on likes this.
  19. Raphael Mabo

    Raphael Mabo Music nerd

    Location:
    Gnesta, Sweden
    It’s made in Taiwan by Yan Horng Electronics. Not China.
     
    bever70 likes this.
  20. Raphael Mabo

    Raphael Mabo Music nerd

    Location:
    Gnesta, Sweden
    The TP92 tonearm was originally developed for the TD309, that I have. A great and innovative turntable with a great tonearm.

    The tonearm was designed by famous hifi designer Helmut Thiele in collaboration with Fink Audio Consulting headed by Karl-Heinz Fink (who has made work for Tannoy, Q-Accoustics, KEF, ALR-Jordan and many others and who was a close friend of Ken Ishiwata of Marantz) and developed using Fink’s own laser measuring technique to find and dampen resonance and vibrations. Walter Fuchs is ”the turntable guy” and engineer at Fink Audio Consulting, but as Karl-Heinz has said ”We are all turntable guys, we love turntables”.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2021
    Slippers-on, Bobsblkwax and bever70 like this.
  21. Raphael Mabo

    Raphael Mabo Music nerd

    Location:
    Gnesta, Sweden
    Acoustic Signature also uses a similar headshell design for their TA-500, 1000 and 2000 tonearms.
     
    Slippers-on likes this.
  22. Raphael Mabo

    Raphael Mabo Music nerd

    Location:
    Gnesta, Sweden
    I have the Fehrenbacher built TD309 too and it’s a great turntable designed and engineered by Karl-Heinz Fink and Walter Fuchs from Fink Audio Consultant in collaboration with the famous hifi-designer Walter Thiele (who has done works for most German hifi-brands, for Thorens in the pas of course but also Magnat and many others).

    The TD1600/1601 and TD309 uses the same TP92 tonearm with resonance damping ring and quality low friction bearings from the Japanese specialist MBR.

    The tonearm was actually designed for the TD309 and released in 2009. It’s a very good tonearm so no surprise that they also uses it on the TD1600.
     
  23. LakeMountain

    LakeMountain Vinyl surfer Thread Starter

    Location:
    Netherlands
  24. Daedalus

    Daedalus I haven't heard it all.....

    Yes Taiwan is correct.
     
  25. Raphael Mabo

    Raphael Mabo Music nerd

    Location:
    Gnesta, Sweden
    It’s simply too expensive to produce in Germany. Fehrenbacher produced 5 000 turntables annually for Dual, Thorens and Perpetuum-Ebner with 15 employees. The volume is too low and cost is too high to earn money on it and pay for new investments. Germany doesn’t have the infrastructure for low cost massmarket products anymore.

    High-end German brands with higher prices can survive. Clearaudio’s cheapest turntable is 1800 euro. Plus they makes electronics also that earns them income.

    Pro-Ject and Rega has higher volume plus they make electronics and loudspeakers too, they can offer less expensive turntables and earn money on them.

    Hey, even Music-Hall has turned to Asia (China) with some of their latest models, like the Classic. So fewer and fewer are made in Czech republic at Pro-Ject.

    Thorens is not popular anymore, I don’t know why. The TD309 was great but it didn’t sell. Maybe it was too modern looking.
    The highly acclaimed TD1600/1601 is a new take on vintage look with modern inside, but the TD309 was actually more innovative.
     
    dividebytube, LakeMountain and Davey like this.

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