The legendary Technics brand is back with a new emphasis on audiophile gear that meets the demands of the 21st century.
To some, the name means simply the best DJ turntables. To others, it’s evocative of the home hi-fi components that dotted our living rooms in the late 20th century. The brand was fairly quiet in the immediate aftermath of its acquisition by Japanese tech giant Panasonic, and now we know why.
They haven’t rolled out quite all of their new gear yet, but below we give you a brief, dotted (and possibly dotty) guide to the rather delectable Technics hi-fi products soon to be available in New Zealand.
While most of this first clutch of new Technics products is geared towards the more modest end of the audiophile spectrum, the SL-1000R is a genuine top-of-the-line flagship product and one for those who simply have to have the best.
As their blurb says, “the SL-1000R features the latest engineering technologies available to create a listening experience like no other”.
What’s interesting – although not surprising given the brand’s experience with the technology – is that even at the top end they’re putting their weight behind direct drive turntable tech rather than the typical hi-fi penchant for belt drives.
“The SL-1000R includes a double coil twin rotor-type coreless direct drive motor, with coils on both sides for 12-pole, 18-coil drive, and high enough torque to drive the heavyweight class platter with ultimate sovereignty. The result is a stable rotation of 0.015% wow and flutter or less, which is considered to be the limit of measurement tools”!
The turntable also features a platter with a 10mm-thick brass weight, which is enhanced by tungsten weights on the outer periphery. “The brass weight is laminated onto the aluminium die-cast, giving the platter a total weight of approximately 7.9kg and an inertial mass of approximately 1 ton cm. A deadening rubber for eliminating unwanted vibration is attached to the rear surface to form a three-layer construction, which achieves an even higher rigidity and provides excellent vibration-dampening characteristics.
“To achieve further noise reduction, the control unit is separated from the main unit and its switching power supply is equipped with unique technology that provides a voltage supply with minimal noise via a newly-developed ‘unwanted noise reduction circuit’. In addition, the communication between the main unit and the control unit are engineered to resist the effects of external noise whilst increasing reliability. These noise-reduction measures enable the SL-1000R High-End Direct Drive Turntable to achieve the World’s highest-level S/N.
“The SL-1000R Direct Drive Turntable System features an S-type universal tonearm with a lightweight, high-damping magnesium tonearm pipe. The gimbal suspension construction tonearm uses high-precision bearings and a highly-skilled handle, designed with Japanese craftsmanship. All assembly and adjustments to the handle can achieve a high initial-motion sensitivity to precisely trace the grooves cut into the records. To further ensure the production of highly vivid sounds, OFC is used for internal wiring, so that the music signal relayed from the cartridge is not dampened and the musical energy cut into the record is not lost.
The tonearm base, to which the tonearm is mounted, is strongly integrated with the turntable. To safeguard exceptional tonearm performance, the tonearm bearings, turntable bearings and needle position remain constant – providing a structure in which the vibration caused by the rigidity of the turntable base materials has minimal effect.
The SB-G90M2 is a new 3-way bass reflex speaker system consisting of a 2-way coaxial driver combining a 25mm dome and a 160mm midrange cone made of aluminium. This is accompanied by two 160mm woofers, also constructed from aluminium. Due to meticulous research and development, Technics’s engineering team has yet again succeeded in improving audiophile performance quality through knowledge in mechanical construction and evolutionary driver design.
With the new SB-G90M2, thorough CAE analysis was used to optimize drivers, elements and enclosure structures to efficiently eliminate unwanted vibrations and distortions.
Consequently, Technics has significantly improved the already outstanding performance qualities of its predecessor the SB-G90. The new SB-G90M2 loudspeaker system demonstrates Technics’ leading position in manufacturing genuinely musically involving products with one single goal: to reveal an acoustic performance as close to the original as possible – regardless of musical genre.
Below are the technical enhancements of the SB-G90M2 loudspeaker system in comparison with their predecessor:
- Advanced Phase Precision Driver: The diaphragm of the Coaxial Driver Unit has been reworked. The structure has been newly calculated by FEM (Finite Elements Method) simulation for reduced resonance and a more natural midrange with less distortions. Also, a Linear Phase Plug has been added, efficiently eliminating any phase disturbance, thus making the sound pressure characteristics of the tweeter more natural
- Advanced BDMA (Balanced Driver Mounting Architecture): The inner Speaker Mount Baffle onto which the woofers are mounted at their centre of gravity around the magnet has now been extended to one plate attached to the base board, so vibrations can ‘escape’ to the ground
- More Energetic Cabinet Structure: The whole inner stiffening structure has been redesigned in the lower part of the cabinet. The so-called Standing Wave Termination Structure – a multiple-folded wave guide containing a controlled amount of acoustically absorbing material – will efficiently eliminate standing waves, at the same time minimizing the use of acoustic damping material.
