The Absolute Sound
The Absolute Sound


review

The Absolute Sound – Product of the Year
The Absolute Sound – Product of the Year


review

Joe Harley
Joe Harley

Joe Harley, record producer: “The A.J. Conti Transcendence is an invaluable tool for me, in addition to being supremely pleasurable to listen to! To put it simply, it tells me the truth about the vinyl I have on. By that I mean that, as much as possible for a mechanical device, it has no “sound” of its own. You’ll know it the instant you put on a record. It is dead quiet …. no low-level groove noise of any kind! I’ve had many turntables and I’ve never experienced anything quite like this. Then there’s the ridiculous speed stability of this thing. I spend a lot of time in studios and the only thing I can compare it to is a perfectly maintained Studer tape deck. The SuperArm tonearms that I have on my Transcendence are not “tonearms” in that they have no identifiable sound of their own. And, as anyone who owns them knows, they track anything and everything with total finesse. Thank you Basis!!” “Poise. That’s the word that keeps coming to mind as I keep playing more records. (Now that my travel has been greatly curtailed, I have a living room concert just about every night!) This table/arm system is just SO poised and refined! It’s basically invisible to the mechanical process and that’s the highest compliment I can imagine ever giving to an analog playback device. I love that this new turntable does exactly that …. it tells the truth with no additive distortion. How cool is that???!” “Now I’ve listened to my own recently produced records and adjusted the low end of my speakers a bit. A.J., this is ri-dong-damned-diculous! Your rig presents a significantly new level of resolution and tape-like clarity without a HINT of harshness! In other words, it sounds like tape! I’m truly amazed and agog!” “We shot another Joe Zone on Sat night, this time with Anthony Wilson. He presented a wonderful album by the great Brazilian artist Milton Nacimento. After the shoot, we listened to Anthony’s own latest album, the one I presented in the last Zone: Frogtown. Anthony was amazed, saying that what he heard sounded like the direct mic feed from the studio. We were mesmerized by the turntable, that this mechanical device sitting there could possibly be responsible for the direct to the master tape sounds we were hearing.” “Hi A.J., This morning, very early, around 7:30 Jesse Carmichael from Maroon 5 showed up for our golfing day. But before we left, we listened to some Janos Starker solo Bach cello as well as a classic ECM recording of Paul Bley: Open to Love. Jesse, being a keyboard player was sitting there with his eyes closed listening in wonder to the solo piano, on one of the most difficult instruments to properly reproduce (piano!). Even the upper register single notes hit with great velocity were reproduced with perfect clarity and overtone structure. Jesse (who owns a fine audio system) said ‘I’ve never heard piano reproduced like this before, it’s like he’s in the room!’ We listened until I had to pull him away to our t-time.”

Les Turoczi
Les Turoczi

Les Turoczi, longtime audio reviewer: “First, it looks stunningly beautiful, just from the visual aesthetic perspective alone. Second, the nature of the sound is a clear step ahead of what the Inspiration had been providing me previously. I never thought I would say anything like that, but it is a fact. There is a new clarity to the tonal structure of instruments, as well as improved sound stage dimensionality and a greater uniformity across the frequency spectrum yielding an enhanced sense of reality to the performers, including vocalists. Effortlessness is at a new level and the ability to relax into the music is beyond what I thought possible. Third, the quality of execution of every part of the turntable is impeccably rendered. The Transcendence and 12.5 SuperArm have been an eye opener as well as an ear opener and I am thrilled with it. A.J. created a truly singular masterpiece in this new turntable system.” “A.J.’s commitment to precision, exactitude, and outstanding manufacturing practices manifest readily in every Basis Audio product. As I moved through updates and upgrades in my analog system, one hallmark that I repeatedly noted was how natural the music was rendered through the changes A.J. made. My love of music, as well as of audio, has grown immensely in the last decade and much of that comes from knowing A.J. Conti and Basis Audio. I sense that I am not alone in that opinion and take joy in being among many proud Basis Audio owners.”

Roy Halee
Roy Halee

Roy Halee, producer engineer: “My Basis SuperArm is a wonder. What it does for the human voice is truly astonishing. It has to be heard to be believed.” “After I acquired an Inspiration and SuperArm I heard things that I had not heard since producing the master tape of [Paul Simon’s] Graceland.”

Chad Kassem
Chad Kassem

Chad Kassem, owner of Acoustic Sounds, APO Records, Blue Heaven Studios, Quality Record Pressings, Analogue Productions: “Every time I saw A.J., he would go on and on about my success, not his. I think that says a lot about a person. He never stopped in the pursuit of trying to perfect his product.’“ “He contacted me a couple of months before he died and said he had an idea. He realized that you can’t get better than an analog master tape. So he told me that he wanted to buy the best analog tape machine and he wanted me to get him a one-off copy of the master tape of one of the records that we reissued. He wanted to use the tape and our vinyl reissue played on his turntable to see how close he could get to the master. He was chasing perfection.” “I’ve owned the Gold Debut turntable for approximately 20 years. It still looks and sounds as beautiful as when I bought it, and I’ve never seen a reason to upgrade.”

Nelson Pass
Nelson Pass

Nelson Pass, owner of Pass Laboratories, Inc. “I use a Basis Signature Series 2500 with the Vector arm daily in my main system, and it brings me great pleasure.”

Greg Timbers
Greg Timbers

Greg Timbers, past chief designer and engineer for JBL: “I initially found out about A.J. when I received a phone call from him while I was working for JBL. Seems he had some questions regarding speaker systems I had designed. Well, that was just the first of many delightful conversations we shared over the years. He was very interested in my thought process regarding the big loudspeaker systems I had done and I was equally interested in his thoughts regarding his arms and turntables.” “It turns out that we have very similar design philosophies, which in general are not mainstream. We are both concerned with the measurements of, actual reasons for and engineering necessities of the transference of energy from one form to another. A.J.’s systems convert from mechanical to electrical and mine do electrical to acoustical. Neither transformation is trivial.”

TAS 2024 Editors’ Choice


Seven Awards

Isaac
Isaac

"I finished setting up the turntable yesterday. I can only say, "wow!" My unit is 13 years old (the arm is newer I'm guessing) and is performing flawlessly. The sound is authoritative, poised, and full, inspiring confidence that any record will sound its best on this table. I had never heard a Basis table before but was always impressed by the commitment and passion your departed husband displayed when talking about vinyl playback and, of course, Basis products. After researching many different brands and technologies, as well as hearing them at dealerships and trade shows, I kept coming back to Basis. ... Thank you for continuing and evolving the legacy of A.J. Conti's designs. I am enjoying my record collection and music like never before." Isaac

TAS 2023 Editors’ Choice


Seven Awards

Tam Henderson
Tam Henderson

“I’ve been meaning to drop another line, to re-enforce my early impressions of the Model 2200 system. I’m spending a couple of hours every day with it, in great enjoyment. A friend who gave up on LPs years ago came over recently, and sat in amazement at the absence of all-too-familiar vinyl distortions. Neither of us can understand all the elements you’ve brought into play to reduce noise, hash and mistracking—but their absence is dramatic. Even inner grooves of records in good condition are clean as can be. And, as mentioned before, the clarity of even run-of-the-mill pressings is perhaps the most valuable aspect of this marvelous machine, because that’s mostly what vinyl junkies have……………)”

G.M. – Owner
G.M. – Owner

G.M., a proud Inspiration owner, relates: I have been hoping to get a chance to send you a letter saying how much I love my Inspiration but I cannot drag myself away from the music long enough to write! In 25 years of audio this has to be the most incredible, surprising improvement I have ever heard. I am not a stranger to great equipment, owning the Wilson Alexandrias, Spectral and Audio Research electronics, and top of the line MIT cables. Yet no addition or change to my system ever caused the music to become so much more alive, detailed, and just plain old addictive. I have to say that this is the finest audio component I have ever purchased, and my wife agrees! Thank you!

Audio Dealer
Audio Dealer

A well known high end audio dealer of 30 years, located in the USA, says: A.J., I know the sound of your turntables, owning the 2200, 2500, and Debut Vacuum, all with Vector tonearms. I know the differences between those turntables, so I expected to hear a difference with the Inspiration, but I never could have expected an experience like I had. I am shocked that any turntable at any price could sound so much better than any vinyl source I have ever heard. The level of detail is truly astounding. The DECAY! The DECAY! The DECAY! The sound of the instruments goes on forever, the strings buzzing and body sound so delicately resonating. It is amazing that there is detail that I never knew was there on vinyl, yet it is so easy, so musical to listen to. The Inspiration has to be the greatest turntable in the world. I can’t imagine anything coming close, I have heard all of the possible contenders. This is one of the 2 most shocking things I have heard since I started my business. It is impossible to pull myself away from the system when this turntable is playing. I don’t know what else to say except thank you!

J.S.
J.S.

JS, a very experienced audiophile and vinyl lover, understands exactly what the 2800/Vector system accomplishes: Over the course of years, I have compiled an extensive collection of vinyl. White label promo’s, first pressings, test pressings, audiophile labels and such. The question was then how to best realize the wonderful sounds trapped inside those 1,500-plus records. The various turntables auditioned revealed that desired rich analog sound missing from digital, but something was still not right. The lush sound flowed too close together. Those turntable/tonearm setups were pouring syrup into my ears. The separation, air and space between notes was limited. Sonic signatures were pronounced. High and midrange was very good, but not thrilling. Bass lacked some weight, but this could not be expected. Hey, this is vinyl. On recommendation from my trusted audio guru, I finally decided on the Basis 2800 with vacuum hold-down and Vector 3 tonearm. The Dynavector XV-1s cartridge was selected for its linear, neutral sound. After my guru set up my system to perfection, the first record was played. I was at a loss for words. This was jaw-dropping. My first reaction upon hearing a major improvement in sound reproduction is always physical and emotional. None of the usual audiophile descriptions enter my mind. I froze in my listening position and felt an immediate rush. Tingling in the back of my neck and change in breathing cadence. I did not focus on why the sound was exceptional. I just wanted to enjoy the experience. My next move was to change from the first LP (Neil Young test pressing) to another (Joni Mitchell WLP). Then a RCA Living Stereo 1-S. Then The Duke's Big Four and so on. No matter how complex the recording, the Basis 2800/Vector delivered far beyond what I had previously heard from any other turntable setup. What was so astonishingly different? First, no more syrup sound. The 2800/Vector created air between all notes. Not just all instruments and vocals, between all notes. Air between the plucks of acoustic guitar strings. Air between various percussion strikes. Everything was clearly delineated. Detailed and smooth without a hint of thickness. Incredible inner detail. The Dynavector XV-1s is known to be neutral. Balanced from top to bottom. Some say a bit sterile. Not now. I had never heard the Dynavector sound this good. Not even close to this good. The Basis/Vector delivered a tight full powerful natural bass. This from vinyl? Absolutely, and the Basis/Vector still delivered all the lower register subtleties that make music an emotional experience. The various background sounds on Steely Dan’s Aja make that recording remarkable. But, can you really hear them distinguished in their full glory? Can you hear those wonderful differences individually or are they lumped into an audio stew? The Basis/Vector is the only setup, analog or digital, that has ever revealed all of those sounds completely separate. All instruments perfectly placed within the soundstage. And the resulting soundstage was huge. Wide, deep, high and low like those experienced at a live performance in the park. Thrilling to say the least. When focused on a particular note, the Basis/Vector reveals leading edge transients and natural decay unmatched by other systems. Voices are heard from the diaphragm out. David Oistrakh’s Conte di Fontana Stradivarius is heard with all of its glory. A.J. Conti’s Basis designs are always with a purpose. Extraneous and flamboyant additions are not applied. If it does not improve the sound, it is not used. Basis is a purest approach. Machined to perfection. Absolutely beautiful when viewed in the flesh. Conti’s obsessive pursuit to eliminate mechanical vibration has yielded incredible results. Since obtaining my initial Basis/Vector system, several upgrades have added. An improved motor, the calibrator base with cable isolation system, the syncro-wave power supply and the revolution belt. Each upgrade has yield even more phenomenal results. This is definitely the pursuit of perfection. On many occassions I have lost time while listening to the Basis/Vector system. Perceived two hours of listening has turned into actual four hours. It is hard to deny oneself of so much pleasure.

Steve W.
Steve W.

Dear A.J., I just wanted to tell you how impressed I am with the 2200/Vector 4 table. It is the most beautiful piece of audio equipment I have ever seen. It is a true work of art. And it is as perfect as human hands can make. I have always built things since I was a kid (I’m 52 now) and everything I build is as perfect as I can make it. Everything would have been so much easier to build if I was not a perfectionist. But I just can’t help it. If something is off a fraction of an inch it bothers me. So when you talk about microns I know how your mind works. I’m sure when you look at other companies products you wonder why they would have not built it better. (A.J.’s comment: I don’t wonder, it’s simply a lack of education, engineering experience, knowledge of physics, commitment, dedication, as well as not wanting to spend the money for the best materials, machining, and finishes.) When a person looks at a Basis table you wonder how did they do that. The 2200 suspension is the best I have ever seen. The rotation of the platter is so precise that without an album on it you can’t tell that it is rotating. (There’s your microns.) And the Vector 4 tonearm is an incredible design and the sound of this tonearm is as beautiful as the table. But I get great joy just from looking at my 2200. However, when I put the needle down that’s when the real magic begins. If there is a turntable in Heaven, it will be a Basis. To the whole Basis team I say Thank You for creating such a great table that will bring me pleasure for the rest of my life. Steve W.

