You wait weeks for one and then two arrive in the same 7-day period. Not buses but press releases from the masters of affordable audio, Schiit (💩).
Today’s news brings the Californian company’s long-drawn-out development of their first turntable to a close. After six years of R&D, Sol is finally available for purchase.
The belt-drive’s features include a die-cast aluminium construction, a 11” uni-pivot carbon-fibre tonearm, an outboard motor, an “insanely over-engineered” 2.5” inverted bearing, integrated cueing and on-the-fly VTA adjustment.
For the finer points and bragging rights, we defer to Schiit’s press release:
- “Die-cast aluminum vs MDF and acrylic. Sol is made of large aluminum die-castings, which are heavy and dense when compared to the typical MDF and acrylic starter table.
- Huge overengineered bearing, vs size-constrained bearing. Unless you’re talking cost-no-object turntable designs, the critical platter bearing is usually, well, somewhat anemic. Frequently based on the 0.28” record spindle, they may only have an effective 0.5-1” height. Sol’s is a ridiculously overdeveloped 0.5” diameter, 2.5” long inverted bearing with Igus bushings, for much higher performance.
- Long arm vs short arm. In turntables, tonearm length is all-important. Sol’s 11” arm beats the living crap out of other entry turntables with 8.X-10” arms.
- Easily swappable arm, vs arm that’s permanently attached. Sol allows you to swap affordable arms in seconds, allowing the easy use of multiple cartridges, versus going through the alignment and set-up process for a fixed arm.
- True unconstrained unipivot vs other schemes. Sol offers a true unconstrained unipivot, versus other entry turntables that use constrained unipivots (obviating the advantages of a unipivot—namely, the uniquely freedom of motion it provides—or conventional designs, which don’t work like a unipivot)
- Totally isolated motor, vs bolted to the plinth. Sol provides exceptional freedom from rumble, because the motor is completely separate, rather than bolted to the plinth.
- On-the-fly adjustable VTA, versus nothing or offline VTA adjustment. Sol is the only turntable anywhere near its price to include this insanely high-end feature, allowing you to precisely dial in the performance—while listening.
- Complete adjustability, vs limited adjustability. Since literally every parameter of the Sol turntable is adjustable, it can accommodate virtually any cartridge, including those that are thicker or thinner than usual.
- 5-year warranty. On a mechanical product?”
Price? A Pro-ject-troubling, Rega-bothering, VPI-badgering US$799. BYO cartridge and phono pre-amp.
Further information: Schiit
Photo credit: Lee Shelly
UPDATE: Schiit has pushed pause on Sol sales, sending an email out to early adopters with the subject line: “We dun phucked up, or, please be part of the “Sol Beta Test”
The rest of the email reads as follows:
“Okay, so it looks like the Sol launch has uncovered a lot more problems than we expected. Please accept our apologies for any trouble you may have had. We want this to be a really exceptional turntable, so we’re putting a pause on sales.
We’re also making you the following offer: please keep your Sol and help us improve it.If you choose to do so, we’ll refund $300 of the Sol’s original price, making your cost $499. Then, we will send you a selected set of updates and changes to improve your Sol. Also, if you have any functional problems right now (like wobbling platters), we will swap those parts as well. And, at the end of the beta period, if you still aren’t happy, we’ll refund the rest of your purchase price.
Alternately, if you’re just done with Sol right now, that’s fine too. Contact us for an RA and we will refund 100% of your purchase price, taxes and shipping when we receive it back.
We sincerely hope you’ll help us make Sol what it should be. If not, we completely understand.
All the best,
The Schiit Audio Team”