Audiophile Turntables

Pro-ject Debut Carbon DC Turntable

project debut carbon dc piano back

Pro-ject Debut Carbon DC turntable is the best buy turntable classic with carbon tonearm and DC power supply; one of the absolute best entry level turntable for audiophile. It has won so many awards over the years that it has become the benchmark for turntables at this price point.

Selling price: SGD670 (all colour version)

Selling price: SGD840 (walnut version)

 

Buy Pro-Ject Debut Turntable from Authorised Singapore Retailer

debug carbon awards

The first Debut turntable, introduced in the late 1990s, was a revolution for the hi-fi industry. For the first time after the arrival of Compact Disc and the assumed demise of vinyl records, an analogue product re-emerged in the “mass market” – something all music lovers could afford.

The new DEBUT Carbon DC was designed to set new standards in this category for the coming decade – perfectly timed as analogue today is again a respected source, while the demand for good turntables is growing again!

The most obvious improvement is the inclusion of a CARBON TUBE for the tonearm, which increases stiffness and decreases unwanted resonance.

This material normally is extensively used in high-end tonearms, but – because of cost reasons – was never used in products at lower price levels. Together with other improvements like an increase in platter size and weight to realize even smoother rotation, the overall sound quality is greatly improved. The approved belt drive design offers low noise AC motor with effective motor decoupling (utilising TPE-damping) and ultra precision frequency DC-driven AC generator (like Speed Box) for ultimate speed stability without unwanted vibration.

project debut carbon dc white

project debut carbon dc walnut

The DEBUT CARBON DC is available in high-gloss black (Piano Black) or shiny red, green, blue, yellow, silver or white as no-added-cost option. It is also available in walnut finish with additional cost.

Elipson Alpha 100 RIAA Turntable

Elipson Alpha 100 RIAA

Sleek, Stylish, and Simply Sound Good. Designed and Built in France. 100% European Quality.

Retail Price S$799*

Get Elipson Alpha 100 RIAA Turntable Online

* For latest pricing and stock availability, please click the button above to visit our eCommerce website

Read the in-dept review here at avforums.com

Overview

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.

elipson_a100_riaa_03

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.

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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.elipson_a100_riaa_06

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.

elipson_a100_riaa_09I 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

Specifications

  • 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

More Reviews

  • This review is for the higher end model – Elipson Omega 100. The only difference from Alpha is that Omega uses carbon tonearm.elipson-alpha-review
  • 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.

Photos

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NAD C 556 Turntable

NAD C556 Turntable

NAD C556 Turntable

 

When it comes to the C 556, NAD has spent lavishly on the parts of the turntable that define its performance, and has left off the features that do nothing to improve the sound. The result is a turntable that easily outperforms others at twice the modest asking price of the C 556. The secret to a good sounding turntable is to make a rock solid mechanical connection between the platter and the pickup stylus. Any play or vibration will either add resonant colouration (making the smack of a snare drum sound like a thud) or subtract the fine detail that is the primary benefit of well-played vinyl. To achieve this goal we use special materials and techniques. The three mechanisms that make up a turntable are the platter that supports and spins the record; the tone arm, which allows the stylus to accurately track the record; and the cartridge, which transforms the vibrations in the record groove into the electrical signals that are sent to your preamplifier.

The platter of the C 556 uses a special phenolic resin that is pressure cast to create the ideal properties of being both massive and inert. The mass creates a flywheel effect that eliminates small, and very unmusical, speed variations called wow and flutter. The mass also rejects unwanted external vibrations, and combined with the extreme hardness of the phenolic material, suppresses vibrations in the audible range. This massive platter requires a precision low friction bearing to allow smooth and stable revolving motion. A special bronze body with a stainless steel ball bearing provides a point-perfect contact with the hardened steel shaft of the platter assembly. This is the ideal design for minimal friction, and a complete elimination of any play or ‘wobble’. The bearing is firmly connected to the rigid and well-damped base that provides a rigid connection to the tone arm. A precision synchronous clock motor keeps the platter spinning at exactly 33 1/3 RPM and its own vibrations are carefully isolated from the platter by a synthetic rubber belt and from the base by rubber isolation mountings.

The tone arm must have the lowest possible mass while still maintaining a rigid, vibration-free connection to the record. To achieve this contradictory goal, the C 556 uses a hand built arm featuring an alloy tube and precision bearings at the gimbal pivot. A simple counter weight balance is combined with a magnetic anti-skate bias control to make for a friction-free pivot that allows the cartridge to operate in an ideal environment.

Reviews
- 5-star review by What HIFI Magazine – http://www.whathifi.com/nad/c-556/review