Wave Kinetics NVS Turntable - Stereophile Review

For all owners, there is a good review in this month's stereophile - table reviewed with the Telos arm and with a Kuzma 4Point. Framer gives the nod to his Caliburn but a close call.
I probably should not have been shocked by the price of the turntable Plus arm Plus cartridge (Plus a highly specialized stand for the turntable) -somewhere over $65K before you get to put on an album. I was also "not shocked" that the record player did not always "come up to speed" on the 1st attempt, i would be sending the motor and/or controller back the next day if that were to happen to me.
the review of the latest Walker is in the Abs.Sound too and it seems to also present some problems for its owners. at least they got it to sit level now thanks to a new pump modification.
I like records a lot, too, but making a big case out of how good the newest turntables are in extracting more and more information is STILL tempered by a number of very legitimate concerns. I don't know what the "magic number" is for a spending limit on analog playback- $10K? $20K? more? for me personally that would be NMT "10", but i am trying to understand the rationale is (beyond pride of owning a mechanical masterpiece) for putting so much EFFORT into that part of the hobby, with a $5 album as your software/weakest link.
vinyl still sounds better than digital. It's as simple as that. What's the cost of admission for top rate vinyl playback ? Pretty steep....but not necessarily Caliburn, walker, NVS steep....and let's not forget arm, cart and phono stage costs.

i have 10,000 reasons (my Lp collection) to optimize vinyl. however, no doubt that top level vinyl performance does require a sizable commitment. and simply the physical commitment to the space, fine-tuning and energy to change Lps is not for everyone.

i'm less invested in my RTR master tapes, but only have around 125 (200-225 reels) of those. so the thing about vinyl is that there is so much great music on it.

there is a level of vinyl performance maybe at around $20k or a little higher 'all in' for hardware that get's you quite ways near that top level.....and maybe another level over $30k that gets even closer. that very top level is typically not a starting point for vinyl set-ups. and price is not always the best way to look at performance as there is lots of high performing gear that is not ultra expensive. although some of it is quite expensive. and certainly there are plenty of viewpoints on how that goes.
Well I hope this post doesn't put the kiss of death on it but I have a Final Audio Parthenon VTT1 turntable built in the 1970's before the big Micro's & Melco's even existed. It weighs 70kg+, with defined energy paths using copper, aluminium, gunmetal and SPZ ( no spongy rubbers or plastics exist in this deck ), platter mass 20kg, inverted bearing, thread drive and has an oscillator preamp to generate precise sine and cosine waves and power amplifier to drive the AC motor. It has never broken down in the 40 years it has been running, apart from replacing the drive thread. The oscillator preamplifier has never needed servicing and still has all the original components including electrolytic caps. The main bearing has negligible wear - according to an engineer friend the design of the bearing is such that wear does not affect the performance. It also passed the dreaded Sutherland Timeline test that has failed so many high end decks.
The cost of this deck in the 70's was about the same as a Toyota Corolla, so given the proliferation of CNC machinery etc there should be no barrier to producing something similar for $20-25k. I note that the Kondo Ginga which is the Final Audio in drag is around $60k.
I find it hard not to be cynical when super expensive components break down on review. The hapless customer certainly doesn't have the podium of a magazine and its readership for leverage on product failure.
Sorry for forgetting the phono stage in my 1st entry... that can run a bit more....
The best turntable i ever got to hear was the SME 30 playing Jobim records at an audio show. the sound was pure magic, no argument. i got to stare at a classic Goldmund Reference turntable a few times at a local dealer- and words fail me when i try to describe the effect that had on me.
i just don't want to be the one who has to find the perfect VTA or some other tiny adjustment that dials in the best sound. my best efforts went to assembling a Thorens and that went quite well. but that's kid stuff compared to Fremerology.
Sometimes i have read about the extensive set-up procedures for certain high-end tables (taking two men two days) and i want to "get out an 8-track" in retaliation.....
....the kiss of death....

In Analog we will find everything but in my opinion, lots of those units became
a Boutique Character (expensive bottle, cheap fluid inside). All those expensive
units have one in common (when we look back):
GREAT Reviews, lots of Hype
and at the end of Day it was more or less nothing to write home about
(sonically). Some examples?

Goldmund Reference
The Mother of Hype, but the moving Arm changes Azimuth in every groove, the
table itself has a good soundstage, but details are all smeared AND it destroys
every cantilever after some time.

Rockport Sirius III
The American Altar, but the Arm wire inside is so stiff that the Arm can not
track the inner 3 tracks properly, it skips, the only way out is to use a very
heavy cartridge, but the cantilever will be destroyed very soon. And the sound is
ultra thin, completely lifeless without any body. Great engineering, missing the
sonic target by a mile.

A super expensive German Turntable 30k+, endless rave and hype and during
its demo at the High End Show the bearing broke. A typical example for
Boutique. Now they are available for 1/5th price, company is out of business.

Framers Finest. I listened to it 3 times, professionally set up from the Importer.
2x it was defect and the 3 time the connected Phonostage had a problem (or
the Arm wire, Phonamp, Cartridge). I always said "Mono IS interesting"
Anyway, that Company is also more or less out of Business what
Australians wrote me. Buy replacement Parts NOW.

