I have the TD280 Mk II and it's a nice turntable, but it was an entry level offering and the TD125 was an upper market and flagship player so not really in the same class. But I do like my TD280 for it's musical sound and it do has semi-automatics if one wants that. TD290 is a 280 with a Pro-Ject tonearm, a bigger plinth and a new motor. I would recommend going for the 295 Mk IV instead (it's a TD290 with a dual-plinth construction). But it's just been discontinued.colver wrote: ↑13 Jan 2020 20:27Hi folks I'm looking for a bit of advice. I'm thinking about replacing my Thorens td125 MK2 and Garrard Zero 100sb for a more modern TT, either new or up to about 25 years old. Something that needs less repairs or tinkering. Any ideas what would sound decent and more "pop a record on and play"? I do like the Theorens td290 and 280, the cheaper Linn's and the Systemdeks.
Now, there's another alternative - the Thorens TD 402 DD.
This is actually Thorens first direct drive since the 80's. And it's semi-automatic with auto-start and auto-stop. ("semi" because you still control the tonearm lift). It has gotten great verdicts in German magazines and it comes with a VM95 that is easy upgradeable.
Here you have the German tests:
https://www.testberichte.de/p/thorens-t ... ml#artikel
(I know of only one test in english, but this was for a pre-production/prototype unit so it's not valid. It raised some concerns that are cured with the production units).
Here you have info about it:
If you want a full automatic, then Thorens has the new exclusive 148A, this may be the best new fully automatic on the market today. But it's more expensive than the TD402.
You may also want to have a look at the new TD1600/1601 (1601 is a semi-automatic version of the 1600). It has got really great reviews and Thorens is "back on form". Offering a musical, muscular and very stable and open sound.
Here's an english review of a pre-production/prototype unit:
https://www.tnt-audio.com/sorgenti/thor ... 601_e.html
Please note that the review has one error: It states that Thorens has production in China, this is not true. Some of their products (the TD402 and 1600/1601) are produced in Taiwan (yes, Taiwan, not China) for cost reasons. Others are produced in Germany. All are designed and developed in Germany by the Thorens R&D team.
Here we have another great review, of the production model. (yes, it's now in full production)
https://www.lowbeats.de/thorens-td-1600 ... tradition/
Here's Thorens own info: