Raven Black Night

First sneak pic of the new reference turntable from TW Acustic.

I can't see any belt from the pic. The copper platter reminds me of some heavy weight Micro Seiki from bygone years.

I wonder what it sounds like? Surely it's belt drive?
i have been told by the UK importer it will be a belt drive as the motors were not installed in that particular pic.
Is there anything that can not be found on www?!


I believe the official introduction will be at the Munich show this spring. Motor and controller are not pictured.

The pictures you see were forwarded from TW to distributors and customers on his email list.
Surely it will cost more than the AC, but how much and will it be worth it? I hope Highwater will have the scoop when I visit in May. Might they even have one to demo then? Unlikely.
is this an advertising?
I honestly am glad he posted it. I love learning about new stuff that I might be interested in. I am considering selling my SME 20/2 and this might be a great option for me...

Isn't that the purpose of a "forum"?
When I spoke with Jeff in May last year, he mentioned that the estimated price for the new TW Acustic reference statement table was going to be around $50,000.00. Maybe with the dollar being a little stronger, they will be able to adjust the final release pricing. However, the table has been in the design/production phase for a while and there are many factors that could effect the final release price. As usual for TW Acustic, I am sure it will be a stunning piece of acoustical engineering that delivers the upmost in performance.
It's not an advert as I see patients for a living, not selling hi-fi.

Just an enthusuast who came across it on a UK forum and thought it might be of some interest here so i posted it. Not an advert for anyone. ;)
Wow. A Saskia with a Schroder tonearm would be less. I'm sure it's a great table, but the Raven AC is looking more like a bargain in this light. I guess I should wait to see what the actual price is before I pass judgement.
Sharing the same sentiment with Sonofjim here. It will be interesting to see the details and specifics later.
The table will retail for around $40K. It has some very novel features. I didn't want to post as it would come across as advertising but since some are asking let me go for it. What is a forum for but to share information. That is how I find out about a lot of new product before it is "formally released".

The motor is a different implementation that what has been done in the past. The motor is 3 motors in an individual housing w. both a/c & d/c battery supplied power. Imagine the motors looking like a second baby turntable to the side of the table. Due to the new motor implementation and more massive platter the speed stability is incredible. I would assume the Black Night has increased detail, more top end air and an increase in dynamics. From what I understand the platter doesn't lose speed for several revolutions even after the motor is turned off. It also includes newly designed isolation feet for the turntable that are proprietary and made in house. The plinth is made from a solid block of anodized aluminum. The platter is mostly copper and weighs (if I remember correctly) 50 lbs. The table has something that I consider critical for most VTA tweekers out there. VTA is adjustable from the turntable with zero variation in HTA while adjusting VTA. This for me is the “cats meow”.
It is hard to imagine something being better than the Raven AC but the Black Night is so over engineered that it leaves me lusting. Maybe one day but this is an off year for me. My focus is room treatements, and little doodads (spelling?)
Aluminum plinth, 50# platter, baterry powered motor. I'm no expert but it seems to be taking on a little more similarity to the Galibier tables (esp. Stelvio)which is the other table I'm considering as a real option. Just my simple minded observation.
Dgad you forgot to mention the ceramic main bearing.

I don't doubt the Galibier tables are very nice. But there are a few major differences. These include material selection, certain motor calibration and syncronization differences, and lastly the main point is the bearing. TW uses a very different bearing than every other table that I know of. Also, the adjustable VTA is critical for me. This will help w. some tonearm that are difficult to do repeatable VTA or any VTA such as SMEs, Schroder loses a bit of HTA on adjustment, and my Ikeda which is so difficult to do as it is just a locking collar to move up & down freely.


I understand the bearing to be mostly similar on the Black Night w. a slight change to accomodate the increased weight. I know the inner part of the bearing is changed compared to the Raven AC. The part inside the platter. I forget what material is used.

Also voicing of the turntable has a lot to do w. cartridge selection and phono stage, preamp etc. I am in the middle of a love affair w. the Colibri.
I realize my comparison is simplistic and unscientific. I'm just a kid with a crayon connecting the dots before I can see the whole picture. No disrespect for TW Acustic is intended at all. In fact, the pictures of your setup make the Raven look very good indeed. I can't help making comparisons between TW and Galibier because they're the two companies my search for a "last" table has led me to. No doubt there will be more differences than similarities. (Sorry, but don't the chief designers for both companies spell their names T-H-O-M?)

Since I have never personally compared the two tables I would have no comment about anything other than basic engineering principles and design. That is why I consider the Galibier nice. No criticism intended.

My love of TW is based on how it sounds in my system compared to my previous turntable. Also, how easily I hear the differences between cartridges and even the slight changes in VTF, VTA etc I make. Also, multiple comparisons of Mats, arms, cartridges between me & some friends w. the same turntable often came to similar conclusions. These comparisons have allowed me to form my own conclusions about what I consider to be a good product without even listening to it. Of course I love the looks and design etc. It is all about what suits you the consumer.

