8/04/2014

Linn Sondek - LP12 The turntable


Hailed as the turntable by which all others are judged the LP-12 was and is a  vintage design staple. My first taste of it's sound came from my friend Yuri's setup. I was blown away at the balanced suspension design and then by it's transparent sonic representation. A table he utilized to this day which is testament to it's performance.
Throughout the years, there have been many changes to components such as rubber feet, baseboard, armboard, suspension springs and grommets and reinforced plinth. However, the Cirkuskit, with its newly designed bearing, is one of the most significant. This subjectively offers a large performance upgrade. Since 1991 (serial number 87600 onwards), the LP12 has been supplied as a mechanical assembly only, without power supply fitted.Early versions were a platform for mounting third party tonearms, had a basic power supply arrangements, and would only revolve at 33⅓ rpm. Those users requiring a 45 rpm option would have to purchase a special adaptor to increase the diameter of the motor pulley and platter speed accordingly.





Linn capitalised on the success of the Sondek LP12 by introducing the more affordable Basik and Axis turntables, complementary tonearms for the Sondek and cartridges at different price points.






The Sondek LP12 turntable, introduced in 1972, utilises a suspended sub-chassis design and a patented single-point bearing machined to extremely tight tolerances. The LP12 has evolved since its introduction, but its basic suspended sub-chassis design has remained. The thinking at the time was that the most important component of a high-end audio system is the loudspeakers. Linn presented an important challenge to that by claiming that the source (i.e. the turntable) was the most important part of the system.


Today, many options are available for tonearms and power supplies to partner the deck. The LP12 allows the purchaser to select from a number of Linn as well as third party options. It is commonly partnered with the Linn Ekos SE tonearm. External power options include Linn’s own top of the line “Radikal” power supply featuring a speed management system that auto-calibrates the motor every time the Sondek LP12 is powered on. If purity in design is what you seek than look no further than this "sonics first" design. VintageSound at it's finest!