The Fatboy

Re: The Fatboy

Postby Dorian » Mon Jul 30, 2018 4:27 pm

Brf wrote:VPI's official position is that the uni-pivot design offers the greatest level of performance. The gimbal tonearm was developed because some users do not like the "uneasy" feel of uni-pivots, therefore, VPI started to offer a gimbal version. Now some users report that they like the sound of the VPI gimbal over the uni-pivot and vice versa. There is no wrong answer because it all comes down to user preference. Both the gimbal and uni-pivot are proven designs.

Makes sense, thanks Brf.
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Re: The Fatboy

Postby Peer Gynt » Thu Aug 02, 2018 10:21 am

Brf wrote:
VPI's official position is that the uni-pivot design offers the greatest level of performance. The gimbal tonearm was developed because some users do not like the "uneasy" feel of uni-pivots, therefore, VPI started to offer a gimbal version. Now some users report that they like the sound of the VPI gimbal over the uni-pivot and vice versa. There is no wrong answer because it all comes down to user preference. Both the gimbal and uni-pivot are proven designs.


I agree.

With the new Dual Pivot installed on Tuesday, I am rethinking my preference.

The gimbal is still easier for me to setup ... but that’s just me.

But the dual pivot modified unipivot really sounds great. So I was firmly in the gimbal camp, and now I’ve got a foot in both.

I am not a VPI historian, but I can tell you what I remember.

1. The linear tracker that Lou Souther developed, which like the unipivot, has less constraint than a gimbal, worked better on the VPI table than on anything else. Lou had a special bond to the VPI.

2. When unipivots started to appear, like Graham, they sounded better on a VPI than on anything else.

I think it was a stroke of brilliance to make an integral arm to go with the tables, and unipivots are simple to manufacture. The VTA tower concept, and its attendant mounting strategy, makes it less likely that attempts to mount arms from other manufacturers will be fruitful. By offering a gimbal option, VPI is now potentially appealing to the whole world of customers who do not have their hearts set on a suspended subchassis, like Linn.

I can’t wait for the listening showroom/house to open.

In Leicestershire there is a Linn dealer called Cymbiosis. It is owned and operated by Peter Swain, the brightest turntable fettler on the retail sales level I’ve ever met. Peter keeps 18 or more LP12s in different states of specification so that at the time of your appointment, he can really give you a chance to hear the effect of the specific upgrade you’re interested in.

Related to the unipivot vs gimbal discussion, Linn are 100% in the gimbal camp. Their arms are all gimbals.

Aftermarket companies. Naim and Tiger Paw have produced unipivots specifically for the LP12.

Peter has maybe 6 tables set up with these arms. Why?

First so that customers can hear and compare. He believes, as BRF and I agree, some will prefer one, others the other.

Second, he keeps keeps demo cartridges ready on armwands for quick insertion during cartridge auditions.

He observes that it won’t sound the same as it would on a gimbal, but it gives you a very good sense about the flavor of the cartridges being compared.

I wish all turntable dealers could be this committed to their customers.

The VPI listening house has the potential to be a great start, and the Mecca of sorts for turntable aficionados in the US.
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