But while the best of the three, a TD124 equipped with a Series 1 12-inch SME tone arm carrying an original Ortofon SPU cartridge retipped and retuned by Garrotts, continues to amaze music lovers with its high-end sound, it’s churlish to think turntables haven’t progressed since the 60’s.
The modern turntable benefits from all the accumulated experience of the great turntable manufacturers of days passed. But it’s also the recipient of fresh design ideas, better materials and manufacturing techniques than those available in the past.
Dollar for dollar, the current batch of turntables are cheaper than their forebears and the more respected brands build their designs to a higher level of fit and finish than many of the older brands.
There’s no better way of exploring this notion than attending the 2016 Melbourne International Hi-Fi show and taking a close gander at the contemporary Thorens turntables spinning their talents in Room M9.
The trio comprise the TD195MK IV with a TP41 tone arm and a plinth finished in gorgeous Mahogany, the TD203 a kosher Thorens entry level manual model that will please budget conscious audiophiles and music lovers.
The third model that continues to elicit applause and approval from discerning owners is the TD209 with its new TP90 arm and iconic styling. A styling that surely takes its cue from the shape of a painter’s palette.
But there’s substance as well as styling to the TP209 thanks to its two-part acrylic and aluminum platter. And recalling our theme of progress and onwards and upwards for contemporary turntables, how about this neat performance enhancing feature: the TP209 has adjustable drive belt tensioning, a feature as modern as the TD109’s styling.
Thorens has an extensive range and an even prouder history. Come along and check out the display in Room M9.