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Teac TN-4D, a very special turntable

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Dale Davies ▼ | June 21, 2019
The Teac TN-4D is a direct-drive, analogue turntable with an elegant, low-profile design.
Teac TN-4D
Audio   An analogue turntable that achieves highly accurate rotational speeds
Teac TN-4DThis was made possible by the use of a newly-developed brushless DC servo motor. This motor with feedback control system achieves crystal-locked speed stability and smoother rotation while also eliminating cogging. Cogging is a phenomenon in which the periodic attraction of the armature and rotor inside the motor is dependent on the rotation angle, resulting in a fine pulsing. For example, if you turn the axle of a motor with your fingers, you'll feel the rotation occurring in steps. This phenomenon is known as cogging.

Teac TN-4DIn order to eliminate cogging on a direct-drive turntable, a motor needs to have large numbers of poles, along with complex circuits and a mechanism to achieve smooth rotation. As a result, most turntable direct-drive units are relatively large, which is why the resulting turntables are so bulky. This low-profile DC servo motor also allowed Teac to design a plinth that’s extraordinarily sleek and stylish compared to that of most other direct drive turntables. The new tonearm employs knife-edge, pivot-point bearings, developed in collaboration with SAEC Corporation, a world-famous, high-end tonearm manufacturer.

Teac TN-4DThe result is an insightful, high-resolution sound quality that tonearms with conventional bearings can’t match. Partnering it is a carefully designed PHONO EQ amplifier that allows you to directly connect the turntable to the line-level inputs of your existing hi-fi system. A high quality NJM8080 op-amp, specially designed for hi-fi applications by New Japan Radio Corporation, is employed to convey the finest of musical detail. Additionally, a USB port on the back panel allows you to digitally archive your vinyl collection via your PC/Mac.

Teac TN-4DTo extract the music from your vinyl, the TN-4D comes with a highly-regarded Oyster MM cartridge from SUMIKO – a legendary American cartridge manufacturer. Noted for its innate musicality, the cartridge comes pre-installed on the headshell at the factory, allowing near ‘plug and play’ operation. The S-shaped tonearm, meanwhile, allows for quick cartridge/headshell swaps, so users can alter the sound quality by experimenting with different cartridges, if the desire takes them.