Best turntable and arm under 10k?


Am thinking about upgrading my TT and looking for owners of the following new tables:
Kuzma Ref 2 w/Ref tonearm 
Sota Cosmos w/SM tonearm 
SME 10A w/sme tonearm

My current table is a SOTA Sapphire w/Sumiko FT-3 tonearm

....thoughts?
staggerlee57
Call Donna at Sota and ask about the new Series VI line including the formerly Phoenix Engineering motor controllers. My new Nova VI is being made as we speak! Cheers,
Spencer 
Might well be the Rega P8 or 10
Read this thread:
https://forum.audiogon.com/discussions/kuzma-koetsu-feedbak
Kuzma tables are wonderful but don't get much love. Well worth the $$
The one table that I find extremely interesting and heard only once is the Bauer DPS series. An unforced and beautiful presentation. It is one that left a lasting impression on me. Not sure of their availability.
My Sapphire also back at SOTA
upgrade and put a better arm on it

Bardo should be on your list also IMO

I had my Sapphire repaired & updated @ SOTA a few years ago with new suspension, platter, bearing and power supply.  That gave it the stability to really take advantage of a major arm upgrade.  I ended up with a Graham Phantom and it really rocked my world with the DV cartridge I selected.  I'd also suggest you take a hard look at the Tri Planar and Reed offerings.  I've read some really glowing reviews of their arms on SOTA tables.  SME makes great arms, but I believe the others potentially offer better synergy.  Good luck & happy listening!
SME Model 10A. SME makes the best turntables and tonearm s in the world.
Without bringing up turntables you didn't mention, I'd go for the Kuzma Ref, among the ones you named.
Hi
Thanks everyone for all the suggestions- I will look at all suggestions in regards to other tables and the various arms mentioned....

it has been quite a while since my last TT purchase (my Sota Sapphire is 1st gen - 35 years and still sounding sweet..but not worth the cost of upgrading)!!!


Seems like there is quite a bit to learn about TT’s these days ...and it seems that every manufacturer has their own philosophy of why heavy mass or low mass, suspended or solid plinths material (aluminum vs steel vs acrylic) best way to reduce or eliminate resonance....the list goes on and on...

However, I was really hoping to hear from owners on any of the tables mentioned (my choices or others mentioned) to gain real world perspective on difficulty of setup, reliability, support, Tonearms that work best, etc.  Would like to know what were their favorite and not so favorite aspects of each table.

also, any recommendations of dealers and/or anyone in the metro NY area that I could ingratiate myself to get a peek and a listen on their rigs!

Thanking you in advance for your time and assistance!

For $10k you can buy Luxman PD-444 Direct Drive in mint condition with two armboards, two tonearms and two cartridges of the highest caliber. This is what i am using in my studio (picture is one year old).
Probably the bes turntable in the world that is insanly affordable is the Merrill Willaims Real 101.3. when used with a good tonearm matches or beats much more expensive turntables.

George Merrill is a turntable genius but not a marketing one, many of his ideas were used by others, his list of firsts is astonishing, he had a lead pod damped motor, an outer clamping ring, damped springs, viscous damping, an adjustable weighted platform designed to equilize the weight of a tonearm to eliminate side to side motion of a subchassis, two piece plater and drive hubs, pioneered the use of acylic as a main platter althought damped heavily with lead and so on and so on in his previous designs.

The man’s entire concept in building a table was to look at energy storage and transfer and how that process affects vinyl playback.

Geroge came out of semi retirment with a totally new concept in vinyl playback in around 2012 with the release of the new REAL turntable.

The Merrill REAL turntable is the world’s only turntable with a laminated rubber plinth. The entire table is designed to absorb and dissipate energy.

The outer clamping ring has a rubber damper, the center weight has a massive ball of high density rubber compound which absorbs any energy coming from the main bearing, the plinth is designed to absorb engery and the footers are designed to absorb energy.

Every turntable uses mass to not resonate however even massive materials can still store energy and release it over time adding colorations when you hear a Merrill you will be astonished at just how clean and fast it sounds.

We demonstrated the REAL turntable at the New York Audio Show in 2012 and we also had the first Kronos table. The greatest testment to the REAL’s performance was after the show we setup the Kronos with a Graham and a $5k Benz cart as the show vs a Merrill Table with a Triplaner and a $3k lyra cart and the $15k Merrill was 90% as good as the $40k Kronos we kid you not.

The other thing about the Merrill is is insanly easy to setup and is designed for many years of trouble free service.

Dave and Troy
Audio Doctor NJ


I agree with having gone that route myself once upon a time .
But having listened to a friends Rega P8 with Aria a lot recently I’d go for
the Rega .
And I never liked Rega's .
You might also look at professional Garrard re-builders to supply you with a refurb or rebuilt unit. There is a reason many vinyl lovers choose these idler drive machines. Classic Turntable Company, AudioGrail, Artisan Fidelity etc.
Direct drive. Old skool like Chakster mentioned but there are also compelling new products as well.
One more nod to the Cosmos and SME arm combo.