J.
J.

A.J. I would be happy to try and put into words my experience with the 2200. I upgraded from the 1400 signature I purchased 3 years ago which was the table that took me out of my 25 year hiatus from vinyl. It was such a surprising and wonderful experience that I very rarely listen to CD's anymore and really believed the 1400 would most likely be my last table, it was that good. I upgraded my tonearm and cartridge and the system got even better. Since my listening room is on a cement slab I really never thought I would need a suspended table. Boy, was I in for a surprise! I have followed the Basis innovations through print and on the website and have been intrigued. The mention in the TAS 2009 buyer's guide really tweaked my interest so I pulled the trigger on a 2200 Signature. I have to say the packing is first rate and totally organized as are the instructions on unpacking. Building the table was a breeze and took less than 2 hours. Basis suggests letting the resonance annihilators stand up-right over night prior to assembly to let everything settle which is excellent advice. I mistakenly thought I had a tonearm mismatch and e-mailed A.J. Conti, on a Saturday no less, in desperation for some help. I was disappointed to say the least and realized it would probably be Monday before I heard anything. He replied within an hour, problem solved and I was off and running! Customer service is truly what you get from Basis Audio. So how does the 2200 sound? The rug burns on my chin are getting serious! It is an experience I never thought possible from my audio system. What really floored me was the incredible detail, low level detail that is so intricate to a song that I had never heard before. Listening deep into a black background with subtleties that are critical to taking the listening enjoyment from outstanding to off the charts. The other thing I noticed right away was the tonality of voice and instruments, all instruments, like the critical lower keys of a piano that would simply just blend in before and go unnoticed but were now an important part of the song. Everything just sounds so natural and real. All of the detail is so naturally rendered. In fact it comes with such a richness and air that it just washes over you. And that's a combination that is very rare in any system I have heard over many years, richness and air. I could go on and on using every audiophile term in the book, but I will just say it is the finest front-end piece of equipment I have had in my system in my 32 year journey in this hobby. Thanks Basis!

David Rowley
David Rowley

AJ I am so happy with my new 2200 Signature Turntable. The box showed up at the house on Friday. All contents were packed with the utmost of care in mind. Having the video for the arm and table made it come together with ease. When I played my first record I new I had made the right decision. The performance and craftsmanship are second to none. Thank you again, David Rowley Kenai, Alaska

LD
LD

From LD, Los Angeles, on his Debut Vacuum/Vector/Synchro-Wave system: Hello A.J., Here is a review on your product to be shared at your wish, I have been in the professional film and sound industry for 25 years. I have won awards for my digital work in film yet have never given up on analog for my home sound system. My search began 2 years ago……the search to replace my trusty Linn turntable. Being in the industry I have been to most major shows in those 2 years, listening to every major brand of premium turntable that I found at shows. How can anyone miss the poor speed stability of most turntables in relation to the Linn? I have perfect pitch, yet the pitch is so poor on most that I have to assume most listeners without perfect pitch should notice. The 2200 with Vector at CES showed me that Basis is pro equipment. In so many ways this sound exceeded that of even the $110,000 turntable at another display. As to the sound, what is there to say? Speed is rock steady, music flows perfectly, razor-sharp detail yet beautiful “analog flow” to the music. The 3-d effect is stunning. My only regret is not upgrading to this earlier. One-line summary: Perfect stability, fantastic detail, stunning 3-dimensinality, gorgeous build - If anyone is reading this and you are just considering this purchase, you should do it now without a moment’s notice, you will never regret it. A.J., if you were in my industry you would be awarded an Emmy achievement award.

Dr. R.
Dr. R.

From Dr. R. on his 2800/Vector/Synchro-Wave system: Hello Armando, Firstly I want to tell you that I am enjoying the Basis 2800 more than ever since adding the Synchro-wave power supply, balanced rotor motor, micro thin belt, Calibrator base with cable isolation system, upgraded suspension and Vector Model 4 tonearm. Among other positive attributes, the retrieval of detail is among the best I have ever heard (and this includes the Continuum Audio Labs Caliburn with Cobra tonearm) and the noise floor is the lowest of any turntable period. The ergonomics of the system have also taken a huge step forward. You were right I really did not know what to expect with these upgrades and they have certainly exceeded my wildest dreams. As you said it is truly unlike any LP playback system and more akin to master tape.

Dr. M.
Dr. M.

Dr. M. writes, about his 2500/Vector system: Hi AJ Finally cleared customs. Set up table with a friend (who could not believe how easy it was-he is a former Linn dealer).You are right-I am astonished at how good it is. As well as the expected improvements-better (much better) base, deeper and wider soundstage, clearer treble and so on, it retains(and improves)the major strength of the Well Tempered- ie a sense of ease and flow that draws you into the music. I was always concerned that there might need to be some type of trade-off (with a SME 20 I had listened to there were tradeoffs) but all aspects of the music were better. I am stunned frankly. Congratulations. A couple of questions-What type of turntable stand is best? I currently have a heavy one with a sand box. The Basis is so well sorted I suspect that it does not matter but I am interested in any views that you have. Also I only seem to need a vestigial amount of antiskating -is this common-I used a non tracked test record to set it. My cartridge is a van den Hul Frog. Thanks again for the great service but especially for designing and making the thing. Everything from Al Green to Mahler is now more like music. Best Roger

Bob B.
Bob B.

You already know this from our long phone calls, I was ready to quit vinyl after fussing with my (American brand turntable) first with his arm, then the new Phantom. Jumping grooves with the “memorial arm”, mistracking, and with the next arm (armboard did fit properly, took Harry 2 tries to get it right) that bright sound on orchestral music. Well, frustrated I was. Now, I just turn on the 2200, cue down the Vector 4, and play. Kudos to PS of Absolute Sound for his review, giving you the recognition you deserve. Everyone tried to sell me whatever they had without caring about solving my fundamental problem. You took me step by step, guaranteeing that the Vector 4 and 2200 would solve the problem, and you were right. I am sending you an album, you might have never heard of the jazz group, but give it a chance, this is real jazz played with real emotion. Thank you again, I can now enjoy music instead of constantly thinking about my turntable and tonearm and why they will not work. B.B.

Major Manufacturer
Major Manufacturer

From a major manufacturer previously using the SME 30 turntable: Hello A.J., Have I told you lately that you make a wonderful turntable! I have spent so much time listening the past two weeks that I just haven't had time to communicate. The turntable is amazing! 1. Works every time you turn it on! 2. Retains all it settings and does not need constant adjustment. It just works. 3. Is a pleasure to use! Ergonomically well designed. 4. The suspension actually works and it does isolate from the environment. Have been listening at very high levels at times. 5. Speed is constant and varies very little from day to day use. 6. Bass definition is amazing. Very noticeable with my speakers that go very low. More output in the bass registers because of the turntable and vacuum clamp. Same arm and cartridge on my other turntrable does not product the definition or the same output level as on the Basis. 7. More clarity top to bottom. Mid-range definition is amazing. 8. Sound stage does not change no matter how complex the material. As I said before, I have been spending every spare moment listening……… Hope all is well with you and yours!

Scott P.
Scott P.

Scot P. says about his 2200 with Vector: Now that my turntable is set up I fear our great conversations will not be as frequent! I don’t find many locals to talk with about Ducati motorcycles so I’ll have to call you about them still! As you know, I am fortunate enough to own a Ferrari, Porsche, Ducati, the WAMM system (still the best loudspeaker I have ever heard…..), and now the 2200. David Wilson told me to buy a Basis, as that is what he uses of course, and boy was he right! Everything else in the system is way more expensive than the 2200, but as I said to you, my business had a tough year and I could not spend more. I’ve auditioned the Nottinghams (jokes, you are right), SME 30, 20, and so many others. I had some of them on loan in my house (being near such a big city helped here). The 2200 must be the best turntable in the world except for your more expensive models. I can tell you, I’m a Basis man for life! Thanks again for all the help, Scot

Executive
Executive

From an executive of a world-renowned electronics manufacturer: Good evening Armando, I would have broken one of my rules and called you at home this evening if I had your home phone number here at the house. I received the arm board you sent today. I came home and while my wife was fixing dinner I mounted the arm that had been removed from the SME-30. The arm had the cartridge mounted. So same arm and cartridge. I adjusted the arm and will redo it later and check and make sure I did not make an error. Well the SOUND is WONDERFUL, GLORIOUS, etc.! Never had sound like this in my house. Even my wife came into the room and asked what I did to produce such a magnificent change in the sound. We have been listening and the difference is amazing. Mind you that I am using the standard belt (not having tried the Microthin yet) and SME arm......... You already know how it sounds so I won't bore you with my observations at this time. Once I get further into listening we can talk about things. The SME-30....... needs serious help! Thanks!

M.J.
M.J.

A.J. As you know, I had been urging you to do an air bearing platter for over one year and a direct drive for speed stability. Based on what Lloyd Walker told me the air bearing would offer superior suspension and greater silence. You responded that air under pressure would offer little isolation, that this type of bearing would have a resonant frequency in the audio range, and that the air would cause more noise in the audio range than your bearing. In addition, you told me that with the new motor controller and belt, the speed stability was in the range of a good direct drive. Walker convinced me that I should seriously consider his turntable despite the fact that I love my Debut Vacuum. We all love upgrades, and I was excited about uncharted territories. Before buying anything I decided to conduct some tests by myself in order to proof the statements heard and read. I found some dealers with a Walker on display who happened to be using my same phono cartridge. I flew to the dealers, bringing a very sensitive electronic stethoscope to one of the dealers and listen to the walker with a variety of records that I own. As I told you after I conducted my tests, I was shocked. I just could not understand how much noise Walker platter had when the stethoscope picked up nothing from yours with the vacuum on! How can you possibly make a bearing quieter than an air bearing or it was the motor noise what I heard. I honestly could not discriminate so I assume that you could be correct. (I wonder how a magnetic bearing will perform fixated to the bottom, with the motor on the same acrylic isolation platform so the belt distance never change and still without any contact to the top acrylic plinth). Then I tested the isolation of the platter by tapping the stand the walker turntable was on. Again, you were correct!! the noise traveled right through air bearing and into the platter. When I tested by tapping the stand on the Basis, I was not able to pick up any noise or vibration even using the stethoscope at the maximum sensitivity. (But then when we communicate, we speak and listen thru the air ; don't we?, what a great conductor of sound!). I placed a warp record on the basis without any recording and listen with the volume all the way up and I could listen a noise thru the speakers every time the needle went thru the warp, the noise completely disappeared after I turned the vacuum on and the record was flattened. I concluded that a warp record without vacuum has to interfere with the integrity of the musical recording. After all this tests, I decided to check your speed stability with your own old motor and the walker and the clearaudio motor controllers. Using a cardas record with a 1000 Hz signal plus a meter and also a KAB record I tested the speed stability. Then I switched to your new rewired motor and controller. My findings where: 1) Motor vibration and noise with the stethoscope almost imperceptible at the motor case and non at the platter vs much greater vibration with the old motor. 2) Speed stability/ wow and flutter with the new belt; DIRECT DRIVE TERRITORY ( The exact numbers I could not get, because I do not have instruments sensitive enough) vs an acceptable speed drift after a minute with the old system. Finally, I listened. The Walker just could not compete with the sound of the Debut Vacuum. In my own system the Debut is simply better, more dynamic, more detailed, more natural than the Walker. Remember, this is playing the Walker with the same cartridge as the Debut. It is in my opinion, that the Debut is like listening to a live performance vs a nice musical recording thru the walker. I can sum this up by saying I always believed in your engineering, precision, and quality along with the sound that results from these. It is good to be able to tested by myself, that way I could make my own conclusions. However, I am greater believer that you make if not the finest then one of the finest turntable available at any price (the Basis Signature Debut V Vacuum). Let not forget that I am not a professional reviewer so may be that my conclusions could be wrong but I am a conscious consumer and at the end of the day, I was more satisfied with your system and that, no professional could argue. Maybe the professional reviewers should test components in a more controlled environment before reaching their conclusions.

Josh G.
Josh G.

Dear Mr. Conti, As you know, I owned the Goldmund Reference, Forsell, Linn and another prominent $40,000 table before buying the 2800 and Vector tonearm on your convincing arguments. I must be the only person in the country owning 4 “supertables”! Now that I have your supply, I do have to confirm that what you said is true. The seismo-wave (Should read “Synchro-Wave” – Basis) supply has elevated the motor system to an invisible, noiseless, magic platter rotater. I can hold your motor in my hand and not even know if it is running or not. When I feel the belt while it is driving the platter it is the quietest of all my belt drive turntables. But the proof is in the pudding. My 2800 (or YOUR 2800) is the finest overall turntable in my stable, with the quietest background, the greatest REAL detail, and the most realistic tone. My hats off to you, you know your engineering and your turntables. With many thanks, Josh

Steve P. Raves
Steve P. Raves

Dear A.J. The new turntable (Debut Mark 5) significantly exceeded my expectations. The old Debut III was a great table, but the new Debut Vacuum removed another veil, increased dynamics, bass was tighter with better definition. The highs were also better defined with a greater 3 dimensional quality to the midrange. My wife even commented that the music was “much clearer with less boom.” She normally just tells me to “turn it down!”. Again, my compliments for your extraordinary work.

David C.
David C.

No doubt you are disappointed. I could not spring for the 2200 and had to “settle” for a 2001 + Vector. All I can say is “Wow.” My friend trying to twist my arm into buying a VPI HRX is so jealous that his much more expensive setup cannot resolve as the Basis does, cannot track as the Basis does, and has obvious pitch stability problems compared to the 2001. I did the “credit card trick” as you call it, holding the credit card against the body of the turntable with the edge against the platter. You were right, the VPI moves in and out, while the Basis shows a perfect round platter. What did he get for his $11,000? I know that VPI got a lot more out of the transaction, big fat profit I love companies that know what they are doing, and it is obvious that you know what you are doing. If anything, you have vastly understated your own products. This is the opposite of what I normally see in audio, where designers are blinded by their own work. Thank you from a satisfied customer.

