Laser Turntable for $15,000

by Paz

Laser turntable.

This a laser gadget that can burn a hole in your pocket, but at least it leaves your vinyl discs undamaged.

I really miss music on vinyl. I still have 50 or so LPs in one of my Mum’s cupboards and she keeps nagging me about it them but I’ve never let her get rid of them because I knew a gadget like this would come one day.

The problem with vinyl music was that it was too easily scratched or warped. I’m guessing that many of you have grown up with audio CDs and have never had to suffer, listening to your favourite album track with a “tuck tich”, “tuck tich” sound playing on top of it.

When I switched to CD, I thought the music was a bit “tinny” and the picture covers were too small, but it was a price worth paying for the chance to listen to music unblemished by hissing, clicking, and scratching noises.

The problems with the classic turntable were often produced by wear from the diamond-tipped needle. With the ELP Laser Turntable there’s no contact between the probe and the delicate vinyl surface. The technology’s quite complex though. The turntable uses 5 lasers, two lasers to centre the probe, one laser to control the height, and the remaining two pick up the stereo music channels.

The light from the laser probe is reflected off the walls of the vinyl groove with a deflection angle that can be translated into a sound signal. As well as being a non-contact probe, the laser avoids electro-mechanical distortions that you would otherwise get from a needle and cartridge. In fact the audio reproduction is claimed to be the closest to perfection that you can get from vinyl.

I’m feeling very nostalgic now; I think I’ll give my Mum a call and find out if she’s still got my LP collection at home – maybe she’ll lend me $15,000 to free up that cupboard space :) .

Found via Gadget Madness and Tech Digest.

5 reviews or comments

mck Says: May 19, 2006 at 3:21 pm

Heh, I don’t even own a CD, let alone anything on vinyl, all my music is on my hard drive. :P

djpromo Says: May 19, 2006 at 6:07 pm

i agree that music sounds much better on vinyl, but the whole point of vinyl records is so that you can play with them (for me at least). this takes all the fun out of it, and that kind of money can buy you a room full of technics.

Dual VHS and DVD recorder from Sony » Coolest Gadgets Says: June 2, 2006 at 3:10 pm

[…] Another retro gadget closely on the heels of the laser turntable we featured last week. From Sony, this is a dual VHS video and DVD recorder due to go on sale in the next few days for around $300. […]

Laser Turntable tumbles in price, now only $10K » Coolest Gadgets Says: March 15, 2007 at 1:47 am

[…] reported on the $15,000 laser turntable back in May of last year. Now there’s great news for all you audiophiles on a budget, as the […]

Tecno Says: December 16, 2007 at 12:03 am

Ha HA… 1500!!!!, im buy a old turntable in 15 $us, only I want the laser head, but I buy a car with the cost. Ridiculous.

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