The new STORM turntable weighs in at 28kg and provides all the advantages that true high mass turntables can deliver. STORM offers rock solid and tuneful bass, a stable and focused midrange, clear and detailed high frequency reproduction – producing a sound-stage that has both natural delicate musicality and great authority.
The new STORM design replaces one of our best selling turntables, improving on the design with wider feet spacing offering greater stability; improved platter resonance damping and heavier platter; quality design to improve sound quality, not for its own sake - something Acoustic Signature is known for worldwide.
Of course, STORM also has very low mechanical noise courtesy of our unique Tidorfolon bearing design, and an externally sited motor, run by our S-Alpha regenerative power supply ensure perfect rotation of the new platter. We think it looks pretty cool as well!
A 50mm solid turntable platter made of aluminium, a very soft alloy to optimize its periodic resonance. There are 8 Silencer inserts fitted in the platter, to further reduce resonance and the bottom face is coated with resonance-reducing material.
- The bearing is the heart of every turntable. Through fundamental research and development, we have invented a bearing with the ideal performance characteristics of exact fit, extremely low noise, very low friction and long term stability. The platter bearing component is manufactured from special hardened and polished steel, with an extremely hard tungsten carbide ball at its base. The bearing housing uses perfectly matched and ‘aged’ sinter bronze inserts which are self-lubricating; and therefore maintenance free. At the base of the bearing, we use our specially developed ‘high-tech’ material TIDORFOLON. Our bearing runs dry - without oil.
- The external drive motor of the turntable is run by its own electronic controller, called the Alpha-S. The AC mains voltage is converted to DC current and a precision oscillator then produces a perfect sine wave at 12VAC to run the motor, resulting in a perfectly steady and constant platter rotation. The Alpha-S is impervious to the negative effects of mains voltage fluctuations and household appliances that produce ‘noisy’ mains that can have a very great detrimental effect on AC motors and therefore the turntable performance and ultimately the sound. The Alpha-S control is the perfect design solution.
A 45mm solid aluminium chassis forms the base of the turntable, on which all arm attachments are fitted.
The tone arm mounting plates are adjustable. The mounting of any desired tone arm is possible, with a maximum of 3 tone arm mounting plates for either 9” or 12” on one turntable.
The three widely spaced adjustable feet offer simple macro and micro adjustments to level the turntable. The high mass platter (with its inertia) is an integral part of the turntable concept. Very low bearing friction, perfect motor drive control and large platter inertia guarantee perfect synchronization and the best sound. Highest precision manufacturing in Germany guarantees reliability of this turntable. To make sure that every STORM is exactly the same we produce nearly every part on high precision computer controlled machines.
Dr Hi-Fi's Technical Review and listening tests are HERE
The 28kg Mass Monster with external Motor Drive unit and external Power Supply for under $6,000.00. The natural competitor to the A.S. Strom is SME's Model 20. There are no others that come to mind which can really be honestly compared in this class.
The SME Model 20 is weighing in at approximately the same mass, however there are still major differences. Not to mention the significant price advantage of the Storm over the SME Model 20 but it also measures less in area but the Storm's weight is the same so the result is an even greater and more rigid chassis.
So while paying less you are actually getting more in real terms. More Mass, More Rigidity and More Performance.
Below extract is taken from SME's website.
"A turntable should address the problems of extraneous vibrations. These emanate from numerous sources including air and structural vibration from loudspeakers, groove modulation, stray electrical fields and mechanical imperfections in moving parts. In the Model 20/3, superb instrument quality machining is allied with fundamental physics. The higher the mass and stiffness of a body the less it will flex and vibrate; the duration of a vibration can be shortened by suitable damping.
Model 20/3 weighs approximately 28.6Kg (63lb), significant in relation to its size because it is density that matters. For example, the same weight of metal spread over a large enough area would be aluminium foil! The sub-chassis measures only 440mm (17 5/16”) by 350mm (13 ¾”) but weighs 11Kg (24lb). Its thickness 16mm (5/8”) resists flexing at low frequencies whilst high frequency resonance is attenuated by efficient extensional damping."
I offer you to compare this to the alternatives in this price range with similar specifications and you will be convinced as I have been that the Acoustic Signature Storm is Choice # 1
Heavier 45mm Main Chassis increased from 40mm, larger feet with better more advanced vibration insolating system, larger Motor Drive unit with thicker 25mm Armbase increased from 15mm on the Challenger MK.II.
315mm x 50mm Solid Aluminium Drive Platter. Complete with 8 Brass silencer inserts fitted into the platter assembly, to further reduce resonance and the bottom face is coated with resonance-reducing material. This is the entry level model in the Acoustic Signature range to benefit from this exclusive resonance busting technology.
