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Fluance RT81 Elite High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable Record Player with Audio Technica AT95E Cartridge, Belt Drive, Built-in Preamp, Adjustable Counterweight, Solid Wood Plinth - Piano Black
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- PURE ANALOG LISTENING EXPERIENCE - Premium components allow this high fidelity belt driven turntable to recreate the performance the way the artist intended
- HIGH PERFORMANCE CARTRIDGE - The Audio Technica AT95E featuring a diamond elliptical tipped stylus is designed to track your record grooves with greater precision & accuracy for high definition audio
- SUPERIOR RECORD TRACKING - Enjoy perfect playback using the balanced aluminum S-Type tonearm ensuring the stylus is rested deep in your record's groove, producing every audio detail indistinguishable from the original recording
- SOLID WOOD PLINTH - The beautiful piano black finished cabinet is crafted from solid engineered (MDF) wood, incorporates isolation feet, an aluminum platter and a rubber slip mat which results in superior isolation from unwanted vibrations
- CAPTIVATING SIGNAL CLARITY - Incorporating a high quality built-in Texas Instruments preamp, ground terminal and gold plated RCA line outputs that ensures warm, true sound
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The RT81 plays traditional LP and EP vinyl records with stunning quality that achieves the purest sound reproduction. When you want the absolute best in music performance, pull out your favorite 33 1/3 or 45 RPM records, hook up your sound system, drop the needle, and immerse yourself in the RT81.
Pure Analog Listening Experience
Your soul will be captivated by the crisp, distinguishing characteristics of the music you love. Premium components allow this belt driven turntable to produce a pure uncompressed listening experience that recreates the performance the way the artist intended.
High Performance Cartridge for Warmer Sound
Your music will sound richer when the Audio Technica AT95E moving magnet stylus rests in the grooves of your favorite vinyl record at a mere 2.0 grams of tracking force. The upgraded elliptical stylus is renowned for its freedom from noise and distortion, clarity on musical peaks, and channel balance.
Complete Clarity Without Compromising Your Collection
You'll savor every note thanks to the balanced and adjustable counterweight of the S-Type tonearm. The fluid movement of the bearings within the tonearm coupled with the advanced anti-skating system practically caresses your record, preventing scratching and ensuring the stylus is perfectly rested deep in your record's groove for perfect playback every time.
Solid Wood Plinth for Resistance to Vibrations
The cabinet is crafted from solid engineered (MDF) wood in High Gloss Piano Black which reduces vibrations to ensure the stylus provides the best possible signal. Sound isolation feet, an aluminum platter and a rubber slip mat significantly reduce reverberation, leaving you with pure stereophonic sound.
Premium Components for Captivating Signal Clarity
The built-in-high-quality Texas Instruments preamp, ground terminal and gold plated RCA line outputs ensures high fidelity sound in its truest form.
A Passion for Great Audio
Fluance has successfully revolutionized home audio. Utilizing only superior components and expert audio engineering, the Fluance Record Players are a testament to the performance that can be achieved when a passion for music takes center stage. The perfect complement to any audiophile's lifestyle, you'll be enjoying live performances in your home for years to come.
