There isn’t much to dislike with Discovery, save for its size and Captain Nemo physicality. The speed controllers on the front panel are not marked, so conceivably you’ll spend some time turning the Discovery on and off when you think you are simply stopping the platter for a record change. You’ll also tend to forget whether twisting the left-hand knob ‘up’ gets you to 33.3rpm or 45rpm. There were more than a few ‘oh… bollocks!’ moments when on returning to the listening chair I was met with a fast, high-pitched voice, but you quickly learn. It’s also an intricate and complex piece of equipment to install, so unless you can field-strip a Sparta blindfolded in 20 seconds flat, it’s best left to the experts, and if you live on the fifth floor and in a room accessed by rickety, narrow stairs… those experts better include a few piano movers. In great fairness to the Discovery, though, once installed it’s pretty much fit and forget, and the tonearm is easy to use and even easier to swap cartridges.
Discovery is perhaps the aptest name for this turntable in two ways. From the position of the turntable maker, finding out what it does and why it does what it does is like the Rosetta Stone of top turntables. While a lot of what goes into Discovery remains a Kronos-kept secret, there will be engineers and designers pawing over the website, this review and – when shows finally happen in number – the actual Discovery turntable itself, in order to find just what can be reverse-engineered and applied to their own equipment. I don’t think Louis has to worry too much about this; the key component is pretty damn obvious and what is in essence a second turntable running in counter-rotation is a little hard to hide.
For the end-user, however, the Kronos Discovery’s name is just as apt. You are about to discover what’s on your records for the first time. That at first is a revelation, but once you get over that first listening bump and get used to its ear-opening performance, you will just want to tear through your record collection, in a voyage of, you guessed it, Discovery.
- Rotational speed: 33.3 rpm & 45 rpm
- Tonearm length: 9 to 12
- Power supply: dual channel pure class A linear DC, CPU controlled
- Motors: 2× Maxon DCX DC motors
- Motor mounts: Delrin enclosure, height adjustable
- Speed guidance system: continuous dual-loop feedback, continuous correction
- Sensors type: hall sensor (platters) /optical encoder tachymeter (motors)
- Correction cycle: 60 times/rotation. 0.015% max. 0.005% min
- Control CPU: independent system for each platter
- Platters type: resonance tuned compressed phenolic/aluminium/copper
- Platter weight: 8.2kg (x2)
- Drive belts: 2 silicone/Viton, one-piece moulded, 0.230/platter
- Compensation pulley: Teflon and zircon bearing
- Main bearings: dual hydraulic isolated inverted sleeve and ball
- Shaft type: grounded heat hardened tool steel, surface treated
- Ball type: precision ceramic 7mm
- Suspension: full floating top suspended, level adjustable
- Elastomers: 317 elastomers, Viton/silicone proprietary mix
- Dimensions (W×D×H, no SCPS): 71 × 37 × 29cm
- Weight: 65kg, PSU 22.5kg, SCPS-D 22.5kg
- Price Kronos Discovery turntable: £100,000
- SCPS-D power supply: £20,000
- Kronoscope Tonearm: £20,000
Manufacturer: Kronos Audio
UK Disrtributor: Decent Audio
Tel: +44(0)1642 263765
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