HiFi News Brinkmann Spyder
Hi Fi News 01 December 2018 Full Review
This high-end turntable package needed to be special given the surfeit of fancy disc-spinners on the market, and so it proved. Its modular construction means you can add up to four tonearms – up to 12in in length – in bolt-on ‘pods’. Our deck came configured for the £3895 Brinkmann 10.5 tonearm.
A novel electronically heated bearing means that it is largely immune to changes in ambient temperature while the supplied ‘Sinus’ motor is designed to ‘It’s fun to kick off the audition period with a poor recording’ reduce cogging, powering what is effectively a 500g flywheel, giving a smooth feed to the platter. We also used the optional £2995 RöNT II vacuum tube power supply, making a cool £16,685 in total. The large 10kg alloy/crystal platter is driven around its edge by a thin rubber belt from the offboard motor. It sports the usual two speeds, with speed-trim pots sitting either side of motor control buttons. The arm pods bolt to the main chassis and contain detachable arm mounting plates, which – if they’re specified for Brinkmann tonearms – come pre-wired to simply plug straight into the base of the arm. The Brinkmann 10.5 went on very smoothly – it’s a beautifully finished design with a claimed dynamic mass of 12g, so will work well with most modern cartridges (as our original lab test confirmed).
The tube is made from aluminium and stainless steel, with a so-called ‘high tech synthetic material’ also used, while the allen-key locked headshell has an anodised finish. Double gimbals with precision ball-bearings are employed in the bearing and there are adjustments for VTF, VTA and headshell azimuth. Magnetic antiskating is fitted too and there’s a beautifully silky feel when you hand-cue your LP tracks.
In use, this turntable feels lovely. It oozes quality and gives no impression that engineering corners have been cut. There are no creaks or groans from the belt as the deck spins up to the correct speed, during which time the motor remains absolutely silent.
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