- Responding to requests from our customer base, the new SB-G90M2 now features bi-wiring speaker terminals.
The SB-G90M2 loudspeaker system will be available from December 2021 in a meticulous and luxurious finish of high-quality black gloss.
The brand new SU-G700M2 Integrated Amplifier builds on the considerable reputation of the successful and widely acclaimed predecessor SU-G700, which has received countless excellent reviews and accolades from across the globe.
The new SU-G700M2 is a typical example of Technics’ untiring efforts to constantly improve even their most accomplished audiophile products in order to add truly outstanding value to the contemporary audio world.
Advanced technologies derived from Technics’ Reference SU-R1000 Integrated Amplifier were employed to migrate it to the next state-of-art level in its class.
The SU-G700M2 inherits Technics full-digital core amplifier technologies such as the JENO Engine (Jitter Elimination and Noise-Shaping Optimization) for highest signal precision free of jitter and distortion, and LAPC (Load Adaptive Phase Calibration) for optimum matching to any speaker.
Seeking further improvement, the new SU-G700M2 incorporates the following technologies:
- An Advanced Speed Silent Power Supply(AS²PS), incorporating “fast” semiconductor parts such as GaN(Gallium-Nitride) FETs and Silicium Carbide (SiC) Diodes for a much more reactive, efficient supply of current to the power stage for higher drivability of speakers. This approach leans on the power supply of the SU-R1000 reference amplifier
- Improved sound image and dynamic power, combining low distortion and high transparency with energetic drive, improved sound stage and precise focus of voices and instruments without sharpness
- A high-quality MC phono input stage (in addition to MM input) for direct connectivity to turntables with highly preferred MC pickup cartridges
- Phono Input Phase selector for optimized playback of mainly older vinyl discs recorded with inverted phase
- Volume and source knobs now have the aluminium “spin” texture also derived from the SU-R1000 Reference Amplifier for clear distinction from the original SU-G700
The new SL-G700 Network SACD/CD player has been highly reviewed by overseas evaluation sites. The introduction of this Grand Class unit complements today’s other Grand Class announcements of the SU-G700M2 integrated amp and SB-G90M2 floorstanding speakers.
The SL-G700 is a truly modern digital source that can act as the center of any top hi-fi system handling all digital playback duties needed.
The SL-G700 incorporates the following technologies:
- Wide support for Digital sources: SACD & CD playback plus network streaming. Spotify, Tidal and Deezer direct streaming with MQA support plus Chromecast and Airplay 2 support. Both Wifi and wired Lan connection supplied. Internet radio, USB playback, Bluetooth and Optical and coaxial digital inputs round out the connectivity of the SL-G700.
- Grand class design featuring 4 section construction for vibration and interference reduction. Battery isolated clocks to remove jitter and ensure accurate decoding of digital streams.
- Premium grade D/A converters: Asahi Kasei Micro Devices AK4497 is a highly rated 32-bit DAC with a high S/N ratio ensuring low distortion and sublime sound imaging
- High-speed Silent Hybrid power supply: high speed switching power supply optimized for analogue audio playback is employed to ensure smooth and clean power is supplied to all circuits ensuring natural playback with low noise.
- Class AA headphone output: A dedicated D/A circuit for headphones is used to eliminate mutual interference form the analogue output.
- High grade parts selected: Brass milled RCA jacks and premium XLR connecters ensure solid connection to interconnects. Use of non-magnetic carbon film resistors and other high quality components ensure signal integrity. Plus high quality isolating feet and a ridged reinforced steel chassis with a 7mm thick front aluminum panel ensure outside vibration and interference won’t affect the accurate playback of the SL-G700
The finish options, as with the integrated amp, are hairline-brushed aluminum in silver or black.
Witchdoctor reviewers are hard at work reviewing the new Technics gear and will publish their findings shortly!
- More Technics gear to come soon! Available in specialist audio stores.