Fluance courts budget audiophiles with Reference Series turntables
Many vinyl records today are a bit chunkier and a tad heavier than many of those on sale a few decades ago. But such quality improvements are clearly not high quality enough for some listeners, as there are moves to introduce HD vinyl – promising longer playing times per side, more amplitude and improved sound quality. Fluance has clearly seen the writing on the wall, and has today launched its brand new Reference Series High Fidelity Turntables.
The Reference Series shapes up as four models – RT82, RT83, RT84 and RT85 – with Fluance promising a "pure, unparalleled analog experience that immerses the listener right in the heart of the recording."
All models share key design elements, including a multi-layered MDF chassis in glossy black or walnut veneer finish that sits on three height-adjustable rubber spikes. They all have a servo-controlled belt drive motor with an optical sensor that looks for minute changes in linear velocity and acceleration 500 times per second and adjusts the speed accordingly. And Fluance says that it's managed to get wow and flutter down to 0.07 percent.
Though each Reference model comes with an Ortofon cartridge at the end of an S-shaped tonearm, not all turntables groove on the same flavor. The RT82 comes with an OM 10, the RT83 and RT84 make use of a 2M Red and the RT85 includes a 2M Blue.
The RT82 and RT83 rock a 1.22 lb (553 g) aluminum platter, but the RT84 and RT85 come with a 3 lb (1,500 g) frosted acrylic platter that's said to offer more speed consistency and cooked-in vibration damping. As a result, listeners of the 84/85 system can look forward to "a more 3-dimensional sound with tighter bass, a fuller mid-range, and overall improved clarity."
The Reference turntables support 33.3 and 45 rpm playback and they all have gold-plated outputs around back. Buyers will need to shell out extra for a phono preamp if their hi-fi amplifiers don't have their own phono stage, though.
The RT82 turntable is priced at US$299, the RT83 at $349, the RT84 at $449 and the RT85 at $499. They're all available now, and come supplied with a dust cover. The video below has more.