If anyone is looking to get me something for Xmas (or Hanukkah), then look no further.
Reporting by Eric Franklin Shook
What we have here is a successful way to communicate—by way of vinyl and needle that is. Building on the spirit of the original ‘Reference” model of the 1980s, the new Reference Jubilee reimagines the classic with superior materials, advanced bearing tech, hyper-accurate optical speed control, and lastly… wait for it… a DAC??
Do read on to the press release below, it’s not as wild or in the least way off-putting as the news might lead you to believe. Enjoy!
New Reference Jubilee turntable from Clearaudio
The Reference Jubilee turntable is designed to showcase ‘the best of Clearaudio
past, present and future’, marrying the brand’s proven state-of-the-art
analogue technology with some striking new developments
The original ‘Reference’ was Clearaudio’s first ever turntable, launched back in the 1980s. It featured a distinctive boomerang-shaped, resonance-optimized chassis, which the new Reference Jubilee reprises, now replacing the earlier acrylic version with a higher-performing Panzerholz wood and aluminium construction.
And, while the new Reference Jubilee incorporates several of Clearaudio’s tried and tested innovations, these come in slightly adapted and tailored forms. A 6cm-thick main platter, constructed from highly damped polyoxymethylene (POM), rotates on a special version of the brand’s renowned frictionless Ceramic Magnetic Bearing (‘CMB’).
Below, and built into a heavy, 8.5kg stainless steel sub-platter, is Clearaudio’s ‘OSC’ Optical Speed Control, in which in an optical sensor takes a reading of the sub-platter’s rotational speed (with 1,598 impulses per revolution) and delivers that reading to a control unit. The control unit then immediately regulates the slightest of deviations by adjusting the motor’s voltage via an operational amplifier, delivering superb speed stability.
But here, there is an added twist. While the company has earned a considerable reputation for innovation in all things analogue, here the design team has expertly married digital and analogue technology to achieve a new level of precision and consistency of rotational speed.
A 12-bit DAC generates a motor reference voltage which is converted using discrete electronics into an analogue voltage signal. Hence, the digital reference is used only to compensate for slow movements or drifts due to temperature, oil viscosity, belt friction factors, etc, while the motor is driven purely by the analogue output stage.
The motor itself is brand new: a high-torque, air-core (non-magnetic) 24-volt DC motor with belt drive, created to run exceptionally quietly. The entire motor housing is decoupled from the main chassis, suspended by an elaborate network of rubber ‘tightropes’.
On the outside, Clearaudio’s new Reference Jubilee is a visually elegant turntable, compact in appearance and yet with all of the ‘weight’ of the brand’s top Innovation Series models, plus the benefit of even more technological advances to create a new ‘reference’ design.
Consumer contacts for publication: www.clearaudio.de