William
William

Dear AJ, Let's do the heart first: every time I walk into the listening room, the first thing I look at is the Debut. I cannot take my eyes off it. But, if form follows function, why shouldn't a beautifully engineered thing look beautiful too? Think Porsche, Philip Johnson's glass house, Sapper's Tizio lamps, Wassily chairs (I've got a pair-- like the Barcelona chairs, they're uncomfortable as hell.) Oh yes, it does make music too, I almost forgot (!). I listened yesterday to Art of Fugue, Davitt Moroney on harpsichord. That harpsichord was right in the room, I swear to God. The harmonics and hall ambience filled the room. Who needs four or five channel when two can do that? It's spooky. And when Bonnie Rait sings her love songs, she's singing to me and only me. You can hear the way she forms words with her mouth, and uses her breath for subtle shadings and meanings. This is not obsessive hi fi detail-- this is heightened communication with the artist. The Koetsu finally has the right platform to let it do its thing. I think you should get one-- Rosewood Signature Platinum. Or, go for it, and grab an Onyx or Lapis. Now for the head. I found that putting the rubber washer on the spindle for the Basis clamp (I had failed to do that) makes a significant difference-- deeper bass, more bass, more depth, roundness, and human quality to vocals.

T.C.
T.C.

Hello A.J., I wanted to pass on a few comments about my Debut, Vector, as well as the new belt you sent. I purchased the table in May of 2002. As you know I was assembling a new system at the time for a new home I was about to move into. Several of my friends owned 2500s, 2800s, Debuts, or Ovations, so I decided to go in this direction. Frankly, after seeing the build quality of your table, it was not a difficult choice. I live in a rural town, and had to assemble the Debut on my own. Keep in mind that I am fairly new to analog, as it supposedly died during my youth. This table was simple to put together. Unfortunately I was not as pleased with the rest of the system. over the last 15 months every other piece of the system has changed, but the Basis remains. I owned a highly regarded $8700 CD front end, but the analog sound was so superior that I sold the Digital, relegating digital listening to the car and portable player. Besides being easy to set up it holds its settings. Seven months ago I decided to update the decor in my listening room and had to move all of the equipment out. I once had to do this with another table and ended up having to set up the table from scratch, settings had changed dramatically. I own all of Wally's tools, including the Azimuth tool, and upon moving the table back into my room I was thrilled to learn that everything was dead on....no readjustment was necessary. Being an obsessive person I occasionally recheck VTF, Azimuth, and level, and the table holds perfect. Not once have I had to re level the table in 15 months! As good as the Debut is, your new vector arm may be your best feat to date. Never have I owned an arm that sounded as dynamic and natural as this one. Tracking is simply not an issue anymore, neither is sibilance which I had always blamed on certain recordings in the past. I have a couple of LPs which have grooves VERY close to the label, and can honestly say that these tracks sound the same as those elsewhere on the disc. I was recently revisiting VTF (there goes the obsessiveness again). My cartridge manufacturer recommends 1.8-2.2. At 1.8 the arm tracked perfectly on all of the tracks (+12db - +18db) on the HFNRR test records. Out of curiosity I changed VTF to 1.0. The arm still tracked the first three tracks perfect, with no buzzing, and stayed in the grooves for +18db. I tried a couple of well known LPs which had loud horns or vocals which have proven troublesome in the past and I experienced no mistracking, even @ 1.0 VTF! Another interesting thing about this arm is that it seems to be compatible with a wide variety of cartridges. Since I have owned the Debut I have used the Shelter 901, Van den Hul Colibri, Benz LP, and Dynavector XV1s. I used the Colibri and DV back to back. One weighs 5 grams, the other 13. One has a high compliance, the other low. One uses suggests VTF of 1.35, the other 2.0. I fully expected that one would be far better with the arm than the other. They certainly had their own sonic signatures, but I did not experience any pitfalls which would suggest a mismatch. I tested the resonance using a test record and both fell into the 8-11 hz range. I have now installed the new belt which you sent. First, I like the yellow color. I had my doubts that a belt could make a difference. As you know, I am less prone to falling for tweaks than friends of mine. I could tell from the first track that this darned belt makes a difference. The bass was fuller, which is what I thought might happen, if anything was going to. What did surprise my is that the background seemed blacker. Because of that my sound stage seemed to get deeper. before the SS was wide. I had not notice that it was shallow, but after using your new belt, instruments seem to be more holographic. In short the belt made a big difference. I have found two items in this hobby that I know do it for me....one is good OTL amps, and the other is my Basis table. In combination, oh my! My hats off to you and your team for building such a fine product. Best Regards, T.C.

David L
David L

Upon assembly……………I admired and complimented your design, fit, and finish throughout the assembly procedure. I would also like to note that I am a mechanical engineer/certified trades person in occupation, and I think that your design is brilliant with unparalleled execution. However, my biggest compliment to you is, “I am proud to say that the Basis Debut will be my last TT. ”

J.B.
J.B.

OK, I took you up on your personal challenge, and you were right……no exaggeration in your claims of performance of the Vector. Yes, you pretty much jumped down my throat in that last combination, I figured I had better try your product or never call you again! I know, I did take up much of your time, with you saying the same thing over and over: “Try a Bassi with a Vector, you won’t be sorry.” I have used the SME 30 year 4 years, with the Graham 2.2 and now the Phantom. As you know from our long, numerous telephone conversations I needed a less expensive turntable for my second system. I ended up with the used pre-Signature 2500 and a new Vector. (Sorry, could not spring for a new 2500 at that point.) You promised that I would not be let down if I listened to the old 2500 and Vector in my main system, and yes, you were right. This outperforms the 30/Graham combination in many areas including bass, dynamics, smoothness, detail, imaging, dynamics, dynamics, dynamics, and DYNAMICS! Meanwhile, there is nothing that the 30 does better than the 2500. I performed the suspension isolation test outlined in your website, but just tapping so as not to damage my speakers. Again, you were right. Breakthrough with the SME, none with the 2500. I am sold!!! I have made arrangements with (xxxxxxx) to take my SME on trade toward a 2800 and Vector. You are right, he is the best. You have a real admirer in (xxx), I can tell you that. After I have installed the 2800 I will e-mail you about trying some interconnects. Thanks, JB

Greg L
Greg L

Hello A.J., I am in love with my system and the 2001 and Vector. I have never heard a turntable, arm and cart that sounded better. The Basis equipment has truly exceeded my high expectations by a wide margin – in short I couldn’t be happier. I want to Thank You for the time you spent with me on the phone, about a month ago, your recommendation to purchase the Vector and for your including the Super Belt. I have an awesome LP system and I Thank You again for your WISE counsel. You and I talked about many things on the phone but never discussed cables so to answer your question I came up with this out of the blue. I believe the cables in the Vector are better than my very expensive Transparent IC’s and speaker cables which DID require over 200 hours of break in to really sound good. I have listened to the 2001 for probably approx. 75 hours so far and with even less than 30 hours on the 2001 (I don’t think my Grado Reference Master was even fully broken in at that point) the overall sound quality was outstanding. I’m thinking that my Transparent cables may be the weak link in my system so that’s where the Basis cable idea originated. I would enjoy learning more about your cables as I am a true believer in the Basis turntable system as I have HEARD how wonderfully it CREATES MUSIC. Thanks for designing and manufacturing products that place the listener in the concert hall with WHOMEVER they wish. This is truly a most rare and wonderful thing. I wish you all the best. Sincerely, Greg L

Sal Enthuses
Sal Enthuses

A.J.: I know you reject it when I call you a genius, but your educational record (and I attended the same university, so I know!) says otherwise, and your research and subsequent products confirm that you are indeed a genius designer. The Superarm is now setup, and it is extraordinary. I have owned linear tracker air arms, rolling arms, pivoted arms, unipivots, Sme, Grahm, the german arm you laughed at, and none come close. The music says it all, and nothing sounds so much like music. I now wonder, is it possible to have TOO MUCH dynamics??!!!. Course not, but the point is the dynamics are extraordinary. Sal

Eduardo
Eduardo

Armando; Last Friday we installed in my home the new Inspiration with Supertonearm 9. You create a masterpiece. The sound of one vinyl “Misa Criolla” Jose Carreras, was sublime., espectacular… I am now very happy with your creation. Best Regards Eduardo

Paul S.
Paul S.

Basis folks, 2 years with the Graham Phantom, 6 years with Vector showed me that you surpassed all tonearm specialists with your first tonearm entry! But the Superarm…that Superarm…this may be the most important audio component I have ever purchased.

Bob A.
Bob A.

I am so glad to have met you at the Newport show. Thank you for the time you spent with me, though most of the talk was over my head. I’m not an engineer, I only play one on TV! You were on target, the Superarm made a bigger difference in my system than $60,000 in cables. I only wish I knew you made cables before. The bass is absolutely stunning, such impact and dynamics. But the subtlety on stringed bass is just as beautiful and organic. Now, about the Inspiration: how can I live without it after this improvement. Please call me when you are in town. Dinner is on me. Bob

Doug
Doug

A.J. It’s night and day. The Vector is great, but now sounds broken compared to this. Better in every way. My wife even noticed the difference. “It sounds real” she says. And it is true. Like going to a concert. Or at least closer. THANK YOU!

Frank
Frank

Dear AJ Thanks for the list of Jazz records. I bought every one. I am half way through listening to them. Most I love. But some of that Coltrane stuff is over my head. The SA9 is tremendous. I see what you say about a tonearm being as important as a turntable. Wow. It transformed my system and gave my cartridge more life. My XLF’s are very happy. Are you sure it is best with this cartridge with the arm tube even with the platter? Sounds great, but that seems too easy. Should I experiment? Thanks again

Joe
Joe

Hey A.J. I took my time and spent 4 hours setting everything up to perfection. Wow, wow, wow, and wow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Gynormous sound!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You are the man. This takes the Vector sound and brings it to the Nth degree.

Philip
Philip

…….nothing, nothing in the world is like this. Dare I say this is the biggest advance in my audiophile career. Congratulations on the mind bending achievement. The Vector beat all comers. But this makes the Vector sound dirty, which itself made the Graham sound filthy………..UPS tore up that supera-arm box but the arm is so well protected it was perfect. All for now. Happy listening, Phil

Stacy
Stacy

We all know that audio manufacturers take the prize for huge stories about “jaws dropping”, “picking up your jaw off the floor”, “blows them all away”, and such claims. You don’t do it. I love that. So I will do it for you. Never has a “front end” component made such important changes to my system. I want to listen to the music day, night, whenever. The superarm makes me want to listen. I know the reasons why, but I do not even want to think about them, it’s too hard, the music is too overwhelming. You topped yourself here. 25 years using Basis, you saved the best for last. Great job, kiddo.

Dick P.
Dick P.

My first selection, Scherazade, Reiner CSO, Shaded Dog The violins are so sweet, so seductive, yet each stands out clearly in its own space, with its own tonality. Together yet separate. CD can’t begin to do that. This alone is worth the price of admission. Do you like chamber? Bartok Quartets. Did you turn me on to these? They are transformed into living, breathing humans playing those strings. And the pizzicato movement, you can feel and picture skin against plucked string. Hair raising, joyous, the mainlining of the musical message. My third selection, rock. Peter Gabriel, the spooky realism of his voice, the punch and drive of drums, I never thought a stereo system could have drum slam like this. More to come as I play more records. I am overjoyed, I will say that. And I am happy you pushed me to keep my old cartridge to better understand just what a tonearm can do. Dick

JC
JC

Greetings AJ & Co - Well I now have the Vector, by way of Nick at Audio Connection in Verona, NJ. The arm is INTENSE! My 2200 Sig/Calibrator Base/Vector 4 is easily the finest audio source I have ever owned, and quite possibly the best I have ever heard. Simply amazing what's in the grooves. A real case in point is the sitar on the Beatles' "Norwegian Wood". It's got a clarity I've never heard and a lengthy decay that just wasn't coming through before. Really, really nice equipment. Thank you!

CA
CA

From CA who upgraded from Vector 3 to Vector 4: I took yesterday off and installed your Vector 4 straight off. Six hours later, I still had not done my honey-do's. To my ear, the changes in the music from the Vector 3 to the 4 were not subtle, but stunning…….. the music was wonderful. I reread Robert Harley review before sending this to you, and all the descriptions were apt. What was noticeable more musical to me was that the Vector 4 swings and has a sense of grace and ease. Interestingly, the records that I put on initially were all records that swing- Basie, Ellington, Eiji Kitamra. It was fun... I believe the arm tracks better with a darker quieter background. The transients seem faster. Classical music this morning is not congested. Passages are quite delineated with the tone and detail the best that I have heard in my room...

Pete
Pete

Thanks for the response. I finally now have the arm set up perfectly… The detail that this arm gives is great but the Vector also really seems to be able to flesh out all of the threads in the music, each instrument no matter how large or small has more body to it and hence realism and a greater sense of the acoustic space that it was recorded in… … kudos on a great piece of engineering. I have never quite worked on anything so precise… it's quite amazing how everything fits and works together as a whole. Thanks very much for your help A.J. Pete

JM
JM

Hi again A.J. Just spent this weekend listening for the first time your new Vector 4 tonearm. Last weekend I spent the weekend listening to my older Vector 3 which I just sold this past week. I played the same source material on my 2500 during the last two weekends and using my home made rig broke in the new phono cable and connectors on the model 4 using my dish network receiver playing 24/7 for over 100 playing hours so everything was settled in and ready to go with no further break in in required on the new model 4 arm. I used my wallytractor specifically manufactured for your arm to align my phono cartridge and set up my VTA and tracking force as exactly the same as was on my older Vector 3 to make things the same for the comparison of the two arms. First I love the way the new Vector 4 operates. I really never had any major issues with the model 3 but the 4 is much smoother to operate and move on it's vertical and horizontal pivot… You are correct in the sense it operates like any other normal arm now. The model 3 by comparison was OK but not as stable as the 4. The smoother operation as the new 4 is really a nice upgrade just by it's self and was a pleasant surprise. Sonically there is a very noticeable improvement in sound but the difference is not huge. Just like your phono cable the improved sonics was a nice refinement of a already excellent sounding arm. I again was taking notes on my note pad the past two days as I was listening for the first time the Basis Model 4 arm and listed below are some comments I made while listening.

