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Peak HiFi is a well established business and was formed in 2004 as audio consultants specialising in high quality audio equipment, with a particular fondness for stereo and analogue equipment, we are particularly enthusiastic for classic turntables such as the Garrard 301 and the Garrard 401. Peak HiFi offers a select range of new and approved used equipment, accessories and services. Reconditioned Garrard 301 and 401 units are available as well as beautifully engineered plinths for these decks. We welcome you to visit us at our premises in the Peak District and to take advantage of our relaxed surroundings and two demonstration rooms where we can demonstrate all of the equipment and assist you with your selection. Please call us to fix an appointment.

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Home > Products > Turntables, Parts & Upgrades > Classic Turntable Company > Classic 301 Reference

Classic 301 Reference

Classic 301 Reference
In stock

The Classic 301 Reference

The Classic 301 Reference has found its way into some of the world's most respected recording studios and is used as a reference deck to check the finished master pressings. Developed in conjunction with professional recording engineers this is now being made available to the domestic market. Shown in the SMD Acoustics Type II Reference Plinth with brass hardware and a SME312 for illustrative purposes only.

The Classic 301 Reference is a “new” Garrard 301 using many new upgraded components combined with a small quantity of refurbished Garrard parts.

On its release in 1965 the Garrard 401 promised a number of design changes that would improve on the performance of the Garrard 301 that had been around since 1954, unfortunately the quality control on the 401 was not up to scratch and what should have been a sonic step forward was not fully exploited....until now.

The Classic 301 is built on the looks of the Garrard 301 and takes onboard some of the strengths of the 401. 

The original 301 has a weak point where the bearing is bolted to the chassis, the 301 chassis is not rigid and if you grab the base of the bearing housing you can actually flex it (move it) as it is not rigid. The chassis of the new 301 is significantly stiffer than the original 301 especially around the critical areas surrounding the bearing and is CNC machined from a solid slab of brass, (not a variable alumimium casting like the original)

The hardware, linkages, fascia plates, platter mat etc. are all built to replicate those classic looks but utilising up to the minute modern engineering techniques.

The platter is a brand new oversize ultra high mass 10 Kg platter from  Precision Audio Components and is CNC machined from solid brass to very tight tolerances better than two thousandths of an inch. The finished platter is polished on the edges to give a superb mirror finish.

Solid brass is virtually free of any defects and thus perfect for a turntable platter. For reasons of cost (solid brass is extremely expensive and creates a lot of waste during machining) the original platter was cast aluminium and the casting process inevitably suffered from porosity and flaws within the casting these coupled with casting tolerances that can not easily produce a consistent thickness means the platter was not in balance which required the drilling of holes in the platter to try and balance it.

The Precision Audio Components platter is as perfectly balanced as can be achieved with modern state of the art machinery and selection of the best material. This avoids the excessive vibration caused by a badly balanced rotating platter. Such a platter can cause unacceptable levels of noise and detrimental effects on sound quality.

The extra diameter is 20 mm over that of a standard platter and the upgraded platter has aproximateley 7kgs of extra mass, this greatly improves the platters inertia and results in added bass delivery, stability of imaging etc. basically it has so much energy in rotation that it takes a lot to stop it spinning. The theory has been well employed over several years and oversize platters have been used by the likes of Shindo for his 301.

Also included in the Reference model is the Precision Audio Components upgraded solid brass grease bearing. The bearing is massively oversized to support the massive brass platter and add mechanical stability over the original bearing thus bringing about an improved sense of grip and control to the music and further reducing the noise platform but without loosing the hallmark Garrard sound.

The bearing is fitted with two precision-machined bushes and the spindle runs on a phosphor bronze thrus pad for the ultimate in close tolerance low friction contact.

The sound of the Classic 301 Reference builds on the strengths that give that Garrard its signature sound.

The Classic HiFi (Garrard) 301 transcription turntable is arguably the ultimate analog musical device. The solidity, presence, body, speed, dynamics, sound staging, noise floor and low-level detail retrieval of the Classic 301 transcription turntable is equal to or above what the super tables of today can muster.

The Classic 301 Reference is shown in a polished brass finish but it can be provided in any colour at no extra charge.

Note: There is a waiting list for all the Classic 301's and current delivery on the Reference is approximately 6-8 weeks from order. Payment can be made in full at time of order or contact us if you would prefer to pay a deposit with the balance due 1 week before despatch.

Product Code: Classic Reference

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