Soulines Kubrick DCX/Timestep T-609 turntable/tonearm Lab Report

The combination of an inverted brass/stainless steel bearing and acrylic platter was first unveiled in the original Pink Triangle deck of the early '80s, but Soulines' Kubrick looks to be a more substantial example. The 40mm-thick, 3.2kg platter is machined from an acrylic laminate and driven via a soft belt and medium-torque DC motor which – as supplied – was running about 2.5% slow. The spectrum [Graph 1] was obtained after adjustment and betrays rather less low-rate drift than we've seen from other DC designs, although peak wow is still moderate at 0.06% and flutter not dissimilar at 0.05%. Start-up time is a modest 6 secs. Through-bearing rumble is –68.4dB (DIN-B wtd, re. 1kHz/5cm/sec) although noise is successfully attenuated through the acrylic platter where through-groove rumble/noise – with or without the cork/rubber mat – is very low at –71.6dB.


Wow and flutter re. 3150Hz tone at 5cm/sec (plotted ±150Hz, 5Hz per minor division)


Cumulative tonearm resonant decay spectrum, illustrating various bearing, pillar and 'tube' vibration modes spanning 100Hz-10kHz over 40msec

The Timestep T-609 tonearm is evidently quite 'lively', its curved titanium tube offering a broad low-Q resonance at a low 55Hz [off the scale of Graph 2] coupled with secondary bending and twisting modes, and/or harmonics, at 96Hz, 180Hz and 280Hz, the latter two at higher amplitude and not especially well damped. Higher frequency mid/treble modes are certainly less aggressive and the claimed ABEC7-tolerance bearings were certainly free of detectable play while offering a low ~15-20mg stiction/friction in both planes. The counterweight and magnetic bias adjust are essentially uncalibrated while the unspecified 'high effective mass' rather depends, in practice, on your choice of headshell. A figure of 20g will be typical, suiting high mass/low compliance MCs, although those 'energetic' varieties that exhibit obvious needle talk should probably be avoided. PM

Turntable speed error at 33.33rpm: 33.29rpm (–0.13%)
Time to audible stabilisation: 6 seconds
Peak Wow/Flutter: 0.06% / 0.05%
Rumble (silent groove, DIN B wtd): –71.6dB
Rumble (through bearing, DIN B wtd): –68.4dB
Hum & Noise (unwtd, rel. to 5cm/sec): –58.5dB
Power Consumption: 2W (1W idle)
Dimensions (WHD) / Weight: 470x160x350mm / 14kg
Prices: £2995 (deck), £1450 (tonearm, inc mount & cable)

Supplied by: Timestep Distribution, Devon
01803 833 366