Trans-Fi Terminator Tonearm: 2019 Update

In reading a few related posts on linear tracking tonearm, in general,  and Trans-Fi Terminator , in particular, I thought I would give a brief update of the Terminator.

I purchased the arm directly from Andrey in Moscow two months ago. From what I understand, Andrey has taken over production after Vic's retirement. What I received is the most up-to-date version of the arm with the carbon fibre wand and brass counterweights, the direct wire leads from cartridge to  phono amp, and a new brass manifold ( not evident from the main web-site). Both the wand and the new manifold are Andrey's contribution to the continued refinement of the Terminator.

Also,  please visit this site: This gentlemen from NZ has developed a new arm mount for the Terminator which advanced the arm's sonics even further. It was reading through the the development of this new arm mount that convinced me to order the Terminator after much prior research. I did not purchase the arm mount from NZ as it would not readily fit my Verdier La Platine, instead Andrey made a custom arm mount. It is in essence a two point support mount rather than a single point support rod that is commonly used. 

My previous arm was a SME V of 1990's vintage mounted with a ZYX airy. The Terminator is several notch above the SME V. All the accolades given to the Terminator seem justified. My main point in writing is that the new developments by Andrey, i.e. the carbon fibre wand and the newest brass manifold, seem to improve upon the Terminator even more ( see link above ). This is the news that I wanted to share with existing Terminator owners. I asked Andrey to start a blog on all the new stuff that is happening with the arm, but it seems that he is busy making 'things'!


I think 99% of Terminator owners have taken a few inconvenience for granted, e.g. having to wiggle a record out from under the manifold. The swing out arm pod is brilliant! I would never have arrived at that solution. However, with your Clearaudio experience, lifting up and swinging out are bar for the course. My initial reaction was that there are just too many moving parts to my taste. But It seems to to be working fine for you.

My puzzle with VTF remains. I am dressing the wires exactly as you, under the wand and thread through and up at the pivot point. You, of course, have done away with the gantry and employing custom tubing to connect to the phono stage. While you are getting consistent readings, I still getting varying numbers each time I play records. I may make an attempt at your custom VTF garage. 

Please update on SQ as you see fit. And again congrats on a very well thought out setup!

Hi Albert,
Thanks very much for your comments. 
Keep in mind that there are no air bearing arms on the market (AFAIK) that will allow a record ring weight to be regularly used.  This is what kept me away from these tonearms for years.  

Especially with short tonearms (the Clearaudio is 2 inches to the pivot; the Terminator is 3.5 inches) constant VTA is critical.  The ring weight solves the problem with warped records, and improves the sound.

The other significant factor is the ability to have multiple arms.


Photos of air supply added (#40 - #43)

I know that it’s overkill, but it gives me lots of flexibility.

The light blue cannister is an air filter. The carpeted item behind the filter is for quieting the pump noise.

New is a needle valve for a constant air bleed because the pump does not like being shut down from 5 psi to 0.5 psi.

The pump is in another room through an 11 inch thick wall.


The darker blue containers, seems like 20 litre, are surge tanks? There are two connected next to each other, and a third next to the turntable? 

You're getting a 6 psi reading out of the pump. Do you have a pressure gauge before the tonearm? I am particularly interested in what  the actual pressure reading at the tonearm. While I have a much more rudimentary pump / tank system, I am thinking of installing a gauge between all the surge tanks and the tonearm. The actual pressure to the tonearm should be much lower. If I am not mistaken, @terry9 has his arm set at 0.5 psi. J
Actually, the Pz wand prefers 0.3 psi.

Overkill? Overkill? What is this word? Sounds like blasphemy to me ...