This month's news page will be dedicated to some of our analogue products as the resurgence and success of analogue LP playback components continues at an unabated pace. While some of the products covered are familiar and long-standing in their acclaim and global recognition, others are relatively new additions to the UK and international high-end scene.


The Tri-Planar tonearm must have been one of the most consistent and respected pivoted designs for almost 30 years. Ever since Herb Papier launched his original Tri-Planar design at the Consumer Electronics Show in 1981, it has been unequivocally accepted and ranked as one of the very best tonearm designs of modern times. Incorporating a unique dual-pivot design, the Tri-Planar also addressed 3 vital parameters of any superior tonearm design - vertical bearing positioning at the record plane, adjustable azimuth (lateral angle) and fully adjustable vertical tracking angle (VTA) with facility to alter it while the record is playing.

Fast forward into year 2008 and, after many years of or co-operation both with Herb Papier and his excellent successor Tri Mai, we are still delighted and proud to be distributing the Tri-Planar in the United Kingdom, a product now in its Model VII U-II incarnation. The current version of the Tri-Planar tonearm is available in black or silver finish and all production units coming into the UK (unless specifically ordered otherwise), are equipped with a 1.25m length of a highest quality audio cable (in a single piece from the headshell pins to the output connectors) terminated with the best Cardas Audio RCA plugs. The Tri-Planar tonearm is compatible with virtually any quality turntable and, at the same time, simple and easy to install, particularly thanks to a clever design solution which keeps the arm cable above the subchassis or chassis surface at all times. For more detailed information about the Tri-Planar tonearm visit or contact our office via email or telephone with any questions you may have. Current UK price of the Tri-Planar VII U-II is £3,490 inc VAT.


Although launched back in late 2005, the Kuzma range of quality moving-coil cartridges still seems to have been somewhat neglected by the international audiophile community as well as regular users of high-end analogue equipment. All Kuzma cartridges are produced by a renowned Japanese cartridge manufacturer ZYX to exact specification and sonic performance Franc Kuzma has chosen after evaluating a number of standard ZYX designs for almost a year. The range consists of 4 models (KC1, KC2, KC3 and KC4) ranging in price (in the UK) from £590 to £2,590 inc VAT. The entry-level model has a conveniently higher output of 0.5mV, while remaining variants all adopted an output value of 0.25mV which is sufficient for a noiseless reproduction when most of the very best high-end audio phono preamplifiers (either solid-state or valve) are used and set up appropriately. We have been using the flagship Kuzma KC4 model in our reference system with great pleasure for some months now, and can report excellent behaviour and sonic results in combination with a variety of quality tonearms (SME, Tri-Planar, Kuzma). Without a question, Kuzma moving-coil cartridges deserve to be considered as one of the choices when initial purchase or upgrade of the kind are to be considered within any high-end analogue LP playback package.


Last couple of years have given us an unexpectedly high number of well performing and very affordable phono preamplifiers moving-coil and moving-magnet cartridges. While there is no question in our mind that "there is no such thing as a free lunch" in this world, it is refreshing to be able to confirm that, indeed, a small number of phono stages do nowadays offer very good levels of performance without costing thousands of Pounds, Dollars or Euros. For many years now, we have been marketing the unique Benz-Micro Lukaschek PP1 phono preamplifier which most certainly confirms facts just outlined.

One pretty new phono preamplifier of the kind is most certainly the Rogue Audio STEALTH, a neat, slim-line full size component which does not try to look extremely impressive, but delivers the goods (read: sound) in a most respectful and satisfying manner. A relatively simple, but extremely clever solid-state circuit configured around carefully selected, high quality operational amplifiers (op-amps) generates a very musical, transparent and naturally dynamic sound, while retaining an unusually quiet and 'black' background, even with low output moving-coil cartridges. The STEALTH offer its users a full flexibility in terms of gain, input impedance and capacitance (for MM cartridges) adjustments, which are essential for cartridges of different output levels and load requirements related to the phono stage they are to be used with. Rogue Audio STEALTH phono preamplifier is available in silver or black front panel finish and the UK retail price has been set at £695 inc VAT. For more information about the Stealth and other Rogue Audio products, please visit or contact our office via email or telephone. So far, the only UK review of the Rogue Audio Stealth phono preamplifier has been published in the Issue 58 of the Hifi+ magazine earlier this year.

:: ZANDEN MODEL 1200Mk2 IN "the absolute sound"

We are delighted to let you know that "the absolute sound" magazine published a most interesting and very complimentary review of the Zanden Model 1200Mk2 phono preamplifier in its September/October 2008 issue (184). The Founder and Chairman of TAS, Harry Pearson, expressed himself most favourably about the unique design and features of this state-of-the-art phono preamplifier as well as its overall sound presentation and character. Our warm congratulations to Kazutoshi Yamada of Zanden Audio Systems on another very deserved praise and acclamation!

Tri-Planar VII U-II Tonearm


Kuzma KC4 Cartridge


Rogue Audio Stealth Phono Preamplifier


the absolute sound Issue 184
Zanden Model 1200Mk2 Phono Preamplifier
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