TAS-The Absolute Sound 2012 Editors Choice Awards - Clearaudio takes out an amazing 13 awards

 

We would like to congratulate Clearaudio on the significant number of awards they achieved at theis years 2012 TAS awards including: 
4x cartridge awards 
5x turntable awards 
1x phonostage award 
1x record cleaning machine award
 2x accessories awards 

Clearaudio Basic Plus MM/MC Phonostage @ US$1000
The Basic Plus is everything a modestly priced phonostage should be. It’s compact yet elegantly finished. It’s switchable between mm and mc cartridges. A robust outboard power supply is included and yields superb isolation from hum and RFI. Most significantly, the unit delivers a spacious and delightfully resolved soundstage with heart-stopping bass resolution. If you want the last word in isolation, consider adding the Clearaudio Accu+, an outboard NiMH battery supply (US$900). NG, 206

Clearaudio Maestro Wood MM cartridge @ US$1200
Sharing the solid Boron cantilever and stylus of the esteemed Insider mc cartridge, the Maestro Wood, a moving-magnet design, gushes sweet sonics like squeezing a ripe, red plum. But it’s not a softy in the dynamics department, nor does it smear inner details. Whether it rounds transient details and rhythms too much will be a question of taste. Rated at 3.6mV, it won’t tax most phonostages, either. NG, 186

Clearaudio Concerto v2 MC cartridge @ US$2750
This is the entry-level cartridge in Clearaudio’s “super-class” of moving coils, and super it is! The Concerto uses wood to add a touch of warmth and richness, yet retains the superb focus, resolution, transient quickness, and top-end extension that have been hallmarks of Clearaudio’s reference cartridges. JH, 167

Clearaudio Stradivari v2 MC cartridge@ US$3750
In his recent survey of five moving-coil pickups, PS gave the Stradivari his personal “Golden Mean” award because it ideally mediates warmth and detail, control and relaxation, liveliness and listenability, at virtually no sacrifice in tonal neutrality. There is an organic rightness about this pickup that elevates it to referencecaliber. PS, 172

Clearaudio Goldfinger Statement MC cartridge @ US$15,000
Simply the best—which is to say, the most sonically complete—cartridge JV has yet heard. Peter Suchy has here managed to combine all of the virtues of past Goldfingers (their phenomenal low-level resolution, their tremendous energy, their vast soundstaging) with a previously unattained natural richness of tone color to produce a cartridge unlike any other. Like a cross between a Koetsu and a Clearaudio, the Statement will appeal to just about any kind of listener (provided he’s got enough do-re-mi). One of JV’s references. JV, 216

Clearaudio Double Matrix Professional Record-Cleaning Machine @ US$4000
Here is a product that improves upon its predecessor, the Double Matrix, in every way for substantially less money. Like the Double Matrix, the Professional will clean both sides of an LP simultaneously, which results in a genuine savings of time, labor, and boredom. Unlike the Double Matrix, which proved to be quirky in its operation, the Professional’s motor never cogs; it disperses fluid evenly over both sides of the record being cleaned; it scrubs and vacuums in two directions; and the speed of the platter is variable from very slow to quite fast via a control knob. A no-brainer for well-heeled analog hounds.

Clearaudio Concept @ US$1500 with Concept MM cartridge or US$2000 with Concept MC cartridge 
The Clearaudio Concept turntable package does everything but unbox itself. Preset at the factory, this spinner features a svelte belt-drive chassis, a stunning friction-free, magnetic-bearing Verify tonearm, and the Concept moving-magnet cartridge. The build and finish of this Germanmade ’table are superior. For sheer musical engagement and superb speed stability, it’s the one to beat in this price range. WG, 205

Clearaudio Performance SEP Turntable  w/ Verify tonearm  @ US$2800 
The Performance’s precision ceramic/magnetic bearing allows its platter to float on a cushion of air, contributing to this turntable system’s startling transparency, openness, and clarity, very good native speed stability, and low noise floor. Its improved Verify arm is equally at home with highperformance moving coils or modest moving magnets. As with most mass-loaded designs, a rigid stand is required. JH, 180

Clearaudio Ovation/Clarify Turntable @ US$5500
Continuing the trend of bundling together ever more sophisticated turntables, arms, and cartridges into fine-sounding but relatively hassle-free combinations, Clearaudio recently released what may be the most ambitious such package yet. With a magneticbearing arm and Talisman v2 Gold cartridge, the Ovation is a terrificsounding combo. It is very well balanced, with excellent detail that emerges from silent backgrounds, exceptional pitch stability, and sweet extended highs—if not the  powerhouse bottom-end found in the highest-end models. WG, 216

Clearaudio Innovation Wood Turntable @ US$11,000
The dual-plinthed Innovation Wood combines some stunning innovations with Clearaudio’s ceramic/magnetic bearing (CMB) technology and lightweight yet extremely dense Panzerholz to damp resonances. It uses a massive stainless-steel subplatter, which, when coupled with a new DC motor with optical speed control, results in superb speed accuracy. JH has not heard any belt-driven ’table best the Innovation Wood in this critical area. Solo instruments and voices have such rock-solid pitch stability that you’ll swear you are listening to a direct-drive ’table without the motor noise. JH, 204

Clearaudio Statement Turntable @ US$150,000
This over-the-top, 4'-tall, 770-pound turntable/arm costs more than an S-Class Mercedes, but delivers a level of LP playback that is unmatched in reviewer Don Saltzman’s experience. The Statement is utterly quiet, stable, and capable of extracting the finest detail from record grooves. DS, 186 (see also HP’s Workshop in Issue 186 and this issue)

Clearaudio Precision Bubble Level @ US$60
Turntables sound their best when they are level—something careful listeners will want to check at setup time and verify periodically. (Remember: Furniture and floors sometimes settle a bit over time.) Use a good multi-axis spirit level such as this one from Clearaudio to keep your ’table on the level.

Clearaudio Strobo-disc and Strobe Light @ US$60 and US$200
Featuring grooves that create the additional stylus drag necessary to accurately measure your turntable’s speed—while at the same time doubling as a cartridge break-in device—Clearaudio’s Strobo-disc and Strobe Light are great tools for the serious vinyl junkie.