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  1. #1
    Founding Wammer jonjin's Avatar
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    SP10 plinth project

    Finally found myself a 12" Ortofon RMG-309 at not too bad a price and should therefore press ahead with making a plinth for the SP10. I've also found some Panzerholz and Russ Collinson himself has some, so this could be quite easy. What I have to decide is the design. I know that conventional wisdom is to make a plinth with maximum mass, but I wonder about a skeletal plinth type that the Garrards use (like this). Too heavy a plinth might be the reason why some people feel the SP10s can sound too neutral or 'dead'. This website also seems to suggest this and backs it up with measurements.

    http://qualia.webs.com/plinths.htm
    http://qualia.webs.com/dampingfactorvalues.htm

    Hmmmmm...

    JJ

  2. #2
    Up the hammers ADPully's Avatar
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    JJ -Sehr gut, I see you are back to the wamm with speaker and vinyl player projects in parallel. Ive never heard of panzerholtz before it deffo sounds German to me? Some good research here has got me thinking about a new aluminium and slate plinth for my setup. I very much looking forward to reading more about your panz.
    Last edited by ADPully; 24-10-2010 at 06:17 AM.
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  3. #3
    Founding Wammer jonjin's Avatar
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    Andy, I always have various hifi projects in my head... combinations of what-ifs and wishful thinking mainly. Some reading I've done says the idler and air bearing parralel tracker concept that you have is the best!

    Panzerholz is very dense and heavy with high damping factor, higher than slate. It is essentially beech ply with resin pressed under high pressure.

    At the moment I'm considering a 2 staged approach. Start with a simple skeletal plinth. If it doesn't sound good, the 2 sections can be glued together.

  4. #4
    In the trade Wammer
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    hi, were did you manage to find the Panzerholz ? I think a skeletal plinth will look good what are you thinking of using between the two sections?

  5. #5
    Founding Wammer jonjin's Avatar
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    http://www.ltlewis.co.uk/b15.htm
    Let me know if you're interested in a group buy as one sheet is too much for me.
    They can be tricky to cut. This thread has good info on how to do it...
    http://www.vinylengine.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=27852

    Between the 2 sections would probably be sorbothane feet only because I have them lying around.

    I've also read that Newplast which is basically Play-Doh but oil based makes good damping material!
    Last edited by jonjin; 24-10-2010 at 10:43 AM.

  6. #6
    In the trade Wammer
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    depending on price i may be interested , does sound very good for plinths but also very tough i work with oak quite alot and does tend to blunt your chisels and planes quickly .Good quality blades and router bits will be called for i think ,one other thing is the colour alot darker than birch ply
    Last edited by clk230; 24-10-2010 at 12:26 PM.

  7. #7
    Up the hammers ADPully's Avatar
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    You've piqued my interest also Id also be happy in a group buy situation -Do you know the price? I need only 450 x 300 20 to 25 thick for my deck ?
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  8. #8
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    I have built Kenata style ply plinths for SP10s but have not really been happy with the sound.

    I am now using a sold jarrah plinth with a void around the turntable which can be mass loaded with lead shot.A ply bottom is fixed underneath to hold the lead shot in the void.
    It seems that jarrah is the best timber for such uses.Dense but not too dense and it has a short grain structure.Grado are now using jarrah for their most expensive cartridge bodies.

    If you want to experiment with damping the tonearm from the jarrah you can try different washer materials-lead,acrylic,cork etc but for most tonearms you are best with just the jarrah.

  9. #9
    Founding Wammer jonjin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by THOMO View Post
    I have built Kenata style ply plinths for SP10s but have not really been happy with the sound.

    I am now using a sold jarrah plinth with a void around the turntable which can be mass loaded with lead shot.A ply bottom is fixed underneath to hold the lead shot in the void.
    It seems that jarrah is the best timber for such uses.Dense but not too dense and it has a short grain structure.Grado are now using jarrah for their most expensive cartridge bodies.

    If you want to experiment with damping the tonearm from the jarrah you can try different washer materials-lead,acrylic,cork etc but for most tonearms you are best with just the jarrah.
    This is very interesting! Can you describe the differences in sound between the Kaneta ply and Jarrah? Which wood did you use for the Kaneta?

    I am interested in your idea because the convention has been to have high mass and multi-layered. Eg, Welsh slate is actually composed of layers and taking this one step further would be the Panzerholz which is even higher density. But you seem to have approached this from a different view point with a medium density wood.

    Jarrah seems to be available from eBay as untreated reclaimed railway sleepers. This might actually be cheaper than Panzerholz but will require significantly more work.

    JJ

    edit - slate is higher density than Panzerholz (which makes empirical sense) but I think Panzerholz has higher damping factor
    Last edited by jonjin; 24-10-2010 at 02:11 PM.

  10. #10
    In the trade Wammer speedysteve's Avatar
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    I definitely think there is a balance to be struck. As you say too damped and it may sound lifeless and boring - bit like an SME deck / arm

    Are you going to have armboard? That may give you another option for fine tuning. I bought Coco's SP-10 in slate bed and gunmetal armboard. Before adapting the armboard to fit my arms I tried a birch ply one. Gun metal better for vivid, life and emotion. I have no science in why, just know that it works.

    Love to see some pics...
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  11. #11
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    Either go skeletal, uber light and fast carbon/aerloam/nomex, or massy, don't mix the two...