The Mother of of all Airliners. Super, super expensive at that time, Hype
endless, bloody knees from Audiophiles - from kneeling in front of it - was
normal, even more expensive with optional remote VTA....but it never worked
properly. The Airflow in some areas was not constant, so..well, you can

The Mother of a "Game-Changer" Product, defect bearing while RMAF but some
wrote, even with that defect bearing it sounded fantastic (great or?) and in some
discussions in Seattle area some buyers wrote how happy they are now
"being a member of the Club."
A pity that the thread about was deleted :-)
No knowledge (from the whole Chain Manufacturer-Distributor-User) about
shipping, no knowledge about platter mechanism, no damping was a result of
that damage and honestly, buying a product from "Engineers" who
have absolutely no idea about technical connections ...well, good luck.

Thorens Reference
The Audiophile Answer from Germany to Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Heavy and it will show every visitor "Hey, I am something serious"
In real life you can get the identical sonic quality from every 2-3k$ turntable
today. But the motor management is good.

Wood Arms
Well, let's face the truth, a piece of wood at a string or 'in long' for 16K$ has to
be touched from God AND made from some ultra secret, mystic material, stolen
from the NASA...Energy transfer? What is THAT, we want Emotion... well,
Boutique,...Geometry? Pardon, WHAT? The best bearing is no bearing...
Of course you need a 12k+++ Cartridge to get the full sonic impact the Arm is
able to deliver

Well, even after 30 years they find revolutionary 'improvements'...in a way the
ARC Company in analog. To catch the same customer again and again, that's
brilliant. Sonically? When you want a different sound, all you have to do is to
open the window...

Of course, all owners, no matter from what expensive product, will write that
their unit is an exception and is working like a charm etc. But let's face the
facts: It is the money what counts.
The wealthy Audiophile likes to show others how clever he is and what
expensive units he owns, he wants the Respect to be accepted as an
"Experienced Audiophile" but at the end of day, he also wants
money when he sells that Sonic Wonder. Who writes "Yes, I have that T3F,
Rockport, ...and it is really inferior, but I like it?"
No one.

Is there a way out?
Of course.
Let's visit Dover and steal his Turntable :-)
Can I mention the flaw in the review of the Clearaudio Ovation turntable in this same issue of Stereophile? The use of a preamp that turns analog into digital at 192kHz and 18 bits, while seemingly logical to the reviewer, and possibly an answer to the question about digital versus analog(although I doubt it), renders the review of the turntable almost useless. I have heard digital copies of turntables that I think I could live with, but, at the least, there is a drying up, almost mechanical aspect, to the sound, I believe. Certainly, this is flawed logic, as assumptions are made that aren't backed up by evidence. I'm not as worked up as I was initially, as the supplier pointed out this defect in methodology.
I want to point out that it might be possible with the Linn lp12 to get really close to the best, for a lot less money, with their Radikal DC motor. Yes, a lot of their upgrades are expensive, and might not be needed as much. Unfortunately, I've not taken the plunge yet, but in comparison to those other expensive alternatives listed by Syntax, this may be a way to approach the best with a reasonable cost alternative(especially if you already own a Lp12). I'm not advocating a purchase here, just an audition.
As the owner of an NVS I feel compelled to comment on my findings and experience with the turntable. To my ear, direct drive 'tables have always sounded more smooth, powerful and dynamic than belt, rim, idler or other drive mechanisms. Outside of one vintage Technics DD model, which, if you can find one, sell for upwards of $20k when replinthed and rebuilt there are few direct drive TT options available at anywhere near the NVS price point. This is one reason I became interested in this 'table.

Of greater importance is the sonic abilities of the NVS, which when mated with the Durand Talea II and Ortofon A90 far surpassed any other 'table I have heard to date.

Additionally, I have had ZERO mechanical problems of any kind with this unit. My understanding is that the bearing issue was due to the original packaging being inadequate and this packaging- plastic flight case with foam too soft to correctly protect the unit- was subsequently completely rethought and redesigned to a palletized wooden crate system. This new crate system is a marvel to behold and I have heard of no other freight damaged units being reported.

I am completely satisfied with my NVS and feel it provides performance as good or better than ANY turntable at ANY price available today new or used. Considering it is considerably less expensive than the Caliburn it could be viewed as a bargain in the not so sensical world of big boy's toys and bleeding edge analog reproduction .
My experience with the NVS has been nothing short of amazing. The shipping crate was built like a brick #$!& house! No issues with the bearing damage or damage to any other part of the TT.

Setup was a piece of cake! As MF mentions.... Get everything level, plug in the power supply unit and the table is done. They remaining parts (tonearm and cartridge) are the typical challenges for most any tables right? My Talea II came with great instructions and I was able to mount and dial it in within an hour or so. Further tweaking ALWAYS occurs with my setups as I'm a "check, check and re-check" kinda guy.

Performance has been mind blowing. This table can and will convey a very "tape like" presentation. My frame of reference is a Studer A80 Preview Machine along with an AMPEX ATR-102.

Bass has great authority, sound staging is wide and deep. Quiet? As Fremer mentions "...It didn’t take long to hear that the NVS produced dead-quiet backgrounds similar to the blacknesses produced by the Caliburn and Onedof. Only the best ’tables I’ve heard (which are not necessarily the most expensive, the VPI Classic 3 being a case in point) can manage this level of deep, satisfying nothingness, out of which the music seems to leap. Only the best belt drives and the Rockport Technologies System III Sirius, another direct-drive model, have managed this kind of background blackness."

