I’ve been through a number of cheap record players in my life, and they’ve all had some kind of problem — buzzing sounds, low level rumbling sounds, etc. I thought I had found the perfect record player some years back, and indeed it fit all my requirements, which are:

1) Not suck, sound wise. (I’m no audiophile, but I don’t want the record player to make rumbling sounds at me, either.)

2) Have a simple user interface. This means no adjusting belts or anything to switch between 33.3 and 45, because I do that a lot. And no touch interface or anything like that. Just nice buttons.

3) I think that’s it?

The problem is that that record player failed in a way I don’t think I can recall a record player failing: It required adjusting the speed every couple of months. I’d be listening to a record, and then I’m thinking “was his voice always that high pitched?” and then I’d measure, and sure enough, it’d be running 5% too fast. So I’d have to get out a screwdriver and adjust the speed, and that’s just … annoying.

So I spent another few months trying to find a record player that satisfies 1) and 2), and I ended up with a record player that’s basically the big brother of the one I bought last time.

And… it sounds good? And I measured the speed: It’s absolutely spot on, and it’s supposed to stay that way:

With Clearaudio’s optical speed control (OSC) and ceramic magnetic bearing (CMB), the Ovation achieves supreme speed stability and redefines the standards in its class.

I’m crossing my fingers and my toesies.

This new record player is physically larger (deeper, that is) than my old one, which means that it doesn’t fit on top of my stereo stack.

It’s lumber time!



I measured correctly! It fits! This never happens to me!

Then I painted it black, because I think that’s the law?

Look! It’s totally stable! It’s not teetering or anything!

It’s about 14kg. I should probably rearrange this to be less vertical at some point, but it’s kinda nice working height. The old floors here are so sway-ey that things skip around anyway when walking around, so perhaps I should bolt it to the wall? Meh.

Anyway, I was talking about UX? This has excellent UX: It’s just four physical buttons, and they even light up. Excellent!

Now where did I put that 7″ picture disc of Be My Wife…

Mmm… sounds excellent; the crackling, hissing and popping really comes through.

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