Testimonial for Thorens TD-125 MKII w/ SME M2-9 arm
I just received a beautifully refurbished Thorens TD-125 MkII turntable outfitted with a new SME M2-9 arm and Dynavector 20X2 low output MC cartridge (both superbly pre-mounted by the way) from Dave Archambault of Vinyl Nirvana. To my utter amazement, Dave was able to deliver the total package – special ordered no less – to my front door in just over a month.
Packaging proved first rate. Lots of green bubble wrap, custom styrofoam insets, plus full instruction sets for the arm, cartridge and ‘table. Turntable set-up (VTF dial-in and anti-skating adjustment) was a breeze – for the most part. The one exception had nothing to do with Dave, but owed to SME’s insistence on using the old-school bobbin-and-thread anti-skating arrangement on the tonearm. Although admittedly elegant, bobbing the loop end of the thin nylon wire through the pulley assembly proved a major pain in the you-know-what. Still, all’s well that ends well, and I can hardly argue with the superb sonic results.
The ‘table itself is simply stunning to behold. The solid zebra-wood plinth with gorgeous mitered edges, coupled with the taupe top-pate (the latter redone in a stunning automotive-grade paint finish) and new co-polymer arm-board assembly, exudes an almost Scandinavian modern élan. The suspended sub-chassis/arm-board assembly superbly isolates the stylus from external vibrations, far better in fact than my old Rega P25 sitting on a custom Gingko Cloud. Thumping the ‘table’s solid wood side panels with robust whacks elicited no untoward behavior, no cartridge skipping or mistracking that I could discern. Wow!
Sound quality is off the charts. Tight, tuneful bass, open airy highs, piston-like dynamics, take your pick: This set-up delivers. As a mechanical system, the table runs silent and smooth. One faintly hears a tiny bit of motor “churning” as the unit comes up to speed, then nothing, nada, zilch! During playback, the unit exhibited no mechanical noise that I could detect.
Dave answered my simple set-up questions promptly and cheerfully by phone. The man takes his work seriously but has a great time doing it. Highly recommended!!!!