European Importer
European Importer

Armando, as you saw at the audio show, I set up each tonearm with a test record and my portable oscilloscope. This allows me to watch the actual signal as picked up by the cartridge. The Phantom will not follow the test tone when the levels start to raise. The sine wave is shown as dropping straight off after its peak as the stylus loses contact with the groove. I purchased a Vector from your importer and it shows perfect action in tracing the tone. At the highest levels of the test tracks the Vector still perfectly traces the sine wave. The Vector is superior in tracing what is actually on the record. The Vector also aligns perfectly using your gauge. The Phantom arm wands are not always the same length, you are right in that observation, and it can be hard to get the cartridge in the correct place. With Vector the alignment is perfect with any cartridge. Yes, it is fact that the Vector is a superior tonearm. It is magnifico! D.R.

Vector Owner
Vector Owner

Armando, as you saw at the audio show, I set up each tonearm with a test record and my portable oscilloscope. This allows me to watch the actual signal as picked up by the cartridge. The Phantom will not follow the test tone when the levels start to raise. The sine wave is shown as dropping straight off after its peak as the stylus loses contact with the groove. I purchased a Vector from your importer and it shows perfect action in tracing the tone. At the highest levels of the test tracks the Vector still perfectly traces the sine wave. The Vector is superior in tracing what is actually on the record. The Vector also aligns perfectly using your gauge. The Phantom arm wands are not always the same length, you are right in that observation, and it can be hard to get the cartridge in the correct place. With Vector the alignment is perfect with any cartridge. Yes, it is fact that the Vector is a superior tonearm. It is magnifico! D.R.

New Vector owner
New Vector owner

Armando, as you saw at the audio show, I set up each tonearm with a test record and my portable oscilloscope. This allows me to watch the actual signal as picked up by the cartridge. The Phantom will not follow the test tone when the levels start to raise. The sine wave is shown as dropping straight off after its peak as the stylus loses contact with the groove. I purchased a Vector from your importer and it shows perfect action in tracing the tone. At the highest levels of the test tracks the Vector still perfectly traces the sine wave. The Vector is superior in tracing what is actually on the record. The Vector also aligns perfectly using your gauge. The Phantom arm wands are not always the same length, you are right in that observation, and it can be hard to get the cartridge in the correct place. With Vector the alignment is perfect with any cartridge. Yes, it is fact that the Vector is a superior tonearm. It is magnifico! D.R.

Basis Importer
Basis Importer

You were right……for the Demo Debut I was better off using the Vector than the Phantom. The Vector just sounds like real music. The bass is more real, more detailed. But most of all, the arm does sound like a master tape. Congratulations.

Victor S.
Victor S.

Hi, Thank you for convincing me. I could not afford to upgrade my turntable and tonearm at the same time, and my Orbe turntable suits me well at the moment. You should really hear it with Vector, it might not be a Basis but it is a quiet, speed stable turntable with very musical sound. With Vector it sounds better than my friend’s Goldmund Reference, I am not kidding. The Vector brings such power, such tracing ability, complete musical realism compared to his Goldmund arm on the Reference. This now sounds like a cost-no-object source, everything you said about Vector actually was understated. I could not believe it was as good as you said, but listening tells me that it is BETTER than you said! You say that you are maybe not a genius, just one of the very few qualified designers in analog. Well, from the Vector it is clear you are a genius as well as a qualified designer. I wish I could afford your cables if they are this good. Happy and thankful in London, Vic

DC
DC

Machining looks fabulous – matches perfectly!... Indeed! I was unprepared for just how frequently mistracking on crescendos was a function of the tonearm, rather than cartridge, the LP itself, etc. I have not tried one of my test records I have with various modulation levels cut, but on material we played for hours and hours and hours this Saturday, it was surely amazing how crescendos were so much more controlled. A HUGE and MOST PLEASURABLE improvement!!!! Your Vector tonearm has indeed been one of the real pleasures to purchase and incorporate into my system. One of those components that makes substantial contributions to better sound reproduction, makes sense technically, and will provide enjoyment for years to come…

Andre C.
Andre C.

Sorry for my English, I much more like when we speak in French. Armando, you challenged me and I accepted your challenge. You are indeed proved to me about that you never expand the truth. Your Vector is just as you say, she never begins to strain or make the sound of forced music on any record. Mistracking, as you call this, is never happening, where on my SME 5 on SME 30 and Versa Dynamics this is so often the sound, most especially on my beloved opera and classical records on inside grooves. I heard more into the music with more details with your machine than any of my other 4 record playing machines. My Basis also makes for much more dynamics and violins and all instruments very much more sound like in real live performance. Bravo! If you make your voyage to Roma for Top Audio Expo and you make connection in Paris I will be pleasured to meet you for a nice wine.

D
D

My initial impressions are that the Ikeda/Vector performs flawlessly in the 2800. The Ikeda cartridge displays no sign of sibilance whatsoever! This is amazing since there was some sibilance/harshness on other tonearms including the Graham 2.2. (Basis note: anyone who has had contact with the Ikeda knows that it is the most demanding cartridge, along with the Decca, on the tonearm and to date there has not been a tonearm that could effectively handle the Ikeda.) … This is the absolute BEST that I have heard with the Ikeda thus far… the Ikeda/Vector/2800 seems to be a magical match on initial audition.

DW
DW

Hi, Last night I had another eye opener, or listening experience! You know the harmonics from violins and instruments I have been looking for and thought a new cartridge was required. Well I am no longer in need for a change. The wires send so mush of the music through- the emotional experience is the best I have had in a long time. The balance is from oil well deep to stratosphere tall. I was just shaking my head in awe as every new instrument was played. I especially liked a Living Stereo RCA record -Yea an oldy but goody it was which I bought at the high cost of 1.75 from somewhere of The four seasons. Details of violins, the whole orchestra was there. You could tell close mics from distant miking and in my head could travel around the orchestra visiting each instrument as it came on line. Realism, in spades. Please come down soon and hear this system and you'll have no doubts how well these wires are engineered. We will have a fight convincing the crowds until they hear it for themselves. This weekend I'll try the other tubes for the hum mitigation... What do you think about a pair or two going to Art Audio's Joe Fratus for review before the Vegas show?? He would be a good ally don't you think??

Dick
Dick

I have two Vector arms on two Debut Vacuum arm boards set up with different cartridages for quick comparisons-I am lazy and like to set them up once and just listen. The first arm was the Vector model one the second a model three with the upgraded PSTT wires. I got to tell yea I am pleased to a higher degree even though I thought the model one had it all. It is a must do kind of up grade in my opinion it is worth the trouble of sending the model one back to be upgraded which I have done. In fact I was so impressed in the improvements across the board that I talked Basis into making me two pairs of interconnects from the arm wires. I have been searching for a reasonably priced, killer sounding wire since I heard the Cardas Gold Ref. (which I have) and the Valhalla (which I don't own). Friends, Romans and Audio buffs lend me your ears I have found audio nirvana, at least for now. With the prototype wires in my system (the true interconnects will be out this winter) I got the Valhalla detail without the silver alloy brightness. The sound field opened up like on a warm spring day after winter that lets you open the windows and let the fresh air in after being closed in for the winter. The first night of listening was like....well I just sat there shaking my head side to side and smiling a lot...wow I never heard that before, wow never felt the chair headrest shake like that before, maybe I could use James Newton Howard's piece to get a great neck message that bass is deep! I've been listening now for a couple of weeks and am still discovering new sounds on familiar records-and nodding alot! I agree with the previous reviewers too but if they haven't up graded yet their in for a pleasing upgrade. A VTA adjuster can be added too which makes adjustments painless and a lot quicker.

RM
RM

Hi Armando, Just dropping you a note about the Vector which I've had up and running for about 4 days now. It is nothing short of breath taking. I didn't know what I wasn't hearing before. Everything is majorly improved from the bass end to the clarity and overall imaging. It's hard to believe a tonearm could have such an impact…

KK
KK

Hello AJ, I bought a new Vector from Terry Combs at Sound Mind Audio. It replaced my Graham 2.2 on my Basis Debut with vacuum…………………. I play drums in a little blues band, and I record and mix demo tracks on a 8 track reel to reel. I use vacuum tubes and prefer analog. Anyway, the point is I am around live music a lot and I am used to the sound of an analog master tape. Your arm is the single largest improvement I have ever made to my analog front end. Wow, I have had it a couple of months now, and I still remain amazed at the dynamics, bass, treble sweetness, and grain free sound. It just does not sound like vinyl. It sounds like tape. Incredible. Oh I do have a Koetsu Urishi mounted on the arm. With the Graham, I thought I needed a bit more gain than what I was getting with my CAT Ultimate preamp. Now I have plenty of gain. I guess more of the groove is getting modulated and turned into electricity. Geez, what a dam fine arm. I know you make money building the arms, but this is not about the money. This is about how much your little invention opened up my vinyl collection. Thank you big time!

Doctor C
Doctor C

As for how it sounds: I and the friend I mentioned (another doctor) have actually been astonished at the difference between the Vector and the Graham, which went through all the upgrades from an original 1.5 to a 2.2… the most obvious thing was the vastly clearer and more substantial bass. Where before the string basses were almost/not quite there, the Vector made string bass entry immediately clear and apparent. The bass is dramatically better, period. And it's not just the bass: there is far greater clarity throughout the entire tonal range. I also think the soundstage has enlarged greatly, but this is hard for me to judge since I now have hearing in only one ear. Anyway, Gary has raved about the improvements every one of the several times he's been over (he comes over about once per week as part of his classical music appreciation project). He has agreed to write up a little summary of his reactions which I can probably send you tomorrow. Another obvious and quite surprising result is the sense of the signal being stronger, i.e., louder in my system for a given volume control setting, and the effect of much lower noise. The latter is a special surprise, as I had thought the noise problem I was having was solely from my pre-amp gain being not quite enough for the Temper cartridge. I still think that's true, but it has astonished me that I don't hear nearly the hash from having to turn up the volume on low-level LPs that I'd had to put up with before. Big difference! (I'll have an opportunity to audition a preamp with higher phono gain later this year.) The other quality, tracking and record scratch, has also benefited noticeably -- tracking seems definitely better, and the scratch has diminished, in some cases quite a bit, thank heavens!… Now, the scratch is not only reduced, but cleanly separated from the music. Another reaction -- the arm cues down and the needle settles very nicely into the lead-in groove with a minimum of jounce and inward skating before it grooves. This seems very elegant, at the level it should be but almost never is, on any arm I've experienced.

G.P.
G.P.

… I will attempt to offer my opinion on the improvements made by replacing LC’s Graham tonearm with the new Basis model. (The) system has always been extremely transparent and airy with excellent high and mid range clarity. You could say it was the perfect classical music system and I always would try to achieve that level of detail in my system but seemed to fail miserably in comparison... Then came the Basis tonearm. I must say that I have never heard a more significant overall improvement in a system without replacing a major component. To me, it sounded as if (he) had realized after all these years that he had left the high and low filters in the on position and suddenly turned them off. The highs and mids suddenly were clearer, louder, and had more detail without giving up the airiness or transparency and without the addition of any distortion. Quite the opposite. The bass tightened and seemed to hit deeper with no added boominess. Horns jump out at you and violins sound as real as if you were in the front row of the orchestra pit. Every instrument has a new crispness that wasn't there before. ... We're not talking about a system that sounded bad. Quite the opposite. It just sounds that much better now. It's like having the cotton pulled out of your ears. I am extremely impressed with this product to say the least. I only wish I could afford one in my own system. I do however have two good ears and know what sounds good to me. This tonearm certainly does. Congratulations on a great product! Sincerely, G. P.

Bill
Bill

You know, AJ, you had told me once that the Vector was like a Ferrari compared to the Gxxxxx, not casting any aspersions on that highly regarded arm, of course, but I now know, having seen a Gxxxx up close and having handled one, exactly what you meant then-- never was the "less is more" philosophy apparent. I was amazed by the number of parts, screws, bells, and whistles of the Gxxxx, and how complex yet vulnerable it all felt. The Vector is like a breath of fresh air-- sleek, strong, simple, rigid, clean, unbreakable. No contest. Maybe Bob Gxxxx came to feel the same way-- I understand he has a new challenger on the way, with some patented design features. But the engineer trapped inside me doesn't have to think even a nanosecond about which is the better arm from a design standpoint-- using a Gxxxxx every day would make me nervous, whereas, I look forward to handling the Vector, and even now, five months after taking delivery of the Debut, still can't pass through the room without looking at it. Twice.

Gary
Gary

I thought you might like to hear that I received my turntable and tonearm. I’ve had a chance over the weekend to play a lot of records on it. I thought that initially I would just break in the new cartridge, but it sounded so great right from the start that I just sat back and listened. Supposedly the Shelter 901 will take 40 or more hours to start sounding it’s best. What can I say? The turntable system sounds so wonderful right now and it’s going to get better? I checked the speed accuracy and it’s dead on, even with the saggy line voltage here in Silicon Valley. I’m really very pleased with the 2001/Vector combination. The tonearm is quite a piece of engineering. You really don’t have to think about the complexity of the design because it works so effortlessly.