My NVS is a world class table IMHO and that's all that matters to me. I never heard a table that engages me the way the NVS does. I'm about enjoying the music.... not picking nits with what I'm listening to. If I can get a TT at a approx. 1/3 of what a Caliburn goes for. Throw in the fact that MF might not be able to identify either TT in a blind listening test then I did good! All I know is what I like and the NVS fits that bill!
Well now!

This should be a great thread considering the passion for analog among some very opinionated & some knowledgeable members.. Some bring very constructive dialog to the table while some just love to run their mouth & carry (force) their agenda where ever they can spew it out.

Lets see if I can add a bit to whats already been said.

Eddie your input on the NVS was spot on to my findings.
I have not had any issues with my table.
Packing / delivery was suburb as well as set up.
What more could you ask for? The shipping crate could with stand a small explosion!
Set up was a breeze. No more freaking pumps!!! ahhhhh.
I concur you have to spend time setting up the arm & cartridge.. check, recheck, & check again &&&&. Such is the life in the analog world. Spend the time & you will be rewarded is all I can say.

This table has been the best table I've ever owned & have ever heard. I know this is my opinion (in my system) & I respect what others own. We all should feel comfortable with what we purchased. Regardless of price..
I state these opinions after owning or spending time with many a VPI, to many to list! The Walker, Grand Prix, Rockport, Linn, Thorens, & Upgraded Technics sp10 mk I& II.
others as well... Some of these tables were great in their own right & I do not mean to degrade them, I just like the NVS.
I would love to hear / compare the Caliburn someday to see how close or better this table may be. Can't afford it anyway but it's nice to hear others as MF feel that the NVS gets you close.
I have talked to a few who say they preferred the NVS, so of course to each their own.

As with Ed & Mike I also use RTR tape as my reference & this table arm combo come as close to tape as I've heard & yes on some source material equals & some even betters.

In combination with the Durand Telos, I still am awed at what comes off the groves. Bass extension & definition / excellent!
As MF stated, image & soudstage with great three-dimensionality & depth.. best I have heard a combo do.
Air, space & more air, clarity, detail, speed, & well you get my drift.
I could go on & on but I would say don't let anyone sell this table short.. go listen for yourself & draw your own conclusion.. I will warn you you will be awed!!!!!!!
World Class? yes!
Rockport Sirius III
The American Altar, but the Arm wire inside is so stiff that the Arm can not
track the inner 3 tracks properly, it skips, the only way out is to use a very
heavy cartridge,……..

I can promise you that is not the case! As mentioned in the other thread, I am sure the Sirius III you worked with was either damaged or not set up properly.

I have 2 Rockport 6000s, which share the same wire/arrangement as the Sirius III arm, and I have never encounter problem with “stiff wire” in the past 10 years. I have used both relatively high and low compliance cartridges on them with absolutely no problem with tracking.

Granted, you may not like the sonic performance of the Rockport, but saying that it can't track the inner 3 tracks properly is absolutely not true.
This thread would be more worthwhile if people commented on tables that they had actually listened to.

Syntax - I believe you have not even listened to the NVS.

Yet again, on this forum, a thread goes off the rails with the ramblings of those with axes to grind. I visit this website less and less each month as a result.
Syntax, Did you forget to mention the SME 30? It is an old design, not mentioned much in forums, only once hyped by MF in a review, uses the dreaded belt-drive mechanism and rubber bands for suspension. It doesn't need constant tweaking. There is no bling appeal. Oh, and it can't accommodate two arms. It was designed by engineers, though. With ears ;^)
I own an NVS owner and am delighted with the turntable. It is the best vinyl transducer I have heard to date. The dynamic drive is far superior to any belt or idler wheel drive table in my experience. The bass is deeper, tighter and more linear than I've previously heard. The overall presentation is full, rich, completely and naturally detailed. It's the whole package, rendering the information in the groves in total and complete resolution. It just, simply, sounds right. I say this because I find nothing annoying, nothing I'd like to change or tweak- I'm at ease when I listen. The fact that MF finds it a virtual toss-up against the mega $$ Caliburn is a nice bonus.

My understanding is that the reported bearing damage on the show unit was due to inferior packaging which has been completely rethought and reworked. The current palletized wood crated package is a thing of beauty.
My unit has been completely trouble free and has functioned flawlessly.

In response to Syntax: I find your ranting indictment of so many highly regarded turntables a pointless exercise in opinionated arrogance and, if I'm not mistaken, your Lyra Olympus retailed around $12k- do as I say, not as I do!!
Sorry for, essentially, a double post. I made the 1st one yesterday afternoon and when it wasn't posted by late evening I reposted, thinking the initial post was lost somewhere in cyberspace.

I should add that I've owned several belt, idler and direct drive tables over the years- JA Michel Orbe, Basis Debut V vacuum, Jean Nantais Lenco and EMT 948. The Lenco and EMT were both completely restored, including custom plinths, arm boards and contemporary high end tone arms. At Rocky Mountain I've heard countless other high dollar tables of every drive method and never walked away truly satisfied.

I am now truly satisfied!
One must wonder what Fremer does to the equipment he tests. I find it puzzling that so much of the equipment he reviews tends to break or malfunctions so easily. Didn't he destroy one of the darTZeel monoblocks he reviewed a couple of months ago so that it had to be sent back to Switzerland to be fixed? How on earth do you fry a monoblock that is hand-made like a tank? Didn't he also almost fry one of the MBL monoblocks? Something about the interconnecting cables not matching, if my memory serves me correctly. The man certainly possesses a vast knowledge of the analog, but I question his ability to actually use the equipment as it's meant to be used during his reviews. Just some food for thought in this polemic...
For $70,000+ i would certainly hope the turntable in question would sound good, especially to those who have spent the money to own one. forgive me if i think of all of the state-of-the-art tables at every price point under the sun (and moon) ALSO sound SO AMAZING!!!!!! ETC.!!!! that they TOO are worth the
money. But not being able to audition every great turntable in existence leaves me a bit confused. Fremer didn't break the VPI-Classic-3 BTW, and IT TOO sounded great, a real game-changer/whatever- not that i care what he thinks anyway. what i do care about is separating music appreciation from hyperbole.
and that seems impossible to do without making people defensive or bringing in the "if you can afford it that's ok, you deserve it". how much do these beautiful contraptions really REALLY cost to manufacture? I know NASA has to spend whatever it takes to bring a prototype to a full working model (or two).
but this is not a matter of getting something to land on the moon or explore Mars FGS. i don't know, the whole business just seems a bit off the wall IMO.
i just want to believe that ok, for $10K-$15K, a big chunk of cash, someone could build a turntable/arm with EVERY bit of advanced technology available and DARE anyone to get more MUSIC out of the groove. May the 1st contestant step forward please...

I'm with you in the playing records right ain't rocket science these days camp.

If one drops thousands on a turntable and it DOESNT sound good, then there is a problem.

above you mentioned how much you liked the SME 30 when you heard it. i agree it's a fine turntable. you see used one's with an SME arm in the 'around' $15k + or - range frequently. you could do much worse than buying one of those, adding a cartridge and phono stage and seeing how you liked it. they are built like tanks so a used one well cared for should be trouble free.

it would be fairly easy to sell if it did not seem worth it to you.

you'd be hard pressed to find a new tt and arm for $15k that would offer more....or even as much. there would be other alternatives of course, but since it is a reference for you already why not start there. then it's your ears you are trusting. the best choice i think.

as far as....

"i just want to believe that ok, for $10K-$15K, a big chunk of cash, someone could build a turntable/arm with EVERY bit of advanced technology available and DARE anyone to get more MUSIC out of the groove. May the 1st contestant step forward please."

.....from what my ears tell me nothing is even close to that happening. it's telling about the cost of production of high tolerance pieces that modified vintage tt's in that price range exceed the performance of new ones in that price range.
Dear Vicks: Well MF has good reason$$ to give that nod to the Caliburn. Is sad to tell but today I trust less and less on " pro "-reviewers, no one is un-biased. Yes, through the years I learned many audio subjects from them but now???

I trust higher in every single NVS owner as all the ones posted here because some way or the other all of us " mere mortals " are looking for the same: non-biased ( $$$$$ ) highest quality performance level on each one audio system to reproduce recorded MUSIC.

I love the NVS looks and " only " for that I could be a proud owner, unfortunately I have not that kind of money but I hope to have sooner or latter the opportunity to give a listen to.

Now, it is obvious for all the first hand testimonies that something different is happening down the NVS " land and this thread gives me an opportunity to share some thoughts that I had and have for years with no true or real answers elsewhere, maybe the NVS design is that " answers ":

what suppose that a TT must do, a perfect TT ( theory )?: spin with absolute accuracy at 33.1/3rpm with no speed fluctuations in the very short and long times.
Making that job in absolute dead neutral vibration/noise/resonances-FREE playback to transmit NOTHING to the platter and from here to the LP and obviously nothing from the TT to the arm board.

This is IMHO the first main TT target and the second one could be : to aisle the TT from external induced vibrations/resonances/noises.

There are other TT design targets but the idea is that the TT it self has NO single " negative/positive " influence in the cartridge/tonearm work: we are looking for dead accurate and neutral job, a perfect TT.

Well, we all know that that TT does not exist ( at least I don't know it:yet. ) so any one of us has not that REFERENCE to compare against it.

Each one evaluation/comparisons we make it against other similar TTs and through our each one experiences these are our reference(s) but we really don't know how the perfect TT could " sound " we don't have the true reference at all ( the ones that likes R2R is a different reference and I don't want to open other " window " about. ).

So what are we hearing/evaluating through any TT as the gorgeous NVS? is it a real improvement? is it to be nearer to the perfect one or only different kind of " distortions " that like us more?

We can/could think that we are nearer to the perfection because the new TT ( NVS ) sounds to us better compared on what we heard/owned in the past.
Some of you mentioned Rockport or Walker but IMHO we can't compare two TTs where in one we have a different tonearm than in the other.

In the other side we have not almost any single information/measures from almost any single TT manufacturer that could tell us: how near or away is that TT design from that first main target design:
+++++ " absolute dead neutral vibration/noise/resonances-FREE playback to transmit NOTHING to the platter and from here to the LP and obviously nothing from the TT to the arm board. " ++++ ?????

That for me is critical and an important subject for us as an audiophiles and customers. I would like to know for sure where I'm seated.

All of you know that sooner or latter will appear another " perfect " TT that we will like it more than the NVS and that's will be because it is the " perfect " one or only a different handle of distortions.

