The Focal Naim room system at the Pacific Audio Fest featured a system that was very similar to the systems I saw at both AXPONA 2022 and High End 2022 in Munich. But look at that system closely. Do you see the difference? Something new, perhaps? That’s right, the long-awaited Naim Solstice turntable, complete with arm and cartridge, made an appearance in Seattle.
Ever since I heard a Linn Sondek LP-12 turntable fitted with a Naim ARO tonearm and the Naim Armageddon power supply back in the ’90s, I’ve been waiting for Naim to come out with their own turntable. Here it is, the Naim Solstice, shiny and gleaming with one truly massive platter. Up close, it’s a beauty with a fine level of fit and finish.
The Naim Solstice is available as a complete package with the Naim ARO Mk. 2 tonearm, Naim Equinox cartridge, dedicated power supply and a special phono preamplifier, along with a full supply of accessories. The cost is $20,000 complete, which doesn’t seem out of the ordinary for such a gorgeous product from a company legendary for its analog products–even if this one is made for Naim by Clearaudio. In addition, the Naim Solstice Special Edition will be limited to an initial run of 500 turntables.
The Naim Solstice is unusual due to its combination of a magnetic levitation bearing and a decoupled center section of the plinth. While it is a Clearaudio design–Clearaudio is an OEM for many other brands–this design itself is exclusive to Focal Naim.
Unfortunately I didn’t get to sit down and hear the Naim Solstice–the two times I visited the room during the show, Qobuz was being streamed. But I will make a point of hearing this turntable somehow, somewhere, hopefully before the 500 rigs all sell out. Like most other Naim fans out there, I hope that we’ll see further analog products like this from Naim in the future.