D.P.
D.P.

Dear Mr Conti, I am the proud owner of your Vector tonearm. It certainly deserves the accolade of the best tonearm in the world. The detail I am able to extract from my records is astounding. Thank you so much. My records have never sounded so good. I can see that much thought has gone into development and engineering of this tonearm. Hats off to you for being the innovator and bringing to market a truly revolutuionary tonearm. I love this tonearm so much I have just bought a second one for use on my second turntable. Now that's putting my money where my mouth is!... Finally one last question. Do you think the Vector is compatible with a low compliance cartridge such as the Ikeda Rex which are designed like the Decca London cartridges being cantileverless, but are a moving coil design. They have a compliance of 6 x (10)-6 dyne /cm or is it cm/dyne. I forgot since I do not have the specs in front of me as I type this. Many thanks. D.P.

Dave
Dave

… it's all gone together fine. What can I say about the sound! Superb! Unbelievable (or should I say believable!) grip. I have the Vector with Transfig Spirit and the Graham with VdH Grasshopper IVGLA set up at the moment, the Vector combo is better at everything! And for me the VdH is a considerably better cartridge! The thing that strikes me most is the rhythmic drive the arm has (no doubt to do with the bottom end control and dynamics), but the soundstage size and focus comes close. Just shows how much music other arms lose. Best regards

S.V.
S.V.

I only say this to let you know again what a revelation your new Vector Arm has been and how happy I still am to have waited!

Andrew
Andrew

The combination of the 2001 and Vector is firmly planted in the audiophile sweet spot. All of the typical audiophile criteria (accuracy, dynamics, bass extension, soundstaging, and imaging) are met without sacrificing musicality at all. I've now got an analog front end that easily satisfies all of my obsessive-compulsive audiophile needs while still being truly a joy to listen to. I attribute most of this to the Vector, which has proven time and time again to be the ultimate tonearm. It's one of the most beautiful pieces of audio art that I've ever laid my eyes on, and at the same time, one of the most well-engineered products available. Obviously no compromises were made and it definitely shows. I could go on and on about how great this combination sounds and how much I am in love with it, but would rather comment on an added personal benefit. Several months ago my parents gave me their LP collection. They were music lovers, not audiophiles, but had some true gems in their collection. Unfortunately the LPs showed their age and were mostly unplayable on my old setup. After getting the 2001/Vector dialed in I decided to try a couple of them just to see if there was any difference. Once again, I was amazed as the Vector was able to track everything and anything that I threw at it. Sure there was still some surface noise, but the music was still there in all of its glory. Being able to listen to the recordings that I grew up with has more than justified this investment. A.J., thanks again for your continued work and dedication.

Customer in Singapore
Customer in Singapore

I'm the first person to use the Vector tonearm in Singapore. I've got about 1-2 years experience with the Basis 2500/Vector/Koetsu Rosewood set-up. I thought I'd share my thoughts with you. Firstly, let me reiterate that you've got a superb tone-arm. The Vector made a big difference to my analog playback. ...(here) not too many people are using the Vector - they don't know what they are missing… …The image solidity and bass firmness that I was getting from the Vector was vastly superior to my previous high-end tone-arm.

D.F.
D.F.

Let me take a minute to tell you about this fantastic combination. The 2001/Vector is a completely different animal. (compared to his earlier turntables) First and foremost, the 2001’s suspension produced an extremely quiet, jet-black background. …the 2001 (and Vector combination) is a force to be reckoned with… produced the deepest, tightest bass that I have ever heard in this price range …When listening at night to Jennifer Warnes “Famous Blue Raincoat” I was startled more than once at the sheer realism in her voice. I actually opened my eyes to see if she was really there.”

H.M.
H.M.

I’ve owned some very, very expensive turntables including Versa Dynamics, Forsell, Kuzma, Gyrodec, and Linn.. For my second system I purchased the 2001 clear with the Vector tonearm from your importer. It made such beautiful music in my small system that I decided to try it in the master system. To my astonishment, this outperformed my reference turntable, and is unquestionably the best record player I have ever owned. Either the Vector is magic, or the 2001, or both, and I don’t care which case it is! I have called my friend, your importer, and ordered a Debut and Vector for the main system. One more note; could you consider making the Debut in clear?

Phil
Phil

Dear A.J, Well, I've got it set up and hooked up to the Plinius. You were correct -- I am hearing things from my records that I've never heard before… I am hearing bass that I've never heard from long familiar records (Duke Ellington's 70th Birthday Concert). I've heard that record a hundred times, and last night heard the bass player doing things I'd never imagined before. There is a smoothness and a cohesiveness that I never knew existed. I hear the parts and the whole. It sounds fantastic, and the cartridge isn't even broken in. …once I had it done (the setup) I was very pleased with the result. It is a beautiful piece of engineering -- both aesthetically and functionally pleasing… …Thank you for encouraging me to buy this table and arm. I come from a family of craftsmen and am passionate about the work that I do. The passion you have for your work is obvious, and was a big reason for my choice.

Jeff
Jeff

Dear A.J., I am the guy who buy your vector tone arm from Edward Chen in Taiwan. Finally I have received the armboard from XXXX today. After set up the arm and turntable the only word I can say about the arm is amazing. No matter how many praises I read from AudioAsylum, I still don't believe the sound is so good now.

Bill
Bill

Thanks for the conversation on the phone. As a project manager for XXXX (a major defense/missile/aerospace contractor) I have to tell you that the engineering in the Debut turntable and Vector arm is absolutely FIRST RATE. I have a masters degree in physics, a PhD. in mechanical engineering. Being a project manager, I have high level engineering and scientific personnel on my team, and I can tell you that this design elegance and application of theory are of our company’s “Engineering and Technology Award” caliber. If this was a project effort of a record player system design effort at XXXXX Aircraft I would nominate it for this award. Of course, the proof of a design is the performance and this is where your application of physics really proves itself. I have owned the SME 30 with SME arm and the XXXXXXX airbearing turntable and tonearm, and the Debut with Vector outperforms both. I found your claim of “no mistracking” hard to believe, but it is true. However that’s only the beginning of the story. The bass, the natural sweet highs, the harmonic decay, every musical parameter is exquisite it seems. This system never, ever loses its composure. I thought my Wilson speakers were really dynamic before, but now I know that I never heard how dynamic they really could by given the right signal. WOW! I think the only things I could ask for would be a speed controller for the Debut and a VTA indicating system on the Vector. But these are quibbles: there is not other system that I would consider moving to for even a moment. Thank you for proving how much better vinyl is than digital. (With so much of my projects involving digital guidance systems DID I REALLY SAY THAT???????!!!!!!) Thanks again, and when you come to SoCal for your motorcycle vacation please call me, we’ll go out to dinner.

David Fletcher
David Fletcher

Physicist David Fletcher, designer of “The Arm” and the SOTA turntable: “You have solved many of the problems that drove me crazy. Yes, I agree your damping is correct. I could not do that with my design.” In answer to the question, “What tradeoffs do you see that were made to obtain the strengths of this design, the response was “None, and you can quote me.”

Charlie B
Charlie B

Feedback on the Vector. I am very pleased to say the least. I am using xxxxxxxxx………………. Now for the Vector - * The fit and finish are absolutely the top. I cannot imagine any competitor surpassing it. * I am amazed at how quiet the arm is in the groove. Only my very worst records show any surface noise at all. And my best just amaze me. The Transfiguration Spirit is a good cartridge in this area, but the Vector makes it much better. This was as noticeable with my Spirit MK1 that I have as a backup. * The differences in the quality of pressings and recordings is made obvious. Not exaggerated at all, just obvious. This gives me the impression that the arm gives you exactly what is on the record. Or at least exactly what the cartridge picks up. * Overall, the music seems independent of the devices recreating it. No sense of a needle in a groove or of a record turning. Just music. And I am enjoying it terrifically. Thanks!

Mr. B. Ford
Mr. B. Ford

I just want to say one more time how much I am enjoying the Vector. Every time I reach for the arm to cue a record, I get the same grin I used to get when putting the key in my BMW M3. I think that should explain it. Thanks again.

Roger G.
Roger G.

I know that it has been awhile in coming, but the Vector's limits are deep and I still have not yet completed plumbing its depth. I believe that most of process of traditional review to be greatly flawed. People speak about the bass and the treble as if they were disembodied phenomenon. The audio spectrum is a continuous thing and in fact can be thought of as single composite waveform per channel; simplifying out cross talk. The waveform is RIAA encoded on the record, recoded in the phono section and reproduced by the speakers. I have found that 2 major problems arise. The first is that of "memory". If the component is still "playing" the last note, then the next is not correctly started. This problem is usually exhibited in the arm, the preamp and the room. The Vector is outstanding in its ability to "forget", the energy drained quite nicely away from the stylus. The second problem is that of resonance. Everything resonates; period! The question is one of minimizing and tuning. This is the area were "audiophiles" create the greatest disasters. People are quite adept at moving resonance points and proclaiming victory only to sink into defeat the next day when their ears are "fresh again". Only by applying the laws of physics through good engineering practice can we even start to tackle this problem. Most designers build by ear and people talk about taste as if there were no truth. We are, in fact, quite lucky in that the etchings in groove are the literal truth and not subject to interpretation. The composer, conductor, musician and recording engineer all have the luxury of interpretation. We "mere mortals" are handed down both their triumphs and failures to deal with, as if from on high. It is quite refreshing to speak with you about partial differential equations rather than arm hair movement as the first are where the solutions will come from. In this way the Vector is monumental, representing a breakthrough in design that will not be soon bettered. In fact, I have yet to hear where the Vector's resonance points are!... The truth is never an easy thing to pursue. Our principles always come with high price tags and the road has many vendors of cheap ideals to corrupt us into complacency. It is good to know that you hold the highest ideals and that you seek out the truth and the essence. I am happy to have such a stouthearted companion on my journey! With Fondest Regards, Roger

Roland
Roland

I thought I'd give you a report because there might be some things where you can help me get further, just by reading what I've been doing and experiencing so far. Take your time and get back to me at your convenience. What first struck me was how ''simple'' the Vector looks. down to earth from the outside, but I am sure that the bearing/pivot/fluid construction is unique. Forgive me my untechnical language. I am not an engineer, but I have always wondered if all the ''extras'' the Graham 2.2 has to offer in setup ease really did not have a bad effect on the sound. I also experienced while setting your arm that the setup of the Graham isn't easier at all! At first I was a little scared that setting vta manually would be a pain, but I must say that it was very convenient. You do not have the scale but I think the sonic benefits are more important then having a device that looks like a machinegun from Terminator 3. But you probably want to know what my impressions were the first 10 days. Well With most records I played it sounded like never before. More dynamic, especially in the bass. Astounding at times, but also blackness and the depth of the soundstage were very impressive. Some of the records I played have enormous depth, for example Harry Connick's Blue Light-red light and Lofty's Roach souflee have drumkits and horn sections that are 8-10 feet behind the speakers clearly lined up. I never heard these records sound like this. There was always the deep soundstage but now I could easily follow most of the individual players in the horn sections, like never before. Also stand up bass, which is an instrument I value very much, at times sounded thunderous. Really so much more dynamic and deep then ever before, but without loosing the instruments shape or place in the soundstage. Mids and highs at all times sound plushy or like velvet, without loosing the neccessary bite with horns, electrical guitars and such. …Anything sounding this good, after breaking in fully will only sound better… In any case, I am very impressed with what I have heard so far. I am not saying this to sound interesting or to justify for myself the purchase (which many audiophiles are guilty of). No, records I know well sounded like never before… bye, Roland

Joe K
Joe K

"I've bought the Vector and installed in my Debut for about 2 weeks. This tonearm is marvelous. Superb tracking combined with excellent dynamics. Yet it is very smooth and detailed. The soundstage is much wider and deeper than my Alphason. But it has one weakness, it's too revealing!... Anyway, I like the Vector very much and I can really enjoy the music now."

Guy D.
Guy D.

Hello A.J., Thank you for the custom rear suspension cartridge to handle the extra weight of my custom offset mounting platform for my 12” Ikeda tonearm. I had auditioned this tonearm and every other 12” tonearm I could obtain, and I was of the opinion that this is the finest tonearm on the planet. On the 2500 it worked fantastically, sounding better than it did on my VPI. So, it is with a bit of surprise that I have to inform you that you were correct: I agree, the Vector on this 2500 with the same cartridge is much better than the 12” Ikeda. How is this possible? I know you have said that resonance problems are much worse on a 12” arm, is this the reason? Or is the superior design of the Vector the reason? All I know is the Vector tracking far exceeds the tracking ability of the Ikeda, and tracking is supposed to be the advantage of a long tonearm. The Vector is much quieter, more dynamic, as well as more real sounding. So, all of this effort to accommodate the Ikeda is wasted. When you told me of the New York City dealer who also found the Vector to be superior to Ikeda 12” tonearm I was skeptical. I thought he must have not had the right cartridge or a good setup. Now I know that he was right. I don’t know of any manufacturer who would go to so much trouble in adapting this arm to my turntable, the price of $230 was quite reasonable for this offset armboard. I am returning the custom suspension support for a full refund, which you said I could if I were to find the Vector better and if the suspension is in perfect condition. It is, you will have it by UPS on Monday. Thank you, Guy D.

A.C.
A.C.

