October 3, 2014
BANG & OLUFSEN BEOGRAM 5500
Price: around £170
No longer produced, this turntable features a parallel tracking arm that moves across the record at the same angle as the original cutter head. Problem with these arms is that they can fussy (they don’t like warps or scratches. On the other hand, though, the sound should be improved, with a parallel tracking arm, making it much clearer. That’s the idea, anyway. There’s lots of other interesting features here such as auto-sensing record sizes and speed.
REGA ACOS PLANET
Price: around £300
Mainly qualifies for its eccentric status because, despite the rather minimal design, it has an eyebrow raising platter shape. The company’s first turntable design, it arrived with an Acos Lustre arm. Dating from way back, 1973 in fact (two years before the introduction of the famed Planer design), it’s tough to find but examples do pop up on eBay. There was one on the site as I was writing this.
Flexson make accessories for the digital music streaming technology outfit, Sonos and now Flexson has just released a turntable with compatible technology within its new turntable: a built-in DAC and USB port. You also get a built-in phono amp. It’s easy to plug the lot into Sonos’ streaming technology such as its Connect or Play:5 speaker and then stream your music around your house from the turntable. The company makes a big play of using quality components.
Price: around £550
A real head turner but only available via second-hand sale. Great thing is, you can send your purchase to Michell and they’ll provide a full service for it, which should provide extra support for your private sale. The designer, the late John Michell, was an engineering genius who created the model Discovery spaceship seen in the film 2001: A Space Odyssey and built the eyes for Star Wars’ classic robot character, C3PO. This turntable also appeared in the Stanley Kubrick film, A Clockwork Orange.