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Dual 1212 Reviews

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Dual 1212

Dual 1212

9/10 by TxTTxT

I've owned a series of classic idler-wheel Duals from the 60s-70s. I began with a Dual 1009SK which I loved, then sold that to get a Dual 1019 that was cosmetically perfect but which suffers from lots of issues including erratic speeds and balky mechanicals. I then lucked out and found a Dual 1212 on my local Craigslist for $25. The Plain Jane bottom-of-the-line Dual 1212 rarely gets the respect it deserves. It lacks the sleek chrome and brushed aluminum look of its more upscale brethren, but it's capable of impressive results if it's in good shape (as mine is) and if you take the time to dial in the correct cartridge alignment with a Baerwald protractor. It's published specs are actually quite decent--wow and flutter is 0.12 percent (compared to 0.10 for the top of the line 1019, and rumble measures at -53 db (which is slightly better than the 1019). It sounds great with a Grado Black cartridge and a NOS Shure M91ed. I am sure that someday I'll have my 1019 overhauled and tweaked to perfection but in the meantime, the 1212 is a worthy proxy.

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