If I'm going to pay 50K or 150K for a TT: I WANT TO KNOW.

IMHO as an audio item customers and as audiophiles we have to improve our self and be more exigent with the audio item manufacturers for them take the job to design products that really fulfil our quality level expectations to enjoy the MUSIC in a near perfect way.

So what are you hearing through the NVS or what you own? the perfect one? or are we hearing only a good TT where we paid for it not for the highest quality performance but for its weight/kgs?

The trend on the last years on TT designs is: more $$$ for more metal kilos and I think that the weigthy ones are still to come. No, I'm not saying that the NVS is only that: kilos, NO and yes I would like to be aproud owner of it as any one of you!.

Regards and enjoy the music,
Raul, Your "main target" for TT design sounds right. Neutral, and speed stable and accurate. The latter can be verified with the Timeline or similar measuring instrument. The former is a bit more of a challenge as "neutrality" is subjective in this case. As far as internal or external vibration isolation/dampening is concerned, that too can be measure to some extent by instruments.

I have read no professional reviews which attempt to verify speed issues with the Timeline and rarely do reviewers listen with a stethescope or simlar device for vibrations. Perhaps these forums could be a place for sharing these test data for various owners tables if we really want to "know" the truth.
Admission- One of my personal "dream" turntables (so far) would be a VPI TNT-6 (no longer made) with a heavy platter upgrade and a Benz High-End cartridge, with the SDS motor controller, 12in. JMW arm. my current phono stage is a Lukaschek which is "supposed" to be quite good. i love the fact that it has no settings to adjust at all...
And i would like to compare THAT to other tables costing "whatever". No, of course i don't expect it to sound AS good as a Walker or (fill in the blank) but i want to see if the differences are really that great once you are immersed in the music. i would want to use clean-copy decent recordings, but NOT necessarily audiophile pressings (since i only have a few).
Just so more of my (amateurish) thoughts. we're still talking over $7500 here so even this example is hardly cheap, but it might just keep ME happy for a very long time. Or hell, why NOT the SME-30 (or an Amazon reference?).
"once you are immersed in the music."

For me, that's all that matters. It either sounds "right" or not. Once it does, I am able to be immersed in the music which is all I ask for.
Seems to me that you don't own a TT but a server for all your stuff. Maybe can't understand exactly what I meaned.

Can anyone post a link to the actual Stereophile NVS review, it's almost impossible to get the magazine in the UK.
The 'must have option' for "Game-Changer" Turntables
The reason I went back to turntable, a friend told me "it will easily beat a cd player twice its price", that was ten years ago. Today, with these " Game-Changer " turntables and carts, the message is obsolete.

Syntax, Where do you find these? I especially liked the one about the gentleman asking his butler to bring his shotgun into the room so that he can put another one of his cartridges out of its misery.
Dear Peterayer: +++++ " sharing these test data for various owners tables if we really want to "know" the truth. " +++++

IMHO the main subject is that almost no one " wants " to know the " true ", audio fun could disappear.

The " true " could tell us how wrong we are or how right we are or in between.

Right now we are really happy enjoying what we have and we almost don't care if it is wrong or not: " I like it and that's what matters ", this is a common sentence for almost all of us when we are questioned when we are on " serious " doubts about.
We always take the " easy " road: " I like it that way..... ".

Audio manufacturers know that so they neither care about the " true ".
Why to take the risk to know that some of their designs are way wrong and have no answers to fix it??????

So for almost every one it is more " healthy and with more fun " walk on the audio road at BLIND, almost.

As with TTs the situation/scenario is almost the same with tonearms or cartridges or electronics or speakers or...or....
Something that makes to know the " true " a little complex with TT is that's a mechanical device where the " results " of a design is not 100% predictable as can be with lectronic designs, at least I don't know and never read of a TT mathematic model that can predict a 100% result or very near to it.
Do you know any single person ( manufacturer, reviewer, audiophile, retailer, any. ) that could tell you what to measure and which kind of measures and where to measure and how to measure and how have we to blended those measures to predict TT results through different designs through different build material TT designs through different TT drive designs through different kind of TT bearing designs through a different price targets?

Problem is that no one cares about, till today no one took the " bull by its horns " and developed that mathematic TT model that could serve ( at least ) as a preliminar reference for TT designs or for electronic/speaker/cartridge/or whatever audio item designs.

Pro.Reviewers does not cares neither: it is a high risk for them that all of us could confirm how wrong they are or not at all.

So in absolutely " SILENCE " there is an agreegment already made it inside the AHEE where all we belongs and is sad and pity ( for say the least ) and almost a shame for all of us that are inside the AHEE to stay doing almost nothing about other than closing our ears/mind to suggestions for changes down there in favor of MUSIC in favor to IMPROVE TRUE IMPROVEMENTS on what we are experienced today.
Gentlemans, fun does not disappear only will change with those changes.
I don't know for all of you but for me thinking to have NEW AUDIO FUN EXPERIENCES ( true new audio experiences. ) is just EXCITING!!!!!!!

As I said: shame of the AHEE.

I have no doubt that we deserve what we have because all of us help to build it and still do it every day. I know for sure that all in the AHEE are a lot better ARCHITECTS that what we showed till today so: WHY NOT JUST LET IT GO! WHY NOT ADVANCE! WHY TO STAY STICKY WITH THE SAME FOR THE LAST 40 YEARS!.


