The dance music press is currently full of puff piece articles about Technics new gizmo, the SL-1200MK7 turntable. They’re now on sale for £800 and judging by the media reaction, they’re just great, to quote a certain tiger associated with a breakfast cereal.
I don’t have much experience with vinyl, but I do have two thoughts. Firstly, always beware if the dance music press are praising a product to the high heavens – they’ve either been paid to do so, or are just lazily quoting from a press release. Cut and paste journalism is the friend of any hack with a deadline!
And secondly, they don’t really look all that much from the pictures supplied. I remember seeing a pair of Technics 1210s (I don’t remember the exact model, I’m afraid) for the first time back in early 2005. They even look stunning visually in the way that this, frankly, doesn’t.
But are they any good? According to Richard Talmage, an engineer whose LinkedIn page shows he has over 30 years experience of fixing things from turntables to military equipment, no. He writes on a Facebook post:
“As an engineer with over 25 years experience servicing Technics turntables, I was very disappointed.. Everything from the type of plastic used, to the alloy on the platter is of a lower quality than one would expect. The lead-free solder used on the PCBs is the same which is used on many cheap Chinese products and will begin to deteriorate in as little as 6 years.
The latency and non linearity errors on the digital pitch makes these difficult for most people to mix on, as certainly any digital pitch would never be as accurate as a calibrated analogue pitch on the Mk2 units. Other known issues are pitch range mis-calibration, loose tonearm mounts, platter balance misalignment… the list goes on.”
Ouch. There’s not much else to add here, other than this is one review you definitely won’t be reading in the sycophantic media. Heaven forebid they face the threat of losing their freebies and access, eh?