Drive System & Motor: Belt Drive, DC Motor
Speed: 33 1/3 RPM, 45 RPM
Wow and Flutter: 0.2%
Signal-to-Noise Ratio (Weighted): 67dB or higher (20kHz LPF)
Signal-to-Noise Ratio (Unweighted): 60dB or higher (20kHz LPF)
Platter Material and Diameter: Aluminum, 12", 30cm
Turntable Mat: Rubber
Tonearm Type & Material: Static Balanced, S-Type, Aluminum
Supported Cartridge Weight: 3.5 to 6.5g
Anti-skating Adjustment & Pivot Bearing: Yes
Tonearm Mass & Overhang: 28.2 grams, 19.2mm
Effective Tonearm Length & Height: 224mm, 17mm
Headshell Mount: H-4 Bayonet Mount
Tonearm Wire: 4 x 33 AWG Litz Cable
Cartridge Type: Dual Moving Magnet (MM)
Catridge Model: Audio Technica: AT95E
Replacement Stylus: ATN95E
Stylus: 0.4 × 0.7mil Bonded Elliptical (Diamond)
Mount: Half inch
Frequency Response: 20-20,000Hz
Channel Separation: 20dB at 1kHz
Channel Balance: 2.0dB or less at 1kHz
Load Impedance/Capacitance: 47k Ohms/100pF
Output Voltage: 2.5mV +/–3dB
Cartridge Weight: 5.7g (+/- 0.5g)
Headshell Weight: 10.7g
Recommended Tracking Force: 2.0g +/–0.5g
Vertical Tracking Angle: 20 degrees
Width & Length & Thickness: 4.5mm x 534.07mm x 0.6mm
Connector: RCA (Gold-plated)
Preamp: Yes, PHONO/LINE Switchable
Phono Output: 2.5mV +/–3dB
Line Output: 140mV (–17dBV)
Ground Terminal: Yes
Input & Output: 100V - 240V AC (50/60Hz) / 12V / 500mA
Dimensions: 16.5” x 5.5” x 13.75”
Unit Weight: 6.4 kg or 14.1 lbs
|Fluance RT80 Classic High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable||Fluance RT81 Elite High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable||Fluance RT82 Reference High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable||Fluance RT83 Reference High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable||Fluance RT84 Reference High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable||Fluance RT85 Reference High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable|
|Finish||Piano Black||Piano Black or Walnut||Piano Black or Walnut||Piano Black or Walnut||Piano Black or Walnut||Piano Black or Walnut|
|Platter Type||Aluminum Felt Mat||Aluminum Rubber Mat||Aluminum Rubber Mat||Aluminum Rubber Mat||Aluminum Rubber Mat||Acrylic|
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However, I did find that the turntable speed is not quite as stable as I would like to see it. I allowed it to "burn-in" for 48 hours running on the 33RPM setting and played a record, halfway through the sound became distorted so I went to check the RPM and found that it was spinning at ~29.8RPM. So I lifted the turntable and adjusted the speed using the trimpots on the bottom, but I just cannot get it to spin at a constant or acceptable mean average of 33.3RPM. I just measured it again as I am posting this review and it fluctuates between ~32.8-33.5RPM. Fluance does provide two trimpots at the bottom of the turntable to adjust the speed but it requires me to unplug everything and move it somewhere high enough for me to adjust, so far I had to do this four times. The speed discrepancy does not bother my wife, but I can tell clearly when listening to piano or orchestral pieces that the pitch and speed of the notes is fluctuating so it becomes a small distraction during focused listening sessions. I will say that I am using an iOS application to measure RPM and do not have another turntable around to test it's accuracy, but from other online reviews I saw this seems to be an issue that is not isolated to me.
After saying that, would I recommend this turntable? Absolutely. I checked the competition and did not find the same amount of value I found with this. From the cartridge, build materials, helpful Youtube tutorials (check out their channel), and aesthetics I don't think you will find a better bang for your buck for the $200-$300 price range. While the RPM issue is distracting when listening to delicate pieces you do not notice it as much when listening to more modern "louder" records.
- Looks great
- Built solid
- Quality tonearm and cartridge
- Good sounding preamp
- Rotation speed not as accurate as I would like it to be
- The adjustment for the RPM is located on the bottom and is hard to reach
I was also looking for an automatic turntable that wasn't crap, and although the RT81 isn't fully automatic, it delivers the very simple function I wanted: it stops turning the record when a side is done, rather than going on and on as I get distracted with other things, or forget it's on, etc. Granted, it's kind of funny in what it delivers: the tone arm doesn't lift and return to its cradle. The platter simply stops turning. It just stops, with the tone arm/cartridge resting on the record. At first it bugged me, but then I realized: so what? So, it wins by being a great sounding record player, with a touch of automatic functionality.
I do wish Fluance had done one tiny thing: provide a slot for the 45 rpm adaptor, and make the adaptor more than what it is: a super-cheap piece of plastic. There's nowhere to store it, whereas there is on the 120-USB. But whatever. I'll be playing 33 1/3 records 99% of the time.
Finally, the RT81 is gorgeous; the pictures don't do it justice. It's a truly handsome piece of equipment. I don't need my record player to play backwards, or have crystal sync, or play variable speed; if you do, go with the 120-USB, obviously. Now, I haven't given it the test of time, I only just bought it, but for now, I'm super pleased with the RT81.
Top international reviews
I'm not a turntable expert, nor a hardcore audiophile, but I'm quite impressed with the audio quality coming from this turntable using the built-in preamp and a pair of reasonably priced, powered speakers. I am someone who, if the audio quality isn't good, I don't even want to listen to it. If you have a more finely-tuned ear for this sort of thing, I suspect you'd be satisfied with this turntable, but there is still the option to upgrade the cartridge/stylus in the future, as well as use an external preamp if you choose.
