Panasonic Canada Inc. has announced that a non-limited version of its Grand Class direct-drive turntable will be available this fall. This will take the place of the Anniversary Edition SL-1200GAE, which Panasonic offered in a limited-edition run of 1,200 units worldwide.
Like the Anniversary Edition model, the SL-1200G incorporates many refinements that go far beyond the various iterations of the iconic SL-1200. These include a coreless motor that eliminates cogging, three-layer platter that minimizes ringing, and four-layer plinth that suppresses vibration.
Moreover, the SL-1200G will incorporate the same cold-drawn magnesium tonearm used on the Anniversary Edition, rather than an aluminum tonearm, which the company had previously stated it would use on the non-limited version. The tonearm features gimbal suspension construction, with the horizontal rotation axis and the vertical rotation axis intersecting at a single central point, as well as high-precision bearings using a cut-processed housing.
Panasonic says the SL-1200G/GAE's newly developed motor, which dispenses with an iron core, eliminates the rapid minute speed variations, known as cogging, which are characteristic of direct-drive designs. Speed stability is further enhanced by microprocessor-controlled rotary positioning sensors. This feature is unique to the SL-1200G. According to Panasonic, rotational stability of the SL-1200G surpasses the Technics SP-10 Mk 2 broadcast turntable.
The 3.6kg three-layer platter combines a heavy brass top surface, aluminum die-cast centre and deadening rubber material on the bottom surface, dampening resonances and external vibration. The four-layer cabinet includes a 10mm-thick top aluminum top panel, added to layers of die-cast aluminum, Bulk Moulding Compound, and heavyweight-class rubber.
The Technics SL-1200G will retail in Canada for $5,000.