Posted on 11th May, 2019


Launched at High End Munich, the SME Model 12A is the new entry-level turntable system for the discerning high-end audio enthusiast.

British high-end audio and engineering company, SME has just launched its Model 12A. The turntable system follows the unique styling of Synergy and comes complete with the highly acclaimed SME 309 tonearm and internal Crystal Cable wiring as standard with an option to upgrade to Series IV or V tonearms.  

The compact main chassis starts life as a solid billet of premium grade aerospace aluminium which is precision machined then hand-finished. The result is an inert and stable base for the suspension and sub-chassis to reside on.  

SME Model 12A High End Munich 2019

The turntable is supported on four large polymer isolators inside adjustable feet. The trilateral sub-chassis is also machined from a single billet of aluminium and holds the close tolerance main bearing and tonearm. Furthermore, this section is mounted on three suspension columns for extra isolation.
The main spindle is 19 mm (3/4-inch) high chrome tool steel which is machine ground, super finished and supported in a sealed housing with individually matched sintered bronze bearings.

The platter is machined from aluminium alloy and weighs just over 4.6 kg (10 lbs) and is dampened with a space-grade isodamp material unique to SME. The top surface is diamond-turned with a fine scroll carefully calculated for firmly engaging records to the platter. The substantial chrome-plated, logo engraved reflex clamp is more than just eye-candy as it ensures the most extensive possible platter contact, even when your vinyl has some warping.

Driving the deck is a 3 phase, brushless outrunner motor with 8-pole Neodymium magnets and three integrated hall effect sensors.  The entire motor assembly is virtually vibration-less, as its 2.5 kg (5.5lbs) weight is isolated from the sub-chassis by urethane mounts and spikes.

The electronic control unit uses a high-performance microprocessor, optimised for motor control. Closed loop speed control is implemented using a proportional plus integral (PI) algorithm. Covering 33.3, 45 & 78 rpm, there's also fine pitch speed adjustment allowing increments/decrements of +/-0.01% of the selected speed.

The electronic control circuitry and power supply unit are housed in an external one-piece CNC machined case offering complete isolation and support.  Speed selection controls are mounted on the front fascia panel with LED indicators.

The Model 12A comes equipped with an SME Model 309 one-piece magnesium tonearm with a detachable magnesium headshell that features an advanced style coupling. Internal wiring is supplied by specialist high-end audio cable manufacturer Crystal Cable.  

Price and Availability

The Model 12A is available in three paint finishes of traditional SME Black, Dark Grey and Dark Blue with contrasting detailing and is available from authorised SME retailers from May 2019 with a UK retail price of £7,949.00 inc. VAT.


Jay Garrett's avatar

Jay Garrett

StereoNET UK’s Editor and Bass playing gadget junkie. He’s captained the good ship GadgetyNews for over a decade, making low jargon high tech a very handy thing. His passion for gadgets and Hi-Fi is second only to being a touring musician.

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Posted in: Hi-Fi HiFi Show
Tags: sme  padood  padood distribution  high end munich 2019  munich2019