The Silencer Platter
Since we invented the `Silencer Platter' in 2000 we have continuously improved the performance results and have now achieved platter damping that is unbeaten by any other product. The gold plated Silencers are of course visually attractive and make the Acoustic Signature turntables even more desirable than without them but good looks was not the reason to implement them into our products.
The Silencers absorb and reduce vibrations whilst the vinyl disk is playing and you are listening. So, where do the vibrations come from, that we so wish to remove from the platter? There are several sources. First, the cartridge needle itself, playing a record causes vibrations and resonance in the vinyl, due to the movement of the needle tracking the record groove. It's easy to check by simply turning the volume down on your amplifier, you can still listen to the music directly from the needle/vinyl with your ear close to it. The needle is actually putting vibration back into the record as it tracks the groove, causing vibration in the whole Vinyl record.
This leads to `micro' miss-tracking of the cartridge, when picked up by the needle alongside the actual signal you want from the track, with a very small time delay between the two. The Silencers in the platter absorb some of this unwanted vibration and improve the sound reproduction dramatically.
The second source of vibration is air waves hitting the platter and turntable body from your loudspeakers whilst you're listening to music. Your cartridge/stylus doesn't care where movement comes from, be it the grooves or other vibrations. Your cartridge simply produces an electrical signal when vibrating and all vibrations coming through the turntable will result in unwanted signals, resulting in a loss of detail resolution and imaging from your precious vinyl records. The Silencers absorb these unwanted vibrations, leading to a huge improvement in sound fidelity, improving your listening experience.
To give you an idea how much the Silencers will improve the listening experience, we have conducted tests in an independent laboratory on two identical platters, one with and one without eight silencers fitted. The results are dramatic.
Heavier even more rigid and solidly constructed 25mm Tonearm mounting platform (Armbase), increased from 15mm on the Challenger MK.II which is already more then adequate.
One of the many examples of integrated engineering perfection is the modular Armboard system. In this particular example, I am testing the Rega Armboard with incorporated VTA adjustment! Why fool around with spacers when this very cleverly designed superior alternative works so wonderfully and is infinitely adjustable.
Any Armboard can be specified when ordering. Armboards for any Tonearm can be provided for by Acoustic Signature. If they do not have it in their extensive catalogue it can be custom made. Personalized service is ensured for all customers who choose to invest in this revolutionary product.
The below extract from Acoustic Signature describes their exclusive Tidorfolon Bearing better than what I can...
Ordinary bearings rely on a liquid lubricant to allow the platter to spin smoothly. There are several reasons that this is problematic. As the contact point of the shaft touches the bottom of the bearing, it creates pressure, squeezing out the oil from underneath the most critical section of the assembly. So there is no oil on the high-pressure turning point and the wear begins. Also because of gravity the lubricant cannot coat the entire shaft or axle leaving wear points at the top.
The solution is pure genius. The housing of the bearing is machined out of solid aluminium, at the bottom of the shaft sits a special alloy called Tidorfolon (a mixture of vanadium, ferrite Teflon, and titanium). It is noiseless, wear-free, and self-lubricating. Since it is softer than standard plates it allows the axle point to sink into it's surface a little bit, creating more surface area and reducing friction and pressure between the axle and the base. The axle is made of hardened antimagnetic steel and tipped with a tungsten carbide ball. Sinter bronze bushings are used to lubricate the shaft.
The bronze is more porous than usual bushings and is naturally lubricated in a special process. The bronze is heated, expanding its natural pores, and soaked in oil to add even more lubricant. After that it's cooled down and the oil then stays inside the porous parts of the bronze like water stays in a Sponge. As the axle spins the oil impregnated bronze allows the shaft to spin smoothly without the need for an additional liquid lubricant. And another great advantage is that you don't need to keep your turntable spinning.
There is no difference in sound quality to a 15min. running turntable or one which runs 24 hours a day. This is because of the bearing construction. This construction makes sure that from the first second of turning the lubricant is at the place where it should be to work.
Shown above is the Storm in it's ultimate configuration complete with the optional triple motor upgrade.
Price is currently $1,620.00 for an additional two motors.
The Alpha Digital PSU is also required to replace the Storm's S-Alpha PSU. Price is currently $1,560.00.
|Drive unit||Synchron motor, electronically regulated, Power-decoupled, adjustable|
|Bearing||Highly precise roller burnished Tidorfolon bearing|
|Chassis||Resonance-optimised 45mm mass chassis with 3 adjustable feet, very soft alloy for low resonance.|
|Platter||High precision machined 12 kg alloy platter 50mm thick incorporating 8 Silencers. Resonance absorbing coating to bottom face.|
|Speed Range||Synchronous motor, electronically regulated, Power-decoupled through a S-Alpha supply, switch for speed adjustment.|
|Dimensions||440 mm depth, 440 mm width|
|Weight||31-35 kg depending on extras ordered|