raphaelmabo wrote:Café Latte, I disagree with the views you express.
While it is true that the original 1200 was designed for hi-fi - because in the early 70's there was no DJ-thing going on so it couldn't be made for DJ.s.. - the 1210 was Technics answer to the needs of DJ's so the 1210 is designed for DJ's, with advanced pitch control etc that DJ's likes and needs. Technics simply adjusted their turntable to what the buying public used them for. But as I wrote, one can of course use the 1210 for hi-fi even if it is a DJ-version of what once was in it's original and first version a hi-fi turntable. It is the 1210 we discuss here...
The Technics is an unusual direct drive turntable in the sense that the plattern is designed to be a part of the motor and the integrated thinking with the Technics helped in getting it to achieve low wow and flutter. But turntable design is not only about wow and flutter, there are several factors that affects the sound and there are different schools about how to achieve the best performance. Main drawback of direct drive is motor vibration, with a belt drive the vibration from the motor is damped by the belt.
Many japanese players favors direct drive, but a good working direct drive is expensive to make and in this sense yes it is less expensive to make a good belt drive than a good direct drive, because the belt driven construction in itself cures some problems. The most advanced belt drivers has the motor pulley de-coupled from the chassi, so it is external, just to lower vibration and distortion. It is also about torque, a belt drive can have less torque than a direct drive and this helps the sound quality. Now, take Notthingham Analogue for example - they are strongly believers in low torque motors, their motors has so little torque you have to spin up the plattern by hand! They claim their ultra low torque motor gives the lowest resonance and distortion and has less impact on the sound than higher torque motors - because low torque = low vibration. Direct drive turntables needs to have higher torque than belt drive because they drive the plattern directly. A drawback of belt driven turntables is their slower start-up times - that is why they are not used by DJ's... and pitch control can't be as exact as with direct drive turntables. But direct driven turntables needs more expensive motors. Another drawback of a belt driven turntable is that the belt itself needs to be replaced sooner or later... it doesn't last forever. An old belt has negative impact on the sound because it sits less tight. On Thorens, the belt is inexpensive but it can be more expensive for other makers. But you are of course correct that there are both good and bad direct drive designs as well as belt driven designs. And when it comes to turntables, there are many different schools out there when it comes to how to construct the best turntable. Just compare the Rega-Pro-Ject thinking with Thorens classic thinking (solid plint - heavy plattern vs spring suspension) regarding on how to lower resonances from low frequencies.. But saying that one philosophy is "untrue" suggests that there is some universal general truth to turntable design and just compare the turntables and we can see that here is more to it than that... And if you like direct drives, please do. My post wasn't intended to offend anyone.
Were is this vibration you are talking about and this distortion (measurements)? The motor may well be under the platter on the Technics but it is a 16 pole inductance motor, in other words there is no physical contact between the two halfs of the motor. How the Technics motor works is to give a gradual push as and when needed as controlled by the feedback loop to the spinning platter. Belt drives have their own issues, for a start they all have a physical connection between the motor and the platter (the belt). Belt drive motors also have their own bearings which of course are noisy and the bigger the motor the more the bearings are an isssue so it is understandable the Belt drive TT manufactures try to get the motor as far away as possible from the platter and make the motor as weak as possible. The Technics motor of course does not have its own bearings as half of the motor is mounted on the main board and the other half on the underside of the platter so it sort of shares the main bearing not adding its own noise. The other issue with belt drives is the belt, apart it transmitting noise it makes noise of its own by friction of the belt on the platter and it pulls a sidways force on the platter bearings which is not a good thing either. I was not offended by your comments, but if you believe that belt drives are more suited to hifi you are wrong for soo many reasons. No drive system is better as ALL methods of drive have issues. If it were all about vibration and low torque motors, people would not be dumping their belt drives and searching out an old idler instead (I wont ever be selling my idler), not to mention the Technics sp10 direct drive (I think Jas has one). Your quote.."belt driven turntables are theoretically better for hi-fi because the motor is longer away from the plattern and as thus has less impact on the sound" is just a bit too tidy as unfortunatly it is not that simple and if it was it would be easier for all of us.
No offense meant or taken
I am aware that the sl1200 has become more DJ over the years, but the basic design was not DJ it was hifi (location of motor ect).
Edit.. this is worth a read..http://www.kabusa.com/myth4.htm