This will be expensive..Technics SL-1000R/DS Audio Master 1 optical cartridge

My friend is going to abandon his LP12,.as he has had and upgraded since the 1980s.
This below,.is obviously the best he’s heard from a turntable,he says…

Technics SL-1000R / DS Audio Master 1.

• Technics SL-1000R,.as in Sweden costs £14,500.

His music-systems consist of Linn’s top-notch products,.but we take it from the beginning.

We got to know each other in the early 1990s,.when he bought a couple of Linn Isobarik from me (I had two pairs).
Since then,.he has always had Linn’s Top-notch active-systems.
Always with top-notch sources,.Lp12, CD12, Klimax DS and now Klimax DSM in Linn’s best exact-system.

When he switched from active Komri with eight Solo mono-blocks,.to active exact 350-speakers,then I thought he was crazy.
A lot of people think Komri is Linn’s best speaker ever,.I probably share that view.
We have seven Komri-owners in our group,.and two exact 350-owners.

One of these 350-owners had previously passive Komri,.he regrets that he sold them,and switched to active 350 exact-speakers.

:black_small_square:This was a little short description of my friend’s music-system history.
Now he is interested in this Technics SL-1000R above,.with this DS Audio Master 1 optical cartridge in the picture below…

This DS Audio Master 1 optical cartridge,.costs £17,750 in Sweden,this is a lot of money.

:small_orange_diamond: "Believe me: this cartridge is phenomenal.” writes Ken Kessler in summation in a review,.see below…

“After years of using only MCs,.and following a month with Koetsu’s Onyx,the DS Audio Master 1 was a shock because its presentation was so clean and noiseless –even more so than its siblings.
It requires the listener to dispel any preconceptions about vinyl.
It has speed,.detail and space to rival Deccas. The sacrifice for this is a trace of warmth…so wear a cardigan.
Believe me: this cartridge is phenomenal.”

:thinking: I don’t know what I think of my friend’s decision,.somewhere in me,so i feel like he’s choosing a side-road.
An expensive side-road for together £32,232.

Is it anyone here who has listened to,.or has experience with any of these two products.?

I finish with some pictures…


• Only the disc-plate weighs 8kg.



Prefer look of LP12 myself, that cartridge cost is astonishing! And there i was worrying about £160 for an Ortofon Blue for my RP3 :wink:


I read Kessler’s review of the cartridge. He certainly liked it. He was impressed by “cd-like” silence between the tracks. Inter-track noise from the vinyl is just as much “signal” as the music as far as the cartridge is concerned. I’m suspecting that a noise-gate has been employed in the dedicated phono stage.

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Top speck LP12 about £18,000
Top spec technics £14000

Seems reasonable comparison to me.

If he feels the cartridge is worth it how would you feel if he put it on a LP12?

I bet there’s a lot of technology/quality in the Technics and the LP12 design is 50 years old…

I don’t think i am biased as I use my LP12 and love it’s sound but with a budget in comparison £1200 cartridge.

The measured frequency response looks horrendous! Hope he gets a chance to audition before purchase…

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If your friend has the budget, has compared the system to a high-end LP12 with an exceptional cartridge, and this is better then why not? Provided he/she’ll live long enough to enjoy it and already has a significant vinyl collection to play, I can’t see a problem.

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@Anonymoot,.We totally agree on both things you mention.

@mickdale,.It is,.but my biggest reflection is that it is “Direct drive”.
It feels strange to go from an LP12,.to Direct drive.?

@NAC72,.So far,.he has only listened to it with this cartridge,at Audioconcept in Stockholm.
They have an incredible range of High-End products.

According to them themselves,.in ads,so they are Europe’s largest High-End store.
And I think they are,.it’s impressive to go around and look at all the products they have in this giant store.

@Alley_Cat,.Budget,.he has,but maybe I’m overly suspicious.
He definitely has to listen to this in his system,.before he buys this combination.
We are talking about £32,272,.for something that is not so well known yet.

But we’ll see,.if anyone here has listened to this combination.


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I prefer the look of the Technics. I’m wondering why would object based on an implementation detail (“It feels strange to go from an LP12,.to Direct drive.”), I don’t think that should matter. It’s a means to an end, and it’s that end I feel should be judged, not how the manufacturer got there.

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By that token the SP-10 was first launched in 1970. Both have a lot in common with the forefathers, and a lot different in the latest iterations…

Just googled it.
Just goes to show the basic design principles were sound :+1:

As Linn once said, “if it sounds better it is better”. My emphasis.

Makes my shift from LP12 to SL1200GR miniature
Happy anyway

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I heard this turntable with a conventional moving coil cartridge. I was astonished at how good it sounded. Ultra quiet, super pitch accurate. It was as good as the reel to reel deck being demoed next to it. I was expecting it to sound awful and came away impressed. Defiantly one of the best turntables on the market. A real statement piece.


Guess there is no pixie dust in making a turntable…it’s just solid engineering practice
Speed stability…check
Lack of resonance…check
No play in the bearings…check
etc etc…

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