Luxman America has introduced its new PD-151 belt-drive turntable, which is based on the PD-171A introduced back in 2014, but incorporates a new DC brushless motor, and a host of other upgrades.
"As enthusiasm for vinyl surges, the PD-151 is poised to introduce Luxman turntables to even more music lovers," says Jeff Sigmund, President of Luxman.
In addition to the new DC brushless motor, the PD-151 has three speeds with independent pitch adjustment; massive, anti-resonant construction with a 10mm thick aluminum top plate and 4kg platter; high-precision Jelco tonearm; oxygen-free copper wiring; magnesium alloy headshell; and detachable IEC power cord. Optional accessories include a dust cover and a second tonearm counterweight.
Luxman's sine wave/Pulse Width Modulation power supply provides ultra-stable direct current to the new DC brushless motor, says the company. This high-torque motor continually monitors and maintains speed with a Proportional-Integral-Derivative (PID) feedback control loop. The motor drives the outside flange of the platter through an uncommonly wide belt, identical to the belt of the PD-171A.
The 4 kg platter acts as a flywheel with extremely high moment of inertia, 22.4 kgf mm2, to suppress even minuscule speed variations, notes Luxman. The machined aluminum platter is finished with a diamond-cut surface. A platter this heavy requires bearings capable of sustaining extremely high pressure. Luxman engineers specified polyether ether ketone (PEEK) thrust bearings and brass radial bearings. Conservatively rated, wow & flutter is less than 0.04%, weighted RMS, according to Luxman.
Luxman engineers implemented a rigorous strategy to suppress vibration and resonance. It begins with large, rubber isolator feet, carefully selected for superb damping and excellent temperature characteristics. Each isolator foot offers 8 mm (3/8 inch) of independent height adjustment. Next, the PD-151 incorporates a 10mm machined aluminum top plate. At nearly 1/2-inch thick, it provides much-needed weight and creates a stable platform. Suspended from the top plate is an underslung chassis that protects the music with yet another layer of vibration damping. Inside the player, rubber damping mounts isolate the chassis from two additional sources of potential vibration: the motor and power transformer.
The tonearm comes from Jelco, audio innovators, experts in jewel bearings and builders of some of the world's most celebrated tonearms. Luxman engineers specified a static balance, S-shaped, 7-inch arm with a one-point-cross suspension of extremely low friction. The headshell, tonearm and output cables all feature oxygen-free copper wiring for sonic purity. Overall length is 229 mm while effective length is 214 mm and overhang is 15 mm. The supplied counterweight accommodates phono cartridges from 4 to 12 grams and the accessory counterweight accepts cartridges of 9 to 19 grams. The magnesium alloy headshell weighs just 13 g.
The PD-151 features minimal indicator lights and buttons on the front panel: there are only controls for power, motor on/off, and operating speed (33-1/3, 45 and 78 rpm). Three recessed set-screws enable independent pitch fine-tuning for each speed, while protecting against accidental mis-adjustment.
Other features include a high-precision stainless steel centre spindle, an EP adaptor, an uncommonly inert turntable slip-sheet and detachable output and IEC power cables that owners can substitute with aftermarket cables. An optional acrylic dust cover is 4 mm thick and features cam support hinges.
The PD-151 is now shipping in the U.S. and sells for an MSRP of US$3,895.