Stack Audio. Parts for Linn LP12

I have been running my 1989 LP12 with Naim Aro, Lingo 1 and Cirkus unchanged , apart from carts, since the mid 90s. Probably top spec back then. I have done lots of reading up on all the upgrades and 3rd party products over the years.
I had pretty much convinced myself that I was going to stick with what I have for three reasons;

  1. I really likes the way it sounds in my system. Warm, detailed, unfatiguing at higher volumes, and just very enjoyable.
  2. I couldn’t bring myself to fork out the kind of money that many of the upgrades cost, particularly the Linn ones. My record collection is basically 70s and 80s and all CDs since.
  3. I was nervous of the TT losing many of the sonic attributes that made me buy it in the first place. I have heard many analytical, detailed systems that cost a lot which have just left me cold.
    On holiday in early March I was reading the few reviews that Stack Audio have on the web and was astonished at the prices he as able to offer his products for. Almost slightly off putting. You can buy a Top plate, cross brace, subschassis, arm board, and Base Plate for , I think, less than the cost of a Linn Kore.
    Lock down boredom got to me and I fancied a project. Having watched my TT being serviced a couple of times, once by PS, and having fiddled with it in the past myself, I was keen to go DIY.

I didn’t want a base plate as I don’t use one, have always found it sounded better without.
I didn’t fancy tackling the top plate, and argued that if Linn have never produced an alternative it can’t be too shabby.
So I ordered on the Stack Audio Website a new sub chassis and Naim Arm board. A whisker over £300. Had a couple of telephone conversations with Theo Stack who was incredibly helpful and interested.

The products turned up, clearly well made and finished. Shiny Non logo armboard. Fitting was slow but fairly straight forward, but I couldn’t get the suspension bouncing smoothly or quietly. Ordered new springs and grommets, problem solved. In fact I cant remember when it last bounced so well.
The products I think are made out of a hard stiff composite material, which are I think vibrationally inert and dead. My logic was that any changes in performance are likely to be due to removing the existing “soft” connection between my old chassis and armboard, and also having a harder armboard than the older Linn wood based one.

I really wanted it still to sound like my LP12 and Aro but better and not completely different.

It did. Very Impressed. Everything more focused, more low level detail . Instruments separated more, notes have more defined edges and texture. The bass is tighter but that slightly big warm bass that some people hate, is still there. Hooray!! It still sounds like my record player…£300 defo not wasted. Noticing things in the mix that were not obvious before.

Without A/B comparisons it is impossible to know where this upgrade sits in the scheme of things. I suspect it is competitive. What I can say is that it is clearly an improvement on the old Cirkus Chassis/ Armboard combo. I suspect it is more Kore than Majik in it’s performance, but I can’t be sure. I recently heard a Majik deck but that is not a fair comparison.

Also anyone building or rebuilding an LP12 would find Stack Audio parts a very cost effective way of doing it and they are made to a high standard.

Hope I can put away the upgrade bug for another 25 years. ( I will be deaf and doddery if still going then)

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There have been favourable user reports on the Stack Audio parts on other fora too. Also some good reviews on - line. Appear to be good value for money.

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