Additionally, it's a gorgeous device, with its high gloss walnut exterior, matte black components, and tinted dust cover.
Overall I'd say it's a very easy to use, but high quality turntable. I don't have any complaints really, it's just a sweet machine.
Stating with the pros:
-Very sturdy construction, the turntable feel solid et precious.
-Look is awesome.
-Pretty much ready to use out of the box, setting up is very easy.
Now the cons:
-Finish and dustcover scratch very (can't stress this enough) easily.
-No tonearm height adjustment, limiting the possibility of cartridge upgrade.
-Tonearm counterbalance dont go heavy enough, again limiting the possibility of cartridge upgrade.
-Built-in preamp sound slushy in the lows, need a separate preamp if you like true sound.
-Ground is not very good, very sensible to interference (humm very easily/often), placement in the room is kind of tricky.
-Audio Technica AT95E cartridge sound is not very subtle.
Basically, the Fluance Rt-81, for the price is a nice looking turntable. If what you plan to basically look at it, go for it!
Do your research, I learn they are much better sounding turntable in the same price range.
Cons: arm feels a bit light/flimsy but it hasn't skipped or skirted once so I guess it's probably made exactly how it should be!
Definitely watch a video in how to balance the arm correctly; that part took me the longest time figure out but now that it's done, I haven't had to adjust it once!
This isn't a "audiophile" product by any means, but it's a decent mid-range turntable that's well-designed and easy to use. Mine needed a bit of fine tuning of the RPM within the first week of use, I could tell that certain recordings were not "in tune" and either spinning a bit too slow or too fast. There is a video on the Fluance website that shows you how to finely adjust the main drive motor for the RPM. It's a bit of a PITA to adjust but now my turntable sounds just right.
The build is solid. The speed-selection knob is metal (not plastic as I read somewhere) and the clicks are deliberate and confident - no wiggle/play in the knob. The cuing lever and tonearm locks felt somewhat less sturdy but I saw the same in more expensive players like the Sony PS-HX500 - once again, you own't notice much play/wiggle in the knobs. I did find the finish wasn't great everywhere. For example, the bottom of the MDF isn't painted. The legs have some sort of suspension mechanism to cut out wobbling but they look a little rough aesthetically.
I'd describe the look as vintage. The glossy black finish looks beautiful, but it is a bit of a fingerprint magnet. I also anticipate it to get scratches over time, but I didn't have it long enough to test that theory. If you are looking for modern/delicate, this might not be for you.
Removable headshell will be a bonus if you eventually want to upgrade the cartridge. I am seeing people have destroyed cables on Sony trying to remove cartridges from fixed headshells. So, extra points to Fluance on upgradability!
Hooking it up to powered speakers was easy. The noise floor of the built-in preamp is pretty low, i.e., no noticeable hum/buzz out of the speakers in quiet sections. I tested Dave Brubeck's Time Out album. The sound is energetic - you will feel like it's all happening live. All the instruments come out distinctly. The drum has punch to it and the piano sounds warm.
At this price range, I would definitely recommend this. If you just want a entry/mid-tier player that will produce great sound, I highly recommend the Fluance RT81. There are a few technical caveats - read on if interested.
Stylus pressure issue: I found that the counter-weight markers are fairly off in terms of stylus pressure. After setting it to 2, I measured the pressure and found it to be 2.3-2.4g. This is still within the specification for the cartridge the player comes with, but you should be aware of this. I talked to Fluance customer service (who were pretty prompt) and they told me to use a stylus gauge to ensure pressure was 2.0g. Needless to say,I wasn't happy about having to buy a pressure gauge for this. My alternative candidate, Sony PS-HX500, was spot-on with the pressure. When counterweight was set to 3, I measured the pressure to be 3.05g. I saw that as a sign of lack of attention by Fluance.
Sound quality nitpicking: Soundstage/imaging is okay, not great. My wife and I could easily position the piano and the drums, but the brass instruments seemed to occupy an area, rather than a point. By comparison, on Sony PS-HX500, the imaging was more precise and the soundstage was wider. This would boil down to personal preference. For lot of rock/metal/pop, I think the Fluance soundstage/imaging would be better. For jazz/classical, Sony PS-HX500 might be better.