A good Agon friend of mine whom lived in the past for 15+ years with tube electronics changed to SS ones and today after several years with he is seriously thinking to come back to tubes again, to the " magic " he said!?!?!?!? and that's how we are and what we deserve. This is not a critic to this person that I respect but only an example how we help builded the today AHEE.
Could be wise for this person to think in a similar technology of what he own ( SS ) that could be an improvement?, because I know there are other way better designs out there that what he owns. Anyway, only as an example and nothing personal.

Don't you think is time to make true and real changes for the better? why more of the same if it is not wroking at all?. We are unsatisfied with what we have and almost every day we are changing what we have: TT, cartridges, cables, speakers, electronics, tonearms and the like.
We changed for something new hopping for a real improvement hopping to advance but after a few days/weeks or months we take in count that we advanced almost nothing and then we start again ( endless again. ) a new audio item hunting looking for that advance that almost never comes.

IMHO we have to make our selfs things happen!. We have to be the active actors/protagonist of this movie picture name it AHEE and not mere unsatisfied passive spectators waiting for?????????

Regards and enjoy the music,
Raul, you are a designer of phonolinestage and a tonearm. During the development process, don't you reject ideas that don't work and try to create the best device you are capable of making? Or are you just one more designer going down a blind path? I don't understand from your last post how you propose to improve the process.

I did experience real progress when I installed air isolation devices under my turntable and amplifiers. I have the impression that you don't find that valid or even possible.

What is AHEE?
Peter: AHEE: Audio High End Establishment.

Dear Raul, In your discourse you could not resist taking a shot at tube amplification vs solid state. There is no doubt that SS gear can easily be built to surpass most tube gear in terms of the commonly made measurements (THD, IMD, etc). However, in contradistinction to that finding we also have the testimony of legions of careful listeners who nevertheless prefer tubes (certain tube amplifiers, that is). Further, there are data to suggest that the commonly collected data used to characterize our amplifiers are wholly inadequate to predict what happens when they are asked to reproduce a true music signal. These two facts may indicate that tubes are doing SOMETHING better than SS. (Talking in generalities here; I concede that there may be some SS amplifiers that can "play" in the league with the best tube amplifiers and are better suited than tube amplifiers to drive some of the awful behemoth multi-driver, low efficiency, low impedance speakers that are on the market precisely because those humongous SS amplifiers are available to the high-end consumer.) My point is, if you are truly working on a higher plane and searching for a better world of music reproduction, it would behoove you to open your mind a bit more. In other words, you may be guilty of the very "head in the sand" thinking that you impute to others.
Dear Peter: Electronic design has several mathematic modeling computarized tools for circuit design and layout circuit design. We used those tools as a tool for our design and to help avoid errors/mistakes on the circuit/layout design but all those tools does not predict how the design will sound but could help to predict how it works at electrical level under different circumstances and how well works the different circuit stages stand alone and as aprt of the whole design. Yes, it is a useful tool to start with an audio item electronic design but as I said it is only to start.

The whole electronic design is more complex because it is not only dependent on the designer skills/knowledge but dependent on passive and active parts where even that two similar parts that measure exactly the same performs different and this fact makes " things " a little complex and time consuming.
No we don't designed at " blind " we use several tools and made it several tests of almost any kind.

Some famous electronic item designers as J.Curl choosed a very wise/clever road to design: he meet/asociated with other persons to design and build audio electronic items. He did it with that CTC Blowtorch phonolinepreamp where he was the circuit designer, C.Thompson the circuit layouts and B.Crump the test and parts selection.
Today he did it the same with his new electronic design audio items: Constellation Audio amplifier, line stage and phono stage. He joined other three experts to the whole design, now he only needs a good marketing manager.
Try to be surrounded with other designer experts is an alternative to design in better way when we have no " references/tools " about.

TT/tonearm design is a mechanical design a " mechanical circuit " against an electronic circuit. I'm not a TT designer or an expert about but from my ignorance level I don't know or I'm unaware of the existence of similar tools as with the circuit electronic design, at least I don't know it.

This TT " mechanical circuit " for me is almost unknow and I think that with out those modeling tools is almost impossible to know if the final product meets the design targets in an abjective manner. In electronic circuits we have several kind of references on how any part perform, each circuit part has the whole manufacturer specs with tolerances and limits for the part stay stable under any playback electrical/temperature scenario to performs at its best.

In the " mechanical circuit " we have almost nothing about we have almost no references to evaluate the operation and performance design.
Examples: which target can we choose on a TT design for S/N ratio or wow&fluter or platter weight or whci build or blend material we must use?, 100db is the right spec for S/N, why not 60db 04 75db? 0.001% on W/F is the right " figure " or is enough 0.28%? which kind of vibrational energy ( coming from every where but mainly inside the TT. ) and at which " output levels " must be avoided in the TT design because the cartridge take it as part of the recorded grooves and will be amplified? how and at what level have we to stop/disappear the self TT vibrational energy feedback, how ? why aluminum or acrilyc or steel or brass or which kind of blend TT build materials are the ones that fulfil the targets at each circuit/stage in the whole TT mechanical circuit? how to handle and stop the vibrational energy generated between the stylus/LP and TT platter and its feedback? 3.0kg. on the TT platter is right or we need 200kgs and why. We really need that crazy weight, in favor of what? is it true that more mass/weight produce or could produce higher vibrational energy to deal with?