Hi AJ, I sent this email to you on September 2nd, and have not received a reply. Of course, when I did not hear from you and it was Labor Day weekend and I am an audio nut, I threw caution to the wind and went ahead. I assumed that you had done this many times before and I connected the arm to the FM Acoustics phono stage. All went well and less then half hour I was listening. I have been using the table and arm for a month. I wanted to give you feedback. Just a reminder, my previous arms have been the ARO and Graham 2.2. The Vector is the first arm that I could actually nail down the anti-skate. It tracks like a train. The weights could be set close to the pivot. The tracking weight is dead on. I gained 10 db at least in signal! The vacuum works wonderfully well. I put the vacuum in under the house and you cannot hear the vacuum whatsoever. It’s not there. The table is rock solid, keeps level, and zero rumble, resonances, and not subject to any bounce. I have it sitting on the top of a Naim Fraim shelf. Congradulations on the engineering! Bravo. Now, the most important thing- the music- beautiful, natural, dark quiets, extended bass. First vinyl- Forcione/Sciubba’s Meet Me in London. Probably my wife and my favorite mutual album, was so natural. Her voice now had the eccentricities that we all have. The nuances and naturalness was captivating… Jacintha, Atwood, Clooney, Collins, Baez, Buffy all had the same change. On to classical guitar, and Carlos Barbosa Lima, John Williams, Romeros, Segovia, Bream had the air and overtones that are so engaging. ...The large scale orchestral music was such a treat. The tone of the instruments was wonderful. The arrangements and the structure were a joy to listen to. An audiophile friend came over and brought his favorite albums. He was totally captivated by Lovett’s “Large Band” album. He remarked that it was the most neutral, natural sound that he has ever heard… Thank you AJ. Every morning at 5:15 and lunchtime I get lost in music thanks to you. I am certainly glad that you followed your passion to design vinyl gear. Regards, A.C.

Greg L.
Greg L.

I am in love with my system and the 2001 and Vector. I have never heard a turntable, arm and cart that sounded better. The Basis equipment has truly exceeded my high expectations by a wide margin – in short I couldn’t be happier. I want to Thank You for the time you spent with me on the phone, about a month ago, your recommendation to purchase the Vector and for your including the Super Belt. I have an awesome LP system and I Thank You again for your WISE counsel. You and I talked about many things on the phone but never discussed cables so to answer your question I came up with this out of the blue. I believe the cables in the Vector are better than my very expensive Transparent IC’s and speaker cables which DID require over 200 hours of break in to really sound good. I have listened to the 2001 for probably approx. 75 hours so far and with even less than 30 hours on the 2001 (I don’t think my Grado Reference Master was even fully broken in at that point) the overall sound quality was outstanding. I’m thinking that my Transparent cables may be the weak link in my system so that’s where the Basis cable idea originated. I would enjoy learning more about your cables as I am a true believer in the Basis turntable system as I have HEARD how wonderfully it CREATES MUSIC. Thanks for designing and manufacturing products that place the listener in the concert hall with WHOMEVER they wish. This is truly a most rare and wonderful thing. I wish you all the best. Sincerely, Greg

Harv.
Harv.

For the last 12 years I have been using my Debut with the 1.5, 2.2, then Phantom arms. In my mind it was hard to consider breaking away from that arm series, but the edge that female voices and violins took on with the Phantom started to wear, and wear, and wear on me. So, I took your challenge and bought the Vector through Bob. I will never look back! I attend at least 10 live operas per year, and hit a few symphonies as well. The Vector is stunning. Anyone who wonders if it is the best simply needs to go to a few live, acoustic instrument concerts and hear un-miked vocals. Then listen to the Vector compared to the others. No contest! I am a reborn listener since buying the Vector, I just cannot stop playing records. Thank you! H.H.

John
John

After owning the new Calibrator assembly on my Basis 2500 table for three weeks I thought I would give my very positive impressions and how it helped improved my audio system. I purchased both the Calibrator base that holds the complete turntable assembly including the motor and the Cable isolation system which isolates and holds the Vector tone arm wire coming out from the rear of the tone arm assembly. Total setup time was about 1 1/2 hours as most of the time involved in leveling the table properly... From the moment my stylus hit the vinyl on my first play the improvement is sound was immediate and dramatic. For those that have ever taken a shower with a water restricted shower head and then went to another location with full unrestricted water flow might understand the immediate difference. The first thing I heard was a much wider, fuller and much more open soundstage. The music flowed with much greater ease and was much more dynamic overall. There a certain effortless flow to the music that is very appealing. I found myself really getting into and enjoying the music much more. I was hearing a more focused and powerful presentation with more depth and tone in the music. Listed below are a few things I was writing down on a piece of paper as I listened for the first time with the Calibrator base and cable isolation system.

Steve
Steve

I’ve owned Rega, VPI, Linn, Walker, and without the calibrating base my 2800 and Vector far outperform them all. But with the calibrating base and cable holder, I’ve never, ever, heard analog like this. I am having the feeling of being “bathed” in the sound like I feel at a real concert. This makes a huge difference, bringing my analog to levels that I could not have imagined. Thanks! Steve

Gary
Gary

I installed the Calibrator base on my 2500 this afternoon. I think this elevates the 2500 to Debut standards of design and performance! Locating and fixing the position of the isolator pods and the motor eliminates any guesswork in my setup and I like the way you changed the cable routing block. It was very easy to set up, too. You may still be thinking of some way to continue to improve the turntable, but I can't imagine how it could be better. Sincerely, Gary

Bruno
Bruno

Hi Armando, You have done it again. You have hooked me with the Calibrator. I love the visualls, and more so the convenience of having everything placed perfectly. The 2001 suspension never worked so good. I’m going to save for the Vector. The way you’ve isolated the cable makes great sense. Thanks again.

D.C.
D.C.

The Vector on 2500 was as good as any analog I had ever heard: as good as Walker, as good as or better than Vector on SME 30, as good as Goldmund Reference which I also own. But, with the calibrator and cable mount THIS IS THE BEST HOME AUDIO I HAVE EVER HEARD! No analog equals this. Anyone owning a Basis and Vector would be a fool not to buy this, the added investment is 20% but the added sound is 80%. No exaggeration. You did it again. D.C.

John Writes
John Writes

Just tried the new revolution belt on my Basis 2500 last night and I really like the results. I played some very familiar source material I listened to on the previous weekend with the older belt at the same volume level. Nothing else in my system had changed except for the new revolution belt. So far I love the results and the improvement was a bit bigger that I expected for just changing one belt on my table. Listed below are some notes I was writing down on a blank piece of paper as I was listening. - Cleaner and more detailed sounding overall. - Better defined instruments and cleaner bass notes. - The mid-range is cleaned up a bit with less grunge. - Bass notes cleaner and clearer. - Cleaner rhythm in the bass with sharper and more accurate drums. - Better focus across the entire audio range and I can hear improved tonal qualities of the bass guitar. Although everything sounded clearer I was most impressed with the improvement in the mid bass which was most evident with well recorded source material on my vinyl records. The improved rhythm and punch in the bass was a really nice improvement. For the small amount of money this belt costs this is a no brainier upgrade to anyone with a Basis table. What a great product and really refined and improved my front end.

Dr. David M.
Dr. David M.

Now I know why you have been fixated on speed stability. The improvement this belt makes is amazing, it’s niearly impossible to believe that improving speed stability could result in such realism. The tonal qualities of instruments now closes the gap between real and vinyl. This just leaves CD further in the dust. Being a doctor, I marvel at how many “go through the motions” practicioners there are. Those who think for themselves and go beyond the standard learned information are a rare breed. And we are involved in life and death (not to glorify my profession). What you do in terms of improving the technology of record playback, when you could sit back and just keep producing the same thing over and over, truly advances both the art and science. I wish you would solicit more review activity so more music lovers could appreciate your heroic efforts.

I.F.
I.F.

You know I scored the great deal on the Red Rose electronics. I finally ran them with good cables, and said, “What’s the big deal about?” They were nothing special. Then I hooked up your cables, moving them from the other equipment. The difference was staggering, the cables transformed the Red Rose into something truly special. How can cables be more important than a component?

J.P.
J.P.

Dear A.J. We don't know each other but I thought I would send you a quick e-mail as I have recently been playing with your interconnects, closely followed by your Loudspeaker cables and finally a power cord. I am hard pressed to express with words anything that would do justice to the effect these cables have on the music that flows through them. They seem to present it in the most understated way but only because of the beautiful balance and rightness of their presentation as nothing seems to be overemphasised or out of proportion. Each component as it is introduced into the system reinforces the other and adding the loudspeaker cable at the end creates the most relaxed and unforced soundstage where all the individual elements of the music are allowed to breathe yet still mesh and integrate with each other. Personally, I have never cared about resolution, soundstaging or dynamics as long as that basic rightness is there, but when it is, everything else is a plus. They have extracted from a pile of hardware I used to view as a huge variable, the most musical presentation I would not have thought them capable of, and this from a few pieces of cable placed between them. I have a feeling there is no benchmark you can compare them with. So far, I have raced round to two close friends with different set ups to ask them to try the cables. These are ordinary people like myself who have always loved music, but when told the price have reacted in the same seemingly objective way saying that they were way too expensive. Within half an hour of listening them being introduced slowly into their systems,the "sensible" and objective is replaced by the subjective and their love of music and the way it is suddenly being presented, has changed them to wanting at least two of the components in their system as soon as they can. So just a thankyou for taking the time and effort to construct such a set of cables. Although I have read all the technical features of the cables on your website, nothing will come close to just listening even to a handful of notes through them and what they do to enhance the appreciation of any music in the most fundamental way. You have to love what you do to come out with such a result. Kind regards JP

S. Importer of High End Equipment
S. Importer of High End Equipment

Hello Armando, Today is the second normal working day in my office and the shop. For three days we were sorting up things after the Show was over. Now I have a chance to e-mail you in quiet environment. Firstly I would like to tell you a funny story. The next day after our Basis order arrived I loaned out speaker cables to a loyal customer so that he tried them in his system. The same day he called me saying that the sound is very interesting and asked to leave the cables at him for the next two days for listening. I called him one day before the Show asking for returning the cables for demonstration at the Show. And the man told me: please keep my money I want to have the cables. I asked him to loan out the cables to me. And what do you think he said? No, I wouldn’t like to get the cables crossed the step of my house. The dark humor of the story is that I was not able to demonstrate the cables at the Show. Now the customer wants to buy interconnect cables XLR à XLR – 0,6m – 2 sets and 4 pieces of power cables…

C.
C.

Before you commit to the Purist Audio power chords, please give (Basis dealer) a call at xxx.xxx-xxss and ask him to let you audition the new Basis power chord. These power chords are thin and flexible, and they're shielded with some kind of metallic shielding like the Sonorans and Purist Audio. (Basis comment: No, it is most emphatically NOT the same shield material, the Basis material is unique in the audio industry) comparison, they're better than the new Sonorans and I also auditioned them against the raved about Kubala-Sosna Emotion power chords. I've ordered two and will order the third as soon as I sell my three regular Sonorans. Just the one Basis power chord that I auditioned transformed my system into something very, very special. It worked it's magic on the pre-amp, DAC, and CD transport. I didn't try it on the power amps… The Basis power chord gave me the deepest and widest soundstage that I've ever had. The micro-dynamics are so crystal clear and defined, but still soft and the musical stage has become magical. I can even turn the volume down and it's still this crystal clear picture of every big and little thing happening. The dynamic swings are much more realistic like this too. The Basis power chords are around $1,200.00 for six feet, and they are something truly special.

I.F.
I.F.

Dear A.J., As you know, I've had the 3 new Basis Audio cables in my system for evaluation. To say that I am impressed is an understatement. After all, I but expected slight shifts in various sonic attributes typical of cables currently on the market. Certainly I am not in the market for slight shifts. I'd prefer, to me, the more reasonable method to improve the sound of my system, which is to upgrade actual components. In that way I can achieve significant sonic enhancements instead of mere sonic shifts. To my amazement, the Basis cables (cables?!?!) provided significant sonic enhancements. And it is only after experiencing the Basis Audio cables first hand that I now view cables (interconnects, speaker cables, & power cords) as components. And they are components that I cannot live without. Per my enthusiasm for these fine cables, I wrote a review which I passed on to some of my friends and to you. Also, I added my review to an area on the Audio Asylum internet bulletin board devoted to reviews written by users. As these cables are new to the market, I thought that Basis Audio should hear about how users feel about their new creations. As such, my review is attached (Word format). Basis did a magnificent job on these cables. First, there were the turntables. Then the amazing Vector. Now these cables. What could be next??????????????? I wish you and all the Basis employees a healthy and delightful holiday season. Kind regards, I.F.

Long-time Audiophile
Long-time Audiophile

Dear AJ, RE your cable…….. I have had but two listening sessions, work being what it is before the end of the term. Thirty seconds were enough. For now I will say only this: Thank you for bringing music into my home at last. When I have been fortunate enough over the years to get a really superior product into my system, one that gets me closer to the "truth", something happens consistently. I stop thinking stereo stuff, like bass, treble, imaging, etc. and just hear music, the way one does in real life. I stop analyzing, and just tap my foot and smile. I'm tapping and smiling a lot more now. My wife even heard the difference working upstairs in her office. This from a bit more than a meter of your wire inserted between phono stage and line stage… …I did have to let you know what's up here and thank you again for solving a problem that's been bugging me for years now with my system-- all the pieces were there, but it didn't sound as real as I knew it should. It didn't sound like music. Now it does. Best to you and your family.

