Thoughts on SME 10A

I can get a latest model 10A demo for about $5500.00. How do you think it would compare to other tables at or lower in price? Thanks.
That's a good table It's very well built...will last you forever. What arm is on it? The better the SME arm...the better it will sound...If it has a SME IV.Vi I'd jump on it...Lot's of competition in this range.

Does it have a cartridge also at that price? If so, what? If not, what will you consider? Do you have a table currently? If so what?

About all that is needed maintenance wise is a new belt every few years.
Great table for sure with the Model 10 arm by all accounts. This can be improved upon in the future though.

You will need a good isolation support as the 10 has no real suspension like the 20/30.

However the build quality is second to none for sure.
The SME10 is a great table, have had a few of them through here over the years. Agree with above regarding arm, the better the arm the better it will sound.

Best of luck

It comes with the standard arm and no cartridge. I have an Ayre K1x but never got around with getting a table.
So the 10A is a great will absolutely show you what vinyl is all about. I am assuming your Ayre K1x has a built in phono - if so, I bet it's pretty good.

I might try a Lyra Delos or Kleos. See if you can get the deal to knock $500 off if you buy a cartridge also...set up here is crucial...also the arm cable off the SME is a big upgrade don't have to go nuts here...but $500 is VERY well spent money on this cable...

You'd really have to spend over 10k to get a better might be able to get different for $5500...but I doubt better. I had a SME 20/2 and SME day I want a SME 30/12
I would have to get a DIN to XLR cable. I have some nice XLR cables. I wish I could get some kind of adapter at the tonearm end so I could use them but I think since DIN is just one 5 pin connection for both channels that might be difficult.
Din to XLR is easy, there are several options on ebay, balanced phono is the way to go. If you need to the SME cable is easily re-terminated with XLR's, any tech should be able to do this for you - if not send it to me and I can do it for you.

I second the Lyra cartridges for the SME, Ortofon is worth looking into also

Good Listening

If I'm not mistaken the SME10 has no adjustment for speed and has failed the Timeline test but otherwise is a well built machine.
Don't no much about the 10A , But I can tell you that SME is a great company to deal with . I've been using the 20-12 for a while and SME has been extremely helpful , patient and enthusiastic in answered all my questions by phone , and even called me back at a latter date to see how things were going and talk audio .
Planing on purchasing the 30-12 this summer to bring my analog equipment in line with the digital sound I'm now getting .
rsf507....the SME's are speed adjustable. While it only has 3 buttons (33, 45, 78) when you press and hold 2 buttons, it goes into adjust mode....SME also provides a strobe disc.

I'd be careful saying things fail tests...was the belt old? had someone adjusted the speed then tested it etc...some variables could be at play here you didn't account for in your statement
Bobbob...what brand of cables are you using today? (for your xlr's?) It's best here to get a new one made up...din to xlr-some brands, like my transparent solder on a pigtail with the din before the main cable starts.

It's also true you can reterminate the stock sme cable with xlr's. Although that stock cable is a known weak point in the payback chain..
I have some valhallas that are several years old, also a pair of nordost signature 2s again very old, a BEL balanced cable that I special ordered and really like. I also have an Ayre green rca to XLR phono cable that I got with the preamp. That is why I would like a way to audition each cable as I only want to reterminate one.
I owned the Model 10/A for about seven years before upgrading to the 30/12.
The 10 is indeed an extremely well designed, engineered and reliable
turntable. I tested the speed on a KAB and it was very, very slightly fast, but
then I replaced the belt and it was back to the correct speed. My motor
controller was an old version that did not have speed adjustability. I think the
new motor controller is like the new ones on the 20/30 models that are
adjustable by pushing the front panel buttons, but you might want to confirm
this with the dealer.

The first upgrade I did was to replace the stock cable with a used Hovland
MusicGroove 2 phono cable for about $600. Then I replaced the 10 arm (309)
with an SME V. I did find that cartridge loading and phono gain were critical
to getting an open, dynamic and tonally balanced sound. Also, I had a MINT
LP protractor custom made for my arm/cartridge which gave better results
than the stock SME protractor.

Some describe this table, and SME in general, as sounding overly warm, dark
and a bit uninvolving. I had a very different experience during my ownership.
I found the Model 10 (and my new 30/12) to be very stable, solid and neutral
platforms for the arm and cartridge. These turntables were (are) the
foundation of my system.

I should add that to really make the most of Model 10/A, one should
properly isolate it on a very good platform. This isolation and the extra mass
of the Models 20/30 are what separate those designs from the Model 10. I
first used a Townshend Seismic Sink and then a Vibraplane ultimately with a
130lb steel ballast plate. Performance improved quite dramatically especially
in detail retrieval and bass articulation and impact.

If you can push your budget, I'd ask your dealer if you can get a credit for the
stock arm towards a model V arm or put the money into a good isolation
platform. You will then have, IMO, an excellent turntable and a very good
Bob, Have you decided to get the SME?
Peterayer, not yet still trying to decide if I should get something cheaper.
Hi, well, we'll all spend your money around here don't over stretch financially... I will say...get the best table you can afford...this is money well spent for a audiophile...
If you have not noticed a SME20 with a V arm just was listed for $5500, something to consider

Good Listening

I have a two year old SME 10 with a V arm, upgraded the wires to Nordost Frey.

It sits atop a Grand Prix Audio LeMans SE rack(the legs of the rack have the same filler of the more expensive Monaco)

I use a Clearaudio Talisman V2 Gold into a Manley Steelhead.

In the past I've owned LP12, Oracle/ET2,VPI scout,Rega P9,Sota Saphire/Sme V,and various pre amps with internal phono stages and most recently a Sutherland PHD phono stage.

I am very pleased with the solid control of the SME10, but truth be told the only table that I can fairly compare it to was the Rega P9, and that was with a different cartridge.So table comparisons aren't fair.
All the other tables missed the pleasure of the manley and the Grand Prix rack, and several other upgrades of the last few years.

My take is that the SME 10 is a great table,in that I don't think it adds or subtracts much from what is in front or behind it.

In other words, give it the best ancilliaries you can, and it will let you hear those improvements.
Leave it stock and it will still please you, but not as much.
I can't say the same for all tables.I think some tables have a limit to how much they can be improved upon and throwing a lot of money at them won't really improve them to the extent that you are getting your dollar's worth.

I have a couple of friends who are also in the SME camp, one with the 20 /IV arm, and the other with a 30/V arm.
I don't feel that the 10/v is a distant third runner up or a cheap entry level version of it's bigger brothers.

I don't suffer from table envy, because I think that the qualities of the bigger tables are very much in evidence with the 10 as it sits in my system.

There are a lot of new and very good turntables available now, so the SME line has some good competion.

But if solid build and a less finicky type "set it up and leave it" table is what you desire, I still think the SME 10 is a good place to start or end up in vinyl replay.