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18 April 2024

A turntable that turns heads

By Reena Amos Dyes



In this world of iPod Nanos, MP3s, downloadable music and technology that changes by the minute, there are a discerning few who still prefer the old-world charm and true audio reproduction of a turntable.

But there are some who are more discerning and opt for Goldmund’s turntables, particularly the limited edition Reference II turntable.

Among aficionados the world over, Goldmund is known not just for its high-end audio products but also for being the first to introduce technologies such as home music distribution, DVI output, mechanical grounding and several more.

Goldmund, founded in 1978, has dedicated itself to the accurate reproduction of sound and image. And so particular is the company about maintaining this accuracy and quality that it researches and develops each product for five years before its launch.

Brett Lee, operations manager, Goldmund USA, told Emirates Business: “The core audio electrical research and deep investment in research that exceeds what the largest companies in the world are spending are our hallmarks.

“Through this research we develop, design and manufacture hardware and create software that tackles the audio and video industry’s most challenging problems. The guiding principle at Goldmund is to produce a precise sound with the least possible loss of quality through the different stages. Goldmund will never adopt a technology before it is sufficiently developed.”

No wonder then that it has a faithful following. However it guards its client list fiercely. Lee said: “Goldmund’s clients around the globe include discerning individuals such as heads of state, industrialists, oil tycoons, international business leaders, entrepreneurs and A-list entertainers. However, just like a Swiss bank, we do not divulge our client roster.”

Lee said: “Only 25 Reference II turntables were made to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the first Reference turntable that we made.

We decided to produce only five Reference II turntables per year, for the next five years, with a degree of refinement and a number of new features never seen before. The tables made in the first two years are already sold out.

“The base model costs $275,000 and with options it can go up to $375,000. The price is based on the Reference II’s exclusivity, performance, craftsmanship and the extensive list of features we offer.”

Some of the features of the Reference II are a supporting table of extreme rigidity and inertia with 100cm platter height for easy manipulation, a dynamically balanced platter with level and concentricity calibration to <1/100mm, five-layer platter design (three metacrylate and two brass) with 12 lead damping inserts, ultra-high precision Swiss-made axis using the 25-years experience in Reference rotational parts design.

Lee said: “The Reference II comes in five crates and weighs about 600 pounds. In Switzerland there is only one machine capable of creating the platters to our exact specifications.”

He also described a particularly attractive feature to buyers.
“We’re giving the user the option to transfer the analog signal into digital. The Reference II can immediately capture the analog and transfer it into digital, preserving the signal. The digital domain can correct errors of analog cartridges. If a user still wants to go analog they can. We are giving them the option.”