Sleek, Stylish, and Simply Sound Good. Designed and Built in France. 100% European Quality.
Retail Price S$799
Read the in-dept review here at avforums.com
Entirely designed and developed by Elipson’s designers and engineers, the Alpha 100 RIAA BT turntable is a concentrate of technology and innovation. It’s the world’s first turntable capable of transmitting the Bluetooth wave while keeping the sound quality unmatched.
With Bluetooth, connection to Bluetooth earphone or soundbars are a sleek option. No more messy cables and now you can walk around with wireless headset connected to your turntable.
It comes with built-in phono preamp and unlike conventional belt drive turntables, no need to switch belt when selecting 33 or 45 rpm. Just flip a simple switch will do. It comes fitted with Ortofon OM 10 cartridge, which is a step up from many entry level cartridges.
It is hard to ignore the sleek design really. It is so simple yet elegant. No matter where you put this turntable, it will not have “old school” spelled all over. For your modern home, this is the perfect choice.
HK’s Test Report
With all the ultra cool curved edges, minimalist chassis, built-in phono preamp and Bluetooth, one might think that this is a consumer turntable (ie. looks good but sound bad). Look deeper at the design and features, or simply come over to Retrophonic to audition it, you would agree with me that this is a good entry level audiophone turntable.
It took Elipson years to design and develop this turntable from scratch. Apart from the Ortofon catridge, every components are designed from scratch using latest innovation. There are no OEM parts; from motor to bearing, tonearm to chasis, all brand new. By the way, Ortofon is made in Denmark. So, all European heart and passion you see.
First thing I noticed when I unbox it, is that the belt is wrapped around the entire 12 inch platter. Being the skeptical me, I was initially a bit put off really. Long belts usually means high tendency of inconsistency and this has been reported widely in lower end Pro-Ject turntables. Turns out that I was wrong.
The motor is isolated and electronically controlled via a system called DDS (Direct Digital Synthesis). This provides regulation and control of the speed of the motor. So, it does not matter that much if the belt is a bit loose or long. This high levels of speed stabilty makes it almost as good a direct drive, minus the vibration of course. That’s the top reason why this turntable sounds so good.
Also, when you flip the switch to start, the motor takes a few seconds to slow start. This eliminates jerks during start and stop. This is important in: 1) prevent belt from worn out too quickly 2) reduce record wear (if you are the type that like to drop the needle before hitting the start button)
Check out the Bluetooth specification as well. This is audiophile grade – aptX. You don’t get aptX on low end Bluetooth products.
I must highlight about the counter weight and tonearm. It features narrow screw thread comparing to other turntables. The dimension of Elipson Alpha 100 is large comparing to compact turntables like Pro-ject debut carbon. It is as large as the Music Hall mmf 5.2. Large chassis allows for longer tonearm, which means less sonic distortion. Narrow screw thread means you can easily fit any type of cartridges without the need to buy special counter weight or any awkward adjustments. For many counter weights, if you just turn one mm it means 0.1g adjustment. For Elipson Alpha 100, you will need to turn a few rounds to get that 01.g adjustment. It is so precise!
So, how does it sound?
I’ve compared it with NAD C556 (same as the old Rega RP2), fitted with Grado Blue1 cartridge, hooked up to NAD PP4 phone pre-amp and have the turntable sit on Auralex ISO-Tone Turntable Isolation Platform. This setup is more than SGD 1.2k. And the Elipson Alpha 100 out perform the NAD C556 in terms of sound stage, details and transparency. When I played “Jazz at the Pawnshop”, it feels like a totally new music to me because the music is so lively. I am simply blown away.
In comparision, NAD C556 sounds warmer and balanced. Not as exciting, but more laid-back. Grado Blue1 is excellent in high frequencies as well, very crispy and refined.
So, are you convinced yet?
~ HK Loo
Owner of Retrophonic Records.
8 Dec, 2016
- Plate : Pressed steel
- Chassis : PVC
- Drive: Belt drive
- Cartridge : Ortofon OM10
- Electronic : RIAA preamp (switchable MM & MC)
- Bluetooth aptX & USB : 24 bits / 48 KHz
- RCA cable provided : Yes
- Centraliser : Polyamid Frequency response : 25Hz – 20KHz (-3dB / +1dB)
- Gain : MM = 40,5 dB / MC = 61 dB
- Crosstalk : MM = 88 dB / MC = 78 dB
- THD : MM = 0,006% / MC = 0,05%
- Signal / noise ratio : MM = 82 dB / MC = 76 dB
- This review is for the higher end model – Elipson Omega 100. The only difference from Alpha is that Omega uses carbon tonearm.
- 4-star review by What HiFi Magazine
Should be 5-star really. This is because the factory preset cartridge weight is set wrongly at 1.78g, it should be 1.5g. We tested this at the shop and after this adjustment, the music is simply wow! Lots of details, clear layer seperations and transparancy, very musical mid-range.And this is coming from Ortofon OM10 cartridge, which is well-known in the industry for being dull and heavy on bass. Elipson Alpha 100 sounds forward and dynamic, so it is not a problem of the cartridge at all.