People still listen to records? You don’t say. Some of us never stopped and have watched the format’s resurgence over the past seven years with both joy and a certain degree of angst — used record prices have gone through the roof. What was once a dying audiophile category supported by only a few dozen brands who carried the torch during very dark times (VPI, Linn, Rega, Pro-Ject, Well Tempered, Michell, and others), is now a thriving sector of high-end audio with too many turntables to even count. There are more new turntables being introduced in 2019 than CD players. How’s that for irony. A little late to party is Schiit Audio with their brand new Sol turntable which is now available. Finally.
The Sol has been in development (including R&D) for almost six years and many of us have wondered if Schiit Audio would ever release it. It looks like the wait may have been worth it based on the details of the production model which is now available for order on their website.
$799 isn’t really entry-level for a turntable in 2019 with dozens of models below $400 available from U-Turn Audio, Pro-Ject, Rega, Audio-Technica, and Music Hall, but the Sol offers some very unique features that makes it more of a natural competitor to products like the Rega Planar 3, VPI Cliffwood, and Pro-Ject X1.
Schiit has broken the mold with a $800 turntable with no MDF or acrylic; and a rather brilliant looking 11″ unipivot carbon-fiber tonearm, outboard motor, and die-cast aluminum construction. The aluminum platter is also rare for a turntable below $1,000.
The 11″ tonearm is swappable (a design feature that has been standard on VPI tables for many years) which will allow buyers to use multiple cartridges should they feel the urge. Just add another arm for $199 and do the proper set-up and you’re good to go.
The Sol does not come with a cartridge, so vinyl fans will have to provide their own.
Denon, Grado, Nagaoka, Hana, and Ortofon cartridges should be solid choices with this tonearm.
Update (09/13/2019)…Schiit has suspended taking orders on the Sol until they fix an issue that the first batch of customers discovered. They have implemented two return policies on the Sol that is over and above what most companies would do. But for now…you can’t order one until the Schiit gets resolved.
For more information: Schiit Audio Sol