I think I have more questions than answers. Another problem with mechanical circuits as the TT and tonearm is that are not stand alone circuits but that are " slaves " of the cartridge and it is this intimate relationship the real " trouble " to success.

I don't know what you expected from what I could answer to you post. There are several subjects around there almost endless to post about and as I said I'M not an expert on TT but I know some TT experts/designers are reading this thread and could be healthy to everyone that they decide to put some " light " on the whole TT subject posting here.

Regards and enjoy the music,
Raul, I see your point. One "truth" is the 25th row center at the Boston Symphony Orchestra. If that is one's reference, we have still quite a way to go with our music reproduction systems.

Regarding the NVS turntable: Has anyone tested its speed accuracy with a Timeline? Can one adjust the speed if it is slightly off? It seems that at a minimum, Fremer could do this for his readers. Assuming it is truly a state of the art DD table, it would have to have perfect speed and that would be a huge marketing advantage over other drive types, I would think. But I don't see this stated in reviews or in advertising. This is one objective measurement of turntable performance.
Peter, one thing I've found re speed stability/accuracy in belt drive versus DD/idler/rim, is that in belt drive it can fluctuate over the course of a few seconds due to stylus drag/groove modulation, whereas with many of the non belt drives I've auditioned, and esp. my direct rim drive, there appear to be no/minimal fluctuations over the course of quite a few minutes, but some speed drift day to day, perhaps due to enviromental factors which can be eliminated by adjustment of speed at the start of a listening session.
Still can't find a link to the NVS review.
Dear friends: +++++ " Framer gives the nod to his Caliburn but a close call. " +++++

Reading carefuly the Onedof and NVS reviews IMHO today MF knows for sure that both TTs outperform his Caliburn.
He wants that we believe that both TTs have some " trouble " to even the Caliburn that for him is a " perfect " TT!!.

Why not to think or see the other way around: that the Onedof and NVS TTs have lower distortion/coloration that he seen as a " trouble " in both when he likes the higher Caliburn distortions becaquse that better dynamic/alive in the Caliburn could be distortions/colorations that are not well damped in the Caliburn design.

I don't heard the NVS yet but I don't think for what the owners posted here that the NVS has any kind of dryness as MF wants that we see the NVS quality performance level ( with the Onedof the MF objections seems to me has the same " defense " attitude for the Caliburn. ).

Even that the Onedof showed a better speed accuracy/stability than his Caliburn he write a fast excuse about telling: " that his unit is an early one and that he knows that in today units changes were made about ".

Onedof and NVS are more accurate than the Caliburn ( at least on spedd. ). Why MF can't think that that critical fact is a problem with the Caliburn performance against " perfect " TTs as the Onedof and NVS?

After all those years MF is still writing for rooky/newbie audio readers, his mistake.

Regards and enjoy the music,
IMHO MF Caliburn early unit or not has no single excuse about speed accuracy/stability for those 140K+ dollars!!!!!

and he writed what for me has no common sense coming from a " pro " reviewer: " that due to of-centered LP spindle hole the accuracy on speed is not so important ( something like this. )..." How any one but MF could speaks in that way?

I forgot, in the constant Caliburn defense he writed on the Onedof review a sentence about the unique Onedof TT bearing:
"""" A few years ago,MD ( then with Continuum Audio labs, showed me a prototype for a similar bearing designed for Continuum.... ".
I don't think that trying to diminish the main Onedof design characteristic is a way to make honest not biased reviews.
The Caliburn not needs that kind of " help ", the Caliburn has its own merits with and with out MF " help ".

I have no issue with Fremer stating a turntable sounds dry - it is only an opinion and voiced in the context of his system and room.
Where I do have an issue is his statements that the VPI Classic is the most speed stable belt drive
The Classic 3 is the fastest, most coherent-sounding VPI turntable I've ever heard. Its measured accuracy and consistency of speed were about as good as a belt-drive turntable can achieve
The Classic may be a great TT but the power supply consists of 1 capacitor between the mains and the motor - any deviation on mains frequency alters the speed. The US grid is split into 4 quadrants and the supply agreements in place with the power providers have delivery standards etc, but there are NO standards in the agreements on frequency stability. The mains frequency will vary with load fluctuations on the grid. I have seen figures of 60hz with an accuracy of plus or minus 5%.
As far as I'm concerned the above statements made by Fremer in the Classic review are pure bunkum, and hence I have lost faith in his ability to assess turntables properly.
Spirit, if the review came out in Stereophile this month it will not be available online until next month.
Raul, How do you "know" that the Ondof and the NVS have perfect speed stability and accuracy? I'm not aware of any testing to prove this.

Also, does anyone know if their speeds are adjustable? After having a turntable with no speed adjustment and now one with it, this is, IMO, a necessity for all upper level turntables. The Technics SP10 MK3 has it as well as the Walker, The Dobbins Beat, the Trans Fi, etc.
I think someone did test the NVS with a Timeline. This was mentioned possibly in the previous now banished NVS thread. Perhaps the person who performed this comparison will enlighten us.

