Acoustic Signature's WOW turntable is the model that made the German manufacturer famous worldwide. It is the missing link between the Primus turntable with the TA-500 tonearm and the WOW XL turntable, which explains why both models share features in common.
As always, to guarantee a perfectly reliable and easy-to-use product, Acoustic Signature uses few features, focusing on the machining quality of the parts to ensure a high quality and lasting sound reproduction.
The design of Acoustic Signature's WOW turntable relies on a very rigid multi-layer wood base. The surface has a glossy black or white acrylic plate. This highly elegant finish contributes to the product's excellent rigidity and hence neutrality. The Tidorfolon bearing sits in the centre. It has two oil-saturated brass rings. This principle, invented and designed by Acoustic Signature, is machined with the greatest precision possible. The bearing and ball-bearing are adjusted to perfection! The rotational movement is silent and generates no friction whatsoever. This great piece of work is covered by a 10-year warranty!
The bearing holds the high-precision machined aluminium platter. It is milled digitally from a 24 mm thick aluminium block. Its vibratory behaviour was improved by adding material with damping properties on the underside. It weighs 4.5 kg! It is topped by a leather platter mat with 20 round holes.
According to Gunther Frohnhöfer, a vinyl turntable motor should have enough energy to drive the platter and keep it running without affecting it while in operation. Therefore, Acoustic Signature uses a custom-designed DC motor developed by the leading German motor manufacturer. It is associated with a control circuit that provides perfect speed stability. Playback speed (33 and 45 RPM) can be adjusted electronically. Acoustic Signature specifically opted for the external DC power supply unit for its reliability and build quality.
The manufacturer's great tonearm, the TA-500, takes care of playback! This is the first model entirely produced by Acoustic Signature. Don't judge it by its (very competitive) price, it has all the ingredients of a very high-end tonearm. As the name suggests, the Dual Carbon tube consists of two hollow carbon tubes (one inside the other). This provides excellent internal damping and great rigidity, keeping the weight reasonable. It accommodates a perfectly machined aluminium headshell. The horizontal and vertical bearings use SKF's miniature precision roller bearings. Despite their cost, their build quality guarantees optimum quality and precision. They are encapsulated at a very accurate pressure to prevent play and friction. The anti-skate is adjusted using a small weight with a nylon thread. The system is simple, efficient and reliable.
The internal and external wiring is a single 6N copper cable harness. It is continuous from the phono cartridge pins to the RCA plugs. This minimises signal loss and optimises transparency.
We used it with a high-end MM cartridge and two MC cartridges, one worth under €700 and the other over €1,000. The personality of the WOW is quite difficult to determine! For a very simple reason: its neutrality showcases the cartridge's personality. It's as if the cartridge was connected directly to the Hi-Fi speakers! Playback is stripped down and free from colouration that can be often heard on competitor vinyl turntables. However, its balance is consistent and certainly not dark! To the contrary, it singles out every detail with great ease! It also boasts great dynamics and the players are perfectly in place. There is no bias in terms of register. The bass is detailed, articulate and very authentic. Its quality does justice to the mids. The vocals are prominent and perfectly textured, irrespective of the musical style. As you play record after record, you just can't seem to find any defect! We reckon the new TA-500 tonearm has something to do with the amazing performance.
The latest version of Acoustic Signature's WOW vinyl turntable is not only beautifully built, it also delivers a top-class sonic performance! Acoustic Signature's WOW turntable completely convinced us by its musicality and ease of use! It is definitely a serious contender within this price range! Franck
Power supply: external DC
Spindle/bearing: High precision Tidorfolon
Chassis: 25 mm of MDF/Chipwood sandwich + 3 mm acrylic
Platter: 24 mm thick aluminium/ 4.5 kg
Platter mat: leather
Speeds: 33 and 45 rpm
Tonearm length: 9 inches
Effective mass: 9.3 g
Tube: Dual Carbon
Mounting distance: 222 mm
Phono cable: 6N copper
Cable length: 1.5 m
Dimensions: 43 x 13 x 34 cm