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by sq225917 View Post
    Either go skeletal, uber light and fast carbon/aerloam/nomex, or massy, don't mix the two...
    This makes sense to me too.The laminated ply type is a medium mass approach.

    The ply I used was Hoop Pine.A bit lighter than Birch ply but still a premium quality ply.
    I will post some photos of my jarrah plinths later.

  13. #13
    Founding Wammer jonjin's Avatar
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    Here's some rather heavy reading into a theory on the benefits of slate vs ply... it then purports that panzerholz will be better but polyester cast resin is the best...

    http://lenco.reference.xooit.fr/t551...s.htm?start=85


  14. #14
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    One thing to consider is that Lenco's & Garrards are chucking out (relatively) huge amounts of vibration which needs to be sunk somehow rather than conveyed to the base of the arm. I'm not sure the SP10 motor needs to be dealt with in quite the same way. I will try some kind of lightweight foam/nomex/cf type plinth one day!

  15. #15
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    Very interesting read JJ, thanks for the links.

    It seems 'cat squirrel' has done some homework & panzerholz does look quite an interesting proposition for the DP6000 plinth.

    I was looking towards an aluminium/acrylic laminate so it will be interesting so read his finds on multi layer composites & there damping factors.

    MJ does bring up a good point though on if the SP10 & my DP6000 for that matter, need that amount of damping!
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  16. #16
    Founding Wammer jonjin's Avatar
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    The plan now is to go modular using Panzerholz. Mainly because I am skint and can only afford one layer! But if you believe the links above, 15-20mm should be best in terms of damping response of the Panzerholz. Obviously, size of the plinth will also make a difference as well. The idea is not to go for high mass but have something which is rigid and non-conducive instead. Panzerholz is basically beech ply with resin injected under high temperature and pressure, so it is essentially a multi-layer composite with 'natural' materials.

    Armboard will be the sliding base made of steel ala SME. It should add further decoupling from the Panzer. It also looks nice and should match the silver TT

    Arm is Ortofon RMG-309 which should match the rest of the neutral system as it has quite a lively and colourful character... luminous as some would say

    JJ

  17. #17
    In the trade Wammer speedysteve's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonjin View Post
    The plan now is to go modular using Panzerholz. Mainly because I am skint and can only afford one layer!
    JJ
    Sounds like you need to sell some S2's
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  18. #18
    Founding Wammer jonjin's Avatar
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    Finally got the Panzerholz up and running. Thanks Russ! Great job

    I am extremely pleased with the way it turned out. The plinth is definitely very damped. Tapping on it and the SP10 motor during playback shows no ringing at all. The overall sound is assured and even in the frequencies. It is definitely a big step up from my previous kitchen slab effort. The arm has also been upgraded to the Ortofon RMG309 which is well built and has bearings that is brilliantly smooth.

    This is the current state of chaos in the living room:



    From top to bottom.

    Fostex 167E speakers (I'm tempted to ENaBl it) with pair of SABA field coils on the top unused (one knackered).
    VALab USB DAC with TDA1543 (silver)
    Decware Zen Triode SE EL84 SET 2W
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    Bent Audio Mu Step-up (Stevens & Billington copper transformers)

    SP10 in Panzerholz plinth (20mm) on top of sorbothane feet
    Ortofon SPU GMe into RMG309 tonearm

    Classic!
    Last edited by jonjin; 24-12-2010 at 09:35 PM.

  19. #19
    Super Wammer alfie2902's Avatar
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    The 12" RMG309 looks great!, But not so sure on the Panzerholz aesthetic in this pic JJ have you any other pics? close up etc?

    Looks aside, as it's the plinths performance that really matters, how do you think it compares to a slate tombstone or two? & did Russ say what it was like to work with?

    It would be nice to hear your thoughts after a few weeks listening & your thoughts on the importance of damping factors now your using the Panzerholz good work JJ.
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  20. #20
    Founding Wammer jonjin's Avatar
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    The plinth was purposely left unfinished as I wasn't sure if I needed to add extra layers or moddify it. Now I know it's not necessary anymore. The aesthetics is typical of plywood plinths, you get the nice wooden grain at the top and the side view of laminations which I like. Colour is almost like walnut, maybe a bit darker. It should buff up nicely with some wood wax. I do need to figure out the arm holder placement.

    Russ didn't mention any difficulty with the material but as you read in the outside posts, Panzerholz is quite difficult to cut. Russ did a great job though and the cuts are very clean but more importantly the right specification.

    Very happy with the sound now. In fact this is me done. I can't believe something this simple was the answer. It's a very even toned deck. No emphasis on any frequencies. I know that with some wood you can get some colouration, eg with my previous oak one, the mid region was slightly more pronounced. And the panzer goes low enough in the bass region. I like to listen to piano for testing as it tells me many things - if there any frequency distortion or abberations. And also it's a very percussive instrument. With this deck, the detail is very good, the attack of the keys being struck and the harmonics coming out of the strings, all are easily heard. I was listening to some Jaco Pastorius on bass yesterday also and it did boogie! Again it had lots of instruments which was very easy to follow.

    Compared to slate? I cannot be so conclusive of course as not ABing and everything else is not the same, but I've heard quite a fair few slate decks myself. I would say the Panzer is as good if not better. It's definitely not dead; in fact very lively with my combination!

    Mery Xmas!

    JJ
    Last edited by jonjin; 25-12-2010 at 04:01 PM.

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