Thorens is showing a new turntable at the upcoming High End audio show that combats unwanted vibrations caused by buildings, footsteps, sound waves from the music being played, and the turntable's own vibrations.
The Thorens New Reference has been designed and optimized for the first time from the ground up together with a fully active vibration isolation system from Seismion, the manufacturer promises. Seismion has built an international reputation through its high-quality active vibration isolators, which are used in the semiconductor industry, nanotechnology and scientific research laboratories, and now aims to apply that expertise with active vibration isolation as an integral part of the system.
The active vibration isolation is based on piezoelectric accelerometers with extremely high sensitivity and fully linear electronic control. This complex mechatronic system is based on the so-called "sky-hook damping principle" and is said to isolate disturbances below 1 Hz. At 10 Hz, interference is reduced to less than 1% (-40 dB), according to Thorens. This performance is said to be far superior to all other isolation principles.
Especially at the critical frequencies near resonance, the active isolation is better than an air spring by a factor of 100, and still 17 times stronger at 10 Hz, the developers promise. In addition, the chassis itself is said to be resonance-free due to its layered structure of highly damping materials.
It will still efficiently isolate even the smallest vibrations from the nanometer to the picometer range due to the non-contact actuators, according to Thorens owner Gunter Kürten. An adaptive leveling system that precisely levels the platter within 20 microns completes the active isolation system.
Another fundamental part of any turntable is the drive unit. Thorens' new Reference record player features a German-made 3-phase synchronous motor driven by three linear power amplifiers with 120° shifted sinusoidal signals. The motor torque is transmitted to the platter by a belt. Thorens also promises optimized technology and perfect, resonance-free synchronization in the design of the bearing, which is hand-built in Germany.
The "New Reference" can carry up to 3 tonearms, with the new Thorens TP 160 12-inch arm with cutting bearing and the Thiele TA01 – reviewed here with the TT01 turntable – as standard.
The price of the new Thorens turntable is expected to be well into six figures. A first model will be shown and presumably demonstrated in Munich, Germany at the High End audio show starting on May 18.