Audio Industry Professional
Audio Industry Professional

A.J. All I can say is: Holy shit!!! Now, I am finally hearing what all these wires are doing. From the very first notes, with no warmup on the system, I was hearing more music from this system than I ever have...not even close... The sensation is one of the music slowing down, as I seem to be able to hear into all the contours, around the fronts and backs of tones and into the vocal expression of totally familiar singers that I feel like I am really hearing them for the first time. Total balance. Total neutrality. Total resolution... no spitty, grainy, zippy, sheeny, "airy" artifacts... just music like my brain knows I have heard it when I have been to concerts. It is a feeling, not an intellectual process... I think you've got something very, very special here... and the idea of a wire "system" is one that we will very easily be able to demonstrate because...t'aint no other wires out there like this and putting anything else in the chain will degrade the sound, I am willing to bet... This is like the very first time I heard big sound labs with OTL's... a whole new level... actually, this is quite a bit beyond that sound... but, that was a huge move forward in my sense of what audio was capable of at the time, which was about 15 years ago... Sorry, gotta get back to the music. Congratulations, this is a huge achievement. best,

Bob
Bob

A.J. Billie H. - Day in, Day out... this recording is so amazing in it's ability to immediately tell you whether a system is working coherently... The electric guitar on the left and the muted trumpet on the right, which tend to locate themselves inside the speakers are suddenly alive and in their own space and now you can hear all the spatial clues (reverberations/echoes) that tell you they are there and alive. Holy crap...Foggy Day... the bass... and then there is Billie herself, you can hear all the fragility, strength, and repressed emotion at having to sing this stuff and try to sound happy...

Anonymous
Anonymous

As I get more familiar with what is happening here, I have noticed a couple of things. First, and this is contrary to experience, the vast increase in resolution is accompanied by an increase in smoothness and easiness to listen to (like live music). Mostly, though, it is the INTEGRATION of detail that is revelatory . I had always heard this sound, like a little scraping sound, in the background of Norah Jones first album...now, clear as day, it is attached to the accompanying guitar in space, and it is clearly the sound of the fingers doing a vibrato on the strings. I know this sounds kind of audiophile, but the musical difference between a disembodied sonic anomaly and something that brings you into the kinesthetic experience of the live event (even studio recordings are live in the studio...) helps to bring everything to life in a way I am just not used to from an audio system. Jeez... I wish you could fly out here and listen to this system... it is really special now... I am going to have an even harder time keeping a straight face in audio dealers when they proudly play their best (crappy) system for me... Ok...gushing

Anonymous 1
Anonymous 1

Dear A.J., I’ve had all the big players in my system, including the Vxxxx, and you’ve beaten them all. Totally liquid sound, tremendous detail, and, you are right, bass that redefines the word “bass”!! My 4 year search for the best cables, bar any price restrictions, is over! My only question: how an cables, an electrical device, sound so much like the Vector, a mechanical device? I guess this is the sound of real physics, and the sound of real music! THANK YOU!

J.C.
J.C.

Hey Armando, OK, you are aware of the brand we distribute, our long history with them, and my outlook that they really know what they are doing. Well, I hate to disappoint you, I still feel XXXX knows what he is doing… but it is apparent that you know even more about what you are doing! Surprise… gotcha! You thought I was going to rate xxxx above your cable! No way. This is the most coherent sound the Diamonds have ever seduced me with. WOW! Now my dilemna: I’m going to lose thousands of dollars on every cable sale when I let the demonstration speak for itself. 9 times out of ten your cables will get picked. At less than half the price they will bet a bargain, but I will struggle to pay for my new house! I waited over a year since you told me “any day”, but you’ve done it. Congratulazioni, as our forebears would say!!!! Ciao!

B.G.
B.G.

R.B., on hearing one length of interconnect between his CD player and preamp, and a complete set of power cords: This is the biggest compliment I can think of: Sunday I was listening to Ella Fitzgerald, and for the first time I really felt like it was at midnight, and I was at a club listening to her, it was so real. It was like I could feel the candlelight, so liquid, so human was the sound of her voice: this is what your cable is doing. Being in the recording industry I know the sound of professional equipment: For the first time I could hear the signature of the U-47 microphone: I am sure that was used on her voice. I have never been able to hear that far into this before. I was also listening to Eva Cassidy, Songbird. Wow, the stand up bass, the brass, I never heard the Trombone sound so powerful. But Ella’s voice… the midrange of my Grand Slams, I swear, it sounded like the midrange of the Quads. Your cable is so-grain free…

Richard
Richard

Hi, I was able to find the source of my concern with the sound of detail and hash from my system. It turns out it was not anything to do with the new wires. Well not directly. YOUR wires showed me a fault with MY system. The CJ line amp's tubes which are 6DJ8, Russian cryo treated tubes that had sounded killer with the other prototype wires became hashy and transistory sounding. I went to Mullard and a couple of Valvo CCA's I know were killer before and the sound became like, like, like well really really real. Pure even. Everything clicked into place. Sound stage improved to a well spread, deep, textured presentation. The harmonics from any instrument is supple, layered. Sounds which I may have heard before became focused and grabbed my attention level. I heard new effects on records I have listened to since the 80's. I not only heard the plop of the water drops in the water but the lapping splash of the resulting wave against the side of the tank on Vallenweders Cavern Magic. Something I have never noticed before. Listen you have to get your ass down here soon and hear this. You may have a good Idea you know how good your wires are but till you have heard them in this system you won't know that it is not just because you are biased!!! I have never experienced the smoothness yet with killer -NO losses in- detail, harmonic richness, textures, sound that is completely relaxed but with full dynamics, till now. Fast, clean attacks and lovely ringing decays. The wires have my 1000000000% approval of what a reproduced performance should sound like. The sound was better than anything I have in house or have heard including the forward sounding Valhulla wires costing $6500/meter. If I had a store like you did in the beginning old days I would make it my lifes work to educate the unknowing when ever I saw an interest in the truth of reproduced sound. Bravo man Bravo

D
D

I had been using the Cardas Golden Reference and MIT speaker cables on my Advangarde speakers. My main reference wires were the MIT wires as the Cardas had always seemed to be too edgy at the upper end over MIT's as the Advangarde's are very true but efficiently dynamic. When I installed the PSTT wires the sound field seemed to pull itself together to the point where I just sat back and smiled. I then pulled out more of my favorite recordings to discover what new sounds I hear, and smiled again. Its like a picture puzzle where all the pieces are there but not matched edge to edge and suddenly the whole bunch just jump together. Matched with the PSST intereconnects the speaker cables maintain the frequency domains passed onto them keeping the little tinkles and sparkles correctly in their soft places with their harmonics intact such that their ringing decays into time. Then the next texture grabs your attention and you smile again. The wires are moderately flexible as 5/8 inch diameters can be and come in any termination one wishes or length for that matter. The 2 meter length seemed to work best for me and is the length utilized here for this review. Their sonic strength seems to be due to the ability to keep busy music sorted out and not mix in any artifacts that cause the sound field to smear, blur or bloat.

John
John

I can not imaging the audio world not accepting your cables after hearing them. The key may be getting out as many loaners as possible and letting people decide for themselves. I have to be honest and say that based on your P/C modest appearance my expectations were somewhat tame on it's performance. Over this last weekend I plugged the new Basis power chord in my 2 different preamps. In both locations there was a noticeable reduction of noise and the background was quieter overall. I find this trait to be common among your entire cable line and is a testament to the excellent shielding be used. The Basis P/C exceeded what I though was possible with a 16 gauge wire in a rather simple geometry which just goes to show how critical the quality of copper is and how important good shield is to the sound quality. Your P/C had the best imaging, inner detail and depth that what I am currently using… it is the crystal clear details and imaging where your P/C shines. It also has a wide and open soundstage with a very natural presentation and great slam impact on the bass. I also connected one of your Basis power chords to my sony 36" XBR color monitor with excellent results. It had good deep color saturation with excellent fine inner detail and a very vivid and lifelike quality to the presentation. Wow what a nice picture. A.J. the market for video is wide open and if people could see what your power chords do to improve the video image on there TV, DVD, satellite receiver or video recorder you would have already sold out of your current inventory for this product. Unlike audio where you have to listen and hear the improvement the video image is immediate and the picture quality improvement is obvious one you see it on the screen. I will spend the next week or two getting a better feel for your power chords and will do another shoot out this next weekend. Another fantastic product from the many you have in your current line. I still am amazed how good your entire cable line is. State of the art without the usual hype. Talk to you later

H.F.
H.F.

A.J., My gosh what have you done??????????????? Turned on the amp yesterday, so this is the day after I installed the pre-amp interconnect and had but a short listen, and the sound immediately was there. I didn't have to wait hours for things to happen. And the sound. This cannot but be a coincedence. As though pre-Basis cables, the sound arrived to the speakers via a pipe that was restricted, clogged, just not getting all of the music. And now with the Basis cables, the pipe is flowing with music without any impedance. The overall presentation; wow. Results are quite impressive. So.....I don't have your speaker cables but would love to check them out. But I wonder how can it get better, as the going is already going good, by this change. I have yet to insert the power cords, but also wonder the same. But will get around to this. If you can ship some speaker cables, can you also please send me some of those cloths you mentioned and a filter for the vacuum on the Debut? And let me know, and I'll cut a check. Suppose 10' would work, though currently I have 8'. Avantgarde recommends attaching the speaker cables at the midrange which is the top-most driver, which I'd like to try. though I do not see how it could affect the sound vs. connecting to the woofer (the lowest driver) when all drivers are jumpered together on a common bus. Will need do more listening to see if cables had positive affect on the dynamics, or lack of dynamics as I mentioned in the previous email. Alas, these cables rock.

P.C.
P.C.

Hi A.J., OK, you already know this, I am a confirmed cable nut, I have $100k retail in cables of different brands. Being an investor for XXXX (major audio company), and therefore being able to buy cables through them, means I paid far less, yes, but they are still a large investment. When cable companies send cables to XXX (company president) for evaluation on their electronics and loudspeakers XXX many times sends the cables for me to play with. My exposure to the current best cable brands is therefore quite wide. I am also one of the “listening test panel” members when they have changes or new models, so it is important for my system to perform at the highest level. Now that I have finished the prologue of this letter I will get to the first act! Your cables are, in 2 words, reality bending. They create a new reality in terms of what a cable is capable of doing. I suppose I should more appropriately say, what a cable is capable of “not doing”. Feel as though my amplifiers are backed up to my louspeakers and the output devices hooked directly to the cones. This is A DIRECT CONNECTION BABY! I collect Corvettes from the 60’s and early 70’s, and these cables are like going from a small-block motor, where you always have to be in the appropriate gear, to a big-block, where you can step on the gas anywhere, anytime, any gear and have the car snap your head back with acceleration. I have never heard such power, dynamics, harmonics, and…..and……and…..well, just plain music, from from my Thiel CS5’s. Now, here is the funny thing…..when I go to my BIG SOUND SYSTEM, with the Everests and single-ended tubes, the cables do the same thing. No cable, ever, has worked the same in both systems. Before now I always had a different “favorite cable” for each system. I’m sold, I’m buying interconnect and speaker cable sets for both systems. You know that I hate the philosophy of power cords, buy you’ve shaken my reality so severely that I may just take you up on your offer to borrow your power cords. As you know, THAT, for me, is the most shocking statement of all! Keep well

Jazz lover in San Francisco
Jazz lover in San Francisco

Dear A.J., Hi. Before I forget, congrats on the completion of the website. Looks good. Have you received lots of pos feedback from customers, etc.?… ...Plugged the Basis cords back in and damn, A.J. what have you done? What else can I say. We be talking a night and day difference. That dynamic change I referred to was back to making me nearly jump out of my seat. But it was so much more happened. More natural, more ebb & flow of the music, more life, lower noise floor, real bass, more details in a musical way that made listening seem more like the real thing, more subtleties, more propulsive, dynamics exploded, etc. etc. Essentially the Duos now did more of those things that people purchase Duos for. The real odd thing. Was Joni's 2nd LP, Clouds. Listened to first 2 tracks on side 2. But her voice and an accoustic guitar. First track starts with but the guitar player with Joni coming in after a while When I played the first cut with your cords inserted, I at first thought that I played the wrong side. The sound was that different. The acoustic differed, the guitar was more realistic in sound . Then Joni sounded more real for a variety of reasons. And the guitar which seemed to be located near her head when listening to the Cardas, was now mostly perfectly centered. Now I assume that there is some low freq details of the acoustic that one senses and might not hear, and thus the reason for part of what I heard. And maybe the subs play in higher in frequency than I am aware of (though I think the cutoff freq is 140 hz), but still, I would not expect that much of a positive affect when listening to this LP. Any thoughts there?

Rob T.
Rob T.

Stunning, unbelievable, paradigm smashing! This is impossible, I have your 2200, the Basis Debut Vac. that I have installed the supply on, finally, the Walker, and still my old Versa (digital sounding as it is!), nothing has ever sounded like this in my life. By the way, you are right, I can strike the record hard right next to the stylus, no noise through the speakers. I can just lightly touch the record on the Walker and clearly hear it through the Vandy 5’s. Anyone who claims the clamping ring is as effective as vacuum must be using a Hoover instead of your vac system. But back to the supply, your magic-wave… never, ever has an add-on made a difference like this, I absolutely believe you when you say that this is the most speed stable turntable on the planet. Let me add that it must be the most quiet drive system on the planet too! Thanks, Rob

John
John

As more time passes I am gaining a greater appreciation of the new Basis power supply………… the sonic improvements of the P/S are becoming more evident…………..The greater tonal qualities, supreme inner detail and greater musical realism are awesome sounding now……….The more records I replay on my Basis 2500 with the power supply the more I hear new details and musical nuances I never noticed before prior to the P/S. I don't know if things will continue to improve over the next month or so but right now my system is at a new high. I do not have experience listening to master tapes like some other folks do but what I can say I am enjoying greater musical involvement and hearing finer shades of detail on my system. John

S.L.
S.L.

Shocking, amazing, so a drive system makes that much difference, huh? So much more pure sound, so real sounding, no exaggeration of any part of the sound. It took you forever to come out with it, no wonder why! It’s a miracle. As important as your Vector tonearm. Keep in mind my comments are when using the Synchro-Wave along with micro belt. Thanks so much.