As to the Onedof, why would one assume it has perfect speed stability a priori? It is made by man; ergo it will have some flaws. What? Did you think it would be flawless in performance, just because it costs $150,000? (Kidding but not kidding.)
Well--Raul brought this up from Fremer's review--how about the fact that most records are punched off center? In a way it's almost too funny - you have a piece of equipment costing as much as a high-end sports car only to use it to play records that make equally absurdly expensive tonearm engage in a slalom while trying to extract information from the grooves. Wouldn't that be more important to focus on than an absolutely perfect speed? Or, at least, does this render the obsession with perfect speed somewhat misplaced?
Actus, I often have similar thoughts. Another one, besides the issue of off-center spindle holes, is that many of us acquire the bulk of our LPs in used condition for a couple of bucks, with no knowledge whatever of how they were cared for by the previous owner. Thus one has no way of knowing whether "all" the music remains available for retrieval by one's megabuck phono cartridge and associated components. Then too, there are a myriad of issues relating to how an LP was cut in the first place, by whom and with how much care. However, I think Raul's point is that while we have no control over LP imperfections, we do in theory have control over turntable speed (by choosing a turntable that does its major job of providing a constant speed at all times, i.e., in spite of any effect of stylus drag). Why not eliminate as many variables as we CAN eliminate? Then at least we can be sure that when we are playing well made LPs, the time line will be conserved as the musician interpreted it. I imagine that MF would choose to withdraw his statement, if he could now edit his remarks. That one was too stupid to defend.

I've never heard a Caliburn, much less seen one in the flesh, so I can have no opinion of it or of MF's fascination with it. Just from what I have read, I would take the NVS over the Onedof and the Caliburn, and not just because of the lower price. Yet, there are elements of the NVS drive system that I would like to know more about before I would invest in it. I am quite happy with what I have, in any case.
I was very surprised that tapping on the NVS's custom base plate produced notable sounds in the speakers. And this is on top of Fremer's TOTL shelf unit.. To me it indicates a potential vibration problem - surprising given the specialty of the manufacturer.

I have no such problem on my $1000 TT and shelf. Come to think about it, if you cut the three (rather lovely) legs off this table and stood the center motor housing on brass points it would quite resemble my JVC TT101. Just saying.
I was very surprised that tapping on the NVS's custom
base plate produced notable sounds in the speakers. And this is on top of
Fremer's TOTL shelf unit.. To me it indicates a potential vibration problem -
surprising given the specialty of the manufacturer.

Aigenga got it. Congrats. Yes, this is a sign of inferior construction. When you
know why this happens, then you know why there are good turntables out there
and bad ones. No matter for what price.
And the next is the Start of that unit, sometimes it works, sometimes not. Now
we are in the year 2012, the 'super engineering' from that unit was maybe
2010-2011 but honestly, I think, there was not much of it. Mainly in finish but
time will tell us what will go on with it.
Well, but for some it is a wonder and they list it among the best turntables
today, no Panic, Linn LP12 is among those, too :-).
In a way depressing for everyone who tries to create something serious. My 25
year old Seiki has an adjustable motor, works like a Swiss watch and when the
Timeline is on my unit I can hammer a nail into the wall where the red point hits
it. Btw. and i can 'toc' it wherever I want (I can jump in front of it), even
beside the Diamond in the groove and my Phonostage is open for the small
output of a Lyra Olympos SL and there is silence...
I also agree with Dover in his findings.
From the manufacturer's comments on the Stereophile review...

"The platform has a natural frequency of 3.5Hz. The platform
was designed to attenuate low frequency events like footfall near the
platform, low frequency music getting passed back through the
structure, etc. At this, it attenuates roughly 40dB at 20Hz and gets
better with rising frequency. Significantly, the platform has very low
initial friction and will attenuate even very small disturbances. The
turntable itself is designed to be stiff in order to maximize the pitch
clarity the system produces. However, tapping the top of the platform
will, as Michael discovered, transmit into the arm because it bypasses
the suspension system. Tapping is not relevant to any actual use

Perhaps I enjoy my turntable differently from others, but I've found that tapping my turntable doesn't enhance the musical experience. BTW, I don't own an NVS and have no dog in this fight.
Tapping on a section of a turntable that is above the isolation built into the TT and/or platform does not tell you how it isolates from floor born vibrations.

Of course precise speed and stability of speed are a good thing. Why would you want to add to the imperfections inherent in vinyl. Less error the better.

I completely agree with Dover regarding the VPI Classic. I had a Classic 1 and the motor and belt are the weakest link and far from SOTA.

No one is perfect but some of Fremmer's statements just make no sense to me.
I just reread the review. Fremer does like the turntable and I would love to see one and hear it in person. But I wish these reviews were more critical describing both the strengths and weaknesses of a design. There is no mention of speed adjustability and no discussion about the record clamp and if it sounds better with or without. The record/platter interface is critical. What happens to that energy?

Stable/accurate speed and energy(vibration) transfer are the real issues for a turntable. Correct speed is either maintained or it is not. Vibration is either drained, damped (absorbed) or fed back into the system, amplified and heard as distortion. What does Fremer mean by "dry"? And why does he think it sounds that way?

I agree with Raul when he writes that a turntable and arm are "slaves" to the cartridge. They should not contribute any sound themselves to the playback and they should simply allow the cartridge to "be what it wants to be" (to paraphrase Louis Kahn talking about bricks).
How does tapping in the base bypass the suspension? All of the suspension is above it. Also, if the base is exicited by tapping it may also be excited by loud percussion?