For these arms we took particular attention being paid to the relationship between the bearing structures and armtube.
Extensive listening trials established that industry standard ball race bearings are not considered 100% optimum for effective music reproduction. Similarly it was found that typical uni-pivots are also compromised. Uni-pivots whilst possessing a pleasing musical fluidity can lack performance at the frequency extremes, particularly in the bass region. Arm tube material and assembly were also found to be critical factors.
The new ARM series design has no ball race bearings. The horizontal bearing uses a trapezoidal, captured ball, bearing whilst the vertical bearing takes the form of a restrained, inverted, uni-pivot. This vertical bearing is a unique feature, which contributes largely to the final, overall sound of the tonearm. The bearing exhibits a slight ‘looseness’ when handling however under dynamic conditions (playing a record) the bearing stabilises.
This characteristic gives rise to the description ‘Dynamic Stabilised Bearing’ or DSB. Unlike some cast or machined arms the Audio Note arm is a true single piece design, including the section behind the bearing that carries the counterweight. Machined from a billet of aluminium the large bore tube is tapered on the outside diameter to minimise critical mid-band bending modes.
The stainless steel counterweight is offset to lower the Centre of Gravity and maximise stylus contact within the wall of the record groove. Utilising an industry standard geometryensures compatibility with a wide range of
turntables and ensures simple alignment, especially for the Audio Note range of cartridges.
These arms provide a new level of performance it possesses neutrality, dynamic contrast and musical involvement previously unavailable at this price point.
A more important consideration is the stiffness of the tonearm structure to limit and damp resonance. In other words, the unwanted vibration of component parts within the arm, and secondly to control extraneous motion of the arm. Energy has to go somewhere, and will always take the most direct path. In the case of the tonearm, this has to sink into the turntable subchassis. This means that all mechanical energy has to pass through the arm.
Starting with a journey from the cartridge, down the arm tube and out through the bearings. To maintain both torsional stiffness and resistance to bending in resonance, it is important to increase the surface area of the structure on the path from the headshell to the bearings. The arm comes with a fixed headshell with slots to adjust the cartridge.
This all delivers an outstanding value for money tonearm. Air, space, detail, resolution, soundstage depth and width, bass slam it's all there. It's incisive and very musical.
The three arm we offer in this series are either equipped with copper (AN-A), or silver (AN-V or AN-Vx) to match your system.
Rega Single Hole
Pivot to spindle
trapezoidal, captured ball
restrained, inverted, unipivot