Gary
Gary

Dear AJ, If you told me last week that a belt could make a difference, I would have said you're nuts. I played many LPs over the weekend and the bass seems tighter, high end is more crisp, mids, well, not so sure how to describe the improvement but it's there. I think what is happening is the background is more quiet with this belt and the result is what I described. I'm not sure how a more steady speed has this result but I couldn't be happier. Well worth the wait. Thanks and have a great week!

Audio Importer in Mexico
Audio Importer in Mexico

I have heard Joe’s Debut with Synchrowave and listened to every other Basis playing at the show, it is obvious the Synchrowave and micro belt bring you a speed stability and solid nature to the sound that other turntables do not have. I will send you my SME 30 Mark 2 in trade for your Debut with vacuum and power supply, just like Joe’s unit.

Leading Electronics Manufacturer
Leading Electronics Manufacturer

Conti, you make the only speed stable belt drive turntable in the world. With the improvements of the belts and power supply I listen to only your turntable and every other belt drive turntable is no unlistenable to me due to speed stability problems. I tell everyone “Just buy a Basis with the power supply and be done”. SJ

Major Market Dealer
Major Market Dealer

Comparing the Continuum to the Debut there were some areas where I the Continuum did some things that I liked. After adding the Synchro supply and special belt, it’s not even close, the Debut is in a different league. CJ

G.M., president, **** Records
G.M., president, **** Records

Dear A.J., This e-mail is to let you know how the Work of Art is performing. To help anyone else reading this, let me briefly introduce myself. I established my recording company in the late 1980’s to serve the perfectionist music and audio community. With 5 years I had contracts to produce records and CDs for some of the most world-renowned stars. My facility for evaluating master tapes is certainly the finest listening facility in New York state, with the stand-alone room with no equipment alone worth several hundreds of thousands of dollars. The playback equipment in the room, which includes no video (simply a 2 channel stereo system) is worth $500,000 more. In the room I have the ability to play analog master tapes, digital master tapes, and records. Before the Work of Art I owned many turntables, including the Basis Debut Vacuum, Airtangent tonearm, and Vector tonearm. As you know, A.J., the best sound in my room was always from a master tape. Prior to the arrival to the Work Of Art neither I nor anyone else has ever heard a record sound as convincing as a master tape. On the day you set up the Work of Art I left the room for a few minutes. When I walked back in I thought, and said to you, "This is the first time that I have ever walked into the room and heard a record that, if I did not see the turntable running, I would have been sure that the source was one of my master tapes due to the incredible sound quality, the detail, but mostly the absolute lack of any mechanical nature to the sound. There was simply a totally “grain free”, natural, effortless, yet dynamic and detailed sound – these are all of the attributes of master tapes that make them sound so much like real music. Any hint that you are listening to a stereo goes away when you hear great master tapes, or a great record played on the Work of Art. I told you that before the Work of Art, when I used the Basis Debut with Vector tonearm (and same cartridge I am using in WOA) I would listen to master tapes 85% of the time when listening for fun, records 5% of the time, and FM on my Sequerra tuner 10%. In the 6 months that I have had the Work of Art I have listened to it 90% of the time. I just cannot stop playing it! I have found many, many records in my collection that for overall sound quality are certainly better and more believable than my own master tapes. This seems impossible, but it is true. This effect never, ever happened for me in the past, not even once, in my system or any other system I have ever heard. You can ALWAYS tell the sound of a record, the compression, the “edginess”, the “mechanical sound” compared to a master tape. But with Work of Art, these “flaws” of vinyl disappear. How the Work of Art and Vector 4 have done this “trick” is amazing to me. I am happy to give this testimonial to anyone considering your Work of Art. After owning it since October 2006 I can say that it is more than “a Work of Art”: it is a work of magic. Thank you for the joy that this product gives.

Thomas
Thomas

Dear Mr. Conti, I am writing this on behalf of your importer who relayed your request to me. Being an audiophile for thirty years I would exert great efforts in my search for perfect sound. I have owned the Continuum turntable for two years and had every reason to believe it was the finest in the world until your importer’s showroom, suddenly after four 3 years wait, was blessed with your Work Of Art. I could tell that there was smoothness, richness, and detail that I was missing and arranged for a purchase. Full return if I felt the need was agreed. After hearing the comparison in my house the situation and relative merits were clear. Yes, Work Of Art is better in those regards, and in speed constancy as well. You have achieved the ultimate in your field, congratulations. Also, be prepared. As we say in my country, “In business the superior effort is not rewarded: it becomes the hunted.” Yes, you will now be the prey, with this being a lonely position! Thank you for the music in my home. If you travel in Asia you are welcome in my home.

Roger M.
Roger M.

Finally cleared customs.Set up table with a friend(who could not believe how easy it was-he is a former Linn dealer).You are right-I am astonished at how good it is.As well as the expected improvements-better(much better)base,deeper and wider soundstage,clearer treble and so on,it retains(and improves)the major strength of the Well Tempered-ie a sense of ease and flow that draws you into the music.I was always concerned that there might need to be some type of trade-off(with a SME 20 I had listened to there was)but all aspects of the music were better.I am stunned frankly. Congratulations. A couple of questions-What type of turntable stand is best? I currently have a heavy one with a sand box.The Basis is so well sorted I suspect that it does not matter but I am interested in any views that you have.Also I only seem to need a vestigial amount of antiskating-is this common-I used a non tracked test record to set it. My cartridge is a van den Hul Frog. Thanks again for the great service but especially for designing and making the thing.Everything from Al Green to Mahler is now more like music. Best Roger

Dealer
Dealer

Dear A.J., Well, the proof is not in its incredible good looks, elegant design, intelligent construction and dealer assembly, ease of leveling, relative ease of mounting, setting-up, and adjusting the Lyra Titan cartridge, or two score other reasons to gush about the Debut Mark V (workmanship, azimuth control, ingenious/brilliant arm board, did i say intelligence and elegance by the way???). No, the proof is putting on the first record ...

Anonymous 2
Anonymous 2

GOD WHAT A MUSICAL TUNRTABLE, ARM, CARTRIDGE COMBINATION!!! It took about 3 hours to set-up (we did not hook-up the vaccum last night, however); my customer and another friend "helped." Normally, I build tables by myself or with an insider helping but this was OK. I am VERY deliberate and methodical; i like to look everything over until i understand--or at least THINK i understand :)--why each little piece, bump, excresence, &c is where it is. I used the tonearm box as a work bench for mounting the cartridge &c and found this very instructive and comfortable. I admire MANY things about this table and arm (which I will probably go on and on about in subsequent e-mails ... especially after everything starts easing in and i go back for a follow-up set-up/adjustment or three). But I especially admire the construction of the tone arm wiring and cable…………………… I can see/hear now why Chris (importer of a major brand of electonics) says the Debut does everything the Linn does but better and some things the Linn can't/doesn't ... very obvious………………. ………….the short of this is, we both have a VERY happy customer. Hope you are having a good day……………….. ……………..and did i forget to say intelligent, elegant, musical, and INCREDIBLY involving????

William M.
William M.

Dear AJ, Let's do the heart first: every time I walk into the listening room, the first thing I look at is the Debut. I cannot take my eyes off it. But, if form follows function, why shouldn't a beautifully engineered thing look beautiful too? Think Porsche, Philip Johnson's glass house, Sapper's Tizio lamps, Wassily chairs (I've got a pair-- like the Barcelona chairs, they're uncomfortable as hell.) Oh yes, it does make music too, I almost forgot (!). I listened yesterday to Art of Fugue, Davitt Moroney on harpsichord. That harpsichord was right in the room, I swear to God. The harmonics and hall ambience filled the room. Who needs four or five channel when two can do that? It's spooky. And when Bonnie Rait sings her love songs, she's singing to me and only me. You can hear the way she forms words with her mouth, and uses her breath for subtle shadings and meanings. This is not obsessive hi fi detail-- this is heightened communication with the artist. The Koetsu finally has the right platform to let it do its thing. I think you should get one-- Rosewood Signature Platinum. Or, go for it, and grab an Onyx or Lapis. Now for the head. I found that putting the rubber washer on the spindle for the Basis clamp (I had failed to do that) makes a significant difference-- deeper bass, more bass, more depth, roundness, and human quality to vocals. ………………………………… ……………………………Adjusting VTA is no sweat. VTA adjuster? We don't need no stinkin' VTA adjuster. Besides, the Basis tends to take the neurosis out of listening. The main thing, …………., ………….is that buying the Debut is the best (and most ill-advised, financially!) ten thousand or so bucks I've ever spent-- right up there with our wedding (just the two of us-- might give you some ideas some day) and honeymoon on a private island off the coast of Antigua. But that was when the markets were at all time highs, and money rolled in like the surf-- often and heavy. These days are quite different. The Basis purchase was a real stretch, but I have no regrets. ……………………. Best, Wm

Don Smith
Don Smith

I’m familiar with all of your products and their precision level. I am working on a XXX TNT, and I have to ask you, have you seen the sloppiness of the machining? The sides of the armboard are not straight, the radius of each corners is chopped off as if it was done in a belt sander, is this supposed to be high-end? Why would someone buy something like this if they were comparing it to the Basis? I’m sorry, machining is my living, and whoever machined this is a hack. This part is disgusting. I would not build a prototype, even to just prove out an idea, that was this crude. No one who understands precision or fine equipment would let this go out the door on their product. Every part of the 1400 is more precise than this part to a turntable 3 times more expensive.

Todd Coleman
Todd Coleman

Hello A.J., I wanted to pass on a few comments about my Debut, Vector, as well as the new belt you sent. I purchased the table in may of 2002. As you know I was assembling a new system at the time for a new home I was about to move into. Several of my friends owned 2500s, 2800s, Debuts, or Ovations, so I decided to go in this direction. Frankly, after seeing the build quality of your table, it was not a difficult choice. I live in a rural town, and had to assemble the Debut on my own. Keep in mind that I am fairly new to analog, as it supposedly died during my youth. This table was simple to put together. Unfortunately I was not as pleased with the rest of the system. over the last 15 months every other piece of the system has changed, but the Basis remains. I owned a highly regarded $8700 CD front end, but the analog sound was so superior that I sold the Digital, relegating digital listening to the car and portable player. Besides being easy to set up it holds its settings. Seven months ago I decided to update the decor in my listening room and had to move all of the equipment out. I once had to do this with another table and ended up having to set up the table from scratch, settings had changed dramtically. I own all of Wally's tools, including the Azimuth tool, and upon moving the table back into my room I was thrilled to learn that everything was dead on....no readjustment was necessary. Being an obsessive person I occasionally recheck VTF, Azimuth, and level, and the table holds perfect. Not once have I had to re level the table in 15 months! As good as the Debut is, your new vector arm may be your best feat to date. Never have I owned an arm that sounded as dynamic and natural as this one. Tracking is simply not an issue anymore, neither is siblance which I had always blamed on certain recordings in the past. I have a couple of LPs which have grooves VERY close to the label, and can honestly say that these tracks sound the same as those elsewhere on the disc. I was recently revisiting VTF (there goes the obsessiveness again). My cartridge manufacturer recommends 1.8-2.2. At 1.8 the arm tracked perfectly on all of the tracks (+12db - +18db) on the HFNRR test records. Out of curiosity I changed VTF to 1.0. The arm still tracked the first three tracks perfect, with no buzzing, and stayed in the grooves for +18db. I tried a couple of well known LPs which had loud horns or vocals which have proven troublesome in the past and I experienced no mistracking, even @ 1.0 VTF! Another interesting thing about this arm is that it seems to be compatible with a wide variety of cartridges. Since I have owned the Debut I have used the Shelter 901, Van den Hul Colibri, Benz LP, and Dynavector XV1s. I used the Colibri and DV back to back. One weighs 5 grams, the other 13. One has a high compliance, the other low. One uses suggests VTF of 1.35, the other 2.0. I fully expected that one would be far better with the arm than the other. They certainly had their own sonic signatures, but I did not experience any pitfalls which would suggest a mismatch. I tested the resonance using a test record and both fell into the 8-11 hz range. I have now installed the new belt which you sent. First, I like the yellow color. I had my doubts that a belt could make a difference. As you know, I am less prone to falling for tweaks than friends of mine. I could tell from the first track that this darned belt makes a difference. The bass was fuller, which is what I thought might happen, if anything was going to. What did surprise my is that the background seemed blacker. Because of that my sound stage seemed to get deeper. before the SS was wide. I had not notice that it was shallow, but after using your new belt, instruments seem to be more holographic. In short the belt made a big difference. I have found two items in this hobby that I know do it for me....one is good OTL amps, and the other is my Basis table. In combination, oh my! My hats off to you and your team for building such a fine product.

Doctor Oliver
Doctor Oliver

…I have been a Debut Gold Owner fopr 10 years now, my love for this table has not changed a bit, as a matter of fact, it has been a part of my busy life as a physician. With everything that is happening in the medical world, the Debut has been my refuge and sanctuary to relax and groove in the beauty of vinyl music. More power to you and your company. Your dedication, skill, passion, courage, and more importantly, your vision, I consider a gift and a blessing for us who love and enjoy real music.

Anthony C.
Anthony C.

As a mechanical engineer and a customer I can tell you I admire the design and the high quality of this turntable. The quality of workmanship is just outstanding. Well, the proof in the pudding is how it works. The turntable quality is truly matched by the listening enjoyment. The 1400 is causing me to looses sleep as I am staying up almost every night rediscovering my LP’s. Bach, Brahms, Beethoven, and Shostakovich are coming alive! …………..I am going to give the CD discs away and stop considering buying a CD player.

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