Boston-based independent turntable manufacturer U-Turn Audio introduced its next generation of Orbit turntables including Orbit Basic, Plus, Special and new Custom fully customizable model series.

The new lineup features a number of new premium features including a new standard magnesium tonearm, electronic speed control, revamped drive system, with a wide range of model options starting at a $249 suggested retail price.

The company said the refreshed Orbit lineup also has been updated to present next-level audiophile-quality sound along with stylish design details.

The new lines are available consumer direct through the web site as well as through select authorized retail locations. We’ve included some Amazon links below.

Company specializes in developing customizable turntable platforms using an interchangeable modular design for key components such as cartridges, preamps, speed controls, platters, and isolation feet enabling a flexibility to assemble personalized products.

The company, which said it emphasizes value in its offerings, said the modular concept also makes it easy to upgrade turntable performance over time.

“Our mission is to make great analog audio more accessible,” stated Bob Hertig, U-Turn Audio co-founder and designer. “Over the last decade, we’ve built and shipped hundreds of thousands of Orbits across North America and have earned a reputation for high-level performance and quality craftsmanship that doesn’t break the bank. This new generation of Orbit represents a decade of experience, learning, and turntable development. We were able to take something that was already great and make it even better.”

Among the new option developments are the following:

  • OA3 tonearm — Standard with all new Orbit models, the OA3 is a single-piece magnesium armtube designed for tracking accuracy with minimal record wear. The system includes an adjustable counterweight and internal anti-skate control.
  • Electronic speed control: An Orbit electronic speed control option available for Orbit Special and Custom models provides knob control to allow users to change playing speeds between 33/45 RPM.
  • Revamped drive system: The encompasses a new grooved platter designs, combined with an new seamless silicone belt for easier operation.
  • New colors and hardwood options: U-turn Audio has updated the Orbit family design aesthetics with a choice of five colors and two hardwood options. The company said its wood turntables are constructed from 100% sustainably-harvested U.S. hardwoods, and do not use veneers.
  • Iso-level feet: Premium adjustable-height aluminum feet use Sorbothane to reduce external vibrations for clearer turntable playback.
  • Built-in preamp: The company’s built-in Pluto 2 Phono Preamp option enables connecting the turntable directly to powered speakers, without the need of an external phono amp or phono-ready receiver.

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The U-Turn Audio website now enables shoppers to customize a made-to-order Orbit Custom turntable for personalized experiences, or select from three pre-configured models, each assembled for various levels of fidelity and use.

  1. ORBIT BASIC — This pre-configured entry model features a simple design for high-quality sound at a value price point (starting at $249). The model refresh now adds the new magnesium OA3 tonearm, grooved MDF platter, silicone belt drive, and various color and wood options.
  2. ORBIT PLUS — The company’s most popular option, steps up to premium audio quality and design. The Plus series, which starts at $399, comes standard with an upgraded acrylic platter, improved speed stability and lower resonance. Included is an Ortofon OM5E cartridge with elliptical diamond stylus for balanced sound.
  3. ORBIT SPECIAL — A premium Orbit package, which starts at $549, the Special adds electronic speed control that allows knob-controlled speed adjustment between 33/45 RPM. It includes a cue lever for precise tonearm operation and steps up sound fidelity using an Ortofon 2M Red cartridge with elliptical diamond stylus providing more subtle musical detail.

U-Turn Audio designs and hand-assembles all their turntables at its Woburn, MA production facility. Models ship with a three-year warranty and the company promises lifetime customer support from in house specialists.

The company said Orbit models purchased through consumer-direct website is built to order and comes with the cartridge pre-installed and the tonearm balanced prior to shipping.

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By Greg Tarr

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