Mind you, even for amplification, tonearm design etc. etc, a lot con be determined by knowing a bit about the companies sonic bias / house sound and what approaches they use in their design. If you know that it suits you then often you will like other products from the same company. Also, you might like products that from other manufacturers that they use as well. But... there are times where an upgrade isn't necessarily an upgrade. I have experienced that a few times and have learned from it. Quite often in cartridges and more often in digital. The upgrade is just different. The product that lets you hear those differences is critical.
Hello together,

living with the AC for four months now, I am very happy with it.
Some days ago I had the chance to see and hear the RBN.
What can I say.
The look is stunning, much better than on the photos. Unbelievable craftmanship.
The sound was very clean and fast. For me it is THE step forward comparing it to the AC.

I have no idea if there are similar good TT around, because there are not so much chances to hear the other brands.

If the machine has crossed the big water, try to get an audition at HWS and you will know what I mean.

All the best from Germany

Dgad, you wrote, "VTA is adjustable from the turntable with zero variation in HTA while adjusting VTA." First of all, what is "HTA"? Second, and more important, do you mean to imply that the platter moves up and down to allow for a change in VTA? THAT would really be novel.
No the arm itself can be raised & lowered at the arm pillar. Some designs, when you change the VTA, the arm's HTA shifts. I don't want to criticize designs but some top arms have this problem. The arm loses its position of pivot to spindle and thereby you need to realign your cartridge at the null points again. I know changing VTA does change some parameters, but what I am referring to is tonear design limits. I need to see the final implementation but for me to change VTA easily & repeatably on an SME V for example or an Ikeda would be great in locking in the "ideal" vta for a specific cartridge.
I think most of the TW acoustic turntables will be on show in the Netherlands 20-21 March. If I can find the time I might go for a visit.
Hi Mordante,
you are right!

The Black Night will be shown there for the first time.

Have fun
OMG I have to clean myself up. Thank you for posting this info.

The table looks amazing, and we're not even seeing the outboard platter/motor. Being a Raven owner, there is something very tempting about hearing an all out version of the main TW Acustic design, even if it's way out of my price range, and way to heavy for me to keep moving, at least until I own an apt.
yesterday I had a look and listen to the new Raven. I was disappointed. At the shop there they had 3 Raven turn tables. The new Black night, AC and One.

The Black Night and AC were demonstrated using the Raven Acustic phono pre,
Lyra pre amp,
tri TRV-M300SE 300B mono block amps
Klips klipschorn speakers.

I spoke with several people and no one liked the speakers and neither did I. So they killed what could have been a great introduction of a good looking product.

The Raven One was hooked up to:
T+A V 10 integrated valve amp
Goldenote (used to be blue note) Pamphili phono pre
Isophon Vescova speakers with diamond tweeters

Now this sounded a lot better to my ears this set really made some music. It is always difficult to judge a set during a show. People were talking, laughing etc. But what I could hear made me smile. Now if only they wouldn't have down-firing port I much prefer a rear or even front port.

I even bought a new LP Countdown to extinction by megadeath a recording taken from the original master tape. Now lets hear if that €55 is well spend.
Highwater Sound will be getting one Soon!!
How soon? I'll be there in May but Jeff told me it wouldn't be there by then. It's out of my budget anyway but there was some indication that some features of the Black Night may eventually be available for the AC(custom feet, VTA adjustable armboards)but no idea when.
According to the (German) LP magazine (3/09) the platter
is 'all copper' and the price 29.000 Euro. The review
will be in the next edition. Sorry! (for the price that is).

Yes, the full Black Night is pricey. I wonder though if even the battery powered-rechargable motor controller might be an option on the lower priced units. I'm sure TW has no interest in becoming the German equivalent of VPI but if some of these new features were available as upgrades, the whole line might get better and be available to many more people.
Jeff from High Water Sound said the new battery motor controller, the new TW feet and the new VTA adjustable arm boards developed for and included with the Black Knight
will be available as an option and or upgrade for both the AC and the Raven One and Two and costomers who have them and want the new parts.
Does anybody know if the new battery PSU and 3 motor unit will ba possible to adapt on the RAVEN AC ?

HI Barbapapa

I know the Battery PSU will be avaiable but not too sure if the motor unit will be available outside of the Black Knight. It will be expensive though if it is. I am curious as to how the motor unit would improve the Raven AC with the Black Knight motor unit over the AC-3.
Yes, I spoke to Thomas at the recent Munich hifi show, it is possible to put the new psu unit on to the AC and the three motor system if you so wish. I have a picture of the insides of the battery psu if you are interested btw.

Hi Jrmanders,

yes OK for the picture. Do you know the future price of the battery PSu and new 3 motor "all in one" ?

Hi JY, I think Thomas said 2500 euro for the PSU however I may be wrong, not sure about motor unit though.

If you send me your email address I will forward the attachment.